Canine Kidney Disease

There are many diseases that affect humans, as well as dogs. Dogs get colds and they have allergies like humans. They can also get kidney disease, which is usually very serious. When a dog contracts kidney disease, it has to be treated very quickly to ensure that it lives as fully as possible.

Kidney and Renal Diseases Found in Dogs

Kidney disease is one of the most common diseases that dogs die from. Unfortunately, one of the most common causes of kidney or renal disease in dogs is aging, but there are a variety of other factors which can influence the likely hood of kidney failure in dogs of any age, so it’s possible for any dog to develop kidney disease. Since there is no real way to prevent canine kidney disease, it’s slightly more dangerous than other diseases that can be prevented with the right care.

Breeds Susceptible to Familial and Other Renal Diseases

There are some breeds that are naturally more susceptible to kidney diseases. These breeds include cocker spaniels, lhasa apsos, shit tzus, bull terriers, golden retrievers, German shepherds, Samoyeds, Doberman pinschers, Norwegian elkhounds, cairn terriers, and soft-coated Wheaton terriers.

  • List of Breeds: A list of breeds more susceptible with other good information.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Be on the watch for increased thirst, excessive drinking, and excessive urination in dogs to make sure you catch any signs of kidney disease and renal failure. You should also look for symptoms like lethargy, vomiting, bad breath, weakness, depression, and even anorexia. Kidney Disease and renal failure are usually diagnosed through the use of specific tests administered at a vet’s office. These tests are usually blood tests and other chemical analysis tests.

Treatment and Management

As there is no cure for kidney and renal failure, early detection is especially important so that the disease’s spread can be slowed. There are a number of treatments that can make a dog’s life easier. Fluid therapy keeps pets hydrated and diet therapy works as well. Any blood abnormalities like hypokalemia or hyperkalemia have to be monitored as well. It’s also important to switch your dog to a vet-approved diet plan to make sure it has all the necessary nutrition. There are also some medications that can be prescribed to help manage it.

  • Treatments: Discusses some of the most popular treatments being used.

Breed Specific Renal Diseases

Certain breeds have specific renal diseases. German Shepherds are prone to chronic colitis or inflammation of the colon. Standard poodles are particularly prone to juvenile renal disease. English cocker spaniels are also prone to renal failure as juveniles because they inherit it.

Dietary Management of Dogs with Renal Disease

Diet is one of the most effective ways to control kidney disease. Good fats are helpful when a dog is suffering from renal disease but too much can be harmful. When feeding raw food, give your dog fatty meats, egg yolks high in fat, and whole milk. Be sure however to carefully monitor your dogs behavior when on a high fat diet. If a dog seems uncomfortable after eating it is most likely time to lower their fat intake. A phosphorus diet can also be extremely beneficial to dogs. These diets include foods like bones, fish, dairy products, egg yolks, and organ meats. Try to avoid grains and vegetables.

Effects of Dietary Protein on Renal Function

There have been many studies to determine the effect of high protein diets on the kidneys of dogs with renal failure. Dogs were put on both high protein diets and diets with a normal amount of protein. Tests results were found not to support the hypothesis that a high protein diet had a significant adverse effect on dogs with renal failure.

  • Influence Report: Report about a study done on dietary protein and how it affects renal function in dogs.

Additional Resources and Information

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Theresa September 3, 2011 at 1:18 am

My 22 week old Norwegian Elkhund pup has chronic kidney failure. So far she is still comfortable. I expect there will come a point soon when we will consider euthanasia. I am sorry that your girl was diagnosed with this.

Cheryl July 30, 2011 at 6:00 pm

I have a two year old Norwegian Elkhound who is in the hospital right now for kidney failure the vet has told me that it is genetic and he has suggested that I put her down. I am of course not wanting to do that because she is so young and very much a part of the family, I do not want her to suffer in anyway though, I would prefer to put her on a diet or some kind of treatment to prolong her life, I just want her to be happy for whatever time she has remaining to her…

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