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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 15718
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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My 11 year old shih tzu was diagnosed with chronic kidney

Customer Question

Hello, my 11 year old shih tzu was diagnosed with chronic kidney failure last Thursday. Symptoms were urinating in the house, weight loss and trembling occasionally. Following the vet's recommendations I immediately switched her to a k/d diet with a supplement Aminavast. She received subq fluids 3 days. Today I took her in to see if there were any improvements and her BUN dropped from 135 to 84.7 and Creatine dropped from 3.1 to 2.3. The vet is strongly requesting that I leave her for hospitalization/IV fluids for about three days. Since the subq and diet has helped in so little time, I am reluctant to do so. She is a very nervous old dog and I feel leaving her in a cage at the vets all day will do more harm than good. They are also recommending that I take her to another vets to take her blood pressure (they do not have a machine). She is still eating/drinking the same (well). Am I doing her harm by not hospitalizing her for IV fluids?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

First, I would note that it would be ideal to have her blood pressure checked. High blood pressure is often a side effect of kidney disease and best treated if present (as it can cause dizziness, headaches, and even sudden blindness, etc). So, that would be one step we'd certainly want to take.

Otherwise, in regards ***** ***** main question, I have to say that having her diuresed with IV fluids would be ideal for Liming. This is because we can give larger volumes of fluid in a shorter space of time with IV fluids. This will then let her vet flush more kidney toxins out for her then more conservative options like subq fluids. In essence it is like a reboot, it clears what excess urea/creatnine we can to help reduce her signs and get her feeling better.

Though if that isn't an option (though you could consider trying her for an afternoon to see how she goes, and stop at any time of they report she is stressed or she seems so when you visit) and she is otherwise fairly well in herself, then subcutaneous fluids should be continued daily They are slower acting (since we give less per time) and won't tend to drop the BUN/creatinine as quickly; but can still be of benefit as you have seen. And this could be a very good alternative if she cannot be hospitalized. In fact, you could speak to your vet about training you to give these daily. You can watch a video on how to (HERE) and discuss this as a daily or few times weekly option alongside her supplement to help at least keep her levels stable and keep her comfortable.

Overall, you are not causing her harm with your decision, only preventing her vet from getting her levels down quickly to give her the best change of management. Though if IV fluids isn't a viable treatment option for you, then continued +/- home based subcutaneous fluids would be an alternative that could be of benefit here.

Please take care,

Dr. B.


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