Tips For Collecting A Urine Sample From Your Dog

When you call the veterinarian to get advice on your sick pet, there's a chance that they'll ask you to bring in a urine sample. Along with being a disgusting thought, the process can be difficult if you don't know how to proceed. That said, since approximately 14% of all dogs experience a urinary tract infection in their lifetime, urine sampling is a skill that every dog owner should have.

The best way to obtain a urine sample from your dog is pretty straightforward. There are, however, a few tips that can make the entire affair simple--if you know what to do.

Tip #1--Stay Calm

It's easy and natural to freak out a little bit when you're told to gather a sample. After all, even a well-trained dog probably hasn't had to deal with someone following them around while they go to the bathroom. The task might prove to be difficult as a result. If your dog is untrained, getting this sample might seem practically impossible.

The important thing to do is to stay calm. Your dog feeds off of your energy, and if you seem frantic about things, they'll respond to that. They'll already be feeling a bit awkward and weird about this process--adding fuel to the fire will only make your job more difficult.

Tip #2--Choose The Proper Tool

Difficult jobs require specific tools. If this is your first time collecting a sample, you might not give the proper thought to your choice of tool. This is a major mistake. Using the right item to collect the sample can make this process much simpler than it would be otherwise.

Some folks suggest using a pie tin for this--however, you should avoid this and instead opt for a soup ladle. Pie tins are wide and therefore difficult to position properly without interrupting your dog. They also tend to cause splashing. A soup ladle can be positioned in tight locations without placing yourself too close to the action. 

Tip #3--Encourage Your Dog To Drink

Just as a human might need to drink a little bit in order to go to the bathroom, you dog might need to do so as well. However, it's a bit more difficult to get your dog to drink on command. That's why you'll have to encourage them.

To do so, begin by filling up your dog's dish with fresh water. That might be enough to get the job done by itself. If it isn't, add a little bit of food to their dish. If your dog isn't prompted to eat or drink by this, consider offering a favorite treat, such as cheese or a dog biscuit. You might have to wait them out a little bit regardless.

Tip #4--Be Prepared To Wait

Even if you follow all of these steps, your dog might not be in a position to pee quickly. It's not a good idea to force the issue and try to rush the process. This will only cause the dog to feel uncomfortable--making it even less likely that they will urinate soon. Sometimes, the best solution is to wait it out.

If your appointment is looming, however, one final trick is to bring your dog to the animal hospital and sit in the waiting room for a few minutes. The nervous energy that they'll likely experience tends to cause the need to urinate. After a few minutes, take them outside into a nice patch of grass and collect your sample. Just be sure to bring your collection tools with you!

Collecting a urine sample from your dog is a process that, hopefully, your dog won't ever need to become proficient with. However, by following these tips, you can give your dog the best chance of success the next time a sample is required by your animal hospital.