Kidneys play a vital role in the body by removing harmful wastes from the blood, helping to control blood pressure, and making hormones and enzymes. Not surprisingly, then, a host of serious health problems may arise when the kidneys aren’t functioning properly.
Chronic kidney disease has an insidious onset that becomes progressively worse. The first signs are usually that the pet begins drinking more and urinating more. This can be easy to miss, especially in a multi-animal or multi-litter box household.
When kidney disease develops, these functions don’t occur properly, resulting in illness and (frequently) further progression of the disease.
Common signs include:
- Appetite loss
- Increased drinking and urination
- Lethargy (tiredness)
- Weight loss
- Unkempt coat (due to decreased grooming)
- Back pain or abdominal pain (may be associated with acute kidney failure)
- Pale gums