Have you noticed a bit of blood in your dog’s urine? If this just happens from time to time, there usually isn’t anything to worry about. However, this may be a sign that there is something more serious going on if you’re seeing more than a small trace of blood in your dog’s pee or if it’s happening more often. If you do notice your dog is peeing blood, you should have him/her examined by your veterinarian.
What Causes Blood In A Dog’s Urine?
There are several things that can cause blood in a dog’s urine. The following are the most common causes and how they are treated.
Urinary Tract Infection (URI)
Blood in the urine is a symptom of a URI. Other symptoms may include frequent and/or painful urination, genital licking, straining to urinate, and fever. This condition is easily treatable with antibiotics from your vet and dogs should feel better within a few days.
Bladder stones are a common condition for dogs with the two most common bladder stones being comprised of struvite and calcium oxalate. This condition can cause painful urination, as well as blood in the urine. Although small stones can be treated with changes to a dog’s diet, larger stones may require surgical removal.
Generally not a problem if your dog has been neutered; however, un-neutered dogs can develop a prostate infection, which may lead to blood in the urine, an enlarged prostate, painful or difficult urination, little to no appetite, and fever. This condition must be treated and is easier to fix the sooner it is diagnosed.
This is natural for female dogs that are un-spayed as they are having menstrual cycles that cause them to bleed. Starting from around six months of age, a female dog will go into heat leading to some vaginal swelling and bleeding that lasts for around a week to 10 days.
Pyometra is another problem that only occurs in female dogs that have not been spayed. This condition can be confused with the heat cycle since the symptoms are similar. Along with blood in the urine, you may also notice vaginal discharge that is filled with mucus and smells foul.
This can be a life-threatening condition and requires antibiotics and fluids as treatment. In many cases, the uterus is surgically removed.
Other things that can cause blood in a dog’s urine include tick-borne diseases, poisons (e.g. Warfarin), bladder trauma, and cancer in the urinary or reproductive system.
What To Do If Your Dog Is Peeing Blood
If you start to notice blood in any of your dog’s urine, it is important that you take them in for a veterinary examination right away. Do not panic, and make sure that you are able to tell the vet about any other symptoms that the dog may be experiencing.
The vet will want a urine sample, so be sure to collect a couple of teaspoons full in a sterile container, and label the container with your name, the pet’s name, and the time that the sample was collected.
Urine samples should be as fresh as possible and ideally no more than four hours old. Definitely keep the sample refrigerated if there is going to be any delay in getting to the vet.
If you are unable to collect a urine sample before visiting the vet, you should try to prevent your dog from peeing before going inside so your vet will be able to collect a fresh sample.
In most cases, the problem is likely to be minor and easily treatable. You should make sure to have your dog’s medical history ready since it will help a vet diagnose the problem. If you are seeing an emergency vet, your regular vet should have all the necessary information in their files.
But, if you are visiting an emergency clinic or a new vet, they will not have the information that may be necessary for a proper diagnosis.
Prevent Future Urinary Problems
The health of your pet is as important as your own health so it is important to watch them closely for any potential changes. This includes looking for blood in their urine. If you do notice blood in your dog’s urine or stool, you should contact your vet right away. The sooner the problem is diagnosed, the sooner it can be treated and you can resume living a happy and healthy life with your pets.