Prevention Of Kidney Disease In Cats
Some causes of kidney disease may be preventable , but unfortunately, most causes are not. Heritable conditions, for example, are not preventable, but affected cats, or cats with the genetic copies of the disease, should not be bred.
To limit your cats exposure to toxins, keep lilies out of the home and block off access to the garage, household cleaners, and medications. Limiting exposure to other catswhile keeping your cat up to date on vaccines and monthly heartworm and flea controlis recommended.
If you notice any of the signs above, take your cat to a veterinarian for examination as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and intervention are keys to maintaining quality of life.
Kidney Disease In Cats Faqs
What is the life expectancy of a cat with kidney disease?
The life expectancy of a cat with kidney disease varies depending on the underlying cause and the stage at which it is diagnosed. Cats in the earlier stages can, if the underlying disease is treated appropriately, live a normal life.
Are cats in pain with kidney disease?
For most conditions listed above, I wouldnt classify kidney disease in of itself as painful. The systemic effects and long-term implications, however, can certainly be debilitating and often lead to painful conditions.
Can a cat recover from kidney disease?
Some cats that experience acute kidney insults can recover, although there may be long-term effects that can lead to chronic kidney failure. Cats in chronic kidney failure will not recover, in the sense that they will have no lingering effects of the disease, as it is not curable. However, cats can go on to live a relatively normal life, with some lifestyle changes and long-term management.
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What Is Kidney Disease In Cats
There are two kinds of kidney disease that cats can get as they age: acute kidney disease and chronic kidney disease. The first form is when your cats kidneys shut down unexpectedly, usually as a result of ingesting something poisonous. Antifreeze, which has a sweet, enticing scent, is one of the main causes of acute kidney disease. Fortunately, acute kidney disease can be treated, and the prognosis is great when caught early.
Chronic kidney disease has a few stages but eventually leads to chronic renal failure. The disease slowly progresses and cannot be cured. Because of this, chronic kidney disease is the leading cause of death in older cats. That said, with proper treatment, your cat can live for many happy years.
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How Can You Diagnose Kidney Disease In Cats
The only accurate way to diagnose kidney disease in cats is through diagnostic testing. Your veterinarian will often perform diagnostic blood work and urine analysis testing.
The threat of kidney disease in cats is one of the main reasons why routine exams and senior diagnostics are so important. By performing diagnostics at their recommended time, you can catch this disease in the early stages. Catching kidney disease in cats early will help to prolong your cats life, and prolong their quality of life.
What Are The Symptoms Of Stage 3 Kidney Disease
Kidney disease is a progressive ailment, with kidney function gradually declining. Patients with this condition may notice the following symptoms, which seem to get worse over time.
When kidneys lose function, waste products accumulate in the blood due to decreased filtration. Kidneys secrete several hormones for body functions. For example, erythropoietin can stimulate red blood cell production in the bone marrow. If you have stage 3 kidney disease, erythropoietin is produced less, so red blood cells may be insufficient, resulting in anemia and fatigue.
2. Fluid Retention
Excess bodily fluids are removed through the kidneys. Therefore, kidney disease causes fluid accumulation , particularly in the hands, lower legs, and around the eyes. Untreated edema can cause walking problems, greater infection risk, reduced blood circulation, and painful swelling.
3. High Blood Pressure
The kidneys help regulate blood pressure. As kidney function declines, fluid build-up increases blood volume, resulting in blood vessel damage. Kidney blood vessel injury can cause additional kidney destruction, so the patient is caught in a vicious cycle.
4. Urination Changes
Urine can become foamy if there is a lack of urinary proteins because of kidney damage. Patients may also notice changes in urine color, like be red, brown, or dark orange, if they are any blood in the urine. There may also be either decreased or increased urination.
5. Kidney Pains
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Causes Of Chronic Renal Failure In Cats
The term chronic, as in chronic renal failure, means that the process has been ongoing and progressive, and cannot be reversed.
For some cats, the disease could have occurred after a serious kidney injury or from a severe infection . It can also occur due to ingestion of a toxic substance like antifreeze or lilies, or certain medications.
For others, CRF could be inherited, as with polycystic kidney disease and amyloidosis , seen in breeds like Persians and Abyssinians.
CRF could also be attributed to underlying immune-mediated diseases, stroke-like events, clotting disorders, and cancer like lymphoma.
What Is Chronic Renal Failure Is It The Same As Chronic Kidney Disease
The kidneys have a large amount of spare capacity to perform their various functions so at least two-thirds of the kidneys must be dysfunctional before any clinical signs are seen. In many cases, this means that the damage to the kidneys has been occurring over a number of months or years before failure is evident. Chronic renal failure , or chronic kidney disease is mainly a problem in older cats. Only about 10% of the cases occur in cats less than three years old.
“Damage to the kidneys has been occurring over a number of months or years before failure is evident.”
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What Affects The Progression Of Ckd
Other factors besides age can influence the progression of kidney disease: breed, diet choice , daily activity, and the presence of other diseases. Because CKD tends to develop over a period of years rather than months, its almost impossible to point to the exact cause in most cases.
Chronic renal failure is another name for this loss of kidney function that naturally comes with aging. The word chronic means never ending, because there is currently no known way to reverse chronic kidney disease. However, many other factors beside age can influence the progression of kidney disease: breed, diet choice , daily activity, other diseases and so on.
What Is Kidney Disease
Kidney disease in cats is the deterioration of the normal function of the kidneys.
Healthy kidneys work to flush out toxins in the body and aid in regulating urine production. When the kidneys are compromised in any way, the body struggles to perform these tasks, leading to a waterfall of dangerous symptoms and illness. When a major organ system such as the kidneys begin to fail, the cats overall health will begin to decline.
Chronic kidney disease: In chronic kidney disease, the kidneys will begin to struggle over time. Cats can compensate for months to years in chronic disease, and owners can usually note changes in their health that have happened over time.
Diagnosing the early stages of chronic kidney disease in cats is the goal, as this disease can be managed. Unlike acute kidney disease, chronic kidney disease is not an immediate threat when it is caught in the early stages.
Acute kidney disease: Acute kidney disease is the sudden onset of kidney function decline in a cat. This usually occurs in situations such as kidney injury, urethral obstruction , infectious disease, or toxin ingestion. This can also happen in cats that have congenital kidney abnormalities.
Acute kidney disease is especially dangerous, as cats will experience sudden and severe symptoms. These cases are much more difficult to manage since the function of the kidneys is usually severely impaired in such a short amount of time.
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Can You Cure Kidney Disease
As mentioned earlier, certain types of acute renal damage are reversible. However, the most common kidney problem in cats, chronic renal insufficiency, has no cure. Nevertheless, cats often do much better than dogs when it comes to living a good-quality life with kidney failure.
The first approach to treatment usually lies in correcting fluid deficits and finding the cause of the assault.
Urethral obstructions and ruptured urinary bladders are life-threatening medical emergencies. Your veterinarian will decompress an obstructed cat immediately and then attempt to clear the blockage.
Your cat may have to be hospitalized for several days with an indwelling urinary catheter and intravenous fluids.
Urinary bladder tears from trauma or an obstruction require fast surgical repair and removing urine from the abdomen.
Can People Over 60 Use This
The program is harmless for people over 60 years old.
The program was made for men and women who have chronic kidney ailments or people at risk of developing one. The creators know that the odds of diseases increase as you get older, especially when you reach 60. So from the beginning, they know people in that group will probably use it.
Everything in the program has been carefully researched and selected to guarantee the best results for people over 60.
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Treatment Of Kidney Disease In Cats
Kidney disease is managed mostly with the aid of medications, diet, and hydration. Specific management is geared toward the underlying cause as well as the stage of the disease. A cat in any stage with an increase in either UPC or high blood pressure will most likely be treated with medication.
Based on the cause, additional therapy may be instituted, such as:
Aggressive IV antibiotics, if infection is present
Deworming medication for parasites
Immunosuppressive-type drugs for auto-immune diseases
Chemotherapy and/or surgery
If a urinary obstruction is noted, relieving the obstruction would be the treatment of choice.
Throughout your cats life, any disease process or illness that could affect hydration should be treated promptly with IV fluids. Drugs prescribed in the future for any other disease process will need to be tailored or substituted for a more kidney-friendly alternative, given that kidney metabolism will be decreased. If not, overdosages and/or worsening of the kidney disease could occur.
Additionally, for all stages of kidney disease, fresh water should always be available. Drinking should be encouraged and adequate nutrition should be given daily. Cats diagnosed with kidney disease are often prescribed a kidney-friendly diet which may include feeding your cat canned, wet foods that contain additional water.
Diagnostic Approach To Feline Cdk
In general, the diagnostic approach to patients once CKD has been identified and staged focuses on 3 areas :1. Characterizing the primary renal disease and/or complicating disease processes2. Characterizing the stability of renal disease and function3. Assessing patient problems associated with decreased renal function
Further definition of renal disease includes:
Quantitation of proteinuria Urine culture Urinary tract imaging with radiographs and ultrasound
Stability of renal function is assessed by serial monitoring of abnormalities identified during the initial characterization of renal disease. This monitoring should always include:
Serum biochemical profile Measurement of blood pressure
Monitoring may also include follow-up urine cultures and ultrasonography.
Further definition of renal disease is most important in earlier stages of CKD when correction of the underlying disease or disease complication has the greatest potential to improve or stabilize renal function.
Characterization of the disease stability is most important in earlier stages of CKD, when appropriate treatment has the greatest potential to stabilize renal function.
Characterization of patient problems becomes more important in later stages of CKD, when clinical signs tend to be more severe. In this case, diagnostic efforts should be directed at patient problems, including anorexia, vomiting, dehydration, acidosis, potassium depletion, and anemia.
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What Are The Stages Of Chronic Kidney Disease
CKD is diagnosed by the eGFR and other factors, and is divided into five stages:
|Stage of Chronic Kidney Disease||eGFR ml/min/1.73 m|
|Stage 1: the eGFR shows normal kidney function but you are already known to have some kidney damage or disease. For example, you may have some protein or blood in your urine, an abnormality of your kidney, kidney inflammation, etc.||90 or more|
|Stage 2: mildly reduced kidney function AND you are already known to have some kidney damage or disease. People with an eGFR of 60-89 without any known kidney damage or disease are not considered to have chronic kidney disease .||60 to 89|
|Stage 4: severely reduced kidney function.||15 to 29|
|Stage 5: very severely reduced kidney function. This is sometimes called end-stage kidney failure or established renal failure.||Less than 15|
Note: it is normal for your eGFR to change slightly from one measurement to the next. In some cases these changes may actually be large enough to move you from one stage of CKD to another and then back again. However, as long as your eGFR is not getting progressively worse, it is the average value that is most important.
Outcome For Dogs And Cats With Kidney Disease
Owners sometimes ask how long their pet will live with chronic kidney disease. The length of time a dog or cat with chronic kidney disease will live is impossible to predict with certainty because the rate of progression of chronic kidney disease varies considerably among individual animals. The veterinarian can get some idea of the rate of progression of an individual animal’s chronic kidney disease by following the concentration of creatinine in the blood over many months with the trend of changes in serum creatinine concentration over time being used to estimate how rapidly the kidney disease is progressing. Following progression in this way also can help the veterinarian determine if changes in medical management are helping slow the rate of progression of the disease. Some dogs and cats with chronic kidney disease can live several years with conscientious management of their disease by the veterinarian and pet owner.
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Stage 3 Kidney Disease Diet
Processed foods are extremely hard on the body. Since your kidneys are responsible for removing wastes and balancing electrolytes, eating too many of the wrong foods can overload your kidneys.
Its important to eat more whole foods like produce and grains, and to eat fewer processed foods and less of the saturated fats found in animal products.
A doctor may recommend decreasing your protein intake. If your potassium levels are too high from CKD, they may also recommend that you avoid certain high-potassium foods like bananas, potatoes, and tomatoes.
The same principle pertains to sodium. You may need to cut down on salty foods if your sodium levels are too high.
Weight loss is common in more advanced stages of CKD because of appetite loss. This can also put you at risk of malnutrition.
If youre experiencing appetite loss, consider eating smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day to make sure youre getting enough calories and nutrients.
Stage 3 Kidney Disease Life Expectancy
When diagnosed and managed early, stage 3 CKD has a longer life expectancy than more advanced stages of kidney disease. Estimates can vary based on age and lifestyle.
One such estimate says that the average life expectancy is 24 years in men who are 40, and 28 in women of the same age group.
Aside from overall life expectancy, its important to consider your risk of disease progression. One 10-year study of stage 3 CKD patients found that about half progressed to more advanced stages of kidney disease.
Its also possible to experience complications from CKD, such as cardiovascular disease, which can affect your overall life expectancy.
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Unproven Treatments For Kidney Disease In Cats
Its scary when your beloved companion is diagnosed with kidney disease.
The thought of losing your best friend may push you to investigate unproven treatments.
While nobody can blame you for exploring every available avenue, you should never treat your cat for renal failure without the supervision of your veterinary team.
With that said, some controversial and complex therapies can be discussed with your vet.
They include hemodialysis, which removes toxic waste products from the bloodstream, and kidney transplantation.
Or I came across this site that delved into the area of holistic healing using the EFT Tapping Method.
It may sound a bit woo-woo or just plain unbelievable but keep an open mind.
Not all vets are right.
Not all vets know holistic ways of healing.
Not all vets know everything.
When you feel totally helpless and your cat is suffering, you WILL try anything to make them better.
Therapeutic Goal: Treat Hypertension
- ACE inhibitors are first line therapy for hypertension, and crucial to blunting the reninangiotensinaldosterone system however, they are weak antihypertensives, only reducing blood pressure approximately 10 mm Hg.
- The calcium channel blocker amlodipine is more effective, but should be used with an ACE inhibitor.
Following initiation or increase of ACE inhibitor dosage, mild increases in BUN and creatinine may be noted. Monitor mild increases that do not cause uremia however, reduce or discontinue the dosage if azotemia, accompanied by uremia, significantly increases, which suggests the ACE inhibitor has caused a significant decrease in GFR.
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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.