Understanding Kidney Disease In Cats
Kidney disease in cats can be caused by a bacterial infection, but often the exact cause remains unknown. For whatever reason, your cats kidneys stop doing their job of removing waste products, such as proteins and phosphorus, and excreting them in urine. As a result, the cats systems are thrown out of balance. All sorts of problems can occur, from high blood pressure to anemia.
What are the first signs of kidney disease? Your cat may show increased thirst or begin urinating more frequently. Though they eat normally, you may see subtle weight loss. As the disease progresses, some cats may experience a decreased appetite, more severe weight loss, lack of energy, and poor grooming habits.
Kidney disease is not curable, but if the condition is caught early on, a healthy diet can enable cats to live a long life. As the condition progresses, cats may be given phosphorus-binding drugs before meals, subcutaneous fluids, and other medications. But lets start with the food.
At A Glance: Best Food To Buy For Cats With Kidney Disease
Want a quick look at the products reviewed in this article? In the comparison table below, weve highlighted some of the most important features of each product. Youll find more detailed information about each product later in the article.
- Maximized energy density to help keep cats strong and muscular
- Contains omega-3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation
- Low phosphorus levels help your cat to feel better
- Added omega-3 fatty acids for anti-inflammatory effect
- Calorie-dense to support muscle mass
- Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil help to reduce inflammation
- Controlled phosphorus helps your cat feel healthier
- Customers report that the square kibble is easy for their senior cats to eat
- Low in phosphorus, which may help to prevent and ease the symptoms of kidney disease
- Rich in easily-utilized animal protein
- Low carbohydrate content
- Some reviews indicate that its highly palatable
- Calorie dense to support healthy muscle mass
Because its low in phosphorus with controlled sodium, added B vitamins, and anti-inflammatory omega-3s, we recommend Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Renal Support D Morsels in Gravy as the overall best cat food for kidney disease. This product has a strong reputation for helping cats with chronic kidney disease , but its far from perfect.
To help you find the right match for your cat, weve gathered eight very different formulas, including prescription and non-prescription options, dry kibble, and one raw recipe.
Looking For The Best Natural Cat Diet
Low-protein diets are commonly used to help maintain normal kidney function. The real reason for this is because meat is high in phosphorus, and it is phosphorus that is the culprit . However the scientific support for this approach is much stronger for dogs than for cats. It is also important to remember that high protein diets do not cause kidney disease.
The quality of the food can also be extremely important. Many “veterinary” pet foods are made from poor quality ingredients: by-products, grains, and meat substitutes. It can be especially important to feed your pet the very best natural ingredients if they have health considerations.
Most high-quality commercial foods have fairly high levels of protein, so a homemade diet may be your best option. Heres a couple of sample recipes:
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Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Feline Renal Support D Morsels In Gravy Canned Cat Food
This delectable wet cat food is the best plausible answer for your cat since you will find this wet cat food in various aromatic profiles that attract the picky eaters for a happy dining experience and in turn, will assist in stimulating your pets decreased appetites to put some weight.
This moisture-rich canned cat food is equipped with high-quality energy-dense protein that provides the required balanced nutrition that your feline friend needs especially when she is battling with kidney issues that result in decreased appetites. As this palatable diet formula promotes an energy-dense diet, the meal volume is drastically cut down allowing you to feed your feline friend in smaller portions without any issues.
This Veterinarian prescribedRoyal Canin Veterinary Diet Feline Renal Support D Morsels in Gravy Canned Cat Food restricts not only the protein content between 6.5% and 10% but also a maximum of 0.14% phosphorus in order to lessen the workload of the kidney and thereby escapes the probable renal failure. Plus, this wet cat food includes fish oil which is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acid that lessens inflammation.
What makes this wet cat food apart from other canned cat foods is that you can mix this wet food formula with other Royal Canin canned foods that are available in a variety of palatable aromas that are designed for renal support. This will give you the upper hand to select the best plausible option that your cat may enjoy.
- Buy the Cat Food from: Chewy,
Low Phosphorus Cat Food For Kidney Disease: Reviewed Faqs
What type of food is bad for cat kidneys?
While dry food has its own benefits, it could cause some harm to the cat, one of which includes kidney deterioration. due to its ability to cause chronic dehydration if the cat doesnt have enough water, it could lead to accumulated stress on the cats kidneys.
What are the symptoms of a cat experiencing severe kidney failure?
The cat could start to experience weight loss due to a loss in appetite. it could also show symptoms of diarrhea. some extreme signs that could occur include seizures or circling. these extreme symptoms are a result of the buildup of blood toxins which could cause death.
Is phosphorus beneficial to cats?
Yes, it does have its benefits. However, their intake must not pass the recommended proportion as it could cause kidney disease.
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Signs Of Kidney Disease In Cats
The common signs of kidney disease in cats are usually difficult to spot during the early stages. However, the signs will become more noticeable as the disease progresses. If you spot any of the following signs or any unusual behavior from your cat, make sure you speak to your veterinarian so they can carry out a full examination.
Buyers Guide: Selecting The Best Cat Food For Kidney Disease
Acute kidney disease can affect cats of any age or breed and can come on suddenly. The exact cause of kidney disease in cats is largely unknown but can be potentially caused by many factors, including poisons, shock, and bacterial infection. With careful treatment, it can usually be cured. Chronic kidney disease, on the other hand, typically occurs in older cats and comes on gradually over several years. A special diet can help manage the disease and extend your cats lifespan significantly, although it will not reverse the disease. No matter the cause, the disease is characterized by your cats kidneys ceasing to properly remove waste products and excreting them in their urine namely, phosphorous, sodium, and protein. This is why low-phosphorous foods are so important for cats with kidney problems.
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The Importance Of Water For Cats With Kidney Disease
Regulating the amount of water in the body is one reason why healthy kidneys are so important. Cats with kidney disease do not have this luxury and are more prone to dehydration. Losing water during the day and failing to stay hydrated can lead to unwanted complications. Your goal is to encourage your cat to drink for the sake of his health and your peace of mind. Luckily, there are many things that you can do around the house to prevent dehydration from occurring.
- The more the merrier, so fill up numerous bowls with fresh water and place them in strategic corners around the house.
- Invest in a cat water fountain, especially if you have more than one cat in your household. Running water is very enticing for felines who love nothing more than to drink straight from the tap.
- Moist canned food is always a great option due to its high moisture content and tasty gravy. Wet food can be a lifesaver in summer where your old cat will need all the hydration he can get.
- Frequent urination can cause your cats kidney situation to worsen. Giving your cat a balanced electrolyte solution to keep him hydrated can be the only alternative to drinking from a bowl. This solution requires the use of a syringe and can be administered by the vet.
American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Canned Cat Food
Though not specifically designed for kidney support, this American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Canned Cat Food is an affordable option in cat food that offers moderate protein content and an ideal balance of omega fatty acids. It features fresh chicken as the primary ingredient with grain-free carbohydrates for digestibility. It is rich in natural sources of key nutrients such as fresh fruits and vegetables, plus it is supplemented with chelated minerals for optimal nutrient absorption. This is also a canned food recipe which means that it is higher in moisture content and, because it has a thick gravy, it will be highly palatable for cats who need to gain weight.
- Pros: Affordable recipe, high in moisture content, moderate protein, real food ingredients, fresh fruits and vegetables, blend of omega fatty acids, chelated mineral supplements
- Cons: Not specifically designed for kidney support, some cats are sensitive to chicken ingredients
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Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets Nf Kidney Function Advanced Care
- Best suitable for adult cats
- Great taste and flavor
This kidney food for cats with feline formula and controlled levels of sodium along with phosphorus promotes good health. Purina Pro Plan veterinary diet cat food contains feline formula food that is available in dry consistency. We got a bag of 3.15-pounds on purchase. This meant that cat food would come for long before choosing another pack. Whole pack promises advanced care for cats especially designed to cater to their kidney health. Felines on eating Purina Pros food will show good levels of mobility with good energy. Unique feature which we noticed was the addition of B-complex and potassium. Our cats get wholesome nutrition with a good and flavorsome taste when consumed with the meal.
Whole food appears in the shapes of small pebbles, much-needed for easy munching. Digestion is another perk when eating these pebbles. While reviewing it, we observed that this food in our cats created considerable change in their lifestyle, helping them achieve good strength and mobility. Pussies are free from developing any ill effects after feeding these small pebbles. Besides, it is best to try them out in smaller quantities first before getting the meal as their staple food. After a careful conversation with its manufacturers, we came to know that Purina Pros dry cat food for kidney disease comes cooked in collaboration with nutritionists, veterinarians, etc. Thats one good reason to buy it blindly.
The Best Homemade Cat Food For Cats With Kidney Disease
This recipe was developed by Dr. Meredith Wall, BA, BVSc. Wall completed a Bachelor of Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney in 2012 and a combined clinical nutrition residency and PhD at Massey University in 2022.
In an in-depth article published in January 2020, Wall answers the question: Should I feed my cat with chronic kidney disease a raw diet. The article discusses the potential problems with protein restriction and explores the subject of supplementation as part of a raw diet for cats with kidney disease. After testing and evaluating the nutritional content of several recipes, she settled on the following recipe as her primary recommendation.
NOTE: Wall recommends using a digital kitchen scale to ensure accurate measurements. Measure all quantities precisely do not estimate.
- 470 grams raw chicken thigh
- 30 grams canned pink salmon
- 90 grams salted butter, softened
- 220 grams cooked short-grain white rice
- 100 grams raw pumpkin, chopped
- 60 grams raw spinach
- 1 gram iodized table salt
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How Is The Disease Diagnosed
Renal failure is usually diagnosed by looking at the level of two waste products in the bloodstream, blood urea nitrogen and creatinine and the urine specific gravity. Tests to measure the blood levels of other substances , as well as the red and white blood cell counts can also be important in order to determine the best course of treatment.
Which Cat Foods Do All Of Those Things At Once
Not many commercial cat foods deliver on all seven qualities at the same time. The few that come close are almost all veterinary diets formulated to support kidney function.
In my opinion, prescription diets for kidney health are far from perfect. They focus on dietary protein restriction rather than protein quality. Most offset disease-appropriate nutrient and mineral levels with species-inappropriate carbohydrate content and unwanted additives. If youre used to giving your cat the meatiest and best, these diets are going to be a hard sell. But they do seem to help.
The following list features a number of prescription and non-prescription foods with lower-than-average phosphorus levels, many with low protein levels as well. Theyre listed from lowest dry matter phosphorus content to highest.
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Signs Of Cat Kidney Failure
Common signs of kidney failure in cats may be difficult to detect because of their similarities to other disorders like diabetes and hyperthyroidism. Unfortunately, cat kidney failure is a progressive disease, and symptoms may not be apparent for a long time. If you notice any of these signs, contact your veterinarian.
- Reduced appetite
- Sore mouth or mouth ulcers
- Diarrhea or constipation
Fussie Cat Super Premium Chicken In Gravy
Produced in a human-grade food manufacturing facility, this canned food recipe is low in fat and phosphorus but includes high-quality animal protein from chicken. Its not a prescription food, so check with your vet to see if the phosphorus level will work for your kitty. No prescription needed.
Fussie Cat Super Premium Chicken in Gravy
Is your kitty a fan of shredded chicken in gravy? This low-phosphorus food may appeal.
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Symptoms Of Kidney Disease In Cats
Clinical signs are often related to the severity of the kidney disease and underlying cause. Most cats will exhibit symptoms including:
Increased thirst and urination
Urinary accidents, incontinence, or inability to urinate
Lower back pain
Some cats may show muscle-wasting and signs attributed to high blood pressure, such as vision loss and weakness.
Are Prescription Diets An Appropriate Choice
While it may be simple to transition your cat onto a therapeutic veterinary diet like Hills Prescription Diet or Royal Canin Veterinary Diet, this isnt the only option available.
Prescription and therapeutic diets specifically formulated for kidney disease typically check all the boxes in terms of caloric density, restricted protein, and controlled sodium and phosphorus levels, but they can sometimes leave something to be desired in terms of nutritional quality.
These foods tend to be loaded with carbohydrates . They often contain added sugar and potentially low-quality animal by-products.
Some brands are a little better than others. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet K+M Kidney + Mobility Support wet food, for example, doesnt contain by-products and it is made with quality sources of protein like chicken, beef, and chicken liver. It is, however, still very high in carbohydrates and contains carrageenan as a thickener.
The only way to truly control the quality and formulation of your cats diet may be to make the food yourself.
Making your own cat food can be tricky because you have to make sure it is nutritionally balanced, but once you find the right recipe all you have to do is reproduce it. The best place to start is with a recipe formulated by a licensed veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist.
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Best Cat Food For Kidney Health Buying Guide
Until now, the write-up has been informative on different brands selling cat food to support good kidney health in cats. Readers learnt about low phosphorus and low protein cat food for kidney disease that a feline should consume for better renal health. Detailed descriptions, as mentioned above, have certainly answered most questions about products and their effects on your cats. However, all such information is specific to those brands themselves. Few more questions might linger that might require common answers researched. We will make that job easy for you. Upcoming sections will describe generic questions with apt answers.
Hills Science Diet Tender Tuna Dinner
While not marketed as therapeutic food for cats with renal issues, this food from Hills Science Diet does have relatively low phosphorus . Consult with your veterinarian to see if they think this is appropriate for your cat. No prescription needed.
Hill’s Science Diet Tender Tuna Dinner
You can limit phosphorus while still giving your kitty a delicious tuna dinner.
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Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet Km Kidney + Mobility Support Wet Cat Food
If you are looking for the best food for cats with kidney trouble then you should offer Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet KM Kidney + Mobility Support Wet Cat Food, since its phosphorus and sodium content is no more than 0.70% and 0.35% that assist in keeping the blood pressure low and delay the advancement of chronic kidney disease.
The primary source of this wet cat food is deboned chicken that supports for building blocks of muscles and provide the necessary energy to thrive. Plus this wet cat food has controlled levels of high-quality protein that let the kidney function properly.
To provide the omega-3 fatty acid and omega-6 fatty acid, it includes Flaxseed, and Canola oil in its ingredient list to support kidney function and control inflammation.
Plus, this cat food formula includes fish oil which is a rich source of DHA, glucosamine, and chondroitin. Glucosamine not only acts as a mild anti-inflammatory but also protects the urinary tract.
To support strong muscles and bone formation, regulate blood sugar level, formation of red blood cells, and boost the immune system, you will find traces of iron amino acid chelate, zinc amino acid chelate, copper amino acid chelate, and manganese amino acid chelate.
On the downside,Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet KM Kidney + Mobility Support Wet Cat Food has excessive fillers including, potatoes, peas, carrots, etc.
- Buy the Cat Food from:Chewy,