Characteristics associated with bacterial growth in urine in 451 proteinuric dogs (2008-2018). Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND: Urine cultures are frequently recommended to rule out infection as a postrenal cause of proteinuria. OBJECTIVE: Identify characteristics associated with bacterial growth in urine in proteinuric dogs. ANIMALS: Four hundred and fifty-one dogs admitted to a teaching hospital between January 2008 and January 2018 with urine protein-to-creatinine ratios (UPCs) >0.5. METHODS: Retrospective study included dogs with a UPC, urinalysis, and quantitative urine culture (QUC) performed within a 72-hour period by searching electronic records. Dogs with recent antimicrobial therapy, urine collected by methods other than cystocentesis, or UPC 0.5 were excluded. Signalment, comorbidities, serum BUN and creatinine concentrations, urinalysis findings, and QUC results were recorded. The association between these characteristics and presence of bacterial growth in urine was assessed by univariable and multivariable analysis. RESULTS: Thirty of four hundred fifty-one dogs (6.7%) had bacterial growth in urine. Of these, 18 (60.0%) had active urine sediment. Bacterial growth in urine was associated with pyuria (odd ratio [OR] 25.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] 7.9-79.6, P<.001), bacteriuria (OR 11.1, 95% CI 3.2-39.1, P<.001), and lower urinary tract disease (OR 6.7, 95% CI 1.9-23.0; P = .0028). If QUC was prompted based on these criteria, 8/451 (1.8%) of proteinuric dogs would have had undetected bacterial growth. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL IMPORTANCE: The proportion of proteinuric dogs with both inactive urine sediment and bacterial growth in urine was low, suggesting that QUC might not be necessary in the evaluation of all proteinuric dogs. An active urine sediment or lower urinary tract disease should prompt QUC for proteinuric dogs.

published proceedings

  • J Vet Intern Med

altmetric score

  • 1.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Grimes, M., Heseltine, J. C., Nabity, M. B., Lawhon, S. D., Wheeler, L., Cigarroa, A., & Lidbury, J. A.

citation count

  • 4

complete list of authors

  • Grimes, Millie||Heseltine, Johanna C||Nabity, Mary B||Lawhon, Sara D||Wheeler, Lance||Cigarroa, Annalis||Lidbury, Jonathan A

publication date

  • March 2020