Kidney failure, also referred to as renal failure or renal insufficiency, can occur in both dogs and cats. In a healthy animal, the kidneys filter waste products that are produced by the body. In kidney failure, these waste products are not filtered properly and start to build up in the blood stream. This is when clinical signs of kidney failure are often noticed. Learn about the sometimes subtle changes seen with kidney disease to know when a visit to the vet is warranted.
Canine and feline kidney failure occur suddenly (acute) or over time (chronic). Kidney failure can also be classified as pre-renal, renal or post-renal. There are many potential causes for kidney problems. Read this article to help identify disease types and possible kidney toxins that could affect your pet.
The signs seen with kidney failure may be dramatic - failure to urinate, anorexia, vomiting, or more subtle gradual changes, often attributed to "just old age." Knowing the signs of kidney failure will help you get your pet to the vet sooner to begin treatment.
What signs did you notice, and how do you cope with your pet's kidney disease and manage clinical signs at home?
Urinary problems in dogs are common. Signs can range from barely noticeable to unable to urinate (this is an emergency). Some urinary problems are the result of other diseases, such as kidney failure or diabetes with increased urination as the most common first sign.
Other problems may be the result of stones or tumors in the bladder; causing abnormal urination habits, blood in the urine and infections. If your pet has changes in urinary habits, please see your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Cats are well-known for their "urinary issues" -- spraying, marking, urinary tract infections and urethral obstructions. These events may happen once or multiple times, a singular event or related. It is always most important to rule out a medical problem such as infection or kidney disease before assuming that your cat is just being "bad" or upset about something.
Urinary obstructions are responsible for a wide variety of behavioral signs, and can be fatal in 72 hours or less if untreated, so a veterinary exam is most important.
Urinary tract infections in pets are common. Many of the signs of urinary problems for dogs and cats are similar. While both dogs and cats have the potential to become obstructed ("blocked"), this potentially life-threatening situation is more common in male cats. Prompt veterinary care is essential, as blocked animals may die within hours.
If your pet shows any changes in urinary habits, a trip to the vet is in order to clear up the infection and search for other problems such as bladder stones. Has your pet had a urinary tract infection, blockage or stones? Please share your experiences - first signs noticed, required treatments, etc.