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Questions about kidney disease!

August 17th, 2007, 01:03 PM
My dog, a 5 yr old Lab, has been sick with what my vet says is kidney disease. He was in the hospital for 2 days receiving fluids and was then released. We are not sure if it is acute or chronic yet. I would appriciate any advice on how to cope with this. Mika, my dog, is not himself anymore. I just want him to be well. Right now all I can do is try and give him the best care. He is eating Purina vet diets K/D for kidney disease, drinking lots of water (should I get purified water?) and taking Metronidazole twice a day. He is not throwing up anymore, which my vet says is the most important thing, but I think he is still nauseous because he huffs a lot. Any advice would be apprieciated.:dog:

August 18th, 2007, 12:06 AM
I don't have any experience with kidney disease, but I'm sure there are other people on the board who have had to deal with it, so I'll bump this up to the top so it's easier to see...

August 18th, 2007, 11:42 AM
My dog did very well the day after he got released, but last night he threw up again. I called the vet this morning and he prescribed an anti-nausea med for him and just said to keep an eye on him. BUt I am worried. Help!

August 18th, 2007, 01:48 PM
heres a link to a good article on dogs with kidney disease a lot of info there collected from various sources it seems

August 18th, 2007, 02:24 PM
Did your dog develop an infection, hence the Metronidazole? Some dogs will become nauseous using medication.I would DEFINITELY look at the diets recommended in the link LooPoo gave you. They are a 100% more healthy and more nutritious for your dog than waht you are feeding hhim now.

Dr Lee
August 19th, 2007, 12:34 PM
There is a lot of options for pets with kidney (renal) failure. Routine and close monitoring can help keep your pet feeling well. What do we monitor? Physical exam and clinical signs; Blood values: BUN, creatinine, phosphorus, hemotocrit; Urine values: specific gravity, evaluation for casts, protein and microalbumin levels, and signs of infection; Blood pressure.

What are our options?
1) Diet. There are many diets available. K/D was the first therapeutic diet ever made for a pet, a seeing eye dog specifically who was suffering from kidney failure. The statistics show that dogs in idiopathic renal failure can increase their life expectancy with K/D food by over 2x. Why? the k/d food is restrictive in phosphorus which can damage the kidneys, it is protein restrictive which helps keep the BUN low which helps the pet feel better, and high in omega fatty acids to help promote increased kidney blood flow. Again, many diets available have the same characteristics. Also treats need to be restricted to kidney friendly foods - e.g. diary is bad - it is high in phosphorus. Here is a link for low phosphorus options for humans suffering from renal failure:

2) Pepcid etc... Famotidine (active ingredient of pepcid) and other medications like cimetidine can help your pet feel better, reduce vomiting and naseau and increase appetite. Why? kidney failure/insufficiency increased stomach acidity and the circulating BUN makes mucous membranes slightly inflammed. This is also why many pets suffering from kidney disease have bad breath - they are breathing off the uremia which is sitting in their blood and thus in the mucous membranes.

3) Epikitin. A fairly new drug which binds phosphorus and keeps it from being absorbed. It is shrimp based and thus highly palatable (tasty) and can be mixed with food. A older option was amphogel but it had such a bad taste, it was hard to give.

4) Azodyl. Azodyl is a specific strain of lactobacillus (not the same available in yogurt or other probiotics unfortunately) which degrates and breakes down BUN in the intestine. As a result it creates enteric dialysis which means that is 'pulls' BUN from the blood into the intestines where it breaks it down. Why do we want BUN down - because it makes your pet feel better.

5) Other options? If there is anemia present secondary to the kidney disease, then epogen, a red blood stimulator can be used. However this should only be used in some patients - ask your vet. If there is glomerular disease - meaning that there is high amounts of protein being lost in the urine, then some additional medications like enalapril (often used in heart disease) can be used to help. Also some of these patients need low doses of aspirin - if your pet is not one of these patients, then aspirin will HURT the kidneys, so ask your vet before you use it!!!! If your pet has high blood pressure, then blood pressure medication is needed because high blood pressure will hurt your pets kidneys.

6) If the kidney disease is from other causes, infection, cancer/neoplasia, inflammatory diseases, stones, etc... there may be other more therapeutic options.

I hope this helps. :pawprint:

August 19th, 2007, 03:37 PM
Do you think it's okay to mix a little ground beef with his k/d dog food?

November 7th, 2008, 10:55 PM
Muffy was diagnosed about a month ago and I took her down to Saskatoon to the University of Saskatchewan Veterinary Small Animal Hospital. We are learning much fast online. I recommend you join the K9Kidney Yahoo! Group and the K9KidneyDiet Yahoo! Group. They are very helpful and supportive. The number one issue is diet and keeping your dog eating enough food to survive.. Unlike what the Vets may say, the main thing to reduce or eliminate from the diet is not protein but the phosphorous in the protein and other foods. K9Kidney Folks will tell you about foods and supplements that are phosphorous binders and medicines and supplements that line the stomach to prevent stomach acids from creating ulcers.
God Bless!:angel:

November 7th, 2008, 11:07 PM
Your post was very helpful to me as well. We are going through a lot of subQ fluids these days. Muffy is getting 60 ml 3 times a day, which is about as much as she and we can handle.. The Vet at the University Vet Hospital says that is about right for her weight. She is down to about 14 from her previous 17 - 19 lbs.
Dr. Lee, do you know an online source of Azodyl available in Canada that would be more economical than local sources of $40CAN for 60 capsule bottle? I can't believe the number of websites out there all leading to a Canadian Pharmacy in Surrey, BC. that is selling at good prices exclusively to U.S. customers, but refusing to sell to Canadians. :ca: I don't get it.
Hope you can help.:shrug:
God Bless!:angel: