Your Dachshund is housetrained—but recently you've been noticing him urinating in the house. He also seems to be straining and in pain. The problem could be bladder stones, medically referred to as urolithiasis. And small dogs, such as the Dachshund, are likely to develop them.
What causes bladder stones?
Bladder stones are caused by an accumulation of minerals that turn into crystals and stones in a dog's urinary tract. Some stones are linked to bladder infections, while others may have a genetic basis. Dogs that don't drink enough water, or those that are not taken out frequently enough to urinate, may be at risk, also.
Know the symptoms
Frequent urination and accidents in the home are the most common signs of bladder stones. However, if you observe any of these symptoms, see your vet right away.
- Blood in your dog's urine
- Straining to urinate
- Lack of energy
- Loss of appetite
- Signs of pain
Treating bladder stones
It's important to act quickly. If a stone blocks the passage of urine, toxins in your dog's waste become trapped in the body, putting his life at risk. A veterinarian will X-ray your dog to determine the existence and location of stones, and which of these treatment options is best:
Bladder and urethra flushing: Depending on the size and location of the stones, your veterinarian may be able to flush out the stones.
Surgery: If a stone gets stuck in the urethra and cannot be dissolved or flushed out, surgery is necessary to remove it.
Medication: Depending on the cause of the bladder stones and the severity of the problem, your veterinarian may prescribe a special diet.
Keep in mind that even with treatment it is possible for bladder stones to reoccur, especially if your dog has a hereditary or other predisposition. However, you can take some preventive measures such as monitoring your Doxie's diet, following your veterinarian's recommendations, and taking him out at least three times a day. Always have plenty of fresh water available, too—the more he drinks the less concentrated the urine will be and the less likely stones will form.