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Puppy with crystals.

Species: Dog
Breed: Golden Retriever
Age: 2-5 years
our registered golden retriever,Ginger, had a litter of puppies a few months ago(no prior health problems with our sire/dam & one set of grandparents we own; grandparents are OFA hip certified)...one of these pup's owners called to tell us their pup, "jake" has "crystals" in the urine/tendency towards stones (doesn't have stones now) and bacterial infection..they tried dietary change & now medicines but crystals are still present...she complains of vet costs & inquiring about our responsibility..what is the cause of this--she says genetic? is it possible to pinpoint accurately the cause of this case? as I stated, no prior history of this with our dogs, nor have we heard from any prior puppies/litters with any health problems...she also is inquiring very detailed about the care of our dogs/and during the Ginger's pregnancy..& will be contacting our vet too...ould any of this be a cause? thank you!!!


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I have seen a number of puppies with struvite crystals in their urine. Often we can't figure out why. Almost every time the problem resolves on its own. But it can take some time.

I just did some research for you and there is no known genetic reason for puppies to get this. So, it is very unlikely that this is due to a breeding problem.

The only possible reason I could think for this to be because of a genetic problem would be if there was something like an ectopic ureter. If a dog had this condition then they would leak urine a lot. The constant leaking can predispose a puppy to get infections. Dogs with infections will have an increase in the pH of their urine which can cause crystals.

You may want to ask if their vet has suspected an ectopic ureter. If so, then yes, this could be a genetic condition.

I have a few thoughts for you on the situation. Do you know if the infection was diagnosed by culturing the urine? Sometimes it can look like a puppy has an infection but they really don't.

One other thing I wanted to comment on was the fact that she was going to be contacting your vet. Just so you know, your vet will not release any information to her because this information is confidential between the vet and you.

I hope this helps. I'm sorry that you are going through this tough situation!

Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.