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Why do dogs develop urinary tract infections and what can we do about it?

If you’ve been keeping up with the blog, you know the signs and symptoms of urinary issues. We hope you are better prepared for your veterinary visits!

You might be wondering how your dog developed a urinary tract infection. Let’s break it down.

Bacterial Urinary Tract Infections

A bacterial urinary tract infection is often a result of bacteria from the rectum or feces being transferred to the urogenital tract. Note: your dog often cleans its hind end and licks bacteria from one area to another! This is most common in female dogs because of their anatomy. In females, the rectum is much closer to the urethra than in males.

Female Dogs

Additionally, in females, especially those with a recessed vulva, small amounts of urine can become trapped in the skin folds. Then, normal skin bacteria begin to overgrow because of the moist, warm, dark environment.

Chronic Conditions

Endocrine and metabolic disorders such as diabetes mellitus and hyperadrenocorticism (Cushing’s), that often result in an excessive production of urine, may also predispose a dog to urinary tract infections.

Abnormal Anatomy

Ectopic ureters (ureter ends at a site other than the bladder) and hind limb paralysis are rare but may also predispose a dog to urinary tract infections.

If you suspect your dog has a urinary tract infection, go to the veterinarian sooner than later. If these infections progress and ascend, or travel upward toward the kidneys, the complications can be very serious.

How Can I Keep My Dog’s Urinary Tract Healthy?

Your veterinarian may prescribe a special diet or medication to help your dog’s urinary issues. Nutraceuticals (non-prescription supplements), can also be a great way to improve urinary tract health! My top pick is…

Crananidin, made by Nutramax, contains cranberry extract and proanthocyanidins. Let’s just call those PACs. Crananidin prevents bacteria from attaching to the bladder wall, so it can help prevent urinary tract infections. Cranberry extract can also help break down bacteria. It is safe for dogs of all ages and sizes, does not interact with any other medications, and has no known adverse side effects.

There are a lot of cranberry-only supplements on the market for dogs. Crananidin is special because of the added PACs!

Do you use a urinary supplement for your dog? Which one? Does it help?

Disclosure: If you make a purchase through my Amazon or Chewy affiliate links, I will earn a commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.

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