Urolithiasis in canines is a disease that can affect many different breeds. Miniature Schnauzers are particularly likely to develop this condition. Urolithiasis is caused by urolith (stones), calculi, or kidney stones in the urinary tract.
The condition is also referred to as urinary calculi, cystitis, or bladder stones. They are very much like kidney stones in human beings. They may develop in the kidneys, urethra, or any other place in the urinary tract of a Miniature Schnauzer or other dog.
The most common place they occur is in the bladder, and whether it is crystals or stones, they irritate the lining of the urinary tract causing pain, blood in the urine, or changes in the urinary bladder lining. In more severe cases of urolithiasis, the flow of urine may be blocked and make urinating very painful, if not completely impossible.
Symptoms of a dog with urolithiasis are quite similar to that of a human being; bloody urine, increased urination, dribbling of urine, appetite loss, vomiting, and pain. The dog must receive immediate medical attention if he shows any of these symptoms.
A lack of proper medical treatment of this condition can result in death. The Miniature Schnauzer may show all of these symptoms or maybe just a few, so they must get medical attention either way. There are also different types of stones, so it is important to know which type your dog has.
Though a specific cause for urolithiasis has not been determined, many different factors can contribute to its likelihood; age, breed, sex, diet, and living quarters are just a few examples. Although a young pup may get this disease, it is much more common in dogs aged 2-10 years old.
Males and females can both suffer from urolithiasis, but it is much more common in males because they have a longer and more narrow urethra than females. Smaller breeds such as the Miniature Schnauzer are more likely to get this disease than a larger breed.
A lack of exercise, low fluid intake, or the dog being confined so they cannot urinate frequently can contribute to this disease. Diets rich in certain minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and protein may also lead to urolithiasis development.
If the dogs’ urinary tract is blocked, a veterinarian will need to empty the bladder and try to fix the blockage manually. Years ago, a veterinarian would need to remove the stones, which oftentimes is still likely surgically. Most cases of urolithiasis can be cured with proper treatment and a special diet to help reduce excessive amounts of minerals so the dog may more easily pass the stones on their own. This can usually take from 4-6 weeks and depends entirely on the severity of the stones. If an infection is also present, the dog will need to take antibiotics.
A Miniature Schnauzer needs to follow the right diet to help the stones disappear. After the dog is healthy again, it is equally important the dog stays on a diet that will not cause urolithiasis to develop again at a future point in time. Urolithiasis can be a severe disease for a Miniature Schnauzer or any other dog. Almost 50% of dogs who have it suffer from relapse at a future time if they go back to the same type of diet they were consuming before the onset of the disease.
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