How Is Kidney Failure In Cats Is Diagnosed & Treated
Your vet will do a comprehensive examination of your cat, including blood and urine tests, X-rays, and possibly an ultrasound. A kidney biopsy might also be required.
If kidney disease is found, treatments could include intravenous fluids to correct dehydration, vitamin injections, supplements, medications, and possibly surgery to remove blockages. When treating kidney failure the goal is to manage the symptoms and slow down the progression of the disease.
You can support your cats treatment with a carefully managed diet and plenty of clean fresh water. Your vet will recommend that you gradually transition your cat to a kidney diet that is low in both phosphorus and protein and is enriched with vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.
For cats with end stage kidney failure palliative care will be required in their final days. This will include keeping them warm and comfortable, with food, water and a litter box nearby, as well as lots of loving human companionship.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet’s condition, please make an appointment with your vet.
If your cat is exhibiting symptoms of kidney failure contact our Greensboro Vets right away or visit your nearest animal emergency hospital.
Treatments For Chronic Kidney Disease In Cats
Even though there’s no definitive cure for chronic kidney disease in cats, various treatment methods and techniques can improve and prolong affected cats’ lives. In a nutshell, these treatment methods are all geared toward minimizing the buildup of toxic waste substances in the cat’s bloodstream, preserving adequate hydration, dealing with the disturbances in electrolyte concentration, supporting appropriate nutrition and kidney support for cats, controlling blood pressure, and slowing down the progression of the particular kidney disease. Here are our top natural remedies for treating kidney disease in cats.
Stage : Late Stage Kidney Insufficiency
Stage 2 kidney disease in cats will show creatinine levels above 2.2.
Your vet will note that your cats urine is not being concentrated, which is a clear sign that the kidneys are failing.
Stage 2 renal failure treatment includes everything in stage 1 plus a potassium supplement.
Your cat will likely be started on the kidney diet mentioned above.
Your vet may prescribe the medication Benazepril to help decrease blood pressure within the kidneys.
Blood pressure and all blood and urine testing should be increased to twice a year.
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What Causes Chronic Kidney Disease
CKD occurs where there is long-standing, irreversible damage to the kidneys that impairs their ability to function and remove waste products from the blood. In most cases, the exact cause of CKD is unknown. Samples from affected kidneys often show a mixture of fibrosis and inflammation termed chronic interstitial nephritis. These are non-specific end stage changes though, and do not tell us anything about the underlying cause. Although most cases of CKD are idiopathic , some causes are well recognised. These include:
- Polycystic kidney disease this is an inherited disease seen mainly in Persian and related cats where normal kidney tissue is gradually replaced by multiple fluid filled cysts
- Kidney tumours for example lymphoma can affect the kidneys
- Infections bacterial infection of the kidneys may lead to sufficient damage to cause CKD
- Toxins certain toxins and drugs can damage the kidneys
- Glomerulonephritis this refers to inflammation of the glomeruli they may become inflamed for various reasons and if prolonged this can lead to CKD
Other conditions such as birth defects affecting the kidneys, trauma, hypokalaemia , and hypercalcaemia may also cause CKD, but work is still going on to discover the underlying cause of most cases of this disease.
How common is CKD?
What is the normal role of the kidneys?
Like all mammals, cats have two kidneys located in the abdomen, which perform a wide variety of important roles, including :
A Synthetic Form Of The Hormone Has Been Used For Treatment
How to treat anemia in cats with kidney disease. The hormone erythropoietin stimulates the development of red blood cells in the bone marrow and is produced in the kidneys. Kidney failure causes the active renal tissue to be replaced with scar tissue and this results in fewer available cells to produce erythropoietin. Chronic anemia affects the body negatively in a number of ways and decreases an animal’s quality of life.
Ask your veterinarian what the possible side effects are of the medications your cat is taking. This is because the kidney produces a hormone called erythropoietin which stimulates the bone marrow to produce new red blood cells. Even when the kidneys are failing enough to cause clinical signs, kidney failure may not be the obvious diagnosis.
Fortunately, veterinarians and researchers are hard at work to discover new ways to catch feline kidney disease earlier so they can better treat and manage the condition. Excessive thirst and urination are among the most recognizable symptoms of kidney failure in cats. The majority of cats respond well to treatment, and while it is a matter of control rather than cure, a significant increase in life expectancy is likely if an appropriate treatment plan is put into place.
The kidneys are the bodys filter, but do many other things. A wet litter box and an overly thirsty cat will be the first signs your cat is starting to have problems with his kidneys. The cause is still uncertain.
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What Are The Different Types Of Kidney Failure In Cats
There are two types of kidney failure in cats. Each type differs in causes, treatment options and prognosis.
Acute Renal Failure
If your cat has acute kidney failure, it means that their kidneys are suddenly unable to function properly. This type of kidney failure occurs suddenly, within days or weeks. If diagnosed in time, acute renal failure can often be reversed.
It can happen in cats of any age and typically results from poisons, trauma, infection, organ failure, urethral blockages, dehydration and other causes. Poisons, such as toxic plants, pesticides, cleaning fluids and human medications, are the most common cause of acute renal failure.
Chronic Kidney Failure
Chronic kidney failure in cats is more gradual, and usually develops over several months or even years. This type of kidney failure is typically caused by autoimmune diseases, cysts in the kidneys, and genetics.
Chronic kidney failure is a progressive illness that can lead to total kidney failure, where the kidneys gradually stop working as they lose the ability to filter toxins out of the blood.
Possible Complications To Watch For
Chronic kidney failure is a progressive disease, but the speed of the decline can vary greatly between individuals. Some cats enjoy good quality of life for many months, or even years, while others have to be euthanized soon after diagnosis.
Talk to your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns about your cats condition, particularly if you notice a worsening of:
- lethargy, depression, or other abnormal behaviors
- poor appetite
- weight loss and/or muscle wasting
- vomiting or diarrhea
- bad breath
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Cat Kidney Disease Diagnosis By Your Vet
As part of their investigation to see if your cat has kidney disease, your vet may want to test a sample of your cats pee – this will show if your cats urine is being concentrated, whether protein is being lost in the urine and whether there are any other problems such as underlying infections to take into account. They may also take a blood test to gain a full health profile of your cat and to see if the toxin build up has had any effect on other organs.
What Are The Clinical Signs Of Chronic Kidney Failure
Early signs of disease such as weight loss and poor coat quality are often dismissed as normal aging changes. In the initial stages of kidney failure, the kidneys cope with their inability to efficiently remove waste products by excreting them at a lower concentration over a larger volume . Cats will often drink more to compensate for this increased rate of body water loss. This is known as compensated renal failure. After approximately two-thirds of the kidney tissues have failed, there is a rapid rise in waste products in the bloodstream and an apparent sudden onset of severe disease.
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What Is The Prognosis For A Cat Diagnosed With Acute Renal Failure
The initial prognosis is guarded for all cases of ARF. If the cause is an infection, there is a better prognosis than if the cause is a toxic substance. The long-term prognosis for recovery depends on the amount of kidney damage that has occurred. The kidney has very little capacity to regenerate or heal itself, justifying the guarded prognosis. Your veterinarian will provide you with a more accurate prognosis based on your cat’s clinical signs, results of laboratory tests, and individual condition.
When Should I Feed A Kidney Prescription Diet
Many factors play a role in our recommendation to prescribe a kidney disease diet. These include:
- Urine protein level
- General stage of CKD
- Your individual cats preferences
If your cat is in Stage 2, a prescription kidney diet will most likely be prescribed. Please never make diet changes for your cat without consulting with us.
We are here to help you understand all of your options to keep your cat healthy. We know you bring your cats to us because you love them, and we are grateful to be a part of their care.
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What Are The Symptoms Of End Stage Kidney Failure In Cats
Sometimes, the signs of kidney failure in cats are not caught early enough and the disease progresses to its end stage. Symptoms of end stage kidney failure in cats include general symptoms listed above, as well as dull, sunken eyes, inability to walk, body odor, incontinence in bladder or bowels seizures, confusion, refusal to eat or drink, twitching, blindness, pacing and restlessness, withdrawing, hiding and running away.
Though more than one of these symptoms will be present, you may not see all of them. There may also be a sudden improvement in their symptoms, but do not let this fool you.
With kidney failure, there are no easy answers, as different symptoms may be present at different times. These symptoms can also be signs of other illnesses, which is why early diagnosis, disease management and communication with your vet is critical.
When it comes to symptoms of kidney failure in cats, the stage is key to prognosis. While there is no cure for chronic kidney disease, if its detected and treated early your cats longevity and quality of life can be improved.
Treatment For Feline Kidney Disease
If acute cat kidney failure is caught early enough, it can be managed. However, chronic cat kidney failure cannot be cured and your vet can only provide palliative care. Depending on your cat’s individual case, treatment may include food modification, fluid therapy, dialysis, blood pressure drugs, or a transplant.
Early detection is important, so make sure you take your pet for regular vet checks and act right away if she isnt acting like herself. If your cat is over 7 years old, you might want to get her a senior screening to make sure her kidneys are functioning properly.
For cat’s diagnosed with kidney disease, food modification may slow down the process and increase her lifespan. There are specially formulated cat foods for kidney health, and your vet may recommend one for your pet.
Cat kidney disease can change your pet’s quality of life. That’s why it’s important to visit an emergency pet hospital, such as New Hope Animal Hospital in Durham, if you think her health is in danger. Come by today with any immediate concerns you have about your pet’s well-being.
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Staging Canine & Feline Ckd
The IRIS Staging of CKD guidelines were developed as a guide to classifying stable canine and feline CKD in order to both improve communications surrounding CKD and link appropriate diagnostic and therapeutic efforts to patients with varying degrees of CKD.
These guidelines have been published in well-known textbooks, such as Current Veterinary Therapy and Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine, and have been adopted by the American and European Societies of Veterinary Nephrology and Urology .2,3
This staging system is not used to make a diagnosis of CKD but is employed following a diagnosis of CKD in order to facilitate appropriate treatment, monitoring, and further diagnostics.
How Kidney Disease Affects Cats
Kidney disease occurs when the kidneys lose some of their function. The kidneys primary job is to filter waste and toxins out of the blood and into the urine, but they also regulate mineral levels and trigger the production of red blood cells, which carry oxygen throughout the body.
When the kidneys arent performing well, harmful substances build up in blood. Cats with kidney disease can also develop anemia, or lack of red blood cells.
There are two types of kidney disease in cats: acute and chronic . Acute cases usually happen when a cat eats something poisonous, like antifreeze or Easter lilies, or has an infection, says Erick Mears, DVM, DACVIM, medical director of BluePearl Pet Hospital in Tampa Bay, Florida. But kidney disease in cats is mostly chronic. Previous infection, another disease, or an unknown cause may damage the kidneys.
When part of the kidney is damaged, the rest has to work harder to keep up with the bodys demands. Eventually, the extra effort wears the kidneys out, and their function further decreases. This is why chronic kidney disease gets worse over time.
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Is There A Difference Between Kidney Disease And Kidney Failure
Though the two are tied together, there is a major difference between kidney disease and kidney failure.
Kidney disease is the chronic decline of kidney function over time, while kidney failure is the actual failing of the kidneys to the point where they cannot function properly any longer.
The kidneys are an impressive set of organs, as they can continue to function until 65-70% of the kidneys have been impaired by chronic disease.
Kidney failure would be the period in time of where the cats kidneys have already experienced severe damage, and can no longer function properly.
Managing Kidney Disease In Cats: A Holistic Approach
Imagine waking up one morning and noticing that your cat is ill. He has vomited a couple of times during the night and he is listless and has no interest in his food or water. You gather him up and rush him to the veterinary clinic. The veterinarian examines him, takes some blood for analysis and informs you that your cat is in kidney failure.
How can that be? He was fine yesterday, you say.
That is how kidney failure works, the veterinarian answers.
Statistics tell us that one in every three indoor cats will die from kidney disease. There are very few cat caretakers that have not had to go through the suffering of dealing with a cat that is in kidney failure. Most of the time, we get little warning that our cats kidneys are diseased and once the illness appears, there is little that can be done to repair the damaged kidneys.
For over 35 years, I have treated cats with kidney disease and I can say that there has been little change in our treatment protocols for cats with renal insufficiency. The consensus in conventional veterinary medicine is that the most that we can do for these cats is to give support for as long as possible without much hope of resolution. Perhaps it is time that we direct our attention at the possible causes of such a deadly disease in hopes of preventing it down the road.
My suggestions for preventing chronic kidney disease in the cat are:
My suggestion for cats that have been diagnosed with kidney failure:
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Stage : Cats Kidneys Are Now Functioning At Less Than 15%
With creatine levels above 5, stage 4 kidney disease in cats can be scary.
Treatments from stage 1 through 3 will continue.
Anemia will likely be a problem at this point, so your vet will want to treat that with medications.
Making your pet comfortable will be a top priority now.
Acute renal failure or any sudden worsening of symptoms could require extended hospitalization for your cat.
Achieve Lower Bun Levels In Cats With Kidney Disease 5 Things That Lowers Cats Bun Levels
Lowering bun levels in cats with kidney disease can be achieved through five effective steps. Cats can develop chronic kidney disease as they age and their bun levels rise as their kidney function declines. In todays video, Robert goes over five effective measures you can take to help lower bun levels in cats with kidney disease.
Thanks for tuning in to our channel at healthy kidney inc where we give you great information of things within your power to help support good kidney health and people and pets and today were talking about how to lower bun levels in your cat and we have another video about how to lower it in people and its very similar its really the same thing in cats.
If you like, we do have a probiotic supplement that has other great things to help your cat with kidney issues called KIDNEY RESTORE FOR CATS & DOGS it has 50 billion and seven types of kidney-specific probiotics in there but regardless just make sure you get those billions whether you use our products someone elses its got to be the billions or its not going to have an effect 15-20 billion at least and higher the better. Thanks for watching everybody into your cats best kidney health make sure to subscribe if you havent already and good wishes, bye.
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