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Renal Failure in Dogs

Cost of Treatment: $400 – $3,000

What is Renal Failure in Dogs?

The principal organs of the renal system are the kidneys, which are in charge of filtering the blood to remove metabolic waste and toxins through the urine. Renal function is one of the most important components of good health.

Renal failure can be acute, meaning that it appears suddenly, or chronic, meaning that it is the result of a long period of the disease. There are several causes for renal failure in dogs—from intoxication to congenital problems.

Causes of Renal Failure in Dogs

Acute Renal Failure

  • Injury
  • Toxicity
  • Infection
  • Kidney stones
  • Ureteral stones
  • Heatstroke

Chronic Renal Failure

  • Old age
  • Infection
  • Parasitic disease
  • Cancer
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Trauma
  • Medication
  • Congenital disease

Symptoms of Renal Failure in Dogs

  • Appetite loss
  • Bad breath
  • Bloody stools
  • Diarrhea
  • Drowsiness
  • Excessive sleepiness
  • Extreme thirst
  • Fever
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Sores in the mouth
  • Sudden increased or decreased urination
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Weight loss

Treatment of Renal Failure in Dogs

Cases of acute renal failure due to toxicity or poisoning must be treated with gastric lavage and fluid therapy—this usually requires hospitalization. Cases of infection may also need fluid therapy in addition to antibiotics.

Chronic renal failure is usually treated with dialysis to flush the kidneys and get them started working again, followed by medications at home. Depending on the cause of the kidney failure, the treatment may only be needed once and your dog may be fine for years.

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