If your house trained dog is suddenly having accidents, your pet may have urinary incontinence, a common disorder in spayed females and older dogs. A visit to your veterinarian will distinguish urinary incontinence from inappropriate urination, which is a behavioral problem, and to rule out medical conditions, such as a bladder infection or kidney stones. Arthritis or injury to the back affecting nerves to the bladder can also cause incontinence. Understanding your pet’s condition can help you to find the best treatment available for your pet. Here are some signs that your pet may have urinary incontinence:
* There are wet spots where the dog was sleeping or lying down.
* You detect a strong odor of stale urine from your pet’s hindquarters and the area might be wet.
* You notice your pet licking at the genital area and the skin may be irritated.
* Your pet is constantly dribbling urine while awake and walking around. You might also notice a small squirt of urine when your pet rises from sitting or any other effort that causes the abdomen to tense such as barking, or jumping up.
* You are finding puddles or urine stains on the carpet.
* You notice leaking during periods of heat when your pet drinks large quantities of water, putting pressure on the bladder (this can be helped by putting out cold water or ice cubes in the water to reduce the intake, along with the use of HomeoPet Leaks No More).
Urinary incontinence is typically seen in medium to large breed, female dogs that have been spayed, but it can occur in any dog or cat, male or female. After spaying or neutering, or as the pet gets older, hormone production decreases and the sphincter muscles that control the bladder are weakened. When the animal relaxes, urine leaks out.
Hormone supplements or phenylpropanolamine are most commonly prescribed, but these have possible side effects. Estrogen may cause bone marrow depletion and the possibility of false heat, and testosterone may increase aggression in males. Phenylpropanolamine, which was found to cause strokes and cerebral hemorrhages in humans and was banned by the FDA from the human market in 1999, is a non-hormonal medication that stimulates the fight or flight response, meaning that it can cause irritability and restlessness. According to HomeoPet, their 'Leaks No More' is a natural, homeopathic remedy that safely and effectively treats urinary incontinence, without the unwanted side effects.