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nickelpest 03-15-2014 02:01 PM

Female has always had incontinence
Our female GSD Gretchen was found at Walmart when she was about 6 weeks old. From the time we had her at home, I noticed she would urinate in her sleep a lot. I didn't think too much of it until I noticed she was having difficulty urinating. Vet gave her antibiotics for the infection but wanted to investigate the incontinence before putting our young girl on any prescription. I did a lot of laundry! I brought in almost weekly urine samples, we mixed prescription food with her regular puppy food...nothing was helping.

Finally, when I brought her in to be fixed at about 6 months, the vet was going to take a urine sample directly from her bladder. Well, that didn't work out because as soon as Gretchen was put under for surgery, she completely released her bladder. The vet then decided to put her on Proin.

We had her on 1.5 pills twice per day for a while, which worked wonders. Her appetite changed but other than that we didn't notice any difference. Then she started to leak again so we put her up to 2 pills twice per day. When that didn't work, the vet put her on Incurin, which is hormone based. We started Incurin about 2 and a half weeks ago. Gretchen has had a lot more energy since then. We realized the Proin was causing some loss of energy, in addition to the small appetite.

To start Incurin, we gave Gretchen 2 pills once a day for 2 weeks. They started to work almost immediately. After 2 weeks the vet said to reduce it to 1 pill to see if that would still work. No such luck! We found a small wet spot after Gretchen had been resting on the couch. We are hoping maybe she will adjust to this 1 pill dose. We have to wait 7 days between each dosage change. Incurin is less expensive than Proin, but still $20 for 30 pills. Between her low-quality prescription food (Royal Canin SO dry) at $70 for a 25 pound bag, which fixes her UTI issues, and her Incurin for incontinence, which may be another $40 per month...Gretchen is turning into an expensive dog!

Does anyone have any experience with Incurin? It is relatively new. I didn't mean to write so much but thought maybe someone else had experienced a similar issue.

Harry and Lola 03-15-2014 07:29 PM

Lola had thyroid issues and is on thyroxine and macrolone every day. The thyroxine can cause her bladder to leak, so I give her stilboestrol twice a week to stop any leaking.

Has your vet offered any advice why she leaks?

nickelpest 03-16-2014 01:07 AM

The vet said she has a weak bladder sphincter. Mostly our treatments have been trial and error though :/
I haven't heard of the stilboestrol, I'll look that one up. Thanks!

Colie CVT 03-16-2014 01:26 AM

I was going to ask if they'd ever looked for an ectopic ureter or if she was having sphincter issues. Dogs who leak from when they are young often have those kind of troubles. The surgeons I work for have actually placed artificial sphincters in a few patients who really were having trouble. They have a port that is accessible under the skin to add or remove saline as needed and seem to be pretty helpful. Not sure how old your kid is or if that option has ever been brought to your attention.

Definitely not a fun thing to have to deal with at a young age!

LisaT 03-16-2014 02:21 AM

My girl had "remnant tissue" in her vagina that allowed urine to pool. The internal medicine vet said that frequently there is also leakage with this. The only way to diagnose it was scoping the area under anesthesia.

Sulphur can sometimes also do this, MSM, garlic, eggs in the diet...

nickelpest 03-16-2014 11:11 AM

Colie, our vet did mention that there is a surgery, but at the time Gretchen was so young. Since so far it's been managed with medication we'd like to stick to that. She is currently about 15 months old. It's good to know that's an option and seems successful!

Lisa, our vet checked everything out when Gretchen was under for her spay surgery and it all looked normal. As for food, we need to keep her on Royal Canin SO due to recurring UTIs - otherwise I'd play around with her diet. We did have her on a higher quality affordable brand dry food until we finally had to switch to the prescription brand :\ I do realize that changing her food can fix the incontinence AND the UTIs... but honestly right now we're just looking for a few months of dryness!! When we're ready to research food these forums will be the first place I check.

Castlemaid 03-16-2014 02:13 PM

No experience with Incurin - but I have a female that has spay incontinence. She started leaking shortly after her spay, when she was a little over a year old.

At first we tried the estrabol (?) - synthetic estrogen, but it didn't help. The next step would have been Proin, but after reading up on it, I decided to not medicate, and just live with having to do a lot of laundry. :)

Shortly after this, I switched her to a 100% raw diet, and it turned out that the change in her diet did wonders to control her incontinence. There would still be some occasional leakage, but the incidents went from daily to maybe once a month, if that.

If I put Keeta back on kibble, or canned or try home-cooked, the incontinence comes back, even after one day on kibble. The Raw diet may not work for everyone, but may be worth looking into.

Harry and Lola 03-16-2014 05:12 PM

it's amazing how switching to a raw diet can fix a lot of issues for some dogs.

Colie CVT 03-16-2014 08:41 PM

Definitely makes sense! I think the youngest one we did it on was like 12 months. You can generally scope the bladder to look for things, but some times it is hard to find ectopic ureters. They tend to be slow leakers however. We use CT with contrast to diagnose those lol.

Just wanted to know if you guys were aware. :) I am not too certain on medications. Generally speaking the general practice vets who I work with would send something like that over to the specialists that I work with. And I work for the three surgeons more than anything else. While I still hear, learn and ask about a lot of things, most of my world is imaging, surgery and anesthesia.

nickelpest 03-23-2014 02:47 AM

Thanks for the added advice. I am honestsly not very familiar with raw diets so I may have to look into that as well.
After a few weeks on the Incurin (which is a synthetic estrogen), Gretchen again leaked today. We already have an appointment for Friday for her shots so if she has more accidents I'll have to ask about other options.
Colie, do you know how much that surgery you described would cost? If that is an option for us... I passed on cataract surgery for my other dog because he is 7 and they can adapt pretty well. But if Gretchen's going to be a therapy dog I can't have her leaking everywhere!

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