Cystitis in dogs: possible causes

The low temperatures in winter can cause a bladder infection in the dog. However, the cold is not a reason for the disease, but rather a favorable factor. Read here which causes really trigger the infection. If a dog suffers from cystitis, this is a case for the veterinarian - Shutterstock / Kachalkina Veronika

The causes of a bladder infection in dogs are many. Most often, however, bacteria trigger the painful disease. In order to protect your four-legged friend, especially in the winter months, it is important to understand the triggers.

The most common causes: bacteria

As in humans, the bladder infection in dogs affects the lower urinary tract, i.e. the bladder and urethra. The organs become inflamed - acute, chronic, recurring or sometimes even symptom-free. Bacteria such as intestinal bacteria or streptococci are to blame in most cases. Most of the time they sit on the outer walls or in the immediate vicinity of the genitals, for example in the fur or on the skin. If dogs lick their own genitals or other dogs that carry the bacteria, the pathogens can get into the bladder through the urethra. Even when dogs swim in the water, the bacteria can end up in the bladder. When the immune system is weakened, they multiply and trigger the inflammation.

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Risk factors for bladder infection in dogs

There are several factors that may promote the development of bacterial bladder infection in dogs - such as a decreased body temperature. That is why the disease, which is called cystitis in technical jargon, is a typical problem, especially in winter. Wet and cold weather, long sitting on cold ground or swimming in cold water weakens the body's defense against the bacteria. Because the urethra in females is shorter than in males, female dogs are more likely to develop cystitis. Older castrated bitches are most often affected because the urinary sphincter sphincter often has weakness - and this makes it easier for germs to ascend into the bladder.

Cystitis in dogs: other causes

Urinary stones are also possible causes of bladder infection in dogs. In the disease, crystals form in the urine, which can irritate the bladder mucosa when closed. However, malpositioning of the urinary organs, narrowing of the urethra, diabetes mellitus or tumors can also cause the dog's bladder to become inflamed. It is therefore important to look for the exact causes together with the veterinarian and treat them.