Excessive Thirst and Urination in Dogs

The most common cause is simply that he’s thirsty. Even if your dog doesn’t normally drink lots of water, it isn’t uncommon for him to do so on hot days or after exercising. However, excessive thirst can also indicate serious health problems such as kidney disease and diabetes mellitus. Here are some other causes of increased thirst in dogs:

What causes excessive thirst and urination in dogs

1. Dry feeding

Dry dog foods contain less moisture than canned foods, so they’re generally more likely to make your pet thirsty. If your dog eats only dry food, try adding some canned food to his menu so he can get the extra hydration he needs from that instead.

2. Diarrhea

Diarrhea can be caused by a variety of reasons, including dietary indiscretion (eating grass, trash, or other non-food items), viruses, bacteria, parasites, and more. Dogs with diarrhea drink more water in an attempt to compensate for the fluid loss.

3. Infections

Some types of infection can also cause a dog to drink more water and pee more often, as the body tries to flush out the invading organism.

4. Medications

Medications can also cause dogs to drink more water than usual. Medications like prednisone and antibiotics can increase thirst by making your dog feel more dehydrated and by increasing the amount of urine he or she produces.

5. Inflamed throat

Dogs with an inflamed throat or with tonsillitis will lap small quantities of water frequently while refusing solid food. Water is easier and less painful to swallow and the cool temperature will help soothe them. The same is true if the inflammation is in the stomach. Cool water helps to relieve some of the discomforts.

6. Constipation

If your dog is constipated, he will try to pass stool but without success. Drinking large amounts of water can help soften stool so that it’s easier for your pet’s body to pass through its system. Constipation may come from poor diet or other illnesses. If you suspect that your dog has constipation, ask your vet for advice and treatment options.

7. Diabetes

Diabetes is a disorder of the carbohydrate metabolism of the dog caused by a deficiency of the hormone insulin.

Insulin is secreted by specialized cells in the pancreas. The function of insulin in the body is to convert excess glucose to carbohydrates which are stored in the liver for the future needs of the animal.

In a diabetic dog or cat, the daily energy requirements must be gained from the immediate intake of sugars. Any energy requirement not able to be met from the daily food supply must be supplied by the breakdown of fats.

The process is not as efficient as the normal breaking down of stored carbohydrates and over a long time not only does the dog lose weight despite an increased appetite, but the waste products of fat breakdown can cause certain toxic effects in the animal’s body.

Free glucose is excreted by the dog’s kidney cells and this requires much greater amounts of water.

8. Kidney disease

Kidney cells remove the waste products of metabolism and excrete them via the urine. Any impairment in their function is usually detected by the presence of protein in the urine.

As more kidney cells are affected the dog compensates for this lack of efficiency by drinking more water to flush the impurities with an increased flow of fluid. Eventually, an animal with nephritis will lose weight, but unlike the diabetic animal whose appetite is excessive, it gradually demands less and less food.

It is important to seek veterinary advice where there is a noticeable increase in water intake over a protracted period. Both nephritis and diabetes can be controlled if treatment and dietary changes are begun before the disease process has progressed too far.

9. Cushing’s disease

Cushing’s Disease is a condition caused by overactive adrenal glands. It’s usually due to a tumor on the gland itself or a brain tumor sending too many signals and causing the adrenal gland to produce much more than normal.

Certain steroid medications can cause Cushing’s disease if the dog takes the steroids long-term. The adrenal glands produce cortisol, which is a hormone required for several bodily functions to occur. An increase above the normal level causes several symptoms including increased urination and excessive thirst.

Conclusion of dogs drinking a lot of water

There are many reasons why your dog may be drinking a lot of water. This can range from a medical illness, increased exercise or simply the weather being extremely hot.

Any time you believe your pet is drinking a lot of water and you can’t find a simple explanation, it is always best to seek the help and advice of a veterinarian. They will likely ask for a urine sample so that they can test for diabetes and other metabolic conditions.

The sooner any health problems are diagnosed, the easier it will be to find an effective treatment plan.

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Hannah Elizabeth is an English animal behavior author, having written for several online publications. With a degree in Animal Behaviour and over a decade of practical animal husbandry experience, Hannah's articles cover everything from pet care to wildlife conservation. When she isn't creating content for blog posts, Hannah enjoys long walks with her Rottweiler cross Senna, reading fantasy novels and breeding aquarium shrimp.

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