18 December 2010

{18dec2010: not a UTI}

We got a call from the vet last night with the results of Darwin's urine sample.  It turns out that there doesn't seem to be a UTI, but they watch the culture for a few days in case something changes, but for now things seem normal.  The not so good news is her "specific gravity" was low.  They aren't sure if it's low because she's drinking a lot of water or if it's something more serious such as renal failure.  Our vet tech Ashley said she highly doubt it's renal failure as it's very rare in a dog so young so we shouldn't start getting too worried about it.  They want us to do a first morning catch of urine from Dar and bring it in for testing.  The first morning sample would be a more accurate reading as it should be more concentrated after a night of letting her kidneys do their thing.  Any advice from anyone on how to catch her pee?
I asked about what happens next if this next round of tests show a low gravity and she said it's unlikely, but if it happens we would do blood work on Darwin and go from there.
All this talk about kidney problems makes me wonder if Darwin's three month stint on Prednisone could have affected her.  Seems unrealistic as she was only on it for such a short time, but I guess you never know.... let's just hope her first test was a fluke and this next test comes back clean and normal.  

Onto more entertaining news... After watching Kasha's video of her new trick, I was motivated to try it with Darwin.  I've tried before to balance treats on her head and she never lets me.  Last night was no different.  But last night as she was avoiding me she was very pawy, and jabbed me in the face.  Here's a quick video of our attempt.  You can see in the beginning her paw jab.

I gave up after that.  Later in the night we were playing and she head butted me and gave me a cut above my lip.  hahahaha.  I look like I was in a fight (sorry no pictures of the battle wounds).  As much as it hurt it was pretty entertaining.  Jason said I need to work on my reflexes so I'm more cat like and can avoid getting beat up.  This coming from the guy who got a black eye from Dar.  Hahaha.  
Have a good weekend everyone!


  1. Bummer on the non-diagnosis at this point -

    As for catching, when our first Siberian developed her diabetes - she was 9 - we had to test her pee to adjust the amount of insulin we gave her -

    I had luck with just putting a sample cup under her as she went -

    Some use pie plates or something similar attached to a stick -

    It really depends upon how close you can get as it flows!

    Paws crossed here!

    Khyra's Mom
    P.S. You aren't permitted to panic until you have reason to do so - got it?

  2. Best of luck with all of this! I hope it is nothing serious. Beth here....as far as getting the sample with our lady Newfie, Taylor, way back when....had a lot of bladder issues and we would catch it with a small bowl or something like that. Looked funny and I am certain we kept the neighbors entertained. Best of luck, my friend.

  3. crossing our fingers & paws that its nothing serious with Darwin.

    Mom had a diabetic doggie when she was growing up. They had to collect urine twice a day and test it.

    Her favorite method was to use a soup ladel...or a tupperware taped to a yard stick. That way, when the doggie squatted to pee, she could stick the ladel or tupperware under the stream without getting her hands wet (ewww!) and without freaking the dog out too much.

    good luck!

    wags, wiggles & slobbers

  4. My gosh! What is up with our pups and all these tests?! Hope her pee comes out with lots of gravity! We're still waiting on results from Remi's blood tests. Ugh!

  5. I hope it turns out ok; it must be hard not knowing. Miss M will let us do anything, but she will not let us get a treat near her head or face. I envy dogs that can do that.

  6. We're sorry to learn Darwin is under the weather. Has she been arching her back at all? Mama's dad had a male Dane about 40 years ago who developed a severe kidney condition, and the yelping and arched back, along with blood in the urine, were his symptoms. Mama is surprised the vet didn't go ahead and take a blood test now, though, because the more information one has the earlier, the better [in mama's opinion].

    Mama used to use a shallow [2"], flat-ish Tupperware container to catch urine from female dogs. It's more stable than a pie pan [and easier to pour from, as you have to put the urine in a jar or something], yet flat enough not to startle the dog [after the first couple of times, anyway].

    Our paws are crossed that everything is fine with Darwin.

    Jed & Abby

  7. Hope everything is fine Darwin. We have seen a fry pan being used to catch a wee. Nice and flat so it doesn't bother them. Take care, no worries, love Carol.

  8. O thats has gotta suck that you have to play the waiting game to find out what is wrong :(
    Our paws are crossed for a good outcome!

    Hehe our human was laughing at the video, she loved the noises Dar made :) She says I(Lexi) make the exact same noises... but in different situations!

    Licks and lots of slobber,
    Lexi and Jasper the Danes

  9. Hope everything is fine with Darwin. Looks like she is enjoying herself on the video. Shame about the headbutt!

    Catching a first morning tiddle cane be quite a challenge!

    All pawscrossed here and sending lots of airezen for good test results for Darwin.

    Keep your chin up and have a good weekend.

    we are in the middle of a big freeze here and angels due a pillow case fight.

    Big Nose Pokes
    The Thugletsx

  10. Fortunately you don't need a lot of pee for a urine sample. I just used a square disposable plastic container and didn't worry about anything splashing on my hand. (I've touched worse things.)

    I came across your blog from one of your comments and was delighted to see that you're in Seattle like me. Better yet, Darwin was what I named my heart-dog who died two years ago. And my parents had Great Danes, though never a blue which is my favorite color.

    New follower, Sherry
    with Airedales Alanis & MIro

  11. Oh I hopes Darwin is ok! Momma had to catch kitty brother Troubles (RIP) pee once. She did it sucessfully in the litter box so you should be able to it with Darwin.

    woof - Tucker

  12. omg! i hope darwin is ok! poor thing! hope you find out what's wrong.

  13. Oh Darwin! So sorry I only saw this now (and your last post too) - am glad it's not a UTI and I hope it's not anything else more serious.

    My humans have never had to catch a pee sample for me but they have heard that using a soup ladle (like Murphy suggested) or a small pot with a long handle is very good - your humans need to just quickly stick it under you when you're squatting. Good luck!

    Your video was funny! Ha! HA! My humans like to play that trick on me too...I sometimes manage to flip & catch the cookie but a lot of the times, I just look down and let it drop to the floor! :-)

    Honey the Great Dane

  14. Darwin,
    hope they soon understand what is troubling you... Glad it is not UTI...
    Never had to have my pee taken, guess it is feasible but not 100% easy. Let us know...
    On the treat game... no way I play that... I am like you... the only thing that I am just starting to do now is to catch it when they throw it to me...
    And yes, I can definitely be rough too...
    My human also got a broken lip and Mario a scratch very near to his eye!!!
    Things that happen... they have to learn to be faster!!!
    Ciao Lucille

  15. Hey Dar, we've just caught up on all your action. The hike in snow looked a lot of fun, and I loved seeing your day care action shots!! You seem to be very happy there!!

    Regarding the low USG, unless it was a first morning urine, it really doesn't mean much. Renal failure would mean you are dumping protein in urine too, which I'm sure the vet would have mentioned if they had caught it in the urine sample. If you're dumping protein, that happens all throughout the day, it doesn't have to be first AM pee to catch it. I was dx with kidney insufficiency (due to toxicity) when I was 3. Mum put me on some renal protective supplements and watched my diet slightly, and 8 years later, there hasn't been progression on my kidneys according to my ultrasound. Blood work has always been normal. Kidney numbers - BUN & Creat would only become abnormal when there is 75% function loss. So if you only have 26% kidney function, it would still show normal values. Now stoopid STINKY, he ate a whole 250 tab Advil when he was 1 and went into real kidney failure. It took a lot of work on supplements, diet, and daily Sub-Q to get his kidneys back to functioning normally. But they did and he has been terrorizing me every since.

    You can read the details here if you would like: (http://jaffadale.blogspot.com/2007/12/jaffasunshade-kidney-regime.html)

    About catching a pee sample, I lift my leg to mark, so its always been easy for mum to get my pee. Can your mom use a ladle?

    Do you think your yelping might be back related and not urinary tract related??

    ps. I can see your frustration in your video, mum was laughing, please excuse her, she has a bad sense of humour. She does things like that to me, but meaner, and I growl and grumble and try to punch her in the face too!

    Love nibbles,
    Miss Sunshade

  16. OMG... we just lost a super long comment to you... alright, here we go again!

    We have finally caught up, and loved seeing you hiking in the snow and your daycare actions!! You certainly look like you enjoyed the place.

    Regarding the low USG, it really doesn't mean anything unless it was first morning pee. If it was renal failure, you should be dumping protein too which would have shown on the urine analysis. The fact that your vet didn't mention anything, I think you are fine. UTI often will cause temporary dumping of protein too. I was dx via ultrasound to have kidney insufficiency (due to toxicity) when I was 3. Ever since then mum has had me on some renal protective supplements, and she watches my diet too. Now 8 years later, there still hasn't been any progression with my kidneys according to the ultrasound. I have always had normal blood kidney values. Remember the kidney values (Bun & Creatinine) don't become abnormal until there is 75% loss of kidney function. So if you only have 26% kidney function, the blood test would still be normal. That's why if you suspect kidney insufficiency, you go in via ultrasound to have a look at them. They saw scarring on both of my kidneys.

    Now stoopid STINKY, he ate an entire bottle of Advil when he was one. He went into real kidney failure where his blood values were all bad. However with lots of supplement, diet modification, and daily Sub-Q, he returned to normal (and has since been terrorizing me). You can read details about it here: (http://jaffadale.blogspot.com/2007/12/jaffasunshade-kidney-regime.html)

    Do you think your yelping could be due to your back and not urinary tract related??

    About catching pee sample, I lift my leg to mark so mum has never had problem getting my pee. However, if you are a low pee-er, maybe she can use a ladle?

    ps. I can see and hear your frustration in the video, mum was laughing, please excuse her, she has a bad sense of humour. She tortures me in similar ways and I do the same grumble and growls and try to punch her in the face too.

    Love nibbles,
    Miss Sunshade

  17. OMD...you had my mom cracking up watching your mom try to get you to put the treat on your nose to catch it....you were just so excited. I think once you get older you will be a whiz at it like I am...you know I'm old and don't move that fast so it's probably easier for me.

    I'm glad you don't have a UTI but also hope it's nothing too serious. Feel better soon.

    Now as for catching the wee, my mom has used in the past a collander with a handle and puts a cheap plastic bowl inside it to catch it and no problems. Now we have a collander and bowl in the garage just for this purpose. Good luck and maybe you need to do a video of you attempting to collect the sample...BOL

    AARF Kasha the Dainty Great Dane