Hello, this is Dr. Linda. I hope I can help with your question today.
I am so sorry for your concerns about Arabella's urinary bladder stones. Unfortunately, this is not an uncommon problem in some breeds of dogs, & schnauzers are a bit overrepresented when it comes to this condition.
So, being a Schnauzer is the first link to Arabella developing stones. The second link is just how her body eliminates waste products through her urine. Perhaps she had a urinary tract infection that got this whole thing started, but once the conditions are there to develop a stone, it continues like a snowball rolling downhill, & each stone gets bigger & bigger over time.
Surgery is the quickest way to deal with this as it is curative, but some types of stones can be dissolved with a special, prescription diet. Your veterinarian will need to know the makeup of the stones, usually done with a urinalysis & identification of the crystals within. But dissolving the stones may take many weeks, if the makeup of the stones can be dissolved with a diet ( some are not ). In the meantime, Arabella will still be uncomfortable, urinate small amounts frequently, & will be subject to infections. Surgery is relatively quick, hospitalization 1-2 days at most, pain medications control the pain, which should be no greater than being spayed, & she will feel so much better.
To prevent the stones from coming back, your veterinarian will probably recommend continuing the prescription diet for the rest of her life.
I hope this makes sense & has given you the information you were seeking. Please let me know if you have any additional questions or concerns.
Thank you, & I hope Arabella is doing better soon.