Stabilizing Your Pet
Find a veterinarian who has a good track record treating pets suffering from crf (ask around chances are a friend or neighbor has or had a crf pet). Don’t be shy about “interviewing” a few vets before you decide on the one that is right for you and your pet. An open mind and a willingness to try a variety of treatments with the accompanying knowledge of (or at the very least, curiosity to learn) cutting edge research that might be beneficial to your pets treatment would be the qualities that should recommend him or her to you.
You can play a major role in your pets treatment. Information is the key. If you understand how the disease manifests itself and how and why it progresses, then you can take the necessary steps to protect your pet. My site has some simple to understand explanations about the basics of crf in the CRF ? section and a slightly more complex biochemical description of the causes and disturbances associated with the disease in the Astro’s CRF Oil section. Take the time to read them, and should you want a deeper understanding, the links section will supply some good resources.
Your pet needs to be hydrated. There are two reasons for this. 1) Chances are your pet is dehydrated (the vet will probably administer fluids intravenously at the time of first consultation and diagnosis). 2) Your pet’s system is full of toxins that its kidneys could not adequately eliminate. To help the kidneys clean out these toxins your pet needs more water in its system than it can actually consume because the kidneys are no longer efficient at concentrating urine.
Discuss Subcutaneous hydration or sub-Q’s with your vet. Sub-Q’s are salty fluids that are injected under the skin of your pet ( your vet will supply you with the fluid bag and drip as well as the needles) that can be administered at home. This is less stressful for your pet and much less expensive than having the vet administer I.V.’s a couple of times a week. Have your vet explain and preferably demonstrate the proper technique for administering sub-Q’s. I have also supplied a link to an excellent site that shows you the procedure with step by step photos.
In most cases you will need to administer sub-Q’s every couple of days but its best to discuss a schedule and the amounts with your vet, especially if your pet is suffering from any other conditions such as heart disease or high blood pressure.
The most important thing to remember is that sub-Q’s should be discontinued once your pet has stabilized. Prolonged administration will overburden the remaining nephrons and result in more kidney damage.
If your pet is nauseous and has difficulty eating and keeping its food down, talk to your vet about supplementing the sub-Q’s with glucose until your pet is feeling better and can resume eating normally. The glucose will help your pet keep up its energy. A good remedy for nausea is freshly ground ginger mixed into you pets food (no too much, experiment with the quantity that is palatable to your pet). Whiskas milk flavored cat treats seam to be well tolerated during bouts of nausea. Try these steps before resorting to expensive drugs who’s byproducts have to also be eliminated by already overburdened kidneys.
Experience and research has taught me that lowering a pet’s intake of protein is a mistake that should be avoided. Renal diets that are low in phosphorus are definitely recommended but can be hard to find. If you have the time and wish to put in the extra effort, freshly prepared food is the best way to go. You do have to follow some recipe as there are certain essential nutrients that must be incorporated into pet diets (cats and dogs have different nutritional needs). I have supplied some useful links that provide a variety of recipes and your vet might also have a few, so ask.
Start your pet on Astro’s CRF Oil as soon as possible. It will restore to normal many biochemical imbalances that are causing your pet acute and chronic distress. You will probably also find that it will reduce or eliminate the need for expensive drugs to control secondary symptoms associated with crf.
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