Bladder Control Problems

Information to help with weak bladder control and symptoms of urine leaking in cats and dogs.

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  1. What are Bladder Control Problems?
  2. What Causes Bladder Control Problems?
  3. More Information on Bladder Control Problems

What are Bladder Control Problems?

So your beloved pet has had yet another "accident" indoors – perhaps it’s time to explore possible underlying problems that could be causing loss of cat or dog bladder control. Some bladder control problems are caused by serious conditions that need treatment, while others may be due to the age and temperament of your pet.

Small puppies and kittens do not have mature bladders and so accidents are likely to occur during potty training. Even a trained puppy might have the occasional accident as their bladders are only mature from about 6 months. If however, your perfectly house-trained pet starts urinating in the house, then it is advisable to seek veterinary attention.

What Causes Bladder Control Problems?

There are a number of conditions and factors that can cause loss of bladder control including:

  • Urinary tract infections (UTI)
  • Kidney disease
  • Bladder stones
  • Liver disease
  • Drinking too much (possibly caused by another condition such as diabetes)
  • Congenital defects
  • Obesity
  • Old age
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Stress, anxiety or over excitement

More Information on Bladder Control Problems

Tips for promoting bladder control
  • Never punish your pet for accidents. There is always an underlying cause, even if that cause is poor house training.
  • If your pet’s bladder control issues are related to house training, remember to use plenty of positive reinforcement and rewards for the correct behavior, rather than punishment for the wrong behavior.
  • When loss of bladder control occurs during stress, excitement or as a submissive behavior, the best thing you can do is to not make a fuss over the incident, but rather ignore it. Try removing the stressor and take steps to calm your pet down.
  • Reduced bladder control is a common symptom in aging pets, or those suffering from Alzheimer’s. Try taking your pet outside for "potty breaks" more frequently and reward them when they do urinate outside. For cats, you could try placing additional litter-trays around the house so that they are always readily available.
  • Many older pets are embarrassed and confused about "accidents" when they do occur, especially if they have been perfectly house trained for years. While cleaning up the mess afterwards is no fun, try not to react in a way that will make your pet feel more humiliated.
  • When pets are feeling unwell or have symptoms of a bladder infection, they may urinate in an unusual place to get your attention. Never ignore the message.


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