Kidney failure in dogs

June 27th, 2022

Dog Healthcare, Dog Nutrition

5 min.

Kidney Failure In Dogs

Your dog’s Kidneys are busy organs in their body that have many responsibilities to keep your dog healthy, from removing toxins like ammonia, to maintaining their blood pressure and helping to create new red blood cells.

With so many core functions, it can be a real worry if you suspect your dog’s kidneys are failing, find out the common symptoms and possible treatment options for kidney failure in dogs with this guide

Kidney disease can affect a dog at any stage in their life and sadly, there’s no way of predicting which dog or breed of dog will develop kidney disease and which won’t.

There is sadly nothing you can do to prevent your dog from developing kidney failure, certain products and raw foods have been made to support their Kidneys and reduce the strain. Providing your dog with a constant supply of fresh, clean water will help support their kidneys and, if they do develop kidney failure, it could help to slow down its progress.

Chronic Kidney Failure in Dogs

A dog suffering with chronic kidney failure will see a gradual decline, this can take months or even years to develop. Chronic failure can be attributed to things including infections and tumours and unfortunately, by the time it’s diagnosed, it’s often too late to reverse.

However at the early stages of chronic kidney disease, the healthy areas of the kidney take on the extra work that the damaged areas can’t do any longer, this means that the healthy parts work even harder than usual.

As the disease progresses, and the unhealthy areas start to outnumber the healthy, the workload simply becomes too much and your dog will show signs of kidney failure.

Chronic kidney failure in dogs is a progressive illness that your vet will need to keep an eye on, but it can usually be managed with a combination of medical treatments and a special diet.

Acute Kidney Failure in Dogs

If your dog suffers from acute kidney failure, their kidneys have suddenly stopped working properly. Caused include something such as an illness or infection, or because they’ve eaten something they shouldn’t, like antifreeze.

Sometimes acute kidney failure in dogs may be able to be treated and reversed but could also be permanent, depending on what has caused it, a Vet should be consulted for advice.

Signs of Kidney Failure in Dogs

  • Weight loss
  • Pale gums
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Fragile, weak bones
  • Tiredness and lethargy
  • Urinating more often – urine will usually be very diluted
  • Increased drinking to replace lost fluids
  • Nausea and Vomiting
  • Retching or going off their food

You should avoid trying to diagnose kidney disease yourself, the signs in dogs can be a symptom of other illnesses or conditions and a vet should be consulted.

The sooner you see your vet for a proper diagnosis, the better. Although there’s no cure for kidney disease, early treatment will help to relieve the discomfort caused by the symptoms and support your pet’s kidneys.

Diagnosis of Kidney Disease in your Dog

In order for your vet to diagnose kidney disease, your vet will start by testing a sample of their urine to see if your dog’s urine is concentrated, whether protein is being lost in their urine and if they have any other problems, like an underlying infection. They might also take a blood test to check for specific kidney function, to get an idea of your dog’s overall health and to see if the build-up of toxins has affected any of their other organs.

Treatment for Kidney Disease in Dogs

Diet – Your dog’s diet should be tailored with assistance from your vet, who can advise you with the best raw food to suit their needs. Our two most popular Kidney supporting formulas are:

Nutriment Kidney Support – Sold in 500g trays

Natural Instinct Special Diet – Available in 2x500g packs or 1kg packs

Medication – kidney failure in dogs can impact so many different bodily functions and cause them to develop conditions such as high blood pressure or anaemia, your vet might recommend specific medications to help treat each symptom.

Certain supplements may also be suggested to replace lost vitamins and help to improve some secondary effects caused by the disease. It’s important to remember to only give supplements and medications at the recommendation of your vet.

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