Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment is an essential topic for Shih Tzu owners. When Shih Tzus develop kidney failure, it is often a life-threatening illness. Shih Tzu kidney failure is a condition that can occur in dogs of all ages but is most common in senior dogs. Early detection and treatment are essential to giving your Shih Tzu the best chance for a full recovery.
There are two main types of kidney failure in Shih Tzus: acute kidney failure and chronic kidney failure. Acute kidney failure comes on suddenly and can be caused by factors such as dehydration, infection, or poisoning. Chronic kidney failure is a gradual process that occurs over time and is usually the result of age-related changes or underlying health conditions.
Treatment will vary depending on the severity of the kidney failure and your Shih Tzu’s individual health condition.
This article will discuss the symptoms of Shih Tzu kidney failure, the various treatments available, and how to care for your Shih Tzu during treatment. Let’s start with the symptoms first!
Shih Tzu kidney failure symptoms
The symptoms of Shih Tzu kidney failure can vary depending on the severity of the condition. The most common sign of kidney failure in Shih Tzus is increased thirst and urination. Shih Tzus, with kidney failure, will drink more water than usual and urinate more frequently.
Other Shih Tzu kidney failure symptoms include appetite loss, weight loss, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and weakness.
If your Shih Tzu is showing any of these symptoms, it’s essential to take them to the vet for a checkup. Kidney failure can be challenging to diagnose early, so it’s important to give your vet as much information as possible about your Shih Tzu’s health and symptoms.
Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment
The first step in Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment is typically fluid therapy. This involves giving your Shih Tzu IV fluids to help flush the toxins from their system and rehydrate their body.
Fluid therapy is often done on an outpatient basis, meaning your Shih Tzu can go home after each treatment. However, some dogs may need to stay in the hospital for a few days or weeks while receiving fluids.
Many medications can be used to treat Shih Tzu kidney failure. These medications can help to control symptoms, slow the progression of the disease, and improve your Shih Tzu’s quality of life.
Some common medications used in Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment include:
ACE inhibitors help lower blood pressure and protect the kidneys from further damage.
Anti-inflammatory drugs: These drugs can help to reduce inflammation and pain.
Phosphate binders: These drugs help to control phosphorus levels in the blood. High phosphorus levels can cause kidney damage.
Potassium supplements: Potassium is an essential electrolyte often low in dogs with kidney failure. Potassium supplements can help to prevent or treat low potassium levels.
Your vet will decide which medications are best for your Shih Tzu based on their individual health condition.
A special diet is often crucial to Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment. The goals of a renal diet are to reduce the amount of work the kidneys have to do, control phosphorus and potassium levels, and provide all the nutrients with your Shih Tzu needs for good health.
The first step in changing your Shih Tzu diet is to consult with a veterinary nutritionist or your veterinarian. They will be able to recommend a commercially available food or formulate a home-cooked diet that is right for your dog. Your vet will likely recommend a special diet low in phosphorus and sodium and high in omega-3 fatty acids. You must avoid feeding them foods like red meat, dairy products, and eggs. Instead, it would help if you focused on feeding them foods like chicken, fish, and rice.
In addition to changing your Shih Tzu diet, you must also ensure they get enough fluids.
Some general guidelines for feeding a Shih Tzu with kidney failure include:
- Feeding smaller, more frequent meals
- Restricting phosphorus and sodium (salt)
- Adding omega-3 fatty acids (Supplements) to the diet
- Providing adequate protein
- Ensuring adequate hydration
The fourth step in Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment is surgery. Surgery is typically only recommended if your Shih Tzu has a blockage in their urinary tract or if they have developed cancerous tumors in their kidneys.
The most common surgery for dogs with kidney failure is a perineal urethrostomy. This surgery is done to widen the opening of the urethra so that urine can flow more easily. It is often recommended for dogs who are having difficulty urinating due to blockages.
Surgery can be costly, and it is not always successful. It is essential to discuss all of the risks and benefits of surgery with your veterinarian before making a decision.
Some alternative therapies can be used to treat Shih Tzu kidney failure. These therapies are not typically recommended as the sole treatment for kidney failure, but they can be used with other treatments to improve your Shih Tzu’s quality of life.
Some standard alternative therapies used in Shih Tzu kidney failure treatment include:
Acupuncture: This therapy can help to reduce pain and improve overall well-being.
Chinese herbs: Several Chinese herbs are thought to be beneficial for dogs with kidney failure. These herbs can help to improve kidney function, reduce inflammation, and boost the immune system.
Homoeopathic remedies: Homeopathic remedies can be used to treat a wide variety of health conditions. Some homeopathic remedies that are thought to be beneficial for dogs with kidney failure include Apis mellifica, Arnica Montana, and Ledum palustre.
Nutritional supplements: Several dietary supplements are beneficial for dogs with kidney failure. These supplements can help to improve kidney function, reduce inflammation, and boost the immune system.
If you are considering using any alternative therapies, it is essential to consult with your veterinarian first. They will be able to advise you on whether or not the therapy is appropriate for your Shih Tzu, and they can help you to find a reputable practitioner.
How to care for your Shih Tzu during treatment?
1. Keep them comfortable
The most important thing you can do for your Shih Tzu during treatment is to ensure they are comfortable. This means keeping them warm, dry, and free from stress. It is also vital to ensure they have access to plenty of fresh water and are getting enough exercise.
2. Monitor their weight
It is crucial to monitor your Shih Tzu’s weight during treatment. This will help you ensure they are getting enough food and that their diet is balanced. It is also an excellent way to check for any potential side effects of their treatment.
3. Keep an eye on their energy levels.
During treatment, it is normal for your Shih Tzu’s energy levels to fluctuate. Some days they may be full of energy, and other days they may be more tired than usual. It is vital to monitor their energy levels so that you can adjust their exercise and diet accordingly.
4. Be patient
Treatment for Shih Tzu kidney failure can be a long and difficult process. It is important to be patient and understand that there will be good and bad days. With time and patience, your Shih Tzu will eventually feel better.
The prognosis for Shih Tzus with kidney failure is generally not good. Kidney failure is a progressive disease that often leads to death. However, with early diagnosis and treatment, some Shih Tzus can live for years with the disease. The key to success is working closely with your veterinarian to create the right treatment plan for your Shih Tzu.
FAQs- Frequently Asked Questions
What are the causes of kidney failure in Shih Tzus?
There are many potential causes of kidney failure in Shih Tzus, including:
- Congenital abnormalities
- Autoimmune disease
- Kidney stones
How do I know if my Shih Tzu has kidney failure?
Signs and symptoms of kidney failure in Shih Tzus may include:
- Increased thirst
- Increased urination
- Decreased appetite
- Weight loss
How is kidney failure treated in Shih Tzus?
Kidney failure in Shih Tzus is treated by a combination of methods, including:
- Fluid therapy
- Dietary modification
- Kidney transplant (in some cases)