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theladebug's avatar

How Do I deal with my dog's steroid related bladder control issues?

Asked by theladebug (217points) December 28th, 2009

My 9 yr old boxer was recently diagnosed with cancer. She had a surgery to remove a tumor on her ear which was causing her discomfort (She would scratch it until it bled), and we did a biopsy of another tumor on her shoulder.

After a lot of soul searching, we’ve decided not to put her through chemotherapy and radiation for this disease.

My vet recommended we try steroids which have significantly reduced the size of the tumor in her shoulder and have made some other bumps which I suspected to be other tumors disappear.

The steroids have made her excessively thirsty though which isn’t too hard to deal with during the day, but she has had some overnight “accidents” where she did not wake up to ask to be let out.

This morning was heartbreaking as she tried to “clean up” the mess she made on my bed this morning when she woke up and realized what she had done.

My vet is out of the office until January 4th and I do not especially want to talk to her partner (who turned out to be very cruel and second guess her recommendations when I did try him recently on another issue)

Has anyone dealt with this problem before? She has never had any bladder control issues before, but she is an older dog.

Is there such a thing as doggie diapers?

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5 Answers

syz's avatar

You don’t mention what kind of cancer she has been diagnosed with…

Steroids can help to slow the progression of certain types of cancer. Unfortunately, they have some significant side effects such as polydipsia and polyuria (drinking a lot and peeing a lot). You may be able to mitigate the effects by lowering the prednisone dose; it becomes a balancing act of still getting the results that you need while reducing the side effects.

The are no diaper products for canine incontinent that I am aware of (Bitches britches are designed to control blood spotting in cycling females but probably won’t be able to handle the volume that you’re dealing with). However, there are products called puppy pads that are an absorbent layer backed with plastic to prevent leak-through. If you place those in areas that she lays, it makes for an easy clean up when she gets up – just wad them up and throw them away.

Good luck with her.

theladebug's avatar

Thank you for your response, the puppy pads are a good idea. What we removed from her ear was a stage 2 mast cell tumor.

Cognition's avatar

Proin helped my dog with incontinence immediately but I would certainly check before using it. It could affect the cancer and contraindicate with the steroids, which I am assuming is prednisone.

syz's avatar

Proin is typically used in cases of hormonally responsive incontinence due to failure of the sphincter to tighten adequately. I’ve never heard it used in cases where the incontinence is the result of steroid use, but it’s worth asking about.

rooeytoo's avatar

I had a friend who wore diapers on her old dog, not sure if the toddler size would work on a boxer if not the adult diapers might. Just cut a hole for her tail. Those in addition to the puppy pads and plastic covers on upholstered items.

Sorry, I know it is hard to deal with and watch.

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