Common Signs of Kidney Disease in Dogs

Thursday, February 2, 2023 13:32:59 PM America/Los_Angeles

Kidneys are incredibly important to a canine’s overall well-being and function like a filtering system for the whole body. By eliminating toxins through urine, kidneys assist in keeping the entire body and its organs in tip-top shape. What’s more, kidneys also help the body absorb important and helpful molecules back into the blood. Given these two vital functions, you can see why healthy kidneys are absolutely essential for a healthy pup! Unfortunately, kidney disease is not uncommon in dogs and can happen to any pooch. 

Photo by JC Gellidon

What Is Kidney Disease?

Renal failure occurs when the kidneys are no longer able to do their job of ridding the body of toxins. Kidney disease progresses at different rates for different dogs – depending on the cause – but regular blood work and check-ins with the vet can play a big part in keeping your fur ball healthy for as long as possible. Acute renal failure is typically caused by situational risks such as ingesting a toxin or dehydration, while chronic kidney failure is generally the result of age, genetics, or another chronic illness. Unlike acute renal failure, when kidney function rapidly declines over the course of days or even hours, chronic kidney failure happens over the course of months or years. 

What Causes Kidney Disease in Dogs?

There are a number of culprits when it comes to kidney disease in dogs, ranging from age and genetics to diseases or ailments like kidney stones. Age and genetics are the most common cause of kidney disease, but other possibilities are:

  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Periodontitis
  • Infections
  • Extreme dehydration

What Are the Signs of Kidney Disease in Dogs?

Medical attention should be sought immediately if you suspect your pup is experiencing acute renal failure. Continuous or excessive nausea, vomiting, or lethargy are red flags that indicate declining health. However, canines with chronic disease will also experience these symptoms at different points. Some of the most common signs and symptoms of kidney disease in dogs include: 

  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Weight loss 
  • Frequent nausea or vomiting
  • Bad breath
  • Lethargy or fatigue

Is your fur baby suffering from kidney disease? Going potty can be especially difficult for these pooches. An indoor dog bathroom is a must, because a pet potty should be accessible at all times – even if you’re not around to help them go. A real bark wee wee pad like Bark Potty is one way to offer your ailing dog a taste of the great outdoors in the comfort of their own home.