Chronic Kidney Disease: Supporting The kidneys For The Long-Term

Posted by MyDogDoc on

It can be very worrying if your dog is diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. However, if caught early enough and managed appropriately many dogs can live comfortably for years.

  • Feeding the right diet is often the cornerstone of managing kidney disease and can have a hugely positive impact on your dog’s life.

  • Keeping them hydrated is also crucial - some dogs may need intravenous fluids if they get very dehydrated.

  • Medications are available to reduce any symptoms that your pup may be showing.

Treating kidney disease in dogs

Your vet will tailor any treatments to your individual dog, depending on their test results, and and also looking at the signs they are showing.

  • Diet

The key recommendation for dogs with kidney disease is that they should be fed a diet lower in phosphorus, protein and sodium but high in omega 3 fatty acids. Feeding a low phosphorus diet is most important as it can limit some of the damage done to the kidneys by calcium and phosphorus imbalance, and improve survival - dogs with kidney disease that eat a renal diet tend to live longer.

There are many prescription therapeutic pet foods formulated especially for dogs with chronic kidney disease. Your vet will work with you to find a food that your dog will eat and enjoy and new foods will be introduced gradually. The earlier in the disease dietary changes are made the more effect they can have.

  • Hydration

Dogs with chronic kidney disease cannot concentrate their urine properly so they lose excessive amounts of water in the urine. It is therefore crucial that they have fresh water available to them at all times to keep them as hydrated as possible.

Intravenous fluid therapy (a fluid drip) may be needed to stabilise a dog who is dehydrated. This will require a hospital stay which allows your pup to be closely monitored.

In some instances your vet may administer fluids under your dog’s skin (subcutaneous fluids) which can be done in a consult. Sometimes you can be taught how to do this for your dog at home but it is not suitable in every case.

  • Medications

In some dogs restricting the amount of phosphorus in their diet is not enough, and your vet may suggest adding phosphate binders. These are drugs that bind phosphorus in the intestinal tract, preventing it being absorbed from the food and allowing it to pass out in their poo.

High blood pressure (hypertension) is often seen in dogs with kidney disease and we need to monitor for this carefully as it can cause several complications, including damaging the kidneys further.. Medications are available to help lower blood pressure if necessary.

Kidney disease can make dogs feel nauseous and vomit, so your vet may prescribe anti-sickness drugs.

Life Expectancy

We are often asked how long a dog with chronic kidney disease will live. The honest answer is it is impossible to predict! All dogs are individuals, and what works well for one may not for another. Some dogs’ kidneys will decline rapidly, others much more slowly.By repeating blood tests and looking at the creatinine concentration over time we can sometimes get an idea of how quickly the kidney disease is progressing. This also helps us know if our current management is helping slow the progression of the disease.

Some dogs can lead healthy, comfortable lives for years with careful management of their disease. We hope that by working together with your vet, your dog will too.

If you would like to ask any questions following a diagnosis please contact your Veterinary Surgery or the vets here at My Dog Doc are also available and happy to help support an guide you alongside your practice.

Diet Dog Drinking more Health Hydration Kidney disease Kidney Failure Medication Nutrition Renal failure Senior Weeing More

← Older Post Newer Post →

MyDogDoc Online Dog Care Advice

First Aid – General Advice

Lets Chat Cushing’s Disease

Looking for more expert advice?

Why not download to MyDogDoc app for more expert content and to speak to our professional vet staff

Download the free app now:

App Store | Google Play

Custom HTML

Add your custom HTML here.