Newsletter - September 2014
Tori has a long history of urinary tract infections (UTIs), some of which were multi drug resistant, and they can trigger an IMHA (immune mediated hemolytic anemia) relapse in her. Being on medications that make it difficult for her to fight off bacteria is only part of her problem, but regardless of the "why", she is like many dogs who can benefit from prevention of UTIs. I tried giving her cranberry, but despite a reputation for preventing bacteria from adhering to the bladder wall, it did very little if anything for Tori. Over time, I was working with other people who had dogs that were prone to UTI, so my interest in prevention grew even more.
Whenever possible, I reach for natural solutions to medical problems, and this is where D-Mannose comes in, but some work better than others. D-Mannose is a an almost non-metabolizable sugar, so don't think of it as something that's converted to glucose. It doesn't feed bad bacteria in the digestive tract, and it doesn't mess with blood sugar. It doesn't cause insulin to be released either. Only a small amount of D-mannose can be metabolized; any excess is excreted from the body via urine. Escherichia coli, the most common UTI-causing bacteria, produces chemicals that enable the organism to cling to epithelial cells where they proliferate and cause infection. When taken in large quantities, excess D-mannose that spills into the urine adheres to any E. coli that is present in the urinary tract, dislodging the bacteria from the cells that line the urinary tract walls and excreting them with normal urination.
There's a blog post by Dr. Wright that covers the mechanism of action very well. Read it here and you'll understand that D-Mannose works in people as well. In fact, the supplement is sold for use in people.
And more: "In our study, D-mannose powder had significantly reduced the risk of recurrent UTI which was no different than in Nitrofurantoin group. More studies will be needed to validate the results of this study, but initial findings show that D-mannose may be useful for UTI prevention." World J. Urol 2014 Feb;32(1):79-84. doi: 10.1007/s00345-013-1091-6. Epub 2013 Apr 30.
The glitch? Tori kept coming down with E.Coli UTIs despite being given D-Mannose with, or without cranberry. I began to wonder if the ratio of one to the other made a difference, or if brands differed in their quality and purity. After all, my experience with supplements suggests that differences can be major! So, Tori started receiving a product by Quest, and to this day, she has not had another e.coli UTI. I wish I could say that she's had no other type of UTI, but that's not so. Being on the drugs needed to keep her alive makes that impossible, but e.coli can be a very big deal, and we're done with that one!
Lastly, and very important: Acidophilus has been shown to help women with a propensity to UTIs. You'll find a number of studies about this if you do a search. Some people find help by taking a supplement, while others include it in a spot-wash. I started doing both for Tori because she has allergies that cause her to lick her privates. Her Quest product and acidophilus are combined in food once daily.
Each bottle contains 60 capsules, 500 mg strength
This is what we use for Tori, and at the risk of sharing too much information - I've taken it too. It works so well that I suggested it to clients, but it's unavailable in the U.S., and not always easy to find in my area either. I'm sincerely thrilled to offer it on our site as of today. This is going to help a lot of dogs, and maybe their owners as well!
Learn more on my blog
Monica "Does not the gratitude of the dog put to shame any man who is ungrateful to his benefactors?" - Saint Basil