Urinalysis is an important diagnostic tool that is used to detect and manage many serious diseases and potentially hidden problems in your pet.
A complete urinalysis usually involves three steps:
1. Checking and recording the colour, turbidity (cloudiness) and specific gravity (a measure of how concentrated the urine is) of the sample.
2. Performing a chemical analysis using a multi-test dipstick. A dipstick can detect the presence of blood, protein, glucose or other substances in the urine.
3. Centrifuging a small portion of the urine and examining the sediment under the microscope. The microscope examination can reveal the presence of:
(i) White blood cells, which may indicate inflammation from a bladder or kidney infection.
(ii) Bacteria, in large amounts usually indicate a bladder infection and performing an additional test of culture and sensitivity will give information of what type of bacteria is present and the most effective antibiotics for treatment.
(iii) Crystals made up of minerals are sometimes found in urine and under certain conditions can clump together to form stones.