Hi Anna. Pancreatitis is a common complication with kidney disease and needs to be guarded against, usually by being forewarned if it creeping in through having very regular (monthly) blood level checks.
It can both be triggered and made significantly worse by high fat content in the diet, which you probably know by now.
The best approach is therefore to keep fats to a minimum, at least until the pancreatitis has been resolved, after which time you can re-introduce small amounts of fat - keeping a watch on blood levels to see if it flares up again. In the meantime, dogs still need energy from useful nutrition, so fats should be replaced with carbohydrates. Carbs are not as efficiently used by dogs as fat is, so hopefully this is only a temporary measure.
I am wondering how much fat is in the "NF" food (not sure what NF stands for or which product it might be). If it is a high fat food, then you could try switching to one that is a) canned and b) low fat, lower protein.
Home cooking is indeed a good alternative, but be aware my recipes all include pretty high fat amounts (due to meat and coconut oil content), so I would not use them without adapting them.
The lowest fat content poultry is turkey breast without the skin. Unfortunately it is medium in terms of phosphorus content, so it could be used occasionally, as long as the phosphorus level in the blood results is under good control. Chicken breast without skin is a good option too. The best is actually green tripe, which is both low in phosphorus and fat ... about the same as chicken actually.
If you replace the fats with carbs, then go for sticky white rice or peeled cooked potato as good options. Salmon is quite high in phosphorus, so useful, but only occasionally.
Hope this helps.
That is very helpful, Tony! Thank you so much. The vet has been feeding her canned chicken; so, I'll continue with that (or even fresh) and add some white rice.
Just fyi, the NF food is Purina's kidney function food.
I really appreciate your responding so quickly. Of course, we are beside ourselves that our baby is ill and are so appreciative of any info. that could help her.
No problem Anna. Instead of plain white rice, use sticky white rice (most good supermarkets sell it, or available at Asian and some Chinese cuisine outlets) as it's lower in phosphorus. Purina is not a good source for dog food of any kind. You may or may not be aware there is a huge (1000s of dog owners) lawsuit still going on against Purina, owing to alleged deaths due to contamination/ingredients. I would look more at other canned varieties such as Hills kd, once the pancreatitis is under control. Tinned chicken may be okay, but do check what the ingredients say about both the fat and phosphorus content and - if medium to high - stop using it.
Just for anyone following this thread ... egg whites are a good source of high quality proteins (free range and as organic as possible eggs), but so too are most human grade meats and poultry. Human grade means they are cuts of meat you would buy to eat yourself (not intended for dogs, as dog meats are the waste matter from carcasses or from animals that have died due to illness).
The general consensus is that protein does not need restricting in stages 1 and 2 of chronic kidney disease - but it does need restricting in stages 3 and 4. The ideal is for high quality protein to be fed in these later stages, but that it doesn't amount to more than around 10% of the daily intake of food. When restricting protein, it's important to substitute it with other viable energy sources. Fatty meats (as long as there is no susceptible pancreatitis) can be given - but do be careful of the protein content - along with carbohydrates including sticky white rice and white potatoes in moderation.