Dog Bladder Infection
When fully distended, a dog’s bladder occupies a considerable area in the abdomen. It has a capacity far greater than that of many other species. Perhaps because of its size, a dog’s bladder seems particularly vulnerable to injury. Dogs that are struck by automobiles especially those that have just been let out of the house to relieve themselves often have their bladders ruptured. The bladder is frequently punctured by gunshots, ruptured by kicks or blows, and sometimes even by falls.
A normal bladder shrinks to a very small size after urination. Its walls are thin and pliable. When it is inflamed, however, it feels thick and hard. This fact sometimes leads to errors in diagnosing problems. For example, a bladder filled with stones also has greatly inflamed walls and is likely to give one the impression that the stones within the arc are larger than they are.
Ruptured Bladder. A dog with a ruptured bladder soon exhales Theodora of urine on its breath; its temperature falls; it collapses and, unless quickly and effectively treated, dies in a short time. If an injured dog is brought to the veterinarian in time, surgery may be able to save it. After flushing out the abdomen, leaving a catheter in the urethra so that the urine will drain away as fast as it enters. Intravenous fluids are helpful and antibacterial medications are a must.
Bladder Infection. Common in dogs, especially in bitches, is a bladder infection. They may go about urinating far more frequently than normal, and as if they felt a burning sensation, they may even cry as they urinate. The condition is called cystitis. Occasionally a little blood may follow the urine; the temperature may rise a degree or two. When ado has been affected for several days, the urine may appear stringy or cloudy from pus and blood. Males show similar symptoms and may stand for long periods with a hind leg lifted and only produce drops of urine.
It is not safe, however, to assume that because you see these symptoms your pet is necessarily affected with cystitis; it may have stones called calculi. It is best to consult your veterinarian in such cases and have him or her make the necessary diagnosis.
Twisted Bladder. In perinea! or an inguinal hernia, the bladder sometimes twists about and protrudes into the hernia under the skin. It fills with urine and, unless it is tapped and replaced, the dog dies. This is also a matter for your veterinarian.
Bladder and Urethral Stones. A great deal can be told about the bladder by the palpation of a skillful and experienced practitioner. The layperson ordinarily cannot diagnose ailments by this method, although occasionally one does, for example, the dog owner who brought us his pet, saying that he had felt bladder stones “like gravel that crunches together.” As it happened, the stones were a variety that was not visible by X-ray, but they could be felt and they were surgically re-loved.
When a dog owner sees some of the stones that a veterinarian has removed from a pet’s bladder, he or she often can scarcely believe it.”I-low did they ever get there?” Or, “I never knew my dog ate stones.” A stone that was eaten couldn’t possibly get into the bladder. It would pass through the alimentary canal. Urinary stones are gradual accumulations of mineral matter in the urine around initial crystals that formed and in some way failed to pass out with the urine. Not gallbladder stones arc of the same composition. Some fail to show on X-rays, whereas most types appear as distinct as do bones.
Stones are found in all sizes, from tiny crystals to huge accretions as large as hen’s eggs. Often a bladder is filled with assorted sizes, from fine gravel up to huge stones. The surfaces of the stones vary too. Mo stares smooth from constant rubbing, but occasionally a stone may be as rough as coarse sandpaper and more or less adherent to the bladder wall, the inner surface of which has become pitted to correspond with the irregularities of the stone.
Weight alone can make a load of stones uncomfortable and probably somewhat painful. More serious, of course, is the fact that they irritate the bladder, causing it to bleed. They afford a perfect environment for bacteria to multiply among them. But the worst feature is the tendency of the small stones to work into the urethra. At the point where the urethra joins the bladder, a small stone can easily form an obstruction. In males, the most common place for a stoppage is just behind the bone in the penis. There the urethra runs through the bone. And although a stone could pass down the elastic urethra, it cannot pass through this rigid bone, and so it lodges behind it.
The only way to remove large stones is by surgery followed by bladder antiseptics. When the operation is performed by a skillful surgeon, mortality is low. If the dog is nursed at home, close supervision and faithful medication are essential. If your veterinarian gives you drugs to administer and the dog vomits them, report that promptly. If you can’t make your pct swallow the prescribed medicine, let the vet know. Don’t take your dog home to be treated unless you can follow unequivocally the veterinarian’s directions.
In females, as well as in males, bladder stones become lodged in the urethra, but females may pass them upon occasion, which is painful. It is sometimes possible to massage them out by inserting the finger into the vagina. In some cases, your veterinarian will be able to dilate the urethra while the dog is anesthetized and catch hold of the stories with the tip of long slender forceps and remove them. If this doesn’t work, the vet can operate.
After being removed, stones are analyzed to determine by their composition how best to prevent the problem from returning. One theory suggests infection is necessary for the development of stories, so it behooves us to check and recheck a dog that has undergone surgery to treat any infection promptly if it arises.
Urinary Incontinence. Incontinence is usually called “dribbling.”While it is a common complaint with older spayed bitches, this is-agreeable condition that occurs at all ages and in both sexes. It should not be confused with the reaction so common in some dogs of squatting and wetting or wetting without squatting, from the joy of seeing a familiar person or from fear or excitement. These are nervous reactions based largely on heredity. Some male dogs, some unsprayed females, and many that have been spayed are unable to retain a full bladder of urine. The sphincter muscle is weak, and as soon as the bladder begins to stretch, urine leaks from the urethra.
Bladder irritations as well as weak sphincters may be the cause. Stones, infections, and adhesions can also produce the same result. One of our patients, a female Miniature Schnauzer, has passed a pea-size or larger stone about once every two weeks for years. The owners have two teacupfuls on their mantelpiece as proof.
Another patient, a St. Bernard male, had every indication of a stone obstructing the urethra at the bladder. If he strained to urinate, it appeared he was forcing a stone into the urethra, effectively blocking the passage of urine. When he ceased straining urine dribbled out as he walked along. A catheter relieved the bladder of urine and no stone could be found. Apparently,, a flap of sorts was present which acted as a valve preventing the voluntary passage of urine. The solution was simple. If the dog urinated frequently he had no problem, but holding it for ten hours as he had with the owner at work produced the problem.
The dog should be kept outside where he could urinate at will while the owner was away for long periods. The condition was thus corrected. After a few weeks lie was able to retain his urine for twelve that once a dog is conditioned or habituated to eat only certain foods it is almost useless for experimental study of nutritional wisdom. If dog owners had only a little realization of the effect of food habits on dogs, those who judge the value of food by how greedily a dog eats it would revise their opinions completely. Investigators have consistently found that the taste test is nothing but a test of previous conditioning. It is difficult to understand why dog owners should sometimes be so reluctant to accept this fact.
Anyone working with humans knows that undesirable habits in food selection are amazingly difficult to eradicate. A man is asked, “Why don’t you eat cabbage? It’s good for you.” Because if I ate it I might like it, and I hate the stuff” is his reply. How many people prefer bread made of white flour to whole wheat bread? And yet it is distinctly inferior in value. Most of the better proteins, iron, manganese, magnesium, copper, calcium, thiamine, and riboflavin are removed. But white flour keeps better, so flour and bread manufacturers have conditioned the public to prefer it Fish is as valuable a food as meat and costs much less, yet many people refuse to eat it – and some have even trained their omnivorous pets to reject it.
A remarkable number of people project their own peculiar food habits on their dogs. Animals can’t reason, even as poorly as the man who won’t eat cabbage, but it is extremely easy to build up likes and dislikes by habit formations that are difficult to break. Many dogs, raised on dehydrated dog foods, had to be starved for several days so that they would eat meat, and vice versa.
The point is that every pet should be trained to eat what is set before it, as long as the provisions are wholesome and nutritious. All experience indicates that, given a very large assortment of foods, any unconditioned puppy will settle down to a certain diet of foods it likes, mostly what is good for it. Among these might be the smelly contents of a steer’s intestines or overripe meat. But since most of us can’t offer such tidbits, or live in the same house with a dog that has eaten them, it behooves us to remember how important training is in the cultivation of appetite. A puppy reared on a diet of just one dehydrated-meal dog food mixed with water, and given nothing else, enjoys every meal.
See more: Dog Blood Vessels
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