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Early neutering of bitches increases incontinence risk
Bitches of certain breeds are more prone to early-onset urinary incontinence
Research reveals link between age and onset

Urinary incontinence affects around three per cent of bitches in the UK. The condition can be distressing and costly for owners and also harm the welfare of affected dogs, owing to an increased risk of urinary infection and dermal lesions stemming from urine-soaked skin.

The link between urinary incontinence and neutering in bitches has previously been suspected, but a study published in the Journal of Small Animal Practice provides real evidence on the extent of this relationship.

The results identified an increased risk of 2.12 times of urinary incontinence in neutered bitches compared with entire individuals. Further to this, it identified an increased risk of 1.82 of urinary incontinence in bitches neutered before six months of age compared with those neutered from six to 12 months within the first two years following surgery.

Although there are many benefits to neutering bitches, these results will help veterinary professionals to make evidence-based recommendations on the timing of neutering, whilst taking other considerations into account.

Other key findings include:
  • average age at diagnosis of UI was 2.9 years
  • average time from neuter to UI was 1.9 years.
  • bitches weighing over 30kg had 2.62 times the risk of UI compared with bitches weighing under 10 kg
  • increasing bodyweight was also associated with an increased risk of early-onset urinary incontinence.
The study also indicates that bitches of certain breeds – Irish setters, Dalmatians, Hungarian vizslas, Dobermans and Weimaraners – are more prone to early-onset urinary incontinence than other breeds; which highlights that special care needs to be taken when deciding on whether to neuter these breeds.

The research was supported by BSAVA Petsavers and collected data from anonymised veterinary clinical records of 72,971 bitches.

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Do you know a practice wellbeing star?

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 Has someone in your practice team gone above and beyond to make your workplace a positive one during the coronavirus pandemic? Then why not nominate them for a 2020 Practice Wellbeing Star!

The joint RCVS Mind Matters Initiative/SPVS Practice Wellbeing Star nominations recognise individuals who have held up morale during a time when practices are facing unprecedented staffing and financial issues.

Nominees receive a certificate in recognition of their colleagues' appreciation of their achievements and will be entered into the prize draw for a pair of tickets to attend the joint SPVS and Veterinary Management Group Congress in January 2021.


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WellVet reopens ticket sales to online conference platform

Following the success of its online conference, the organisers behind WellVet Weekend have re-opened ticket sales to allow new delegates to access session recordings and its online networking platform.

The day-long conference saw more than 360 veterinary professionals mix activity sessions with personal development CPD, all hosted within a virtual conference platform. Now, with more than 500 minutes of CPD available, the resource is being re-opened to allow full access to the session recordings until May 2021.

Sessions are aimed at providing delegates with a range of proactive wellbeing tools to explore to find ways of improving their mental and physical health. Tickets are limited in number and on sale at until 30th August 2020.