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Dr. Drew
Dr. Drew, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16846
Experience:  Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
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My dog has crystals in her urine. My vet has put her on the

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My dog has crystals in her urine. My vet has put her on the KD dry food. She is now getting really fat. Is there any other food I can use that will be okay for her kidneys but has less fat content?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 6 years ago.
Hi, thanks for your question about Nellie. What symptoms has she been showing? What type of crystals were found? Has she ever had stones in her bladder?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
She has never had stones in her bladder. I took her in for her yearly and a urine sample was tested and came back positive for crystals. I am not sure what kind. We started her on CD and then switched to KD when the crystals were gone. She has been on KD for about two years. She started putting weight on so we switched her to GD, but she did lose weight. She is back on KD. I am looking for a food with less fat content that would be okay for her bladder and kidney health.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 6 years ago.
OK, thanks for the reply. So, she has never had any symptoms, such as blood in the urine, straining to urinate, or excess drinking or excess urination?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
No nothing like that. Just a routine check up including a urinalys.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 6 years ago.
OK, thanks. The presence of crystals in the urine does NOT, I repeat, does NOT indicate any disease or problem, unless other symptoms are present. Crystals can be a completely normal finding, 99% of the time. There are some rare types of crystals, which can indicate liver disease and other problems, but the common crystals (magnesium ammonium phosphate, and calcium oxalate), are not at all indicative of disease unless there are other problems present such as bloody urine, straining, etc.

As a result, if there are no signs of illness, Nellie absolutely does not need a special diet. Unfortunately many veterinarians are eager to get prescription diets off of their shelves and will look for any reason to prescribe one - but urinary crystals are one of the most over-treated problems out there, and unless there's bladder stones, or some other problem, there is no indication for using a prescription diet to treat crystals.
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