Is Your Pet Drinking and Urinating Too Much?

If your Purr-fect cat is not so perfect with regards to water consumption or urinary habits, or your Bow-wowzer dog is now wowing you with how much he is drinking and/or urinating, read the following and have them checked out. Let’s keep our pets happy and healthy.

What is polydypsia and polyuria (PU/PD)?

With regards to our pets, polydypsia is greater than normal water consumption and polyuria is greater than normal urine production. Pretty simple when explained this way. Not so simple with regards to what may be causing this abnormality in your pets, should they be exhibiting these symptoms.

How big is your list of potential diseases that could cause increased thirst and urination?

Most people immediately think of either urinary tract infection or diabetes. You might have included kidney disease in your list, as well. While these three are common, the list is much more extensive.

Other such possibilities include: Cushing’s Syndrome, pyometra (uterine infection in female dogs), hypercalcemia (increased circulating calcium levels), Addison’s disease, hyperthyroidism (increased thyroid hormone levels), liver diseases, kidney infections, medication induced, diabetes Insipidis (different than the sugar/insulin diabetes that most think about), and psychogenic water consumption, just to name a few.

How much water should your pet consume daily?

On the average, a dog will consume about one ounce per pound of body weight per 24-hour period. Therefore, your 70-pound dog will drink about 70 ounces a day, or the equivalent to about a six-pack for some of you. A cat will consume about 3/4 of an ounce of water per day normally.

You have now determined your pet is drinking more than they should, what is next?

Contact your veterinarian to have them examined. To make your veterinarian and their technicians happy, try not to allow your pet to urinate several hours prior to their appointment. All too often when we ask a pet parent the question: “When did Bowzer last urinate?” The response is commonly, “Just outside before we came in.” In addition to a urine sample, a blood sample may be collected. Radiographs and/or ultrasound may also be suggested. Other diagnostics may also be recommended.

The good news is, many times the cause for PU/PD is fairly straightforward and can be either cured or controlled, such as the case with Diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes). However, sometimes these symptoms can be more frustrating to find the cause. But with patience and discussions with your veterinarian, a diagnostic plan can be established.


If you have any questions about your pet, please inquire in the comments below. We’re always looking for great ideas for our next post.


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