How to Treat a Puppy with an Overactive Bladder

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Changes in routine could contribute to overactive bladder problems for a puppy.

A puppy with an overactive bladder, also referred to as urinary incontinence, usually urinates more than other puppies. Some of the other signs include urinating inside the home, straining or painful urination, and a look from the puppy that she cannot hold the urine. It can take some time to figure out what is causing the puppy to have an overactive bladder. Medical conditions and birth defects are common culprits. It is important to remember that puppies under 3 months of age typically have limited bladder control and reflexes and need to be house-trained.


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Step 1

Review changes in diet and emotional triggers that could contribute to the puppy peeing more often. Sometimes a change in routine, the addition of a new pet or family member, or moving to a new home can cause a puppy to change its bathroom habits.

Step 2

Visit a veterinarian. Several medical conditions typically cause an overactive bladder. Some of the medical conditions causing an overactive bladder in puppies include a urinary tract infection, bladder stones or kidney failure. A veterinarian will likely do a urinalysis and blood test on the puppy to try to diagnose a potential medical condition and suggest proper treatment, such as medication.


Step 3

Bring the puppy outside more often to urinate. Create a schedule that allows the puppy to go outside to do its bathroom business on a regular basis. Increased outdoor trips could reduce the number of indoor accidents. Consistency is important when working with house-training issues in puppies, and the puppy will do best on a regular schedule.


Step 4

Correct the puppy without anger if it has an accident. If you catch the puppy as it is having an accident in the home, firmly tell it "no" and bring it to the appropriate spot outside. Old accidents shouldn't be addressed with the puppy since it will not understand what it did was wrong.

Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.