Tinkerbell had not been spayed yet because the family was on a limited income, but they were worried about the discharge. They ultimately brought her to the vet, where she was diagnosed with pyometra, a life-threatening disease if left untreated.
For those who don’t know, pyometra is a uterine disease usually seen in unaltered female dogs who have not been pregnant; however, the disease can also be seen in unspayed cats, guinea pigs, rabbits and rats. It can be seen in dogs of any age, but typically occurs in unspayed dogs who are around the age of 6 or older.
Usually, a dog will show symptoms of the disease within a few months of their last heat cycle. Symptoms often include:
- a lack of energy
- lack of appetite
- excessive thirst
- frequent urination
- a distended abdomen, due to the enlarged uterus
- vaginal discharge
- and excessive licking at the area with discharge
Fur Kids Foundation is no stranger to this disease, sadly we’ve seen it in many cases we have helped. The Foundation board and case managers encourage all pet owners of female dogs (or cats, guinea pigs, rabbits and rats) to spay them because it prevents the disease from ever happening, especially if you are like most pet owners who never plan to breed your dog. There are also other benefits of spaying your dog, which you can read about in our Why Spay/Neuter page.
We are happy to report that Tinkerbell is feeling much better and is on her way to a full recovery.
Below are a few articles we recommend you read to learn more about pyometra. If you have any questions about the disease, please be sure to speak with your veterinarian.
- Dr. Becker: Pyometra-This life-threatening disease could kill your dog within 48 hours
- Pet Health Network: Pyometra-Why you should spay sooner than later
If you would like to help Fur Kids Foundation continue to help families with animals, please consider making a tax-deductible donation. The money helps families during a time when they may not be able to afford adequate veterinary care. Check out more Success Stories.