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Kidney Infection in Dogs

Kidney Infection in Dogs

In dogs, frequent urination and urinating in unusual places can indicate a possibility of a kidney infection, which is a serious condition, that has to be treated as soon as possible. It is best to detect these symptoms early and diagnose the infection before it turns life-threatening for your canine companion.
Scholasticus K
Last Updated: Feb 23, 2018
In canines, like humans, the kidneys are responsible for filtering blood and eliminating toxins through urine. The kidneys consist of filters which are known as nephrons, that help the kidneys in producing urine. These filters are in very large in numbers, hence a dog can urinate for a few days time, even if the kidneys are severely infected. The biggest drawback of having large number of filters is that the infection tends to go undetected for a number of days and by the time it is detected, the infection has worsened.

Causes of Kidney Infection in Dogs

Infections are mainly caused when the dog drinks contaminated water. In many cases these infections get cured fairly quickly, even before the symptoms are noticed. The reason for this automatic cure is the canine's ability to produce powerful antibodies and white blood cells that successfully cleanse the urinary tract of such infections. But sometimes, the reason behind the infection might be more severe, where quick medical intervention by a veterinarian is necessary.

Kidney infections and urinary tract infection are very common in female canines, however they can occur in male dogs too. Old age is one of the causes for kidney infections. Bacterial and fungal infections in the urinary tract usually occur when the immune system of the dog and is not able to battle out the presence of microbes. Previous surgeries related to the urinary tract also tend to be a cause of the kidney infection in dogs. Some other causes include, cancer in the urinary tract, holding back of urine and intake of antibiotics.
Bladder stones, kidney stones, malformation or injury to the urinary tract are also prominent causes of kidney infection.


You should always observe your dog for change in its behavior, because many a time you tend to misunderstand the dog's condition and ignore the subtle yet major symptoms. Some of the main symptoms are mentioned below.
  • Diarrhea and vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Signs of strain while urinating
  • You would also notice that your dog is urinating in unusual places
  • Squatting and not urinating
  • Fever
  • Constant licking of urinary opening
  • Wanting to go to the bathroom often but not urinating
  • Abdominal pain
  • Increase in water consumption
  • Loss of appetite
Symptoms that are noticed as a result of irregular urination, are seen in the primary stages of infection. In later stages you may also notice, foul-smelling urine, or blood in the urine.

Preventive measures
  • Give your dog a bath regularly. Ensure the genital area is clean, to prevent germs and bacteria entering the system
  • Make sure you provide fresh clean water daily
  • Keep your dog's bedding clean
  • Make sure the dog's diet has water in it, to prevent kidney stones
  • Take your dog out for walks regularly, a good exercise always keeps a dog healthy
Kidney infections not only spread fast but can also be an ordeal for your little companion. It is advised that you take your dog for a check-up as soon as you notice any of the above mentioned symptoms.
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