How long can dogs hold their pee?

  • by
How Long Can Dogs Hold Their Pee

Holding your urine for a long time when you feel like your bladder is about to burst is not exactly easy. The same goes for our beloved pet dogs. While your pup can remain in your home for eight hours or more, is it safe for them to hold their urine for such a length? In general, how long can dogs hold their pee? 

As dog owners, we aren’t always present to help our pets urinate. Sometimes, we are busy with our daily jobs or other duties outside the house. 

It can be risky for your dog to hold their pee for a very long time, though you’ll be shocked to know how long they can do it for. Here is what you need to understand when it comes to our pet’s bathroom breaks.

How long can dogs hold their pee?

Most of the time, dogs can hold their pee for approximately 1 hour for every month of their age. Vets approve of allowing dogs to relieve themselves at a minimum of 3-4 times daily, or once every 6-8 hours. However, some dogs can go for 10-12 hours, but this is not healthy.

How long can dogs hold their pee

Regardless of age, DOGS must NOT hold their pee for more than 8 hours.

If you think your dog is suffering from oliguria or decreased urine output, start observing their fluid intake. As an added measure, put several bowls of water to make sure your dog is drinking more. But this practice is not advisable, unless you are usually preoccupied and prone to leaving your dog deprived of water.

At the same time, not drinking water for a couple of hours is still okay, though it should not turn into a habit. Several factors can affect your dog’s bathroom breaks, including: 

Age Factor

One of the best ways to know how long a dog can remain in the house without peeing is to apply the general rule: N+1, where N is the puppy’s age in months or one hour for every month of their age. 

For example, if your dog is a month old, he can hold his urine for approximately two (2) hours. Don’t go beyond these time frames to prevent accidents. 

When your dog is six (6) months old, assessing this period won’t be needed since; from this moment, your pet will be able to hold his pee for at least nine hours. Additionally, puppies tend to use the bathroom in just a few minutes after drinking or eating. Older dogs cannot hold their pee as much.

They usually demand a potty break every 4-6 hours. As dogs get old, you may notice them begging to be let out more frequently or even cause havoc inside the house now and then. The muscles helping them to inhibit incontinence weaken eventually.

Size or Breed

Smaller breeds urinate more because their bladders are small and will get full faster. Larger breeds can deal with fewer toilet breaks. 

A pug’s bladder is much smaller and weaker than a Mastiff; therefore, if they are gulping water, they are more likely to pee more frequently. 

But giant dogs will still require more bathroom breaks when they are young. Hence, it is still essential to permit them outside 3-4 times every day regardless of their breed or size. 


Potty training is among the first things dog owners need to teach their pets. This is different from the typical stay, sit, and hand commands – prohibiting your dog from relieving himself indoors needs to be done as quickly as possible.

But, house training doesn’t end after they’ve learned how to manage their bladders. The number of times you let your dog outside to do his business in the daytime likewise teaches him to hold their pee for a considerable time.

A dog who stays indoors during their master’s working hours will be better equipped to control their bladder than dogs whose owners let them out more frequently.

Food & Water Consumption

As with humans, if a dog is drinking plenty of fluids, he will require more bathroom breaks. Expect your pet to pee more in hotter seasons since they’re drinking more water. 

Everything else will vary depending on your pet’s diet; a dog who consumes dry food will urinate less than a dog eat fresh food or wet dog food. 


Obesity is a huge predicament for dogs. Studies show that too much body fat can lead to excessive abdominal pressure, causing more frequent trips to the bathroom or going outside. 

Health issues

Dogs with medical problems have various problems regarding bladder control. Conditions like kidney disease or diabetes generally require more pee breaks every day. Common health problems that affect a dog’s bathroom breaks include:

  • Any illnesses affecting their liver or kidney
  • Cancer
  • Incontinence
  • Inflammation
  • Kidney/bladder stones
  • Mobility problems
  • Muscle weakening
  • Urinary tract infections 

Bringing your pet to the vet will help you better understand your dog’s demands and needs. 

Is It Dangerous for a Dog to hold their Pee For Too Long?

Yes, it can be dangerous for your dog to hold their pee in for a long time. Trained dogs will try to control their bladder until they are permitted to go out. And sometimes, these dogs are more prone to develop urinary tract infections and urinary stones. 

Is It Dangerous A Dog Holds Their Pee For Too Long

UTIs are also likely to occur. Additionally, a pup might be suffering or in distress when he is trying to do his business. It will help if you take urinary health seriously in dogs; therefore, it’s essential to know the symptoms you must watch out for:

  • Blood in urine
  • Failure to pee
  • Strong odor in urine
  • Straining or whining when peeing
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst
  • Change of urine color 

These signs can hint at a UTI, which suggests they might need antibiotics. 

Without treatment, a UTI can cause serious problems. This includes having Urolithiasis because of bacterial infection in the kidney. If it persists, a tumor may also develop. 

When a dog has been holding his pee for so many years, sooner or later, his bladder will become somewhat swollen because of this habit.

Is there any way to potty train dogs?

Here are some ways to help your dog feel more at ease. 

Crate training

Crate-training is a popular technique for house-training a dog, though shutting him in a crate the entire day is not recommended by experts. 

Suppose you have a fence, gate or other effective ways of retaining your dog within your premises. This can be a very straightforward method of leaving your dog alone for extended periods of time. 

Sometimes you might be extremely busy with your job and find yourself unable to go home; if this happens, it might be best to keep him in a small spot along with his toys, food, and water. Training your dog on pee-pads or newspapers is highly advantageous as this alternative enables your dog to urinate without your help. 

way to potty train dogs

Train Them To Ask You To Go Out

Dogs will also display a few hints that they need to go outside; you only have to pay attention to your pet to read the signs. Some indications that a dog may wish to go outside for a wee-wee include:

  • Sniffing around
  • Barking, crying, or whining
  • Seems fidgety
  • Pawing at you
  • Crying at the door
  • Standing at the door looking outside 

If you notice your dog exhibiting some of the above actions, they may need a bathroom break. 

Hire a dog walker or Send him to doggy daycare

If you’re busy, have someone take your dog for a walk. It might be any member of your family, friends, or professional dog walker. This will have the added perk of providing your dog some additional physical activity, which modern pooches usually miss. 

Dog Walker with Dogs

When to See Your Vet

Don’t worry if your dog isn’t urinating as frequently as possible. First thing you need to do is to give them some more water, and see if they start to urinate normally. But you must call and bring your dog to the vet if he doesn’t relieve himself all day. Below are some red flags that you must pay attention to:

  • Straining or pain when urinating
  • Increase the frequency of urinating
  • Change in the urine color, such as red and very dark.
  • Dribbling pee
  • Howling and whining when they pee
  • Constant licking and agitation
  • Several accidents 

If you are worried about your pup not urinating properly, bring him to a vet. Urinary problems can lead to severe issues for your dog.

Wrap Up

Now that you have an idea of how long your dog can go without a bathroom break, you can start thinking about how you’ll be able to prevent accidents within your home. Younger dogs may wish to relieve themselves every hour, to start with. As a dog matures, you can add one hour for every month of his age. 

Dogs are man’s best friends. Monitoring your furry friend’s urinary health and managing his toilet habit will help your dog stay healthy and happy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *