Urolithiasis refers to the formation of stones in the urinary tract. Stones can be found anywhere in the urinary tract, in the kidneys, the ureter or the bladder, but are most common in the bladder.

Several factors can contribute to development of urolithiasis. These include genetic factors, diet, breed, metabolic diseases, congenital problems and bacterial urinary tract infections. There are several types of stones, named according to their predominant mineral composition. The most common stones are struvite and calcium oxalate.

Diagnosis and Treatment Notes:

  • Urolithiasis is generally diagnosed by a thorough history, physical examination (including palpation of the bladder), urinalysis and abdominal x-rays. For those instances when the bladder stones are not visible on plain x-rays, contrast dye x-ray may be needed.  In some situations, an abdominal ultrasound may be recommended. Stones are analyzed to identify mineral composition and guide future treatment.
  • Treatment depends on the severity of the disease, your individual pet, and your veterinarian. Pets with concurrent bacterial infection are treated with antibiotics. The stones are treated with surgical removal or by dietary intervention or both. Discuss treatment details when your pet is diagnosed with this condition.


What to Watch for*:

  • Blood in the urine
  • Increased frequency of urinations
  • Straining to urinate


*Please notify us if you notice any of the above signs or if you have any questions!

Dear Valued Clients

During these challenging times, there have been some unforeseen changes at The Big Easy Animal Hospital. I cannot express enough my sincere apology for any inconvenience you have experienced at The Big Easy during these times. As we strive to make the practice safe to protect everyone including you, your family, and our Big Easy team and their families, I’ve decided to make certain changes while we are under this pandemic. These changes will be temporary.


Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday:
Walk Ins: Check-in starts at 9:45am.There are a limited amount of patients we can accept. Our receptionists will be happy to assist you with options to help guide you and your pet(s).)


Saturday Hours

Saturdays will be TECHNICIAN APPOINTMENTS only. These will include boosters, bloodwork, nail trims, certain diagnostics, etc. There will not be a veterinarian on site. While I understand these changes can be inconvenient, I have listed local veterinary clinics that we have contacted and are open to see walk-ins throughout the week and Saturdays as well. For life threatening emergencies that occur outside business hours, please contact the following 24-hour animal hospitals below.

Please, be safe and healthy.

Thank you all for your understanding. -Aileen Ruiz, DVM


24 Hour Emergency Care:


Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center

807 Camp Horne Road
Pittsburgh, PA



4224 Northern Pike
Monroeville, PA

VCA Castle Shannon Animal Hospital

3610 Library Road
Pittsburgh, PA

Veterinarians Accepting Walk in Care:

Penn Animal Hospital

2205 Penn Avenue

North Boros Veterinary Hospital

2255 Babcock Blvd



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