Gout occurs when there is too much uric acid in the body. It crystallizes around joints and feels like broken glass – visible inflammation, terrible pains and lots of discomfort. There are more factors behind gout and genetics, kidney and liver disease are some of the most popular ones.
While quite common in people, this type of arthritis is not that popular in dogs. However, it can occur and it requires proper treatment. It is important to know that hard deposits of uric acid are often diagnosed as a bladder affection. Now, what else should you know about gout in dogs?
Signs that your dog might have gout
So, can dogs get gout? Absolutely, yet the affection is rare in canines. Certain breeds are more likely to get the disease, with dalmatians being the most exposed ones. German shepherds and Irish wolfhounds are also exposed to the affection.
Dalmatians in particular are more exposed because of their metabolism. Their genetics could be an issue, as these dogs cannot get rid of extra blood protein in a very efficient manner. Problems affect the urinary tract and a little attention to small details can help you identify early signs.
For example, an increased frequency to urinate could be an issue. If you can also spot blood in the urine, your dog obviously has a problem. The dog will experience a bit of discomfort when urinating. Sometimes, your furry friend will try to urinate, but nothing comes out.
Whether you notice all these symptoms or just one of them, you have to get in touch with a veterinarian straight away.
The treatment of gout in dogs
The more you know about the condition, the easier it becomes to implement a treatment. You need to know the causes, as well as the operating principles of gout in dogs. Uric acids can skyrocket if the dog suffers from a kidney related affection, for example – the incapability to get rid of waste products.
On the other hand, the Portosystemic shunt is also pretty common. It is a congenital disease and it involves blood getting shunted past the liver. No matter what the cause is, a vet’s investigation is mandatory. Shunt correction is an option, but it will cost. Most dog owners will probably try to manage the condition with medication.
A low protein diet works wonders, yet dogs require protein as well. Certain drugs to eliminate the uric acid might be prescribed by the vet too. For example, allopurinol is quite common for dalmatians, but it is critical to know that the drug is not authorized for dogs. In other words, you might need a consent form, as there is some risk involved.
Gout in dogs is different from gout in humans. Humans will end up with painful inflammation due to the crystals in their joints. Dogs on the other hand, will eliminate uric acid crystals through their urine. These crystals will scratch the bladder lining and cause inflammation. Discomfort will inevitably kick in as well.
Uric acid crystals can also clump and this is when problems may become severe. Such stones can get flushed down the urethra, but if they are too big, they will get stuck. The dog will no longer be able to urinate – such situations require emergency help, so do not delay it. Reach to the vet the moment you spot such issues.
Steps to handle gout in dogs
If you can spot any suspicious signs or symptoms in dogs, seeking professional help is mandatory. Here is how you might be able to overcome gout in your furry friend:
- Get to a veterinarian straight away – no delays whatsoever.
- Make sure the dog can heal in a comfortable manner.
- Take your dog outside to eliminate it as soon as it asks for it.
- Check the dog for calcium based deposits.
- Discuss the dog’s diet with the veterinarian.
- Give your dog the right medication.
In the end, gout in dogs is obviously different than gout in humans. Failing to pay attention to small details can cause severe aggravations and may even kill your dog, hence the necessity of reaching to a vet as soon as you notice the signs – do not try to treat your dog by ear, but discuss everything with the vet.
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