Kidney disease is one of the most common conditions we see in geriatric cats.  As a pet owner, it’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of this potentially life-threatening condition. Fortunately, with early detection and treatment, cats can live longer and healthier lives. Kidney disease, also known as renal disease, occurs when the kidneys can’t effectively filter out waste products from the blood, balance electrolytes and maintain normal body hydration. This can be due to several different causes such as infections, genetics, or cancer. Symptoms of kidney disease in cats include increased thirst and urination, decreased appetite, weight loss, vomiting, bad breath, and lethargy. If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s important to take your cat to your veterinarian right away. 

The treatment for kidney disease in cats depends on the cause of the condition. If the underlying cause is an infection, your vet may recommend a urine culture to help identify the bacteria causing the infection and confirm the most appropriate antibiotic to treat it. If the condition is due to genetics, your vet may recommend dietary and lifestyle changes to help manage the disease. In some cases, supplements and medications may be prescribed to help control the symptoms as well. It’s also important to make sure your cat is getting the proper nutrition to help support their kidney health. Feeding your cat a high-quality, balanced diet that is low in phosphorus and sodium can help reduce the workload on their kidneys. Additionally, make sure your cat has access to plenty of fresh, clean water in multiple areas in your home. 

Kidney disease in cats can be a serious condition, but with early detection and proper treatment, cats with this condition can live longer, healthier lives. If you notice any of the symptoms listed above, take your cat to your veterinarian right away.