Wee makes us happy!
You might laugh at us but we love wee! Just a small amount of your pet’s urine provides us with valuable information about their internal health and can also help rule out diseases such as diabetes and kidney insufficiency.
After we have collected a sample of your pet’s urine, we will perform a few routine tests. These will include:
USG (urine specific gravity) – this helps us to determine how well the kidneys are working by measuring how effectively they are concentrating the urine. This is especially important when we are on the hunt for kidney disease as sometimes a change in USG can be an early indication of disease. This early stage of kidney disease may not be detectable with a routine blood test.
A urine dipstick also allows us to look for the presence of blood, protein and glucose. It can also indicate if a diabetic patient is severely unwell by detecting ketones.
In some cases, it may be necessary to examine the sediment of the urine under a microscope to look for particular cells that may indicate disease. White blood cells and bacteria can be detected on a sediment exam as can urinary crystals, a telltale sign of other urinary tract problems.
We often need to send urine samples to an external laboratory to run more specific tests. This may include one to determine if there is a true bacterial infection present. The laboratory will culture the bacteria and then run tests to determine what antibiotic is required to treat the infection. Another example of a laboratory test is one to measure the level of protein that is being lost by the kidneys. This can help stage kidney disease and greatly assists in determining if medication is indicated to treat the condition.
We may ask you to collect some urine at home and whilst this can seem a little overwhelming, there are a few tricks and tips that will make it a whole lot easier. We will be able to give you the best advice for your pet based on what we are looking for, just ask us for more information.