Posts Tagged ‘disk disease in dogs’

A Natural Remedy for Your Dog’s UTIs

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

For those of us who live with special needs pets, especially geriatric or paralyzed dogs or cats, we understand the dangers of urinary tract infections, or UTIs.

According to an article published in the May 2010 issue of Clinician’s Brief, UTIs develop when the pet’s natural defense mechanisms break down enough to allow virulent microbes to attach and multiply within the urinary tract. In dogs, these microbes are most often E. Coli, a particular nasty bacteria that can be especially problematic for dogs who are paralyzed (such as from degenerative myelopathy or disk disease, or IVDD), dogs with diabetes mellitus or hyperadrenocorticism, dogs who have been on long-term courses of steroids, and dogs who have had indwelling urinary catheters. The risk of getting an E. coli UTI also increases as dogs get older.

Veterinarians often combat E. coli UTIs with antibiotics, repeatedly if a dog suffers from recurring UTIs. But the reality is no one really likes having a pet on antibiotics longterm. As our clients have often asked us at Scout’s House, is there a more natural remedy? Turns out, cranberries just might be the answer.

One cranberry-based product that supports urinary tract health in dogs is Crananidin from NutraMax Labs (the same people who created Cosequin and Dasuquin). As a veterinary researcher from NutraMax recently explained to me, Crananidin uses bioactive proanthocyandins, or PACs, to minimize the ability of the E. coli bacteria to adhere to the bladder wall. She described it as “putting boxing gloves” on the bacteria so that they can’t grab onto the bladder epithelium and are instead flushed out in the dog’s urine. A NutraMax Labs study showed that by Day 7, a once-daily dose of Crananidin increased the bioactivity, or anti-adhesion, of the urine by over 78%.

My understanding is that Crananidin is best used in dogs who get recurrent E. coli UTIs, not for first-timers who really do need antibiotics to knock out the infection. But if your dog suffers from recurrent UTIs, talk to your veterinarian about Crananidin or other cranberry-based remedies. You might be able to avoid that next round of antibiotics after all.

Next up:  What about cats?

Innovative New Website Now Available for People with “Special Needs” Pets

Friday, February 12th, 2010

Scout’s House’s “bigger and better” website (https://www.scoutshouse.com) is up and running with a lot of great information and products for people with “special needs” pets, including informational and how-to videos, research papers, helpful links to veterinary medical websites with reliable information about conditions and diseases affecting dogs and cats, and podcasts. We’ll be adding a lot more info–including information specifically for veterinary professionals and a community forum–in the coming weeks, so be sure to check back.

IVDD and DM, Wobblers and CVI: What Are These Neurological Issues Our Pets Face?

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Join us today at 1pm Pacific for an in-depth conversation with veterinary neurologist Dr. James Lavely from the VCA Animal Care Center in Rohnert Park, CA, about chronic disk disease (IVDD) and DM, Wobblers/CVI, and spinal stenosis–all issues that can cause serious neurological problems in our pets.  Go to http://specialpetsspecialneeds.com