Female dog incontinence is a common problem in elderly dogs and those that have been spayed.
Females are much more susceptible than males to canine urinary incontinence. It affects up to one in five female dogs. But, what are the causes of incontinence?
After a dog is spayed, her body does not produce adequate estrogen. This reproductive hormone is all but eliminated from the body after the reproductive organs (uterus, ovaries, and fallopian tubes) are removed. Though age can also play a factor, spay incontinence can begin in dogs as young as three to five years.
A lack of estrogen can weaken her bladder muscles. This sex hormone affects the external urethral sphincter. So, when pets are desexed, the "seal" can lose integrity, causing urinary incontinence.
There can also be other causes of incontinence.
Incontinent female dogs have an increased risk for bladder infections. Because the bladder muscles have been weakened, it is easier for bacteria to enter.
Female incontinence can also cause urine scalding. Urine is very acidic and can irritate the skin which may result in burns or ulceration.
If your dog has become incontinent, she may also be sad and confused (anxiety depression caused by incontinence). She will not understand why she is involuntarily dribbling or leaving puddles.
Keep plenty of towels and unscented baby wipes around.
But all hope is not lost. She does not have to become an outside dog. There are many things you can give her to relieve her bladder issues. See incontinence products.