Managing Chronic Kidney Disease in Cats and Dogs
Chronic kidney disease is defined as kidney disease that has been present for months to years. Chronic renal disease (CRD), chronic renal failure (CRF), and chronic renal insufficiency refer to the same condition. CKD is not a single disease.
There are many different causes of CKD but by the time the animal shows signs of kidney disease the cause may no longer be apparent. Some potential causes of CRF include:
- congenital malformation of the kidneys (birth defects)
- chronic bacterial infection of the kidneys with or without kidney stones (pyelonephritis)
- high blood pressure (hypertension)
- diseases associated with the immune system (e.g. glomerulonephritis, systemic lupus))
- acute kidney disease, for example poisoning with antifreeze, that damages the kidneys can lead to CKD
Often the cause of CKD is unknown.
NB: Dogs and cats can be managed quite succesfully at home with subcutaneous fluid therapy, proper diet and constituional homeopathic prescribing (treating the individual and not the dis-ease). Prognosis depends on many factors such as cause, age, extent and duration of damage, etc.–Dr. Jeff