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Incontinence in Dogs: Introduction

Jennifer Sellers

Your dog has been housetrained for years, but now she’s suddenly urinating on your favorite rug. Is it a behavioral problem or something more?

Incontinence in Dogs: Introduction


If your adult dog is breaking her regular bathroom protocol, she could have urinary incontinence — a reduction in bladder control due to age or a physical ailment.

What Constitutes Canine Incontinence?

When your dog loses control of her bladder, the urination can range from small leaks to a complete emptying of the bladder. You may notice that she can’t hold it as long as she once could or that you have to take her out to relieve herself more frequently.

When she awakes from a nap, her bedding might be wet from an accident. Other signs of incontinence include redness or skin irritation near your dog’s vulva or penis. This can be due to urine dripping, as well as excessive licking.

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