In September 2015, at 11 years old, Kaya was diagnosed with Renal Failure. We are treating her with a natural home made Kidney diet and supplements, as an alternative to commercial dog foods prescribed by most veterinarians (Hill’s Science Diet Prescription Kidney Care k/d, Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets NF Kidney Function Formula, or Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Renal Support A).
At 14 years old Kaya is still doing great, so we’d like to share what has worked to keep her going strong. We hope that other dogs who have been diagnosed with Renal Failure will be inspired to try a natural approach to treatment, after reading her story.
KAYA is an EXCEPTIONAL ATHLETE.
Kaya is a Border Collie x Rat Terrier mix that I adopted from a Rat Terrier rescue group in Nebraska when she was 2 months old, in February 2004. I went to a rescue to help a friend chose between two puppies that were needing homes. After my friend chose one, I couldn’t leave the other puppy there, so I took her home that day. BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE! Trust in fate.
She was my second dog as an adult, and she introduced me to the world of dog sports because she was amazing at EVERYTHING she tried!
Since then, she has become probably the only dog in the world to become a Finalist & Champion in four different athletic sports – Dock Diving, Frisbee, Agility, and Flyball.
CHAMPION AND FINALIST IN DOG SPORTS
- 2006 USDAA / Cynosports World Games: Dog Agility Steeplechase, Finalist
- 2008 Cynosports World Games: NAFA Flyball, Bronze Medalist
- 2009 CanAm Championships; NAFA Flyball Multibreed Finalist, 5th Place
- 2010 NAFA Flyball HOBBES 100,000 points (still is in the top-10 Flyball dogs of all time)
- 2014 Skyhoundz World Canine Disc Championship: Microdog Distance, World Champion
- 2015 AKC National Championships: NADD Dock Diving, National Champion
Just 2 months AFTER she was diagnosed with Renal Failure, at the AKC National Championships, she WON the lap dog dock diving and became the 2015 National Champion. At almost 12 years old, what a girl!
Raised GRAIN-FREE & occasional RAW.
Kaya has always been fed a grain-free diet. Normally she was fed a high quality kibble, such as Only Natural Pet, Orijen, Acana, Fromm, Petcurean, and Earthborn. She also occasionally was fed raw, we bought frozen pre-mixes which include the veggies, and she was given raw knuckle bones, chicken drumsticks and wings, necks, etc. Supplements throughout her life were salmon oil, chondroitin, glucosamine, probiotics and raw goats milk.
Our IDEAL KIDNEY DISEASE DIET:
After diagnosis, and several days scouring the internet for information, Kaya’s diet has been modified to the following. We’ve been following this diet for over 2 years, it’s based on low phosphorus foods with liquids and supplements for kidney health.
LIQUIDS (Get them to drink often!)
- Fresh water available at all times (filtered or bottled water preferred)
- Answers Fermented Additions – Either Raw Goats Milk or their Fermented Fish Stock
- Raw Eggs, with shell (Organic pasture raised preferred)
- Green Tripe (Frozen by Blue Ridge Beef, or freeze dried K9 Naturals New Zealand Grass-fed Lamb Green Tripe)
- Sardines, occasional (Trader Joes Wild Caught Unsalted Sardines in Spring Water)
- Bone Broth, daily (Organic free-range chicken or beef, or Bone Broth Protein Powder)
- Kindly – Honest Kitchen Grain Free Veggie Base Mix (Carrots, Flax, Peas, Celery, Coconut)
- low phosphorus raw veggies & fruits are: Apple, Cucumber, Cabbage, Celery
- Azodyl – Renal support w/ Probiotics, Prebiotic, Magnesium and Psyllium husk for detox.
- Benazepril – Prescribed for her Heart Murmur, but it’s als0 an ACE Inhibitor proven to aid in renal (kidney) repair.
- Garden of Life Primal Defense HSO Probiotic
- Ground Eggshells (A Phosphorus Binder, you can also buy as a pill: “Eggshell Calcium”)
These are important for all our dogs…not Kidney specific:
- Omega 3s (Krill Oil is the best, with Astaxanthin)
- InClover Connectin Joint supplement (Glucosamine, Chondroitin, Hyaluronic Acid, Yucca & more)
- Cetyl-M (arthritis preventative with Cetyl Myristoleate, Resveratrol and Blue Green Algae)
- Spirulina, Chlorella
- Vitamin C (preferably Ester-C)
Bloodwork & Chemistry Lab Reports
Some of Kaya’s bloodwork numbers may be of interest to some of you, to compare against your own dog’s values. The main numbers that are important to note in Renal Failure is the BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen) and CREA (Blood Creatinine Level), and the ratio of the two.
|Normal:||7 – 27||0.5 – 1.8|
|05/16/13||15 mg/dL||1.3 md/dL||12|
|09/21/15||39 mg/dL||2.8 mg/dL||14|
|9/21/15 – IV Treatment|
|09/22/15||12 mg/dL||1.8 mg/dL||7|
|05/04/16||51 mg/dL||3.2 mg/dL||16|
|06/01/16||50 mg/dL||3.3 mg/dL||15|
|6/2/16 – IV Treatment|
|06/02/16||30 mg/dL||3.2 mg/dL||9|
Twice she has been treated with a day at the vet on IV fluids including electrolytes and Vitamin B, both times reduced her BUN and CREA levels. We do have emergency fluids on hand in case Kaya is ever having a bad day and needs them, but so far we have not had to administer them.
As of February 2018 she’s 14 years old and still doing great!
Update: Quite suddenly in early July 2018 (14.5 yrs old) Kaya started going downhill.
7/11/18 her BUN was 90.3 mmol/L (1,627 mg/dl) and Creatinine was 805 umol/L (9.1 mg/dL) with a Ratio of 112. She received IV treatments overnight and was put on some new medications including antibiotics for a urinary tract infection. They found lung nodules in an xray which were suspicious of lung cancer but we opted to not pursue cancer treatment. She continued to not feel well, eventually would not eat, so we made the impossible decision to let her go July 24, 2018, at 14.5 years old.
Kaya was one a trillion, we are forever grateful to have joined her on her incredible journey.