Bladder Stones and A Dog: Bella’s $1200 Harrowing Tale

Bella, The Byas Life, Bladder Surgery

Bella… Bella… Bella…

Never in a million and one years would I have thought I would be dealing with a surgery for my dog. Never.

We’ve heard of humans getting kidney stones and sometimes even bladder stones, but a dog? How? Why? Am I that bad of a owner to allow this to get that extreme?

In February of this year, Bella started acting weird. She would always stop every 4 to 6 feet to pee. I thought she was marking her territory. Partly because I knew her period (is that the correct terminology for dogs? Doggie periods?) was coming, so she wanted other dogs to find where she lived. Well, boy, oh boy, was I in for a shock of my life.

Apparently, what I thought was harmless was very harmful to her.

Bella Weeds, Mini Schnauzer, The Byas Life

Bella Weeds in November 2017

We just moved up in Central Florida back in 2015, and I don’t really use the vet unless I absolutely need to, so I never really established myself with a vet just yet. We live in a smallish city, so we found out that there was some awesome vets close by! We called one and made an appointment, which happened to be on Valentine’s Day!

We go to our vet appointment, we explain that she is not really peeing. We found this out when MY mother decided to take her out and analyze her going to the bathroom. We did a full blood panel (pocket book is already crying), urine test, and just an overall exam. Everything seemed to be somewhat okay until the vet put her hands on poor Bella’s stomach.

And that’s where she said, “Oh, no!!”

“Oh, no?”

“Yes, oh, no. She has a bladder full of stones! She’s going to need a cystotomy as soon as possible!”

Cue the pocket book crying and myself crying!

How? How could I let my dog get a bladder full of stones? How did I miss all the signs? Why did I have to fail her?

Needless to say, the vet we went to, wanted to charge nearly an arm, leg, and my first born child (which can’t be possible, if I have no children, haha) to do the surgery.

We ended up at our current vet, which is AMAZING. They are all nice, not pushy, and they are best of all affordable.

They did her surgery, kept her two nights, and even spayed her for a grand total of $1200!

I lucked out and had an amazing mother who was able to foot the bill (currently paying her back right now) to get Bella the help she so dearly needed.

What I’ve Learned & What You Can Too

I’ve learned a lot going through this process. It’s been nearly 6 months post surgery and there’s a lot to learn.

  • Certain dogs are susceptible to bladder stones than others
  • Check to make sure your dog’s urine is coming out in a healthy stream and there is no blood and/or crystal like material.
  • First time your dog strains to urine make an appointment with your vet ASAP!
  • There are two common types of stones; struvite and calcium oxalate.
  • After surgery expect to visit your vet every few months for urine tests.

Bella lucked out and had struvite stones, which is the better of the two. This meant her urine was more basic.

I did my research before picking up my baby, so I knew of all medical situations, I’d be in and to make sure I was informed on any choices I would need to make while there.

While, my vet did recommend her to be on a prescription diet (most vets recommend the Science Diet) mine recommended the Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets UR Urinary Ox/St Canine Formula Dog Food, which in a way was rated higher than the Science Diet. However, I opted out after doing much research and found that cranberry tablets help flush their systems as they do in humans.

Needless to say, I visit the vet for urine tests every 2 to 3 months. So far everything has been normal no sign of infection and/or stones!

But, what I thought was a harmless thing ended up costing me tons and tons of money!

**Note: Any and all advice here is all of my own. If you suspect your dog may be suffering from a UTI and/or stones, please contact your local vet for an appointment.**

Amanda is a Florida raised, theme park junkie, furmom extraordinaire. She loves a good adventure with a side of food. You can find her planning her next trip or vegging on the couch with her sidekick (and baby), Bella!


  • Stephanie Jnote November 22, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Oh my goodness. So sad. I didn’t know that animals had to go through these things to. Sorry he’s going through that.

  • Ali || Veggies by Candlelight November 22, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    I am so sorry that Bella had to go through this! Dogs that get sick are so hard to take care of because they can’t tell you what hurts or if something feels wrong. I hope that she doesn’t get anymore bladder stones and her vet test keep coming back okay. Thank you for the tips and what to look out for this is big!

  • Valerie Gray (@valmg) November 23, 2017 at 12:44 am

    It stinks to see our pets in pain because we love them like family. It’s great your mom was able to help.

  • Leigh Anne November 23, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    I hate to hear anytime an animal is suffering. I am glad that you got to the vet to take care of this. We are parting for a speedy recovery!

  • Sandra Crespo November 24, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    Glad to hear your fur baby is ok but oh man vets are so expensive right!?!??! I remember when my little fur baby had to go the ER it was quite the bill lol

    • Amanda November 24, 2017 at 6:27 pm

      Yes! They are beyond expensive. I nearly had sticker shock.

  • Hey Sharonoox November 24, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    Sorry to hear about your dog and $1200 definitely is not a small lump sum of money. Hope the new diet helps for her bladder stones problem.


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