Symptoms of Kidney Problems in a Dog

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Know the symptoms of kidney problems in dogs.
Know the symptoms of kidney problems in dogs. (Image: dog image by Michal Tudek from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

The onset of kidney problems in dogs can appear suddenly or slowly develop over time. Some symptoms are obvious and others are more inconspicuous. If you are aware of what to look for, you are then able to get your dog the treatment and support he needs to recover from kidney problems and continue to lead a normal and healthy life.

Increased Thirst

Increased thirst goes hand-in-hand with increased urination. This symptom is most common in dogs with chronic kidney problems. If your dog’s kidneys slowly become less efficient her body will try to compensate by increasing the blood flow to her kidneys to help the filtering process. The side effect to this is increased urination. If your dog is urinating more often, dehydration can occur and can cause the desire to drink more water.

Lack of Appetite

Often a sudden lack of appetite and even thirst is a sign of acute kidney problems. If your dog ingests toxins such as pesticides or antifreeze, kidney problems set in quickly. Lack of appetite and thirst can lead to lethargy. If you notice these symptoms in your dog, seek immediate medical attention.

Weight Loss

A dog with kidney problems will not eat as often, leading to weight loss. You may see a substantial weight loss in a very short period. In fact, you may notice this without having to weigh your dog, as it may even be apparent just by looking at your dog.

Painful to the Touch

You may notice your dog shows signs of pain, especially when you touch the area near the kidneys. Your dog‘s activity level will drop and you my even hear him whimper when trying to move.

Nausea and Vomiting

When a dog has kidney problems, the kidney's ability to filter out toxins becomes more difficult. These toxins in the blood are poison to the dog, making it hard to keep food down, resulting in nausea and vomiting.

Swollen Abdomen

In severe cases of kidney problems, the kidneys are unable to filter toxins or push fluid through to the urinary tract. Dogs will instead retain this fluid, causing the abdomen to swell. This symptom is most common in the end stages of kidney failure. Seek care from a veterinarian.

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