Taking care of a pet is a huge responsibility, especially when it comes to health matters. Their health is just as important as ours, yet it is entirely up to us as pet owners to ensure that our critters are in the pink of health.
Fortunately, with symptoms, diseases can be easily identified. If you suspect that your cat might have kidney disease, here’s a breakdown of what kidney disease is and what are some signs to look out for. Of course, a visit to your local vet would always be the best way to determine your pet’s condition.
What is kidney disease?
Kidney disease is a medical condition that is common in cats, which causes kidneys to function at only 15%. The internal infections due to toxins in the body will eventually result in complete kidney failure. Generally, kidney failure falls into two main categories: acute and chronic.
Acute kidney failure
Acute kidney failure, also known as acute renal failure, is an abrupt onset of kidney damage and can happen to cats of all ages. Some common causes of this disease include infection in the kidneys, poisons due to toxic plants like lilies or human medications, trauma, and blockages.
The good thing about acute renal failure though, is that it is still treatable with enough care and medical assistance! On the other hand, this is unfortunately not the case for chronic kidney diseases.
Chronic kidney failure
This insidious kidney disease is much harder to treat. The level of kidney function in your cat will decline at a slow pace due to the accumulation of injuries to the nephrons, which are the functional units of the kidney, and it will gradually take a toll on your kitty over the years. The specific causes aren’t always clear, but they usually comprise of acute kidney infections and blockages, advanced dental disease, high blood pressure, or genetics.
Symptoms to look out for
Generally, both kidney disease types come with similar symptoms – the only distinctive differences are the causes and effects. While this is not exhaustive, what you can roughly look out for include signs like:
- Body weakness and fatigue – your feline buddy is not being as playful as they normally are and sleeping more than usual
- Abnormal urinating patterns such as excessive urination
- Increased drinking of water
- Bad breath
- Weight loss
How to prevent kidney disease
There are numerous things that you as an owner can do to prevent kidney disease or prevent it from getting worse.
Maintain a healthy diet
Always remember that prevention is better than cure, and the trick to fighting off any disease, for both pets and owners, is to have the right diet. Make sure that your cat gets all-natural food packed with tons of vitamins. You can always check the labels when shopping at pet retail shops or ask your vet for a recommended brand!
Give them plenty of water
Hydration is always key to a happy and healthy kitty. If they’re not in the mood to drink water, give them wet food like canned tuna instead so that they get some fluids in their system. You can also try homemade recipes for your pet for a change – just get them directly from a specialist in animal nutrition.
Visit the vet
Typically, cats should pay a visit to their local vet in Singapore before they turn one year old. This is to get all their necessary vaccinations done, and thereafter, regular health check-ups with an overall physical examination that tests blood and urine helps to detect any worrying signs early.
It’s vital to do regular blood tests because in some cases, the kidney disease is genetic. The sooner it’s picked up by your vet, the sooner you will be able to adjust your cat’s lifestyle accordingly.
Monitor your pet’s behaviour
Observing your cat’s behaviour throughout their life is paramount so that you notice straightaway whenever they do something out of the ordinary. By being attentive to the changes in your cat’s behaviour and making mental notes of it, you’ll be able to better gauge when a trip to the vet is needed, plus inform your vet to help them come to an accurate diagnosis.
With all these facts in your mind, it should be easier to determine if your kitty is fighting a kidney problem. If so far, so good, then all you need to do is to look after your cat’s basic needs, take them for regular vet visits, and pay close attention to their day-to-day behaviour. Lock in these steps and you can help to reduce the risk of acute or even chronic kidney disease.