Pet Urinalysis

A urinalysis (ie, an analysis of the urine) evaluates the physical and chemical composition of the urine of cats and dogs. It can provide important diagnostic information about conditions of the urinary and genital tracts in pets, as well as about a number of systemic diseases such as diabetes, liver disease, Cushing’s disease, etc. The urinalysis is an important part of the diagnostic evaluation for many diseases and is also an integral part of a thorough preventive medicine program for cats and dogs.

Urine samples can be collected from dogs and cats by several methods. If your veterinarian asks you to bring in a urine sample, you should “catch” the urine midstream in a clean, dry container. This can be a little more difficult in female pets than in male pets. One method that is usually successful is to slide a small, disposable foil pie plate between the rear legs (from behind) when the pet squats to urinate. This type of a urine sample can be used for a routine urinalysis, but it cannot be used for a urine culture because it is not sterile.

If a sterile urine sample is needed for culture, your veterinarian will collect a sample either by inserting a urinary catheter up the urethra and into the bladder, or by performing a procedure called cystocentesis, in which urine is collected directly from the bladder by inserting a sterile needle through the abdominal wall.

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