What are the Symptoms of Kidney Disease in Dogs


Kidneys are vital organs that help maintain fluid balance in the body and purify the blood of waste substances in dogs. Kidney disease affects the functionality of the kidneys. It is also known as renal disease. This condition is classified into two types – chronic and acute. Want to learn more about what are the symptoms of kidney disease in dogs? Read on…

Acute kidney failure

This condition has a sudden onset and progresses rapidly. In some cases, doctors can treat and cure it if they detect it early. Other complications like toxin ingestion or cancer often cause acute kidney failure.

What are the symptoms of kidney disease in dogs?

Chronic kidney failure

This condition is irreversible and progresses slowly over time. Mostly the symptoms appear after considerable damage has already been done to the kidneys. If detected early, it may be possible to slow the development of the disease. Chronic kidney failure is caused primarily due to poor functioning of kidneys.

Other causes of kidney failure

  • Genetic anomaly is a factor in certain dog breeds
  • Older dogs are more prone to renal problems
  • Infections
  • Certain medications
  • Injury
  • Chemicals
  • Lyme disease caused by ticks
  • Heart condition

Symptoms of kidney disease

Increased thirst

Your dog may be drinking more than usual. You may notice this when you have to refill their bowl more frequently than before.

Frequent urination

Your dog may be urinating more often, because of the loss of functionality of their kidneys to retain water. If you notice that your well behaved dog is having accidents and soiling home more frequently, it has to be taken to the vet’s notice.

Difficulty in urination

If you notice a decrease in the frequency of urination, then your dog may be suffering from kidney problem and you must seek help immediately.

Loss of appetite

Failure of kidney functioning can lead to the development of toxins in their bodies, causing nausea and loss of appetite.

Inactivity, dull

If you notice your dog is being less active and sleeping often, along with any of the above mentioned symptoms, it could be an indication of kidney disease.


Weight loss combined with diarrhoea can be a serious cause for concern.

Mouth problems

Bad breath and paleness in gums may be a sign of kidney issue. The dog may also develop mouth ulcers. You may notice that the dog is sensitive to touch at mouth.

Dull skin

The coat may appear dry and dull. Your dog also appears to be weak.  

You must keep in mind that these symptoms may also be due to other less severe problems. It is better to be on the look out for symptoms that tell if your dog is sick, so that you can get them diagnosed early and provide early treatment if kidney problem is identified.


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