Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry to hear that your fellow has been diagnosed with CRF (chronic renal failure). I understand that you are looking for ways to improve his quality of life. I do want you to understand that this is not something we can cure or reverse, but we can support his body to try to slow progression of the disease and minimize any further damage to his kidneys.His prognosis will depend upon several things including the cause (toxins or infections causing acute failure tend to be more responsive and lead to a better long term prognosis if the dog responds to therapy), his degree of failure (mildly elevated enzymes have a better long term prognosis then very high values), whether he is still eating or not (dogs that don't eat have a much poorer prognosis) and his response to therapy. Other complicating factors are if he has hypertension (high blood pressure) and whether he is spilling protein in his urine (which indicates more serious disease).I'm not sure where he is in his disease process. Intravenous fluids are the fastest way to flush out renal toxins. Dogs with acute failure on top of chronic failure whose values come down into the normal range, or close to it, with fluid therapy, are eating, and don't have large amounts of protein being spilled into their urine have the best prognosis. It may help you to look at this website which explains how kidney failure is staged in cats and dogs. The higher the stage the more severe failure is present and the more guarded his prognosis is: http://www.iris-kidney.com/pdf/IRIS2009_Staging_CKD.pdfThis may help you ask your veterinarian the right questions that will allow you a reasonable estimate of his prognosis and what things are needed to help him feel better, longer.Long term therapy for this disease is subcutaneous fluid therapy at home if needed to keep the enzyme levels down, proper diet (diets with high quality but restricted levels of protein like Hills k/d,Hills g/d or Purina Veterinary Diets n/f), medication to control hypertension and protein loss if present (benazepril or enalapril), phosphate binders if high phosphorus levels are present, and potassium supplements if his levels remain low. Supplements such as Azodyl to change gut bacteria to help decrease urea in the gut which would be absorbed into the blood, epakitin to decrease phosphorus levels and omega 3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation are commonly used as well.The supplement that you mention, astro's CRF oil, has omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin E as well as some other ingredients that are not proven to help with kidney function. I think that you would be better off buying a high quality omega 3 fatty acid supplement like 3V Caps or Derm Caps and using those.If his appetite is off you can give an acid reducers to try and settle his stomach
and improve his appetite. Either:1) Pepcid-ac (famotidine
) at one 10mg tablet per 20 to 40 pounds of body weight every 12 hours.OR2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at one 10mg tablet per 20 to 40 pounds of body weight every 24 hours.These medications are quite safe and can be used for several days if necessary or for as long as necessary.Best of luck with your boy, please let me know if you have any further questions.