Why is my dog getting a recurrent urinary infection (cystitis)?

Our question this week was:

About a month ago, our Boxer was treated for his first UTI. The symptoms consisted of blood in urine and slight tenderness in the abdominal area. He was not consuming excess water nor urinating excessively. Our boxer's symptoms have reappeared and we were wondering if the cause of the problem could have anything to with his diet. Could milk given in the dog's food or ice cream given as a daily snack contribute to his UTI?


Erin Gray


Hi – thanks for your email Erin. You wrote that your dog has a urinary tract infection for the second time and you want to know if it could be caused by his diet.

There are several causes for urinary tract infections in dogs. It is generally not caused by diet – but there is nothing in ice cream that your dog needs. Bladder stones are a common cause of recurrent infections. I have a couple really good articles that might help you. The first article talks about urinary tract infections (also known as acute cystitis). Cystitis stands for inflammation of the bladder. The second link below is "recurrent cystitis" and talks about causes of repeat infections.

Articles that might be helpful to you are Acute Cystitis in Dogs and Recurrent Cystitis in Dogs.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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