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What Are the Medication and Vet Costs for a Dog UTI in 2024? Price Guide

Patricia Dickson

By Patricia Dickson

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Marta Vidal-Abarca

BVSc GPCert (Ophthal) MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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When it comes to your dogs, you want to know for sure that they are healthy and happy at all times. Sadly, that’s not always the case, and your dog might get sick from time to time throughout their life. In fact, UTIs, or Urinary Tract Infections, are one of the most common infections in dogs. It is estimated that approximately 14% of the dog population will be diagnosed with a bacterial UTI at some point in their lives.

The thing is that medication and vet costs are quite expensive, and many pet owners wonder where they’re going to get the money for them all. In this article, we’ll give you some of the costs you can expect for medication and vet visits for a dog UTI this year and a few other facts as well. The short answer is that depending on the care your dog needs, the number and type of tests necessary to reach a diagnosis, their size, and the type of treatment your dog needs, vet costs for an uncomplicated dog UTI can range from $150 to $500. If surgery is involved, that number can double or more.¹

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The Importance of Dog Urinary Tract Health

As with anything related to your beloved pet’s health, their urinary tract health is extremely important. Your dog’s urinary system is responsible for filtering, processing, and removing the waste from their body. If the dog has problems with their kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra, then that waste builds up instead of getting flushed out of the dog’s system.

These issues can lead to infections, blockages, and kidney disease. If these conditions are left untreated, they can even prove to be fatal for your pet. That’s why it’s essential to get your dog to a vet right away if you feel that they may have a UTI or any type of problem that affects their urinary system.

Now that you know the importance of dog urinary tract health, you can keep reading to find out how much a UTI vet visit and medication might cost you.

hand in blue glove holding urine strip test results in healthy animal
Image Credit: Pee Paew, Shutterstock

How Much Does Professional UTI Diagnosis, Vet Visits, and Medication Cost?

As with anything to do with a vet visit and medication, having your dog diagnosed and treated for a UTI is not going to be cheap. We’ll try to break down the costs for you below.

General Costs to Diagnose and Treat UTIs in Dogs

  • Vet Exam: $45–$65
  • Urine Collection and In-House Testing: Urinalysis: $75–$95
  • Urine Culture Sent to an External Laboratory: $170–$200
  • Course of Antibiotics: $20–$200 on average; can vary according to the severity and the size of your dog.

Factors that Cause the Price to Vary

Of course, there are also factors that can affect the cost of treating a UTI in your canine. We’ll talk about these factors below.

Age

As your dog ages, UTIs may become more frequent or be linked to other health issues, which means you’ll probably have more vet visits and medication costs than you would with a younger dog.

Size

The size of your pet will also be taken into consideration when it comes to price. A larger dog needs higher doses of medication, hence the higher price.

Location

Where you live can have a direct impact on how much treatment and medication will cost you. No two vets are the same, and no two locations charge the same price in most cases.

Vet Clinic vs. Animal Hospital

Another reason for a difference in price for a UTI diagnosis and treatment for your dog is whether you take them to a vet clinic or a large animal hospital. In many cases, vets working at animal hospitals are specialists holding a certificate or a diploma. Additionally, hospital facilities are top quality with state-of-the-art equipment. These factors can increase the price of the visits, tests, and treatments that they provide.

vet examining the urine sample of golden retriever
Image Credit: Elnur, Shutterstock

Additional Costs to Anticipate

There are a few extra costs that you’ll want to prepare for, just in case. There are a few different ways to perform the urinalysis that will determine if your dog does indeed have a UTI. If a urinary catheter is needed, that will increase the cost, as well as if a cystocentesis (a sample taken directly from the bladder) is needed to collect the urine. Each of these methods, depending on which one is used, can add another $50 to $100 to the total bill.

Also, if the UTI is really serious and you need to take your dog to the emergency vet, you can tack another $100 to $200 onto the final bill.

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Signs of a UTI

Of course, before you take your dog in for diagnosis and treatment for a UTI, you need to know the signs to look out for. We’ll give you a few to look for below.

  • Dribbling urine or having accidents in the house
  • Straining to urinate but very little coming out
  • Frequent attempts to urinate 
  • Urinating inside the house
  • Abnormal color of the urine (brown, red)
  • Increased thirst
  • Lethargy
  • Licking their genitals

If you see these signs in your pet, then you need to make a vet appointment right away because the earlier your vet starts treatment, the faster and your dog will recover. 

chihuahua drinking in the water fountain
Image Credit: muslody.com, Shutterstock

Does Pet Insurance Cover UTI Treatment and Medications?

Generally speaking, yes, pet insurance should cover UTI vet visits, tests, and treatment, as long as you have the right type of coverage. Of course, the type of insurance you have and who you have it through will make a difference as well.

Make sure to do your research to determine who and what the best pet insurance is to cover your pet’s needs, and try to get coverage from the moment your dog arrives home, whether as a puppy or adult. Keep in mind that your dog’s age will likely affect the insurance quote, and any preexisting conditions will usually be excluded. 

However, no pet parent wants to have to pay for UTI tests and medications out of pocket, so it is best to look into pet insurance when you have any type of pet, just to be on the safe side.

If you are looking for a pet insurance plan that offers great value, Spot's customized plans can be adjusted to suit your pet and your budget. You may be able to cover your pet at a cost that suits you.

woman's hands over dog and cat cut-outs pet insurance concept
Image Credit: Andrey_Popov, Shutterstock

Tips to Prevent Your Dog from Getting a UTI

Now that you know everything you need to know about dogs, UTIs, and how to handle them, you’ll want to do your best to help your canine pal never have a UTI again, or never getting one at all.

Regular vet visits and following your vet’s advice are the first place to start when it comes to preventing your dog from getting a UTI. Also, make sure that you give your dog high-quality food and plenty of fresh water so that they have a great start on their road to being healthy.

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Final Thoughts

This concludes our guide on the costs of medication and treatment for dog UTIs this year. Though it can vary from dog to dog, vet to vet, and city to city, these are estimated prices that are commonly being charged in many different private practices.

Make sure you watch your dog closely and take care of your furry friend by following the tips above so they don’t end up in the vet’s office with a UTI on a regular basis. Lastly, look into pet insurance if you haven’t done so yet. It will help you greatly to cope with any unexpected expenses at all times.


Featured Image Credit: Javier Brosch, Shutterstock

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