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Incontinence And Fabric Softener?


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We've had 6 year oldGila about 2 years. Occasionally she wets her bed, doesn't scoot down on it, just as she's lying there, we'll notice a large wet spot under her and urine dripping out. When we first got her, we assumed UTI, and had her tested a number of times, always negative. Sometimes she'll go months without an accident, and then have a couple in a month. We've been racking our brains to find some trigger, and have pretty much confirmed that it only happens on a clean freshly washed bed (nothing more frustrating than changing their bedding only to have it soiled almost immediately). My wife is wondering if it's something in the fabric softener that is causing it, maybe the dog is trying to mask the scent. The dogs do swap beds for the most part, I don't think she's trying to claim it as hers. It doesn't happen every time (luckily), either. All the dog beds are covered in plastic bags before the fabric covers are put on so the foam doesn't get wet if she has an accident, we got tired of replacing beds. Has anyone heard of this or can think of an explanation? I know fabric softeners have anti-bacterial properties, I'm a little worried the beds will quickly smell funky without the softener (we read not to use it on bath towels so they'd be more absorbent, and after two uses they smelled rancid). Not washing the dog's bedding isn't an option.

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if she was marking it she would just outright pee on it, no lies in it as well. when this happens has she exercised strenuously? just wondering, felix who has lower back problems will leak after crazy playing and running.

 

i never use fabric softener and the dog beds do not pick up odors in my house. from what i remember hearing on a NPR program towels start to smell funky when slightly damp(while drying after used) if the soap has not been washed out thoroughly. mmmm....vinegar to the water and less soap or an extra rinse cycle. i do use vinegar on some stuff (towels and polar fleece) but i'm too lazy to deal w/ fabric softeners.

Edited by cleptogrey
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It happened once with Ryder and once only. One minute the bed was dry, the next it was soaked. I got him up, changed the bedding and he went back to sleep after I took him out and of course he had nothing to do out there. I always make sure he has a bedtime pee, no matter what hour it is when I go to bed, he goes either at 9 or if i'm up significantly later like midnight, we go out then too. I always make sure his tank is completely empty before we turn in for the night. Are you 100% sure she's empty before bed and hasn't had anything to drink for at least an hour before last potty?

 

Edited to add: I didn't notice when this is happening....is it randomly throughout the day or just at night? (My assumption was at night).

Edited by XTRAWLD

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10 year old "Ryder" CR Redman Gotcha May 2010
12.5 year old Angel "Kasey" Goodbye Kasey Gotcha July 2005-Aug 1, 2015

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Guest Tuxsmom

Ask your vet about spayed female incontinence. My first greyhound had it and was put on a medication that completely stopped the problem. Before, hers seemed kind of random, too. Then it started becoming more and more frequent. I know you are trying to figure out a cause and effect, but I really don't think the fabric softener is it. Best of luck! 😊

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@xtrawld- It's sporadic, sometimes it happens overnight, sometimes in the middle of the day. It also has happened shortly after coming in from the yard, so I don't think it has to do with her needing to go.

The vet did suggest spayed female incontinence but didn't want to prescribe anything because it happened fairly rarely and the medication can have side effects. She suggested we try to find a cause and effect, such as stress, etc. Clean bedding seems to be the cause. We'll try a vinegar rinse, can't hurt!

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Just an FYI--because a dog's sense of smell is so much keener than ours, I never use fabric softener on my dog's stuff. To me it would be like forcing him to sit next to someone on the bus who had drenched themselves with cologne or perfume, and I know I HATE that!


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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Unless you're using an environmentally friendly fabric conditioner, it probably has a lot of toxins in so not really a good idea to use for her bed. Also agree with Susan re the smell - must be like torture for dogs with their sensitive noses. The weeing does sound like it could be hormone-related incontinence to me. My girl had the same issue and, as I mentioned in another thread, I give her Sage Leaf capsules as I didn't want to use the veterinary drugs, and no more incontinence for many months now.

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I'd just use white vinegar to rinse with then fabric soften that can cause skin irriations. (does with me)

 

Maybe the new smell of her bed is stressing her out.

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Just about every fabric softener contains some form of ammonia or ammonium chloride to do the actual softening. Liquids and dyer sheets both use it. If it is the fabric softener causing her actions, she is most likely smelling the ammonia and trying to mark or mask it.

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We've had 6 year oldGila about 2 years. Occasionally she wets her bed, doesn't scoot down on it, just as she's lying there, we'll notice a large wet spot under her and urine dripping out. When we first got her, we assumed UTI, and had her tested a number of times, always negative. Sometimes she'll go months without an accident, and then have a couple in a month. We've been racking our brains to find some trigger, and have pretty much confirmed that it only happens on a clean freshly washed bed (nothing more frustrating than changing their bedding only to have it soiled almost immediately). My wife is wondering if it's something in the fabric softener that is causing it, maybe the dog is trying to mask the scent. The dogs do swap beds for the most part, I don't think she's trying to claim it as hers. It doesn't happen every time (luckily), either. All the dog beds are covered in plastic bags before the fabric covers are put on so the foam doesn't get wet if she has an accident, we got tired of replacing beds. Has anyone heard of this or can think of an explanation? I know fabric softeners have anti-bacterial properties, I'm a little worried the beds will quickly smell funky without the softener (we read not to use it on bath towels so they'd be more absorbent, and after two uses they smelled rancid). Not washing the dog's bedding isn't an option.

 

there is a product called smelly towel cleaner. You can get it on Amazon. Works great! Never tried it on dog beds!
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What about just using a "sensitive skin" type detergent (I'm assuming little to no perfume scent is added) and skip the rinse all together including the vinegar?

Edited by XTRAWLD

Proudly owned by:
10 year old "Ryder" CR Redman Gotcha May 2010
12.5 year old Angel "Kasey" Goodbye Kasey Gotcha July 2005-Aug 1, 2015

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@XTRAWLD- We do use a detergent for sensitive skin. Both detergent and softener are labeled "free and clear" of perfumes. I will try the vinegar rinse, it will just take time to see if it's actually having any effect, like I said sometimes it's a couple months before another accident. We always hope she's "outgrown" the incontinence, then it happens again, always after washing the bedding.

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Why not just SKIP the fabric softener entirely? I assume you wash the dog's laundry separately? I don't think it's actually good for your fabrics anyway. Just more money into the pockets of the people whose job it is to convince us we NEED fabric softener!


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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