Wednesday 11 December 2013

Cold outside...damp inside

Last Thursday while out performing my farmyard duties Hope was inside peeing.  Now, Hope is 13 years old and on heart medication that causes her to drink a lot and pee a lot, but, even so, she has never soiled her crate, or, peed in the house.  I cleaned up, cursed myself a bit, but didn't think too much of it.  Come evening she started trotting back and forth to the door, all evening, then she squatted and strained to pee in the house before bedtime.  I called my vet first thing in the morning, took in a urine sample which showed a very bad bladder infection.  I was somewhat relieved as I was imagining all sorts of problems.  Hope was in a lot of pain, panting, pacing, hunched up and straining to urinate all day and night.  By Saturday evening, after a day and a half of meds, she looked a little brighter, tail not clamped and she was no longer hunched over in pain.  But, OH the peeing!!!  If you have ever had an adult incontinent dog in your home you can feel my pain, I tried dog diapers with a pad inside, these would overflow within minutes.  Next step, incontinence pads....EVERYWHERE.  Although this was working to keep my furniture clean, it was upsetting to see Hope soiling herself, and worse she had no idea she was peeing until she was soaked,  poor girl.
Another call to the vets yesterday to confirm that this was not normal behaviour after almost five days of meds for a bladder infection.  Last night I started her on Propalin, a medication to help dogs regain control of their bladders.
Today, Hope is feeling good, tail wagging, a little happy roll and the peeing has slowed dramatically.  Fingers crossed that we are on the way to being able to remove the pee pads from my furniture.

This is the first bladder infection I have had with one of my dogs, and other then Gussy, who lost control of her bladder during the paralysis of her rear legs, never have I dealt with a totally incontinent dog in 25 years of owning dogs.  I have been discussing with other dog owners and am completely floored by the number of dogs that have suffered from Spay incontinence starting in very young dogs.  Hope is Spayed, but, she wasn't until her last litter at about 7 years of age.  I don't believe this episode is connected to her being spayed, but, due to age and I have a haunting feeling there may be something more serious behind this sudden change in Hope and her bathroom habits.
Having a geriatric dog is difficult, they suffer from the same ailments as us humans, but, they cannot tell us what hurts, this means we are usually behind the ball in catching and correcting them.  It is my hope that this is just a bit of a hiccup for my old girl and that she will pull through and carry on happy and comfortable for some time yet.
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