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Hello I am Dr. Joey. I hope your Sunday is going well! Thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 15 years of experience. I look forward to working with you.
Please tell me what kind of infection you are referring to (skin, bladder, etc).
Oh...I see that it is urinary tract! Sorry for the poor reading comprehension.
Yes, for recurrent UTIs the first step that I must assume has already been done is to culture the urine (your vet does this) and know what type of bacteria we are contending with and then treat her with the antibiotic, based on a sensitivity panel performed from that culture, that should clear it. Treat for 3 to 4 weeks. At the end we repeat the culture to confirm it to be gone. That way we know this is recurrent and a new infection, but not the same infection.
Then, we have to do our best to figure out why she is getting these infections. I would advocate x-rays to start to look for bladder/kidney stones. AGain, I do assume this has already been done. If that yielded nothing then we could either do an ultrasound to look for problems in her bladder (tumors, polyps) and evaluate her kidneys to look for evidence of chronic infection or nonradiodense stones, or your vet might recommend a contrast study to evaluate the whole urinary system on xrays.
Assuming all that has been done, there are no bladder/kidney stones or bladder tumors and she is truly getting relapse (and has no underlying medical condition to contribute such as Cushing's syndrome or diabetes or a back problem that makes it tough for her to fully eliminate/empty her bladder), then what we have is to either start her on a urinary antiseptic such as methenamine mandelate (this is prescription and your vet can prescribe this) OR you can discuss doing pulse-dosaging of an antibiotic such as treat her once a month with one we know works (like Clavamox or Nitrofurantoin) OR she can stay on a daily low dose of an antibiotic (we usually use nitrofurantoin for this).
1)Glucosamine: You should have her on a glucosamine supplement to support the bladder wall healthy.
2) Probiotic: I also recommend a long-term effective probiotic such as Proviable or FortiFlora (ask your vet which one has been shown in studies to have what they claim in it); there are newer studies to prove that probiotics help improve the health of the urinary system.
3)Cranberry: I do advocate a cranberry supplement for dogs with recurrent issues, but you must use one that dies NOT have vitamin C in it as well. THis is more from a personal perspective since I have found it acidifies the urine and can make a dog more likely to develop calcium oxalate bladder stones.
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