The most common cause of blood in your dog’s urine is a urinary tract infection, or 'UTI'. Here we look at what other conditions may bring about such a symptom and what best home remedies there are
A canine UTI is asymptomatic, which means that it is not accompanied by obvious symptoms. You will probably not even realise your dog has an infection unless you see blood in her urine.
Why is there blood in my dog’s urine?
It is sometimes very hard to see whether your dog’s urine contains blood. The instant it hits the ground her urine is more or less invisible. You can see blood if you look carefully at the stream of urine she produces, but the colour the urine can sometimes mask the presence of blood.
If you do notice blood in her urine you must try to not panic about it.
The presence of blood more often than not signifies an irritation or inflammation of the urinary tract (the tube through which urine passes from the bladder to the outside world).
Female dogs are more susceptible to this kind of infection but they are not its exclusive victims. A UTI is a moderately serious complaint but if it is left untreated can cause a number of very serious problems.
Blood in urine can also be a sign of:
- Urinary stones
- Kidney stones
- Kidney disease
- Prostate abnormalities
- Parasitic illness
UTIs are relatively harmless (in their early stages) but the other illnesses we have listed here can cause acute pain and suffering, and if not dealt with as a matter of urgency can endanger your dog’s life. Your vet will ask you to bring with you a sample of your dog’s urine.
Conventional or alternative medicine?
Once the vet has determined the cause of the bleeding they either prescribe medication or recommend a regimen of treatment. If you do not wish your dog to be treated by conventional means you should inform your vet.
However, you must be aware that of all of the above illnesses only UTIs have been known to be cured by home remedies, and not all UTIs have responded to homeopathic treatments.
Before you start your dog on a course of homeopathic remedies you will want to be certain that she has nothing more serious than a UTI. Your vet will use urinalysis and a full physical exam to determine this. If this is not the first instance of a UTI a more thorough investigation of the causes must also be carried out.
What are the home remedies for a UTI?
After your vet confirms a UTI as the cause of blood in your dog’s urine you may want to consider a home remedy. Home remedies are worthwhile to consider for two reasons:
- They can more safely ease pain and discomfort than conventional NSAIDs medicines
- They have been known to cure some early-stage infections
Cranberries contain ingredients that are well-known for fighting infections especially of the urinary tract and bladder. Studies of cranberry extract conclude of its use against canine UTIs that it kills bacteria.
Apple cider vinegar
Adding one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to your dog’s water twice a day can help to combat a UTI. You should also encourage your dog to drink more water. It is recommended that you provide your dog with a second bowl of water not containing vinegar, just in case she doesn’t like the taste of the vinegar!
Soaking your dog in a hot bath for ten minutes may prevent a worsening of the infection. Wash her with dog shampoo (not a human soap or shampoo) and pay particular attention to her genital area (keeping these areas clean will prevent further bacterial and fungal infections).
A homeopathic tincture called mercurius has been hailed by DIY vets as the miracle cure for a UTI. Mercurius (a much diluted derivative of mercury) is sold in pellet form by canine homeopaths.
People often use mercurius to treat sore throats and excessive salivation. D-mannose is a formula designed especially for animals with a UTI; D-mannose contains a derivative of the cranberry.
You may be able to prevent your dog’s UTI. Making sure she always has enough water to drink, keeping her well-groomed and clean, and making sure she urinates regularly are three ways to ward off bacterial infections of her bladder and urethra.
If you discover these homeopathic remedies to be effective, you may not need to rely on your vet to prescribe conventional medicine. However, if you have tried and failed to treat the UTI by these means you must consider resorting to medicines recommended by your vet.
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