It’s been a trying week at our house. It turns out that the puddles our new little dog was leaving were not the result of his recent neutering as we had assumed. Despite several walks on a leash every day during which he completes his business outdoors as he should, he continues to leak upon returning home.
A urinalysis revealed a urinary tract infection requiring antibiotics and expensive prescription dog food to prevent recurrences. Unfortunately, in addition to his medical issue, our veterinarian suspects that his constant urination may be a behavioral issue. I’m exhausted from cleaning up after this poor little dog. And poor little me is still having head and neck pain from suboccipital neuralgia that didn’t totally respond to the trigger point injection I received nine days ago.
We all know that stress worsens our fibromyalgia symptoms. And this dog situation is stressful indeed — as well as disappointing! We finally found a dog with the perfect temperament, size, age, look, and trainability, and we discover that he has issues. With any luck, this little dog will be perfect for us, after a course of antibiotics and some special dog food made to dissolve the crystals in his urine. Sadly, that has not been our experience in the past.
Our previous dog of similar size and breed had similar issues. We tried several different prescription dog foods, but they didn’t prevent his body from forming crystals, which periodically led to bladder stones and to three very expensive surgeries to remove them. His health issues didn’t appear until much later in his life, by which time he was firmly a member of our family.
So, here we are two weeks in with our new dog, and we have discovered a similar challenge. We’d like to believe the medications will solve the problem. However, we can also foresee a possible money pit in our future. So, we’re faced with a dilemma. Can we afford to keep this dog? Will keeping him be more stressful than therapeutic? Will his issues rule out his ever becoming a therapy dog? If there’s one requirement that is essential for that designation, it’s that a dog is thoroughly potty trained.
Our current plan is to wait until the antibiotics are finished and his urine is retested. Depending on whether any crystals remain, we will re-evaluate the situation at that time. I think we could overcome either a health issue or a behavioral issue. I just don’t think we could survive both.
In the meantime, I’ve just applied a doggie diaper to Sam’s cute little bottom. It was surprisingly easy to do. Now, at least he has the freedom to roam our house without ruining furniture and carpets. I can finally put down my bottle of odor remover and take a nap. It’s not ideal, but it’s the best we can do for now. Stay tuned for further developments.
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