Polyuria and Polydipsia (PU/PD): a common problem in our pets.

2 Ene

I want to talk about an issue, that is not a disease, is a clinical sign.  A very important and common clinical sign, but often owners , are not aware about this problem.  This is  because at the beginning of  some diseases, PU/PD is the only sign, or because the pet mainly lives outdoors.   Polydipsia means excessive consumption of water, about more than 100ml/kg/day.  And polyuria is excessive production of urine, more than 50ml/kg/day.

There are problems that primarily produces polyuria and consequently polydipsia, and other problems in reverse form.  Is important that differentiate this problem from others like: pollakiuria, stranguria, inappropriate elimination or urinary incontinence, urinary marking… Those are problems that can be confuse with PU/PD.

Urinary marking.

If we suspect that our pet could have this problem, there is an easy way to detect it.  We must calculate how much water drinks our pet within 24 hour.  Then we call the vet to transmit this information, the vet is the person who will decide if our pet is drinking a lot or not.

Moreover, we can suspect that our pet are suffering this problem, if we see that they are urinating so much.  We can see this if our pets has frequent “accidents” at home, that did not have before.  Or, for examples, produces a very diluted urine,…

There are several diseases that can produce PU/PD.  The three most important disease are:  Diabetes Mellitus, Renal Failure (acute or chronic), and Cushing’s  disease in dogs and Hypethiroidism in cats.  These disease produces polyuria primarily,  consequently our pet drink more to compensate.

Diseases that produces polydipsia primarily are less frequent.  One reason for this is a disease called psychogenic polydipsia.

Finally there are other several important diseases that causes PU/PD, like:  Addison’s disease, hypercalcemia (high blood calcium), pyometra (uterus infection), hypokalemia (low blood potassium), Diabetes insipidus, hepatic insufficiency,  iatrogenic or drug induced….

Increased thirst and urine production are frequent presenting complaint in our pets.  So if  you suspect that your pet may suffer from PU/PD, do not hesitate to seek your vet.  This is a disease that needs to be investigated sooner the better.

Thank you very much.

Pedro Carracedo.

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