One Simple Test Your Dog Needs Every Year

A urinalysis should be done for your dog at least yearly.

Dog urine. It's not something to which we tend to give a lot of thought. That is, of course, unless your dog is having accidents in the house.

Still, your dog's urine can provide a great deal of information on her health status, even allowing a veterinarian to catch and treat certain problems before signs of illness develop.

What Is a Urinalysis?

Urine is what leaves the body after the kidneys are finished filtering out toxins and adding water.

Urinalysis is the process of testing a urine sample to gain information about various aspects of a dog's health.

First, a urine sample is collected from the dog. This may be done by walking her and catching urine in a sterile container when she goes (free catch), using a sterile needle to collect urine directly from the bladder through the abdomen wall, or by placing a urinary catheter into the bladder and removing urine from it.

Most of the time, urine is collected from dogs through free catch.

What Can a Urinalysis Tell Us?

Several tests can be done on the urine:

When Should Your Dog Have a Urinalysis?

If your veterinarian suspects diabetes, kidney disease, bladder problems, or urinary tract infection, he or she will probably recommend a urinalysis.

It is also a good idea to check a dog's urine routinely once a year and more often as your dog ages.

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