How do I know if my dog’s liver is failing? Simple and Effective Tips

Causes of Liver Disease in Dogs

A dog develops liver disease when any of their livers functions are disrupted. Here are a few of the most common conditions that lead to liver disease in dogs:

  • Infectious hepatitis: Hepatitis is a general term that describes inflammation of the liver. Thankfully, vaccines can help prevent many of the infections that cause hepatitis.
  • Toxic hepatopathy or Hepatotoxicity: There are a number of liver toxins that can cause liver disease in dogs, according to the Merck Veterinary Manual.
  • Vacuolar (Endocrine) hepatopathy (VH): Cushings disease, thyroid disease and diabetes are the most common endocrine diseases that can affect your dogs liver.
  • Portosystemic shunts: When blood vessels bypass the liver, it can lead to an excess of toxins in the bloodstream and can cause liver disease.
  • Liver cancers: Liver cancer can originate in the liver tissue or can spread there from other parts of the body.
  • Inherited liver diseases: These include copper storage disease in Bedlington terriers and West Highland white terriers, among other breeds, and amyloidosis in shar-peis.
  • Idiopathic chronic hepatitis: This inflammatory condition may be autoimmune in origin. It may also be influenced by infectious diseases of the liver.
  • While it seems like theres an overwhelming number of possible causes for liver disease in dogs, most are preventable and all are treatable to some extent.

    If your dog has some symptoms of liver problems, your vet may ask you about their diet and medications. The vet may want to do blood tests and X-rays or an ultrasound to get a picture of what is going on with your dogs liver. They may also want to take a biopsy — remove a small tissue sample for testing.

    You can help your dog by catching liver disease early and making small changes before it becomes severe. Take them to the vet for their yearly exams and vaccinations (including one that protects against leptospirosis). Make sure your vet is aware of any drugs or supplements they may take. Be mindful of what you feed your dog. Fatty foods can hurt their liver. And dont let your dog roam free in areas where there may be poisonous plants or insects.

    The liver is an important organ for your dog. It helps with digestion and blood clotting, and it removes toxins from their system. If its not working right, it can make your companion sick. But liver disease can often be treated and managed.

    The Most Common Liver Disorders

    There are several different types of liver disorders that your dog could be affected by. Many of these disorders share similar symptoms, however, some do not. Thus, it’s always recommended that pet parents seek medical attention for their pets if they notice any of the signs listed above, so an accurate diagnosis can be made.

    Some of the most common liver issues in dogs include:

  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Liver cancer
  • Benign liver tumors
  • Hepatitis
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Leptospirosis
  • 11 Symptoms of Liver Problems in Dogs [7 Ways to Heal & 1 KEY Remedy]