Pet Symptom Checker

Urine leakage

Medical name: Incontinence, urinary


  • Urine dribbling


Even though the result is the same — a mess to clean up — veterinary medical science likes to distinguish between the terms “incontinence” (fecal or urinary) and “inappropriate elimination” (also fecal or urinary). Inappropriate elimination is thought to be a behavioral problem, whereas incontinence usually has an identifiable medical cause. So to determine what’s going wrong and why, the veterinarian will have some questions: Does this cat or dog have a history of neurological disease? Any anorectal or urinary tract surgery, or any traumatic injuries to report? How is the pet’s house-training? Does the animal seem to defecate or urinate voluntarily or involuntarily? What has the pet been eating lately and what medications are the pet receiving (or stopped taking recently)? Have you noticed clinical signs in other systems? If so the incontinent pet (who might be undergoing both fecal and urinary incontinence at the same time) will get a medical examination, which could lead to treatment for the underlying cause(s). If not, the inappropriate elimination could be labeled “behavioral” and the trail of clues will lead through the mysterious mind of the pet. Don’t be surprised if you and your pet are referred to a veterinary behaviorist.

Zootoo does not provide veterinary medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a veterinarian with any questions you may have regarding your pet’s medical condition.
If you think your pet may be experiencing a medical emergency, call your veterinarian or an emergency animal care facility immediately.

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