Majesty Dog

Understanding Excessive Urination in Dogs: Causes and Treatment Options

Understanding Normal Urination in Dogs

Dogs are social animals that we share our homes with, and as such, we must understand their basic needs and behaviors. One of these fundamental aspects of a dog’s life is urination.

This article will explore normal dog urination habits and frequency, as well as the factors that can affect these patterns.

Factors Affecting Normal Urination

Hydration Level: Adequate hydration is vital to a dog’s overall health, including their urinary tract. Dogs that do not drink enough water may experience difficulty urinating because their urine will become concentrated and more challenging to pass.

Conversely, dogs that drink too much water may experience urgency and frequent urination. Underlying Medical Issues: Certain medical conditions such as urinary tract infections, bladder stones, and diabetes mellitus can affect a dog’s urination habits.

These conditions can cause increased or decreased urinary frequency, urgency, and difficulty urinating. If you notice any changes in your dog’s urination patterns, it is essential to seek a veterinarian’s advice.

Urination Frequency and Amount for Adult Dogs

Healthy adult dogs generally urinate every six to eight hours and produce between 20-40 milliliters of urine per kilogram of body weight in a 24-hour period. Factors such as hydration levels and the size of the breed can influence these numbers.

Larger breeds tend to produce more urine, and they may need to urinate more frequently than smaller breeds.

Urination Frequency and Amount for Puppies

Puppies are not born with an inherent ability to control their bladder and bowels. As such, they require potty training to learn to hold their urine and eliminate in a specific area.

Puppies between two to six months of age may need to eliminate every two to six hours, depending on their age. A general rule of thumb is that puppies should be able to hold their urine for the same number of hours as their age in months.

Urination Frequency and Amount for Senior Dogs

Senior dogs tend to experience more health problems, which can affect their urinary habits. Underlying medical conditions such as urinary incontinence and cognitive dysfunction can cause increased frequency and difficulty urinating.

If you notice any changes in your senior dog’s urination patterns, seek veterinary advice.

When to Seek Veterinary Care for Excessive Urination

Excessive urination can indicate an underlying medical condition, whether it’s a urinary tract infection, kidney disease, or diabetes mellitus. Here are a few indications that your dog needs veterinary care:

Emergencies that Require Immediate Veterinary Care

If your dog experiences any of the following symptoms, it’s best to seek emergency veterinary care:

– Vomiting

– Blood in urine

– Straining to urinate

– Lethargy

– Toxin ingestion

– Not consuming food for more than 24 hours

– Pus from the vulva

Non-Emergency Situations to Watch Out For

Frequent urination or large amounts of urination can indicate a health problem that requires veterinary attention. If your dog regularly exceeds the expected frequency and amount of urination, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian about potential underlying medical issues.


Understanding your dog’s normal urination habits and frequency is crucial in maintaining their overall health and well-being. Factors such as hydration levels, age, underlying medical issues, and size can affect how frequently and how much your dog will need to urinate.

If you notice any changes to your dog’s urinary habits or the presence of any of the emergency symptoms listed above, it is essential to seek veterinary advice immediately. Being proactive about your dog’s urinary health can prevent more severe health issues down the road.

Medical Conditions that Cause Excessive Urination in Dogs

Dogs who exhibit excessive urination may have an underlying medical condition that requires veterinary attention. There are two types of excessive urination in dogs:


Polyuria: This condition is where there is an increased amount of urine production by the kidneys, resulting in frequent urination.


Pollakiuria: This condition occurs when a dog feels the urge to urinate more often than usual but produces only small amounts of urine each time.

Polyuria and Its Causes

There are several medical conditions that can lead to polyuria in dogs. They include:

Kidney failure: Chronic kidney disease is a common condition among older dogs that can increase urine production and lead to excessive urination.

Infections: Urinary tract infections and pyometra, an infection of the uterus, can cause excess urine production in female dogs. Diabetes mellitus: A condition that causes increased blood sugar levels and increased urine production.

Diabetes insipidus: A hormonal disorder in which the dog’s body cannot regulate fluid balance resulting in increased urination. Cushing’s disease: A condition that occurs when a dog’s adrenal gland overproduces hormones, leading to increased water consumption and subsequent urination.

Hyperthyroidism: A condition where the thyroid gland produces too many hormones, resulting in increased urination. Hypercalcemia: High levels of calcium in the blood can cause excessive urination.

Cancer: Certain cancers, such as lymphoma, can interfere with the body’s normal metabolic functions and cause an increase in urine production. Liver infection: Liver disease can lead to an imbalance in the body’s electrolytes which can then lead to excessive urine production.

Medication side effects: Some medications can interfere with the body’s normal metabolic functions and cause an increase in urination.

Pollakiuria and Its Causes

Pollakiuria is a condition characterized by increased frequency of urination, but with small amounts of urine produced. The following medical conditions can lead to pollakiuria in dogs:

Bladder infections: Infections in the bladder can lead to inflammation that irritates the bladder lining, causing a dog to feel the urge to pass small amounts of urine more frequently.

Bladder stones or crystals in the urine: These can be caused by an underlying medical condition or diet, leading to increased frequency of urination, including straining or pain during urination. Bladder cancer: Advanced bladder cancer can affect dogs’ ability to empty their bladder fully, leading to increased frequency.

Prostate issues: As male dogs age, they are more prone to prostate issues, leading to difficulties urinating, such as frequency or straining.

Non-Medical Causes of Excessive Urination

Aside from medical conditions, certain external factors can influence a dog’s urination pattern. They include:

Diet: An unbalanced diet, excessive salt intake, or changes in food can lead to increased urination.

Increased activity: Dogs that engage in high-intensity exercise can become dehydrated and drink more water, leading to increased urination. Heat: Hot weather can cause dogs to drink more water and subsequently urinate more frequently.

Age: Older dogs generally have weaker bladder control, leading to increased frequency of urination. Bad Weather: Certain weather conditions, such as rain or snow, can cause dogs to hold off on urinating, leading to increased frequency once the weather subsides.

Behavioural Causes of Increased Urination

Psychogenic polydipsia is a behavioural disorder where a dog drinks an excessive amount of water without any underlying medical issue or dehydrating activity. In turn, this leads to increased urination, with no underlying medical cause.

This condition is more common in dogs with anxiety, boredom and isolation resulting in excessive drinking of water.


If you notice any changes in your dog’s urination habits, it’s imperative to seek veterinary attention to identify and treat any underlying medical conditions. Non-medical causes of excessive urination are easier to remedy, such as implementing a balanced diet, monitoring activities, and managing behavioural issues that can lead to increased water consumption and excessive urination.

Understanding the causes of excessive urination in dogs is the first step to maintain good health and eradicate any potential illnesses that go unnoticed.

Veterinary Diagnosis and Treatment for Excessive Urination

Excessive urination in dogs can be caused by underlying medical or behavioral issues. Understanding the root cause is essential for effective treatment.

This article will cover the different diagnostic tests for underlying medical conditions and the treatment options available for medical conditions.

Diagnostic Tests for Underlying Medical Conditions

To diagnose the underlying medical condition causing your dog’s excessive urination, your veterinarian will conduct a thorough physical exam and take your dog’s medical history. After that, they may recommend various diagnostic tests, which can include:

Bloodwork: Blood tests are used to evaluate kidney and liver function, electrolyte levels, and blood sugar levels that can help identify underlying medical conditions related to excessive urination.

Urinalysis: Urinalysis can help evaluate the concentration and color of urine, detect the presence of infection and inflammation, identify crystals and bacteria, and identify specific gravity and pH. Urine culture and sensitivity: A urine culture and sensitivity test help identify bacterial or fungal infections that are not apparent on a urine dipstick test.

X-rays of the abdomen: X-rays of the abdomen can help identify bladder stones, tumors, or obstructions likely to cause urinary symptoms. Abdominal ultrasound: An abdominal ultrasound can help identify issues in the kidneys, bladder, and prostate gland in males.

Cadet BRAF urine testing: This specialized urine test identifies a genetic mutation that is common in some breeds of dogs and predisposes them to certain bladder cancers. Calcium testing: Blood calcium levels are tested to diagnose hypercalcemia as a cause of polyuria and polydipsia.

ACTH stimulation: This test stimulates the adrenal glands to diagnose Cushing’s disease, which results in excessive urination.

Treatment Options for Medical Conditions

The treatment for excessive urination in dogs depends on the underlying medical issue identified by the diagnostic tests. Here are some of the treatment options recommended for different medical conditions:

Psychogenic polydipsia: Behavioural intervention, such as environmental enrichment, increased interaction, and reduced isolation, alleviates this condition.

Kidney failure: Chronic renal failure requires a low-protein diet. With more advanced cases, fluid therapy and medication to manage electrolyte imbalances can alleviate the symptoms.

Medication side effects: Discontinuing the medication or lowering the dosage of the drug responsible for the side-effects can alleviate the issue. Kidney infection or UTIs: Antibiotics are prescribed to treat the infection, and dietary changes may be recommended.

Diabetes mellitus: Along with dietary changes, insulin therapy may be recommended to maintain the appropriate glucose levels. Cushing’s disease: Treatment includes medication to reduce cortisol levels, improves water balance in the body, leading to a decrease in urine production.

Bladder stones and crystals: Surgery may be necessary to remove large bladder stones, while small crystals can be managed by dietary changes and medications. Prostatitis: Antibiotics are prescribed to treat the infection and reduce inflammation.

Pyometra: Pyometra requires prompt surgical intervention to remove the uterus and ovaries to prevent further infection. Cancer: Treatment options for cancer may vary depending on the type and extent, including surgical removal, chemotherapy, or radiation therapy.

Liver infection: Antibiotics are prescribed to treat the infection and to improve liver function. Monitoring the dog for fluid management is necessary.

Electrolyte imbalances: In some cases, an electrolyte imbalance may require fluid and electrolyte management through oral medication or intravenous fluid therapy.


Excessive urination in dogs is relatively common and can be a symptom of underlying medical conditions that require veterinary attention. The diagnostic tests and available treatment options depend on the underlying condition discovered, and some may require behavioral intervention to remedy.

For all excessive urination cases that cause concern, it is essential to seek veterinary attention promptly to diagnose and treat the root cause for the well-being of your dog. Excessive urination in dogs can be a symptom of underlying medical or behavioral issues, and accurate diagnosis and treatment are essential in maintaining a dog’s good health.

Diagnostic tests such as blood work, urinalysis, and X-rays can reveal the root cause, enabling the veterinarian to recommend the best treatment options, which may include medication, surgery, or lifestyle changes. Understanding how underlying medical conditions, behavioral issues, and external factors like diet or activity level affect your dog’s urination pattern provides clarity in identifying the root cause and remedy of any excessive urination problems.

Seeking prompt veterinary advice is crucial in explaining the cause and treating excessive urination in dogs.

Popular Posts