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We have an adorable irish setter bitch, Ella. We decided not to spay her on the advice of the breeder and following lots of research which identified a number of issues that  might occur, including incontinence.

At 5 years 4 months, she has now become intermittently incontinent. She has been prescribed PPA which after just a few days seems to be working......fingers crossed.

Has anyone else come across this problem in unspayed bitches? 

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Hi Trevor
Is it excitement wee?

Hi Mario. This is definitely not excitement pee. 

About a year ago Ella had a urinary infection, which caused her to have a period of incontinence. This time we assumed the same. However the vet has confirmed there are no urinary infections or blood related issues. She has been on PPA now for 3 weeks and the incontinence has stopped. 

In 1 week's time we reduce the dosage to once per day.

I've read that irish setter bitches can be prone to incontinence, which is one of the reasons spaying is not advised as this can make matters worse (reduced estrogen levels can apparently reduce the strength of the sphincter around the bladder). The PPA helps to strengthen the spincter apparently.

Ella has just come into season, so I am wondering if this may relate to the onset of the season.....although the incontinence started some 6/7 weeks ago.

Hi Trevor. Our last old girl had mild incontinence around her seasons, but from a much earlier age. It turned out she had an ectopic ureter which we decided not to have operated on, as we could manage the inconvenience every 8 months or so. It did get worse in time, and after she was speyed, due to pyometra late in life, she was on propalin til the end.

We've never had problems with any of our other girls I'm pleased to say. I guess this is not Ella's problem though, as I'm sure it would have shown up earlier.

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