Not wet beds.
The first time it happened I wasn’t sure what IT was. All I know was I climbed into bed and my bed sheets and coverings were damp.
This started us on a month’s (not one, not two, not even three months….) long (I’m talking long, like six months long) quest to determine what was going on and with whom.
The obvious thought was that someone had peed on the bed.
My dogs are Labradors. They are funny and goofy and they can also be assholes at times, but I just couldn’t imagine either one of them deliberately peeing on my bed. They aren’t cats after all (no offense to my feline loving readers), because I’ve heard when you piss off certain cats…you might actually get pissed on.
The wet bed went on for some time. There were days, weeks even, when the beds were dry. Then suddenly, one day, there’d be wet beds.
We couldn’t be sure what IT was, or WHO was doing it. Because of Sampson’s bum knee, both dogs were upstairs with access to the bed. Finally, one day Sampson had been downstairs all day with my mom and the bed was wet, that’s when I knew it was Delilah.
Now, Delilah’s a pip. She’s a hoot and a half and she’s stubborn as hell and gives me a run for my money, but I couldn’t imagine her squatting on the bed and peeing on it. I know with cats (there’s that cat reference again, WTH?) they will sometimes go outside their box when they have urinary tract infections. The logical step for me, was to have her urine tested. But that turned up negative.
A couple of weeks later, the wetness happened again, and again I had Delilah’s urine checked and this time she did have a urinary tract infection. She was treated for it and everything seemed ok for a couple of weeks, but then the wet spots started happening again.
The whole thing was puzzling to me. The wet spots would happen during the day when we weren’t home, but at night, when one would think we would be sleeping the deepest, (and more likely to be relaxed enough to let that bladder have its way) there was absolutely no wet spots.
Naturally I discussed it with my Vet who suggested that based upon Delilah’s age, she could be having some urine leakage. A lot of older, spayed females have trouble holding their urine. Like us, those muscles get weaker as age creeps up on us. Think sneezing or coughing…and whatever you do, don’t laugh too hard when you have to pee.
My Vet suggested trying Delilah on a low dose of estrogen, but I was hesitant to do so without knowing for sure if Delilah was leaking urine.
The Vet asked me, “Does it smell like pee?”
“What does dog pee smell like?” I asked her back.
Then, (oh for fuck’s sake, the things I do with these dogs) I put my face down as close as I dared to the wet spot and took a good sniff.
It didn’t smell like pee to me.
One night I was in bed watching TV and Delilah was next to me. I noticed she was licking her cooter intensely. When Delilah got up, there was a HUGE wet mark on the bed.
The next day, I called the Vet who suggested Delilah might be having a small bit of leaking, but in her attempts to clean it up, she was making a big, wet mess. The vet once again suggested a low dose of estrogen, but I really wanted to know if there was a natural way to help Delilah.
I checked with my friend Jodi Chick and she suggested a bladder support supplement. I discussed it with the Vet who suggested Bladder Strength by Vetriscience. She explained it is a supplement they sometimes recommend for dogs on Estrogen, as an additional boost. I decided to try Delilah on it, before starting her on estrogen. Bladder Strength by Vetriscience has a combination of herbs and other ingredients, and the combination works like a natural estrogen.
We started Delilah on the Bladder Strength right away. In the meantime, I bought a waterproof mattress pad for my bed and every morning I would remove the comforter from the bed and place an old blanket on it to make sure my comforter wouldn’t get wet.
I also bought some bath mats, one for the area of the couch that Delilah likes to lay on and one for the new dog bed I bought for Sampson. I tucked that rug under the bed cover, because if I left it on the top, those asshole dogs would simply push it out of the way, and that was really defeating the purpose.
Every morning, just before I left for work, I made sure Delilah went outside and peed.
Things were going along great, until I decided to do a liver cleanse on Delilah and I stopped the supplement. Once it was out of her system, the wet spots started reappearing. One night I came upstairs from visiting mom, and there was a very strong pee smell. Delilah had been on Sampson’s new bed, and it looked like her bladder just let go.
Hubby and I decided, that’s it. She’s on the Bladder Strength, regardless of anything else she might need.
It took the Bladder Strength a good two weeks before the wet spots stopped appearing, but once it was in her system, it was amazing. For a dog Delilah’s size, she was supposed to take 2 ½ a day. I broke it up so she got 1 ½ at one meal, and a full one at the other.
We used the bladder strength for almost two full years before we needed to make changes in her regimen. But that’s another story, for another day.
From what I understand, estrogen is quite safe in low doses, but I always try a natural way first, both for myself and my dogs.
I am not a Veterinarian, I do not play a Veterinarian on TV, and I did not stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night. I’m sharing what worked for me and my dog after consulting with my Veterinarian. As always, consult with your own Vet if you have concerns about your pet.