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1832268 tn?1326816010

Canine Kidney Disease Lifespan .....Survey?

When a person is told that their dog has kidney failure, the biggest question is, How much more time can I reasonably expect my dog to live...? Because each dog is different, Veterinarians and the internet, are vague...some say weeks to months...others say months to years.  I hope the information collected here, along with recommendations and guidance from the dogs veterinarian, will offer dog owners helpful information, and realistic expectations. I would like to hear some input from others, as to what information would be helpful.  For example...Breed, Age, Symptoms, Creatine, Bun, and Phorsphorus levels at time of first exam that revealed Kidney Disease, as well as End Stage Symptoms and Lab Values ( if known. )   How Quickly did the disease progress. Did the dog die naturally, or was the death assisted. I think this type of information would be very helpful to anyone and their dog, who has to deal with this disease. I would prefer it, if anyone who offers the information, could refrain from sharing personal stories, and just try to list information. Does anyone else think this is a good idea....or not...?  Please share your thoughts with me.....Thanks
67 Responses
675347 tn?1365460645
My dog was diagnosed this week with very early-stage renal failure. I know some about some things, but I know very little about renal failure, how to cope, what foods to give.....etc
So I am on a steep learning-curve myself.
My dog is fortunate in that she is right now super fit and well, you would not guess there was anything wrong with her. Her only symptom is she is drinking more than twice as much water as before, and she has bed "accidents", quite easily dealt with by plastic sheeting under a cotton sheet, and dog-diapers with pads.
She is also fortunate that this was caught at a very early stage.
Kidney failure cannot be reversed. The kidney -unlike the liver- has no powers of regeneration. But the disease can be treated, and the aim is to hold back the worsening of symptoms for as long as possible through medication and diet. It's about management -not cure. The ideal is to plateau out at the level of kidney function the dog has when first diagnosed.

So of course, this is going to vary from dog to dog, and depending on what stage the disease is at when it is first discovered. It depends on how instructions are followed re. diet....it depends on the dog's general fitness.

I have such a lot to learn myself about this. And my answer is probably not what you are looking for at all for your survey. I can report back if you wish, with info. about my dog as she progresses.

Bearing all this in mind, the thing to do is keep vigilant, but live day to day. And listen to professional advice.
Hello group,my dog was just diagnosed with final stage kidney failure. She hasn't eaten or pooped in a week today on her own,we have force fed him for the last 3 days but very little. He's been to the vet daily all week.his blood test showed everything off the charts except creating and it's nearly to that point,been going up steadily.presently at 8.6. He has been on biogalenic lactate ringer all week in doses of 300 ml daily as well as a Pepcid and b vitamin injections. He still won't eat on his own and can barely stand more than a couple minutes at a time. He drinks plenty of water and urinates a lot but that's about it other than sleep.i think we are pretty much at the end because he isn't getting any better,ofcoarse he is 16 yrs old as well but was doing great up untill last week when I had him checked for his strange behaviors and not eating. Anyone else have any more ideas? I won't continue to force feed him,he will have to eat willingly or we will just be saying our goodbyes. Hate to lose my long time buddy and member of the family
Avatar universal
My dog was diagnosed in November of 2010.  He is still here and has a good quality of life.  Daily IV fluids given by me at home and pills have provided him with more than one extra year.  His levels were off the charts when first diagnosed, weight lose was what made us notice something wasn't right.  After 4 months of meds and IV his levels were reduced and brought way down.  They are back up again now and it's just a matter of time.  But with a good vet, money, and a lot of your own time, you can definately give your pet a fighting chance and more time with you.
What type of pills did you give him?
Avatar universal
My Dog was diagnosed at then mid November 2011.  He was in seemingly good health but had occasional lack of appetite and lower energy level so we took him to the vet.  They did a routine exam and said everything looks fine but ran the bloodwork. His levels were at 130 and 10, i believe more than twice normal levels.  He was immediately put on IV fluids for 3 days in hospital.  Levels went down to half those levels in a few days.  The vet said at those improved levels some dogs could live months or years.  We brought him home and did twice daily under skin fluids plus standard recommended meds and kidney diet.  We then took him to a kidney specialist who was trying to determine at what stage of Kidney disease he was at.  Got his levels down a little more a week little later,  things were looking promising and his energy levels were increasing dramatically.  Less than a week later, he completely stopped eating.  Took him to specialist after 2 days of not eating.  The specialist thought it was nausea causing him not to eat.  So we checked him in .  Next day he was worse, the next day the vet said he had 3 weeks to live.  The following day they said he might not last the weekend.  The following day they said it was not humane to keep him going and he was put to sleep.  Entire time from first diagnosis to his passing was about 3 weeks.  My conclusions:  1) This is a absolutely devastating disease,  2)  The best that modern medicine has to treat this with is not very good  3) Vets  really dont know what causes this and how long your dog has,  every dog is different.     The only promising treatment i could find is stem cell therapy and that is in experimental stages.

Avatar universal
My MinPin was just diagnosed with kidney disease and was doing poorly.  After being in the hospital 3 days with fluids, etc. she has perked up.  She is now home and I am doing fluids 2-3 times a week (on first week).  She's ok but is not eating very well if at all.  She is not drinking much at all either.  She will eat people food in small portions but not her diet dog food.  I have spent @ $1,000.00 so far on her treatment and not sure how much more I can spend.  I feel awful.  I love her but I don't want her to suffer.  I don't know what to do.
Avatar universal
Has your vet suggested any type of anti-nausea medicine?  Do you know what her levels were - specifically BUN and creatinine?  Depending on what her levels are and what the vet is telling you, you might consider getting her to eat anything.  Try ground meat, pasta, chicken, even bacon to get her to eat.  Since she's smaller, can you give her water via a plastic syringe?  Daisy was never good at taking pills so I'd have to crush them up, mix them with water then shoot them in her mouth.  Not a fun process, I ended up getting wet more often, but it was an option.  

Unfortunately, as you probably already know, this disease is irreversible.  Since she was diagnosed, I am sure there were signs leading up to this and usually that means 75% of their kidneys aren't working.  If you can't afford it, then think about your sweet girl.  You'll know when it's time.  
This is wrong to give a dog protein. Protein makes kidney disease worse.
8335135 tn?1397679400
I have a 15 year old Maltese who was diagnosed with early disease in 2009. I was instructed by his vet to cook ground beef, white rice/ white bread and 1 tums for his meals. At the time his BUN was 55 and Creatine was 1.4
At around 2011 his BUN was 26 and Creatine remained the same.  On April 7, 2014 he went into severe kidney failure. He was hospitalized and at the time of the blood work his BUN was 157 and I believe his Creatine was 2.4  He was hospitalized for three days, flushed out all the toxins, and had IV’s. Since then he has been on the RS recovery kidney diet, and now is on the KD diet and drinks plenty of water. He has gained weight and is pretty active. Just had blood work done and his BUN is 23 and Creatine is 1.1
The vet said all is normal.  He will continue to be on the KD Diet. My vet said she has never in all her years seen a dog especially a senior dog bounce back.  He eats 4 small meals of KD everyday and is pretty much hydrated.  I am just taking it one day at time with my little man and being realistic especially since he is 15 years old.   He has a recheck next month and I can report back with what his blood work shows.
Hugs to all.
8335135 tn?1397679400
Typo * kidney disease in early 2009
Avatar universal
My two-year old lab, Betty, was just started on a diet for kidney disease. He creatinine was 1.5 mg/dL when she was 9-mo old. This past March, her level was 1.6, and this week she has gone up to 1.8 with elevated BUN of 28 mg/dL. She is so young. Will my time with her be cut short? Is/will she suffer(ing)?
As an update, Betty was put on K/D and her BUN normalized to healthy levels and her CRT stabilized at 1.6 for 2yrs. It was a true blessing. Recently, a holistic vet recommended a raw food diet with high quality protein and low phosphorus. I wanted more nutrients in her diet since she's so young, so we tried it for 4 weeks. We checked her levels yesterday and they are the highest they've ever been - BUN @ 29 and CRT @ 2.1. I'm devastated. I feel terrible. Protein content does matter for kidney dogs. We're back on K/D and hoping with all of our hearts that she can return to more stable values. She's so young... Has anyone tried the supplement Rena Food for their pups?
Avatar universal
I too found out in February that our 13 yr old shitz-a-poo Shammy has kidney disease.  We have done everything we could between meds, iv fluids and keeping her happy and comfortable.  She hasn't really eaten in the past few days and my heart is breaking everyday.  My vet feels that doing bloodwork at this time is pointless since we are doing everything we possibly could.  This is the hardest thing I've ever been through.  I too would spend every dime I have to help her.  When she was 10, she had back surgery costing 9K.  I wish this deadly disease was curable because I feel her life is being sadly cut short.  I sympathize with you and know exactly what you're going through.  My only comfort is knowing that she will soon be in a better place where I hope she will be waiting for me.
Avatar universal
My mixed breed was diagnosed February 2013 pre-renal failure, initially only in urine, and after a couple of months it presented in the blood as well.  This past Wednesday, May 14, her phosphorous rose to 16.  This Friday, May 16, she was breathing heavy, drooling crazy, spitting out any food I gave her, barely drinking, and at 12 years of age, was recommended we put her down.  With over a year from diagnosis, I agreed, although it broke my heart.  I was told with kidney disease, its rare to even get them to live a year.  She was on benazopril, lisinopril, phosphorous binder, aspirin, fish oil, NF kidney food (when she felt like eating, which wasn't often as she hated this food…she still had an appetite up until the very end, just not for this food).  

We were told she would basically hold steady and then there would be a sudden drop, and that was basically how it happened.  I think I misunderstood that this was a manageable disease once we figured out the magic equation of meds, and that we would have more time, but I am grateful for what we did have with her.  Until this past week, you wouldn't have known even one day she was sick.  She always had energy, always had a pep to her step, and always with a smile to her face.  I didn't want her to suffer, and as she was barely drinking, and wasn't eating at all, even with the options for aggressive fluids for the weekend, with the potential for a turnaround, it would have returned to the same behavior and her feeling horribly all over again, and to what end should be put her through this cycle of feeling sick?  I still can't believe she's not here, but she put up the good fight, and she fought a most fierce battle.  Best of luck with your dog.
Avatar universal
I'm sorry about the loss of your sweet pup.  It is so heartbreaking to watch them decline but you did the right thing.  You helped her for more than a year and you are right, most people don't get that long out of a dog with kidney disease.  Daisy had about 13 months too.  

The disease is manageable if treated early, but it is not curable.  I think that's where we all get confused.  We'd love to save our sweet doggies but once we learn of their disease it's often too late.  

Daisy had a sudden drop in January and spent 4 nights in the doggy ER.  Once I brought her home, she was never the same.  Every day we had to administer SUBQ fluids at home, weekly blood work, vet visits, etc.  Three weeks after she came home, she stopped eating, the vomiting started again and she was losing quality of life.  I knew when I saw her on Friday that she wouldn't make it through the weekend.  I spent all night holding her, trying to calm her down and just remind her how much she changed my life.  Saturday morning wasn't much better, she still hadn't eaten and was barely drinking.  She just kinda stumbled around until she lost her balance.  It was the hardest decision of my life but I knew I wouldn't let her suffer.  I called the vet and she and her daughter met me at the office.  It was just my family and the vet.  It was very comforting.  

I hope you find peace in your decision.  It won't happen overnight, but I truly believe dogs 'visit' in our dreams to show us they're okay wherever they are.  Daisy comes to me every once in a while, when she knows I need a little push to get out of bed, take the next step, etc.  The good thing about a dogs love is that it never leaves you.  Their paw prints are always on our heart :)  
Avatar universal
I want to share our experience with our 13 year old Shih-Tzu who was diagnosed with renal failure, two months into it at this date.
Her numbers as everyone has experienced were way high at the time of diagnosed, BUN 92 and Creatine was 3.9 (+/-).  After her first fluid treatment in the animal hospital the numbers came down but still had issues trying to get her to eat the KD or any of the other kidney diet foods which is why I’m responding to this. We switched vets just trying to get some help from someone, anyone!  
One day while watching my wife mush up the can food and trying to force feed poor Buttons we came up with the idea of using the blender and adding RO filtered water to the mix and forcing the food through a syringe, bingo, that worked but it really stinks!  We were told that Buttons maybe had a month or two to live but after a week of this and giving sub-q fluids daily we have a new puppy and her BUN numbers were cut in half, creatine came down to 2.6.
Someone said on this tread that they take it one day at a time, us too but for now we have a barking playful dog again.  BTW, she has been spoiled her whole life and now is no exception.  She will eat on her own but prefers for my wife to feed her like a baby, go figure.  
There’s much more to her story but limited space.  My email if anyone wishes to write back is; joseph.***@****  
Avatar universal
My dog, a shar-pei had been always sick, since she was a little cuddling puppy. She suffered from what is called FSF, familial shar pei fever - nasty episodes of high fever 'that possibly at a later stage 'might' result in renal failure', like an autoimmune disease, born with it. Some vets say that one of the main triggers involved in the initiation of fever episodes is stress. I tried my best to offer her a stress-free environment and therefore less fever episodes and no renal failure. I chose the houses I moved in and the holidays based on that stress-free criteria: no noise (she hated the ambulances sirens), close to parks, forests, with a little place where she can sat outside (she loved bathing in the sun) and bcs she hated taking the real baths and was causing her a lot of stress, I reduced the baths to once a year and the rest of the time I used dried shampoos and napkins, my friends and family often complained about the smell, I didn't mind it.

After three years of frequent fever episodes she stopped having them and I was happy, thinking I finally did something for her. I discovered that magic formula. but in April 2012 she was in the dog ER with IV fluids for two days, they did some tests and I remember them saying "the tests were good and no sign of renal issues' and I took her home. After two months she started drinking a lot of water while peeing a lot, even in the house bcs she couldn't hold herself. I took her to another vet, after the tests she said " it doesn't look that bad, a slight kidney problem, let's put her on the kidney diet for three weeks and see how it goes". It went well. She stopped drinking a lot of water and she stopped peeing the usual big puddles.
After a month or so I took her back to the first vet, thinking they seemed more experienced, did another set of tests which showed 'a possible kidney problem in the future, but not now' I kept her another five months on the kidney diet but bcs she was loosing a lot of weight and she hated the food I changed to another diet, a bit more tasty. All this time she seemed fine, occasionally she was nauseous in the morning, but she had a lot of energy and optimism, in some of our lovely days together I used to walk her even for five hours at a time and she was still not tired.

One year later, I moved over to France and got another vet for her. And when she got really sick, last year in September the vet kept her in for five days in the hospital with IV fluids and she put her back on the horrible kidney diet plus ipaketine and rubenal "for life", they said. This time, last September, they also said 'it's kidney failure but not too bad, early stage, I've seen much worse" I must say that ipaketine and rubenal helped a lot with the nausea but she always had very loose stools.
Afterwards she went there every two months for a few days even a week but she also had an incredible three months - fit, happy, eating her diet food with a bit of appetite, no need for vet, put a lot of weight, I even nicknamed her 'jambon' bcs she had big healthy muscular legs. And just when I was hoping to have her around for years to come,this May she started going down, eating occasionally, very loose stools, tired, anxious, problems sleeping, vomiting huge amounts of white foam, not the usual, the vet changed her medicines: maalox, ranitidine plus rubenal plus some antibiotic (?? I wondered if it was okay in kidney failure?) this June she only had two good weeks but the rest she was in a really bad state. that was the first time when I realized that it was over. But I didn't give up.  I still tried to find remedies, I even went to a homeopath for animals, I read, actually re-read everything about kidney failure. I re-watched the videos on how to give IV fluids at home, in France, the vets are not only not encouraging to give IV fluids at home but they strongly advised against it, therefore every time I asked them about it, they opposed.
I was so scarred of causing her more stress, or making her feeling worse, I questioned all the treatments, I was even convinced there was a better medicine scheme that I hadn't discovered yet. This Saturday we went back with the IV fluids and some injections, on Monday they said she had started eating, good stools, relatively good BUN and that we can take her home, but they would also recommend another 48 hours to see if the bun and creatinine can go even lower. On Tuesday, they called me to say that I should put her down, everything went up again in just one day and that she was in very bad shape. I couldn't believe it, on Monday I could have taken her home and on Tuesday I had to put her to sleep. On Thursday we played with the ball and now she's gone.

I have so many "maybes" and no answer. Maybe I should have taken her home on Monday and maybe she would have gotten better being at home with me. Maybe I should have never changed her medicine. Maybe I shouldn't have given her antibiotics. Maybe I shouldn't have changed her diet, back there when they were saying there's no renal issue for now but in the future. Maybe if I didn't let the fox to wonder around the garden and possibly given her some worms that combined with her very fragile health resulted in total renal failure. I'm left with sleep-eating "maybes"...

When I went to the vet, I was convinced I should take her home, but when I took her for a little walk around the clinic, I realized that the dog in front of me was not my lovely optimist kina, there was a tired dog,with swollen and shaved legs and belly from all the tests and scans, barely walking, swollen bottom from all the loose stools, she was fed up with fighting, she didn't even want to go home, she didn't even put a fight, as she usually did, when returning to the vet. And she was finally at peace when she was put to sleep.
I apologize for such a long post, without no conclusions and no hope for the others who might experience the same fight as Kina and me did. I could only say that ipaketine, rubenal, the diet food, the love, the long walks, but also plenty of rest, the stress-free environment, careful surveillance on not scavenge or drink from bad puddles of water eased her symptoms and a little lean meat from time to time mixed in the horrible diet food helped with her humor. And also that there comes a time when you have to let them go, and as someone put it here, you'll know when that time will come. My dog lived two good years since the very first signs.

Thank you Connie for this initiative of opening this thread, I think it helps sharing our stories, understanding and finally accepting that is an incurable disease, and maybe the owners who are experiencing this dreadful disease might find useful information or support.
She left a tremendous gap in my life and even though I hated this disease I would start all over again just for those short five years of one of the finest friendships.

Avatar universal
Wow, thanks for your long story.  My almost 15 year old Chihuahua Buddy was diagnosed with Kidney Disease today and I am exhausted and confused on what to do or not do.  Some dogs are very brave and can put up with a lot.

The trouble is my little man is a real coward and can't put up with hardly anything!  I was faced today with putting him on IV fluids for 3 days at a cost of $3000 after doing an ultrasound, and I know this would break his spirit being thrown in a cage with needles (which he hates!).  I asked for 'Plan B' and they gave me antibiotics (as they think he has been sore from some inflammatory problems) and told me to get the drug that will bind the phosphors to get that out of his body, and I also took home a pain killer and the special 'Renol Diet' which luckily he seemed to love tonight.  They told me to come back in 2 weeks.  His stats were very bad today, but they said the antibiotics could help to improve his kidney stats alone in 2 weeks time.  He also has bad teeth at the moment, but they don't want to give him a dental because of his bad blood and kidneys right now.  Was told that it's literally possible to just forget giving him all the drips, forget having the teeth done - and just keep him on antibiotics and on this diet to maintain things; the vet said she saw one dog live for 2 years that had kidney disease just on the antibiotics alone.

They seemed to understand that this little dog couldn't tolerate drips for days as he is not brave.  I asked the vet what his end will be and she said that kidney disease is not painful at all and is actually a peaceful way to go!  It's just that at the very end she said he probably will not want to eat and will start throwing up and at that stage I should put him down.

I have mixed feelings.  Some reports seem to have good response to the drips and the 'home care' drips - but others go through all this and the dog seems to die very quickly anyway.  I guess because Buddy is such a 'sook' or a 'baby' I need to protect him and not put him through too much.  I'll see how the diet and antibiotics go for now.  He's drinking plenty of water which the vet said is great and will help to flush the kidneys out.  Anyone  ever just used antibiotics and the diet - giving the dog lots of water to drink?  What are some natural alternatives that can help that aren't too intrusive to the pet?
Avatar universal
We lost my sweet dachshund girl to kidney failure last week - July 15th. Last November, we took her to the vet for incontinence, blood tests showed elevated BUN 81 and Crea 2.5. He put her on a low protein dog food and prescribed Proin for the incontinence. He didn't tell us that those test results were already extremely high, or that the Proin could affect both her kidneys and her heart, didn't even tell us she should have a recheck on the kidney function. She seemed fine, other than she wasn't able to control her bladder.  After 3 months on proin and a strict canned crap diet, she began having difficulty walking, her heart felt as though it was coming out of her chest, and suddenly, the incontinence was back. Repeat of blood work showed BUN 120 Crea 3.5 and a heart problem. Vet told us to put her down, but I refused. We got a second opinion, and switched vets. We began heart meds, a homemade diet and sub q fluids, which brought the kidney #s down, but it eventually sent her into congestive heart failure. Had to back off on the fluids.  We spent the her last three months trying to strike a balance, and she had a few bad days, but mostly really good ones, and we spoiled her rotten. A week ago Sunday she stopped eating -- refused everything, she had diarrhea and began vomiting. When her appetite waned previously, I'd give her a sub q or two to flush out toxins, and she'd start eating again and clearly feel better. This time, I could tell it wasn't working.  She didn't bounce back on Monday, or Monday night, and couldn't keep her meds down -- no heart meds, no antacid and no cerinia.  I was praying she'd perk up again and start eating but she didn't.  I called the vet Tuesday morning, couldn't get in until 3pm. By the time she was seen she hadn't eaten for 48 hours. A recheck on the kidney function showed BUN off the charts above 180, Creat of 6.5 and she had mouth ulcers. The vet told me intravenous fluid wasn't an option because of her heart. We could try a cerinia injection, take her home and continue sub qs, but there was little hope that we could get those kidney values down low enough to make her feel much better. I wanted to take her home so badly and try ANYTHING, but I couldn't put her through any more misery just to buy me a day or two more with her, so I made the hardest decision of my life, and I'm heartbroken and feel so guilty. She was the sweetest, smartest little girl. I helped deliver her 11 years ago  -- I still have her mom, who's 13 and going strong. I believe she would have enjoyed a few more happy years if I hadn't put her on Proin.
Avatar universal
What is the KD diet and where can I find it ?
Avatar universal
My Australian Cattle Dog was diagnosed with kidney failure a couple weeks ago. She is only 2 years old. The whole time I've had her she has had bathroom issues;she could never hold it longer than a few hours, I had to let her out over night, she was dripping and always peed in her crate. She always had a water obsession that I wrote off as a quirk. Well, recently I had noticed her appetite was way down but I thought some dogs will just eat when they are hungry. I took her to a kennel while we were out of town for the weekend and they called me saying she had collapsed on the ground but she now seemed ok. I kept her at home the next day while I went to work and when I came home I noticed she had thrown up in her cage and was having diarrhea. I called the vet and they wanted to see her immediately.I took her in and they ran the blood work. Her 3 kidney levels were off the charts and her blood level was low. They kept her for 2 days hooked up to an IV and flushed saline through her system in hopes it would remove the toxins. After 2 days the numbers were lower, but basically unchanged. The vet said she was also anemic which I've read is another side effect of severe kidney failure. She reccomended a blood transfusion but that by itself is $800-$1000 and I have already (in 2 weeks) spent almost $1000. She came home with a special KD food and a bunch of pills and some Pepcid. The vet rechecked her levels after a week and they, again, lowered but a smidge. And her blood level dropped more. So at the moment, we are still feeding her the special food and she is on the piils and we are going to check her levels again in a week. If they still remain unchanged, I guess we will continue the food and pills and monitor how she is acting. But she acts 100% fine, you would never be able to tell she was sick.
Avatar universal
Our dog was DXed when he was adopted at a year old and was taken to be neutered.I don't remember what his numbers. I do remember that several years into the diagnosis of Chronic Renal Failure, I asked our vet for a ballpark number of the years we might have with him. At that time, his numbers were rising so slowly, that she felt there was no reason not to have him till he was 10 years old or even 11. He died at almost 12 years old. He was a Golden Retriever, and CRF tends to be familial in that breed. In his later years we noticed his gait was odd, and found that he also had Degenerative Myolapathy. For the CRF, we blood pressure meds, had him on a prescription diet for CRF and added some higly bioavailable proteins alond with aluminum hydroxide for a binder to his kibble. We did Subcutaneous fluids too, though they aren't as successful for large dogs as they are for small dogs and cats. He didn't seem to mind it. so we felt even if SQs helped a little, it was worth it.
We did have to euthanize in the end, the DM (sort of a doggy version of ALS) is a progressive nuerological disease and he was losing his battle with that. 12 years isn't bad for a big dog with all that he had against him. He was an awesome pup.
Avatar universal
My 16 year old chow mix was dx sept 2013 with beginning stages of renal failure.  His specific gravity of urine was low but his creatinine and bun were still in the high end of normal (I think 1.3 and 30). The doctor estimated a year and recommended 300ml subq fluids once a week at this point and k/d diet.  That worked fine for six months. In April 2014  He started losing his appetite among other issues with dementia and odd gait (ataxia).  At this point I switched vets because I knew there would be a roller coaster of treatment approaching and needed a vet that could spend lots of time with me so I could learn and set up a plan of action.  In April 2014 his creatinine was at 2.1 and bun at 60.  We started him on 300mg daily subq fluids (plasmalyte) rimadyl (for arthritis)and azodyl 3x daily.  He stopped eating k/d and wouldn't even touch ANY dog food so for the next three months I cooked him his meals- anything he would eat on his own pretty much. Not nutritious at all but he was still eating on his own a bit.  By June 2014 he lost 15 pounds (from 45 to 30) because of lack of appetite.  His bun was 85 and creatinine 2.2. We then started him on tums (100mg a phosphate binder)and benezapril (high blood pressure). He got so sick with diahrrea for two weeks from this whole cocktail! So after making him eat pumpkin, which helped I stopped all meds other than the sub q fluids. A miracle happened- he then started eating dog food on his own! Lots of it!  He loves red barn's beef roll and I/D. So for the past month he has been eagerly eating on his own and seems very alive and happy although he keeps losing weight.   He had his check up today (aug 2014) and the vet said she sees a huge improvement with alertness, blood pressure, and overall vitals (w/O any meds for a month) His creatine is slowly going up still (2.4) but his bun dropped to 60. So I'm not sure if all the meds together help or hurt.  I'm scared to start them again and he will stop eating again.  The vet tried acupuncture today too to help stimulate his appetite and increase stamina.  I was skeptical but when I got home from the vet he went on a 10 minute walk eagerly. This is a learning experience for me and him.  It is worth the fight  and money though to keep him happy.  The fluids are around $25 a bag which isn't bad.  So I would without a doubt at least give them these as a hydration and flush.  It was scary at first with the needle but I'm over it and it only takes 5 minutes a day.  I know I won't have him forever and understand that he will eventually stop eating again and his #'s will go up and I will have to put him down but at least he has this 2nd wind now. The vet warned once the creatinine gets to 3ish he will get very sick and it can happen real quick. So I'm hoping to prolong that and enjoy every minute with him.  
Did you administer the fluids yourself or did you have to go to the vet?  Thanks!
Avatar universal
My Yorkie was diagnosed with kidney failure in September 2014. She was in the hospital for 10 days (over $6,000) where they ran tests and found out that she developed kidney failure from eating chicken jerky treats. It is called Fanconi syndrome and the FDA has been investigating the deaths and illness of several dogs due to eating chicken jerky treats. I purchased Dingo Market Cuts from Walmart and both my dogs got sick throwing up and with diarrhea. After a week eating the treats, my smaller dog did not want to eat and started urinating during the night (It never happened before). A very expensive urine test diagnosed her with Fanconi Syndrome (kidney failure). I wonder how many dogs have gotten sick from eating chicken jerky treats. I stayed away from treats made in China but the Dingo brand is made in the US. Still my little Yorkie is now sick and her life expectancy is shorter. She went from a happy 6 pound dog to a 4.8 pounds dog in 3 weeks. She is not eating much and is now anemic.i give her IV fluids everyday and she requires medications to control her nausea. I am spending as much time with her as possible and I cannot imagine my life without her. She is so sweet and did not deserve to get sick from a dog treat. I am worried that the treats that made her sick are still being sold by Walmart and I have not been able to post a review on their webpage.
462827 tn?1333168952
Hello Claudiaca-----I'm so sorry to hear about your little one.....Fanconi Syndrome has been non-stop since 2007......There are many web sights still monitering this disaster!!!!

Please start posting your story on any page you can find...Consumer Affairs.com is a beginning......

The most powerful page related to this issue is "Truth About Petfood.com".....Susan Thixton has a ticker going on her page until the FDA wakes up and analogizes the problem.....

Please send her your story, too...She will respond and warn others...Sign up for her newsletter.....She also has a Facebook page.....Post it there, too... This women is powerful, trust me!!!!

I'll be praying for you & your little one.....We have wonderful threads on this forum about kidney disease & treatments......We also have a speciality forum on just this topic.....Please join us & read what others have to say....Take care.....Blessings to you both, Karla

462827 tn?1333168952
Claudiaca--There is no sense complaining to any of the powerhouse companies like Wal-Mart or Dingo...They are not listening....

Yes, they are still being sold at Wal-mart!!! To answer your Chicken Jerky question: THOUSANDS have been poisoned &/0r died from eating these tainted products.....

You MUST get your story out!!!!  Karla
Avatar universal
I just learned that my relatively healthy 15 year old min-pin has CRD. Last week when we took her to the vet, we found her BUN to be 74 and Crea to be 2.3. She was eating fairly well but had been a finicky eater for years. When she was young, we always added carrot sheds to her food...than 1 day she stopped eating the carrots in her food, so we didn't add them anymore. Yes, the vet bills can get expensive, but SQ at home really does help. I also have her on KD, which I thoroughly blend adding a little tuna juice and lots of filtered water. She eats 2 meals a day. Her skin is now tight, so she appears to be well hydrated. I think the tuna juice helps make the KD more palatable and I've even started adding shredded carrots to her food. I do SQ every 3 days (100 ML) and monitor her urine. So we'll see. I have also fostered many dogs that we ended up actually adopting because no one else wanted them. I've had 17 dogs in our house at 1 time and loved them all. With so many dogs (and many of them seniors), you start seeing trends as to what works and what you should continue doing. What I've learned (from our personal experience): 1. Try to work with a good homeopathic vet. In fact, both my traditional vet and homeopathic vet have worked together on several of my dogs and they respected one another. I made it very clear from the get-go that I wanted it this way as my traditional vet is less than a mile away from our house, while our homeopathic vet is 30 miles away. I (from the very beginning put myself in the driver's seat). 2) Trust your instincts. You're with your pet more than anyone else...so you do have a voice. 3) Do your own research and understand that much of what you read can make or break you. You have to know what to siphon as good info and as bad. Everybody else's experiences will not necessarily be yours. 4) Listen to your pet - you'll know through observation how much more s/he will be able to handle. My Ginger is a tiny dog (at optimum health, she weighed lbs). Now she weighs around 5 lbs. There are good homeopathic and natural remedies that a good homeopathic vet can suggest. These forums actually do help. The support I get (just by reading these posts) help a great deal and I'll continue to give updates here. Good luck everyone and Happy New Year.
Avatar universal
My dog was diagnosed with renal failure yesterday.  He is approximately 13-14 y/o (rescue, so not really sure) 53 lb. Australian shepherd.  A little over 6 months ago, we did his routine "old man" blood work and found he was a little anemic.  We brought him back a few weeks later to see if there was any change.  He was still a little anemic, but there was no change in the results.  So, we thought we'd do periodic blood work to check on it over time.

He had been getting to be a pickier eating -which was pretty much solved by wetting his dry kibble down a bit (I feed Wellness).  Then when that didn't work as well, I added some wet food mixed in with moist kibble and that has been working well.

He started having a few accidents in the house - not many.  But he can usually hold it about 4-5 hours.  He has also gotten very week in the hind end.  He is on Dasuquin MSM supplements for that, but it no longer appeared to be working.  So, we went to vet yesterday thinking we were dealing with an arthritis issue.

Blood work was done.  He's still anemic.  His BUN was 81 and Creatinine was 4.2.  Vet said his kidneys were down at least 75%.  She estimated days to weeks.  She didn't think dietary change would be helpful at this stage.  She mentioned fluids, but felt it was going to be "liters and liters" and she didn't sound optimistic.

There was some bacteria in his urine, so she prescribed a round of antibiotics.  She also prescribed Tramadol for his arthritis pain since no other options are available b/c of the status of his kidneys.  She also recommended Pepcid AC 20mg capsule daily.

My dog has been sleeping a lot in the past several months.  I attributed it to old age, as I did the couple of accidents.  Today he didn't eat all of his breakfast and I am going to search for some low protein dog foods I can put him on.  Today I have just been trying to learn all I can about what his happening to him.
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