Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

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Canned Ice
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Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Canned Ice »

I took Buckley to the vet yesterday because he seemed to be experiencing UTI symptoms (straining to pee, leaking urine in his sleep, etc.) I was surprised when they weighed him. He had lost about 5 lb since his last visit in August. I knew he was skinny and I had upped his food to compensate. But I had no idea he had lost that much weight.

The vet ran the in-house urinalysis yesterday and he didn't see anything to suspect a UTI. He did say he couldn't completely rule out a kidney infection (if it is an infection, it's likely high in the urinary tract) but he thinks something more chronic is going on with the weight loss. He did see protein in his urine and some glucose. So I took him home and fasted him and they ran bloodwork this morning. His bloodwork showed he has a slightly elevated BUN level. (There was something else that was slightly low but I can't remember what it was.) Basically he said his bloodwork looked like that of a dog with *very* early stage kidney disease. (No signs of diabetes so that's been ruled out)

The vet said normally he wouldn't think much of it except that it's coupled with weight loss and some general urinary symptoms. He started him on Azodyl which is a probiotic supplement that has been shown in some lab tests to reduce BUN levels. He supposed to stay on that for a couple of weeks and they we'll repeat urinalysis and bloodwork. He did say to keep him on his higher protein grain free food though. I was so afraid I'd have to fight to keep Buckley off of prescription food. Given his history of dietary issues, the vet didn't want to mess with that.

I was not expecting this. Buckley is maybe 7 or 8 y/o best we can guess. It seems pretty young to be dealing with kidney disease. Is there anything else I should be looking out for symptom-wise? The vet said to keep with what I've been doing so if his bloodwork and/or weight does start to improve, we can pinpoint it so I don't want to jump in the any additional supplements right away but it's something I'll consider after we try the Azodyl. The weight loss is the most concerning thing to me right now.
Buckley - I own this mountain.
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Barb Wright
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Barb Wright »

:( Oh, sorry to hear about Buckley....surely since you are on it this early you'll be able do him a lot of good. You will want to read up on kidney disease problems and what you can do to help him. IMO here is the best info on the net

http://www.dogaware.com/health/kidney.html

follow all the links and you will probably be as well versed about KD as your vet. Knowledge is power, and it will help you make the right decisions :)

Lots of healing vibes headed your way for Buckley.
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13

Cindy
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Cindy »

Geez, you and Buckley haven't been able to catch a break!!! I'm certain Barb is the go to person so all I can do is send positive vibes in your direction. Please let us know how things continue to play out.
Kayla RIP 10/2/15, Pippa, and Layla
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Sooz
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Sooz »

Sending healing prayers Buckley's way.
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rtropeano
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by rtropeano »

Sending healing thoughts your way. Hope you get a handle on Buckley's issues quickly.
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Annie'sRebecca
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Annie'sRebecca »

Poor Buckley and you! Praying that it's just an infection and everything is normal when you go back in a couple of weeks.
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Annabelle
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Annabelle »

Us and the britt kids are sending Buckley healing thoughts
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Lisa
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Lisa »

No brilliant thoughts other than to reference the same webpage that Barb did. Here's hoping it's just an infection and the weight loss is just due to stress or an increase in activity or something. Good thoughts for you and Buckley!

From my own experiences, both Britty and Madi have tested with elevated BUN on blood tests, and while my vet has suggested that it might be early stages of kidney disease, she's also said that it's nothing to be concerned about yet. Madi went through a phase where she dropped a bunch of weight and had an elevated BUN...I upped her food intake just a bit, and started making sure that she had water available more often and that I was adding more water to her food. Her weight went back to normal and her BUN actually went down a bit. With both my girls, my vet suggested adding more moisture to their diets, but did not suggest dropping the protein levels on the food.

Some ideas that might help Buckley are to feed more frequent meals (3 or 4 per day) and add more moisture to his diet...either add in canned food or add water (or more water) to his dry food. If he can tolerate it, and you can find it, a high calorie canned food might be ideal. When I was feeding canned to an older foster dog, I think I found that Blue Buffalo Homestyle was fairly high in protein and calories compared to many other brands (at least, that's what I ended up feeding her...it was easy to get and she did well on it). Another option would be to supplement with a prepared raw diet in the mornings and kibble in the evenings. I like the Stella and Chewy's patties...when I buy them, I feed a patty in the AM and either a half cup or cup of kibble in the PM (depends on the dog).
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Canned Ice
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Canned Ice »

Thanks for the link, Barb! Tons of good info. I don't think his bloodwork was too alarming to the vet - mostly the numbers combined with the weight loss.

Lisa, the vet told me to provide him unlimited access to water. I have and he is going through several bowls a day. He can make it through the night (he's bursting when I take him out in the morning) but during the day, he's out every few hours. He's had several more accidents. I ended up getting some Huggies and lining them in one of his old belly bands we made when he was in a marking in the house point in his life. There's no way he can make it through the work day without an accident. I'm hoping it's just an infection and all of this is temporary.

I think I will be moving soon (provided the property manager comes though with some minor repairs) - to a house with a fenced yard. I can put in a dog door so Buckley can have as much water as he needs and unlimited access to the outside without the humiliation of Huggies.
Buckley - I own this mountain.
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adele
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by adele »

Poor old Buckley! Could it be that the weight loss is from all the stress he's been under? Poor guy. I hope the house and yard come through.. that'd be just great. I hope he feels better soon.
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AuntieMom
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by AuntieMom »

Please give Buckley a kiss and hug from me. Keep us posted, please.
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headtrip_honey
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by headtrip_honey »

Having lost two dogs to kidney related problems, I can completely sympathize with you right now. Hopefully you caught whatever it is early enough that you can stop it!

::good thoughts::
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Canned Ice
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by Canned Ice »

Buckley went back to the vet for his follow-up today. They repeated the urinalysis and his urine protein levels were half of what they were. He was supposed to have a repeat of bloodwork as well. This morning Buckley decided to help himself to some kibble I had forgotten to put away after I picked him up from the kennel. So they decided to skip the bloodwork, especially since his protein levels were down. The vet wants to try him on another three weeks of Azodyl to see if we can get the protein levels down more and his weight up. After he finishes this bottle of Azodyl, they'll repeat the urinalysis (and hopefullt) bloodwork.

They also discovered a surprise - Buckley has tapeworms. He hasn't had any flea infestations but the vet said all it takes is one bite to cause an infection. This is a new one - I've found exactly one flew on Buckley ever and it was after he left the dog park. I suppose fleas are a bigger problem here in Mississippi than they were in Virginia.
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michellep
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by michellep »

I hope Buckley is feeling better! Maybe the tapeworms caused the weight loss- definitely have to do year round flea and heart worm in the deep south, the fleas can get really bad if you don't stay on top of it- I ended up having to have my yard sprayed once :shock: Good Luck!
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AuntieMom
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Re: Weight loss and slightly elevated BUN

Post by AuntieMom »

I hope the Azodyl helps. Also glad Buckley helped you remember you had not put away kibble. :P
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