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Dr. Baum advises owner of rat terrier the fact that his dog is drinking and urinating frequently could be a sign of diabetes or kidney disease. Exam, blood tests important.

My rat terrier dog is drinking and urinating frequently!

Does this need to be checked by my vet?

Dear Dr. Baum —

I have a rat terrier who has always been potty trained — no probs. But recently he seems to be drinking more water and having trouble holding his urine, and is going in the house, which is very unlike him. He knows it’s wrong, he just can’t help it. He doesn’t seem to be running fever and asks like he normally does, doesn’t seem to act as if he’s sore either. Could this just be a bladder infection or should I take him to the vet if he’s not better in a day or two? He’s not a puppy nor an elderly dog, I would say he’s middle aged.

Thank you for any helpful advice you can send my way.


Dear Karen:

Increases in water consumption and an increase in urinations definitely need to be checked out by running blood and urine tests. The most common conditions that cause these symptoms include kidney disease and diabetes. Occasionally malfunctions of the adrenal glands will also produce these signs. Have it checked out as all the above conditions can be significantly helped if detected early in their course.

Please also read two articles dealing with this issue on our site:

Increased Water Drinking
Increased Water Drinking Article 2: Diabetes

Good Luck!!
Dr. B

Dr. Barry Baum, Chief of Staff, Center-Sinai Animal Hospital, Los Angeles veterinary services, full and emergency pet care

About Dr. Baum

Dr. Baum has been the owner and Chief of Staff at Center-Sinai Animal Hospital, Los Angeles, California since 1979. The hospital has been serving the Los Angeles community for over thirty years.

Read more about Dr. B!

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