Senior Dogs and Incontinence

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This guest article was written for Pet Guardian Angels of America by Micka Victoria, a writer for Pet Parents

Urinary / fecal incontinence

Urinary / fecal incontinence is most common in senior dogs. Urinary incontinence is when your dog loses total control of his bladder, which causes him an involuntary leakage of urine. While fecal incontinence, on the other hand, happens when your dog has no more ability to control his bowel movements, causing him to leak poo unexpectedly.

It can be extremely challenging for pet parents to deal with these types of incontinence. Aside from the worry we feel for our furry best friends, we also worry about our house constantly being soiled (not yet including the odor!).

Here, you will know if diapers are the best solution for your dog, putting into great consideration their condition and your resources. Knowing what’s best for your dog will make sure that he’s as happy as he goes through his golden years.

ANALYZE THE SITUATION

Watch for incontinence signs

Incontinence is most common in senior dogs. If you notice that your dog has been frequently having accidents inside your house (and this is odd for him to do), this is something that needs to be addressed properly.

Some dogs who experience incontinence are only affected when they are asleep. Always make it a habit to check if the area where he’s sleeping has been soiled.

Determine severity of the condition

Make a visit to your vet. It’s always safe to be sure of everything. A proper diagnosis of your dog’s condition will determine the severity of his incontinence (if ever it’s really that), because some incontinence (from anxiety and UTI) are only temporary and can be treated.

Think carefully about your dog’s hygiene

Incontinence in your senior dog can sometimes leave a mess on your dog’s skin (sometimes a urine scald) and can possibly cause skin irritations. Using dog diapers can lessen the risk and will leave them feeling clean. Plus, it will leave you saving a lot of time since you won’t have to wash them every time.

Note: Just keep watch of any signs of a diaper rash. It’s recommended that you change diapers when deemed needed.

Compute the cost

Disposable diapers range from $15 – $20 per packs of 12. Depending on the severity of the incontinence of your senior dog, you may need 2-5 diapers a day, and that can be really expensive. Washable diapers for dogs may cost a little bit more per diaper but it’s for a long time use and it’s more cost-effective.

Will diapers improve your dog’s quality of living?

If your dog’s only issue is incontinence, using diapers to make him comfortable is a great idea. It’s also a great idea for you as a pet parent, to avoid stressing out over messy accidents in your home.

CONSIDERING OTHER WAYS

Some urinary/fecal problems that causes incontinence can still be treated. Consult your vet for possible treatments.

CHOOSING THE BEST KIND OF DIAPERS

Dog diapers

These doggie diapers go over your dog’s bottom and is secured at the sides.

Belly bands

Dog belly bands are lightweight wraps that work well for male dogs.

Note: If your dog’s incontinence comes with very heavy leaks, pee pads for dogs are a big help to absorb additional moisture, if there are any leakage from the diapers.

Always keep in mind the cost, quality and efficiency of the diaper you are going to use for your dog. Getting used to will take some time but there are great diaper brands in the market that have no “crinkly” or uncomfortable texture and will help increase your dog’s comfort and acceptance.

Dog diapers and belly bands are an essential thing especially when your dog is experiencing incontinence. And as responsible parents, we have to always make sure that what we decide to do are good, if not best, for our furry friends.