Why Is My Dog Peeing Blood? 8 Possible Causes
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Discovering blood in your dog's urine can be deeply unsettling. This symptom, known as hematuria, often points to underlying issues within the urinary system.
The system, divided into upper and lower tracts, plays a crucial role in waste processing and removal. When blood appears in the urine, it could indicate a problem in the bladder, kidneys, or other parts of this system.
If you're concerned, consider scheduling a home vet visit to address the issue promptly.
Now, let's delve into the eight most common causes of blood in a dog's urine.
1. Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
A UTI in dogs is a bacterial infection that can affect any part of the urinary system, most often the bladder. The infection is often caused by E. coli bacteria, which enter the dog's bladder by ascending through the urethra and then divide, causing inflammation and discomfort.
A UTI can be a one-time infection or a recurring case, particularly in female dogs. Females are more susceptible to contracting a bladder infection than male dogs due to their shorter urethra, making it easy for the bacteria to access. UTIs are also the most common reason for a puppy peeing blood.
Typically, UTI treatment consists of antibiotics. The veterinarian's prescription may be based on the type of bacteria isolated on urine culture or typical sensitivity patterns of common urinary tract pathogens.
2. Kidney Infection
The technical term for an upper urinary tract infection affecting the kidney is pyelonephritis. It is most common in older dogs. If you notice your dog peeing blood and showing signs of lethargy and a loss of appetite, a kidney infection may be to blame.
3. Prostate Problems
Prostatic disease may be another reason for blood in your male dog's urine. Such diseases include benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostatic cancer, cysts, bacterial infection, and prostatic abscesses.
4. Bladder Stones
Crystals that aggregate cause bladder stones (uroliths) and get stuck in the bladder, causing inflammation, ulceration and bleeding. They also create the possibility of urethral blockage. The stone formation can associated with chronic UTI, diet, or genetics.
5. Kidney Stones
Hematuria can also be caused by stones in the kidneys. Stones form for several reasons, such as chronic infection or inappropriate diet. Some dog breeds, such as Yorkshire terriers, are more susceptible to forming kidney stones. When stones form, they may block the urine flow or cause damage to the kidneys, which results in bleeding.
Hematuria can also be caused by poisoning. Your dog may have ingested some toxic substance, such as rat poison. In addition to hematuria, your dog might show bleeding from the gums, bloody diarrhea, lethargy, experience difficulty breathing, a swollen abdomen, cough, or collapsing episode.
7. Internal Bleeding
While we may want to attribute a dog's hematuria with UTI, it may be indicative of a more serious problem. Internal bleeding from trauma can show up as bleeding in the upper or lower urinary tract. Bleeding or clotting disorders, such as thrombocytopenia (too few platelets) can also lead to hematuria.
8. Bladder or Kidney Cancer
Any form of cancer cells developing within the bladder or urethra, such as transitional cell carcinoma, can lead to hematuria. Renal carcinoma can also cause hematuria. As these cancers are more common in older dogs, it's a good idea to ensure your senior pets have regular health checks so any problems can be detected via radiographs or ultrasound scan and treated early.
What Should I Do if My Dog Is Peeing Blood?
As a pet parent, if you notice blood in your dog's urine and other symptoms, such as frequent urination, you should visit your veterinarian immediately. Urinary tract infections are not typically considered an emergency but should still be assessed within 24 hours. However, if your dog is showing signs of pain or has other symptoms, for example, a lack of energy, you should get them seen as soon as possible.
Hassle-free In-Home Pet Sick Visits
When your pet isn't feeling well, the last thing you want is a stressful trip to the vet. Our in-home sick pet visits offer a calm, stress-free alternative.
The veterinarian will run diagnostic tests such as urine culture and sensitivity. They may also do blood tests. Without these diagnostics, you cannot tell what causes blood in a dog's urine. Proper diagnosis may rule out some serious conditions, and your dog will get appropriate treatment.
As a pet parent, you play a pivotal role in your dog's well-being. Monitoring your puppy's or dog's peeing habits is essential to ensure their health and happiness. Blood in your dog's urine is a serious concern, and it's crucial not to overlook it.
If you notice any signs, don't hesitate to schedule a home vet visit to get professional assistance and ensure your pet's well-being.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is blood in a dog's urine an emergency?
While a lower urinary tract infection is not a life-threatening emergency, it is very uncomfortable for your dog. If your dog is peeing blood, it could also be a symptom of a more serious condition and should be checked by the veterinarian as soon as possible.
How do veterinarians treat blood in a dog's urine?
Hematuria treatments depend on the cause. This is possible to ascertain after your veterinarian has carried out urine tests. Once that has been done, they will prescribe the appropriate medications for your dog.
How often should I monitor my dog's urinary health?
You should monitor your dog's urinary health frequently. Check your dog's urine color daily to identify anything unusual. Doing so as a habit will make it easy to notice changes in your dog's urination.