The bladder stores urine produced by the kidneys. Bladder infections, also called bacterial cystitis, develop when bacteria that normally lives in and around the lower urinary tract travels up the urethra and infects the normally sterile bladder.
Older male dogs that haven't been neutered may be prone to bacterial infections of the prostate. Female dogs are also predisposed. Dogs on steroids for an extended period of time, who have diabetes, or who have hyperadrenocorticism (over-production of the adrenal hormones) seem to be more susceptible to bladder infections.
Infections that last unusually long or that reoccur often may suggest the presence of an underlying problem. In some dogs, bacterial bladder infections reoccur even after treatment. In this case, long-term treatment may be required to help improve bladder function and to prevent infection from spreading into the kidneys.
- frequent urination
- difficulty urinating
- urinating in inappropriate places
- excessive licking at genitals
- blood in the urine
Never attempt to diagnose your dog on your own. Your vet will need to perform a variety of tests and discuss medication and supplements that will speed your dog's recovery. You may also want to speak to your vet about the best way to support your pet's recovery through proper nutrition.