Dogs and kidney disease
For an avid dog-lover, the loss of his pet is the single most traumatic experience. If this occurs due to an illness, it becomes even more tragic. Kidney disease is one such killer. It can manifest itself in two ways. One is acute kidney disease and the other is chronic kidney disease. The former strikes suddenly whereas the latter takes effect over a period of time. Either way, the result is fatal for the canine and heartbreaking for the owner.
This disease causes a loss of approximately seventy percent of normal kidney function and it is these organs that act as the body's filtration system. If these do not work properly, toxins and waste products slowly build up in the blood. This can lead to a variety of problems, and sadly, eventual death. This unfortunately is the harsh reality of canine kidney disease.
The ability of a dog's body to properly function is stopped by kidney failure. A number of symptoms and warning signs will likely become obvious when the toxins begin to build up in their bodies. The acute time form usually appears more quickly even though both these chronic diseases show different symptoms. Dogs that suffer with this form of kidney disease can become dehydrated. Gently pull the skin on your dog's stomach to test them for hydration. The skin should spring back. There is a real possibility that your dog is dehydrated if it does not.
Another telltale sign of the acute kidney disease is the extreme reduction or total stoppage of urine. Your dog would suddenly stop urinating. It is a very excruciating process as the kidneys become quite painful. This is the most obvious sign. You would notice your pet's arched back or stiff leg movement. In such a case, you would need to rush your precious pet to a veterinarian immediately.
Chronic kidney disease shows different symptoms. They may well have a change of appetite with no desire to eat where normally they would gulp food. They may perhaps go off their food altogether. This will, over time, lead to weight loss. The first warning signs which highlight the start of the disease are increased thirst and water consumption. These are frequent exhibits of the condition. Sadly the dog may lose control of its bladder with frequent increased urination occurring. As time goes on urination will become painful, some cases impossible and blood may appear in the urine. Canine kidney disease can be deadly and serious, any signs of urine symptoms, vomiting, lethargic or depressed in your pet treat this as a warning sign and alert your vet straight away. If caught quickly it may be possible to gain control over the disease.
If the veterinarian suspects kidney disease he will usually follow four steps to decide if the dog has the disease or not. A thorough physical examination is what he will normally do first. The dogs relevant history will be gone over with the owner next, things such as their home behavior and symptoms. A blood test and urinary test are the two steps he will take after the first two steps are done. Both tests have to be done to make sure of a correct diagnosis. Whether or not your dog has acute or chronic kidney disease will be confirmed by both of these tests.