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What is Dripping Urine?

While it can be annoying and messy that your dog is dripping urine, you need to have your dog examined by your veterinarian. Dripping urine is not necessarily a sign that your dog is suffering from incontinence. There are other possible causes of your dog’s dripping urine, such as submissive urination. Submissive urination usually affects young dogs that are frightened or not confident and they will generally outgrow it. Infection can also cause your dog to drip urine.

Dogs that drip urine constantly may have a medical condition that will require treatment from your veterinarian. Be sure that your veterinarian performs a thorough physical examination and diagnostic testing on your dog to find the cause of your dog’s problem. 

Possible causes of your dog dripping urine include:

  • Submissive urination
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Bladder infection
  • Excessive water intake
  • Spinal cord injury or disease
  • Weak bladder sphincter
  • Incontinence

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Why Dripping Urine Occurs in Dogs

Submissive Urination

Submissive urination usually occurs in young dogs that lack confidence or are fearful. Your dog will exhibit other signs of being submissive such as ears back, head bowed, lack of eye contact and slow, low tail wagging. If your dog is dripping urine as a result of being submissive, do not despair, they will usually outgrow it. 

Urinary Tract or Bladder Infection

Urinary tract infection and bladder infection are common causes of dripping urine, especially in adult female dogs. Your veterinarian will be able to determine if your dog has an infection by performing a urinalysis and a urine culture. 

Excessive Water Intake

Some dogs will drink large quantities of water and their bladders are unable to hold all of the urine that is created. These dogs will drip urine because they simply cannot hold it in until they get outside. A urinalysis will show diluted urine if they excessively drink water. Many times when your dog drinks large amounts of water, there is an underlying cause such as Cushing’s disease, diabetes, bladder infection or kidney failure.

Spinal Cord Injury or Disease

If your dog has suffered a spinal cord injury or disease, they may not be able to feel when their bladder is full. This then causes them to drip urine. This is generally classified as incontinence.

Weak Bladder Sphincter

There are several factors that can contribute to a weak bladder sphincter. The most common cause is simply old age and generally occurs in senior female dogs. Obesity and a reduction in the sensitivity of the neurological receptors in the sphincter can also cause the sphincter to weaken. This is sometimes referred to as spay incontinence and can be caused by low levels of estrogen. 

Incontinence

Incontinence encompasses all other conditions that cause your dog to drip urine. It is the general terminology that veterinarians will use when there is no other medical conditions present causing your dog to drip urine.

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What to do if your Dog is Dripping Urine

Even if you suspect your dog is dripping urine because they are submissive, it is still a good idea to have them checked out by your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will perform a full physical examination and will order diagnostic tests such as a urinalysis, urine culture, complete blood count and chemistry panel to determine the cause. 

Urinary tract infections and bladder infections will be treated with antibiotics. Your veterinarian will discuss with you the best antibiotic for your dog. You should see an improvement in the dripping urine after a few days of antibiotic treatment but you will still need to finish the medication that was prescribed to ensure that the infection is completely cleared. 

If your dog is drinking water excessively, your veterinarian will need to diagnose what is causing the excessive thirst. Once they have discovered the cause of the excessive water intake has been diagnosed and treatments started, you should notice a decrease in the amount of dripping urine. 

Spinal cord injuries and diseases that are affecting the bladder’s function may require surgery to slow or stop the dripping urine. Your veterinarian may also prescribe medications that will help with the incontinence that is occurring. 

Most dogs that are diagnosed with a weak bladder sphincter are older females. Estrogen and alpha-adrenergic agonists can be prescribed to help maintain the neuroreceptors and increase the pressure on the neck of the bladder to hold the urine within the bladder.

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Prevention of Dripping Urine

In most cases of your dog dripping urine, there is a medical condition that is causing your dog’s bladder to not properly function. Seeking immediate veterinary assistance when you notice your dog dribbling urine is imperative to stopping the incontinence.

Submissive urination can also be problematic, even though it is not a medical condition. Your dog should eventually outgrow the behavior, but there are a few things you can do to help your dog be less submissive. Do not lean over your dog, instead drop down to their level when they approach to keep them from feeling threatened.

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Cost of Dripping Urine

Treating your dog that is dripping urine can become pricey depending on the diagnosis that your veterinarian gives. Urinary tract infections can cost between $300 and $1000 depending on the severity of the infection. Treating incontinence issues in your dog can range from $400 to $3000 depending on the treatment that is given.

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Dripping Urine Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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Beagle

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Twelve Years

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Unknown severity

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my dog just had surgery from a cyst by his upper leg and he now is leaving a wet pee spot after sitting or laying down is there something i can do?

Dec. 20, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Linda S. MVB MRCVS

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0 Recommendations

If the surgery was today and he is still slightly under the effect of the anaesthetic, this should wear off over the next few hours. Just give him the opportunity to pee outside and keep him nice and clean. If the issue continues, we should have him checked over and it may be worth analysing his urine.

Dec. 20, 2020

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Shih Tzu

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Six Months

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Unknown severity

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1 found helpful

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Painful Urination

Hi, My 6 months old puppies was having a hard time after urinating, he lie down like having a seizure posture and most of the time he moans in pain.

Sept. 28, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Thank you for your email. From your description, it seems that something is wrong with him, whether it is a urinary tract infection, or something else. It would be best to have him seen by a veterinarian as soon as possible, as they will be able to help him. I hope that he is okay.

Oct. 7, 2020

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American Staffordshire Terrier

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Five Years

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Not Eating

This past week she’s being really fussy and will only eat meat like boiled chicken etc but is refusing her dog food point blank. This morning she’s been urinating after going outside and doing it, but in little drips like she doesn’t realise she’s doing it. She’s also lost quite a bit of weight too, but seeks bloated in her stomach area. There’s no way she’s swallowed anything she’s not supposed to as she never left unsupervised with toys and she’s always supervised in the garden etc. I have a feeling she does have anxiety so not sure if any of this could be related to that

Sept. 28, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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Thank you for your question. I do not think that what you are describing is related to anxiety, and she sounds like she is not feeling well to me. Since I cannot examine her, it would be best to have her seen by a veterinarian who can see her and see what might be going on with her. Once they know more, they will be able to let you know what treatment she might need to feel better.

Oct. 7, 2020

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Pitbull mix

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Eighteen Years

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Peeing All The Time And Leaking Pee As She Walks

Why in the pass year my older dog started leaking per

Sept. 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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Thank you for your question. I am sorry for the delay, this platform is not set up for urgent emails. At eighteen years old, there may be a number of things going on - she may have a bladder infection, kidney disease, or incontinence and can't hold her urine. It would be best to have her seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine her and see what might be causing this, and see what treatment she might need.

Oct. 10, 2020

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Jack Russell Terrier / fox terrier

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Two Years

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Humping

Continue to hump my old dog, showing dominance behaviour towards him. Exercised daily several times walking, has not been spayed.

Sept. 26, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay, this venue is not set up for urgent emails. Spaying may help this behavior, but it may be normal for her, if she is a dominant dog. If you are concerned, It would be best to have your pet seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be going on, and get treatment for them.

Oct. 15, 2020

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Miley

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Corgi

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2 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Urine Spotting

Hello. We have a 2 year old Corgi. Miley is a good dog however she barks quite a bit when she senses animals outside or loud noises. Every time Miley barks in the house we find urine drops are left behind. No good advice Came from our vet checkup and Miley is healthy. We are at our wits end. Do you have any advice?

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Petey

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Maltese

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11 Years

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Mild severity

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Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Peeing In House
Dribbling When Peeing

Petey, our 11-year-old dog is dribble peeing outside but then when we come inside he just streams pee on my stuff and we are waiting to see if we can keep him because his previous owner just passed away. Also, he has not been spayed/neutered so we think that it could be that.

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Harper

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Golden Doodle

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4 Months

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Leaking Urine

Hello, we just got our golden doodle a few weeks ago at 4 months old, she is now constantly leaking and needing to go outside to pee, she's a super energetic dog so i don't believe that she is doing this of fear. This has gotten to the point to where we are having to take her outside very 30 minutes during the day. What would you guess is wrong with her? Thanks.

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Winnie

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Golden/Belgian Mal

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18 Weeks

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Fair severity

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Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Marking During Walks, Leaking Clear

18 week female Golden Belgian Mal mix tries to pee again during walks and playing. And some leaking when sitting Vet checked for UTI, ultra sound, bladder exam. I thought maybe she is marking or going into heat early. Eating and drinking normal. Active level is high, sleeps normal. Vary alert during walks, plays well with other dogs sometimes submissive with older bigger dogs. Should I return to vet for more tests or what other tests are available. Vet recommended on cycle before spaying. Responds well to basic commands and does well sleeping in the crate. If a video option was available here I would post that too.

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Ernie

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Sheepadoodle

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12 Weeks

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Moderate severity

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1 found helpful

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Dripping Urine
Dripping Urine, Frequent Potty Time

I have a 12 week old OES/poodle mix. He is completely crate trained. He will go hours without having an accident. When I give him water to drink, he needs to go outside almost constantly. He doesn’t seem to try and hold it at all. He will let me know that he wants out by barking, but it is quite literally every 6-7 minutes. He will pee a little and then move to pee some more. It seems to be squirts. Although, after letting him out of his crate to go outside; he seems to fully empty his bladder. I’ve also noticed little urine trails or drips on the carpet as well. So, could there be an issue medically speaking, or is it more behavior related? I’m confused because he doesn’t wet in his crate. Thanks!

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