Ask the Veterinarian/High WBC



I have a 3 year old intact male argentine mastiff.
About 2 months ago he was constantly licking and chewing his groin area to where he would cut himself. I took in a urine sample thinking he had a UTI and needed some antibiotics.

Results from 1st urinalysis -
Gravity - 1.016
PH - 8.5
Protein - +3
RBC - + 1
WBC - +1
Bacteria - + 1

They said he had a ton of protein, very dilute and there could be something wrong with his kidneys. They ran blood work for his kidneys which came back negative.

They put him on 2 weeks of Ciprofloxacin. They also had me give him 1000 mgs of Vit C daily.   Another urinalysis still showed a lot of protein. They put him on 2 weeks of Cephalexin. Then the last urinalysis showed his proteins were negative but his WBC was high (10-15).

The 1st 2 tests were done in-house, the last one was sent out.

The vet is telling me that there's an infection in his prostate because he is not neutered and the females are in heat and the only way to resolve the problem is to neuter him which I told them I can't do. They can't seem to give me a straight answer as to why the proteins got better and his WBC is High. It makes no sense to me. And he stopped chewing his groin after the 1st round of antibiotics.

Now they prescribed Primor for 21 days. Today was the 1st dose (2400 mgs, he's 105lbs).  He has been skittish all day, everything is making him jump. And he's panting off and on. The vet told me it's not from the meds but to stop the meds and bring him in for an exam.

They are telling me the only thing that will help the infection in the prostate is Primor. And he is obviously having some kind of reaction to the meds.

Is this something that could go away on it's own? Would another course of Cephalexin be a waste?

I'd appreciate your advice on this problem or even if it's a problem at all.

Thanks for your time.


ANSWER: If it truly is an infection in the prostate, then Cephalexin will not be of much use and Primor is a better choice. There are only a few drugs that can get into the prostate gland.  Ciprofloxacin is not absorbed from the intestines of most dogs and so we do not recommend its use.  The drugs closest to ciprofloxacin for the dog are Baytril or Zenequin, which will both help the prostate infection.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you for the reply.  As I mentioned he had some kind of reaction to the Primor so I will not give it to him.  I eventually went back to the vet and received 3 weeks of Cephalexin 500mg 2x/day.

I don't still don't understand why his proteins returned to normal but his WBC rose. Any ideas why?

And if it's from him being intact and the females are in their "heat season won't this infection pass?

Thank you

Cephalexin will kill bacteria in the urine and treat a cystitis, which will make protein positive in the urinalysis.  Cephalexin does not get to the prostate gland. If there are WBC in the urine, then it could be from a prostate infection.   A bacterial prostatic massage culture may be needed.

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Dr. Louis N. Gotthelf


Dermatology and ear diseases of dogs and cats


I am the author of "Small Animal Ear Diseases; An Illustrated Guide" published by W.B. Saunders. I have over 25 years of clinical experience with a special interest in dermatologic conditions and ear diseases.

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