What does it mean when a dog’s protein levels are high? Get Your Pet Thinking

Diagnosis of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

As with most appointments, the doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination of your dog and ask that you report the onset and extent of any symptoms, as well as any medical history. The most important diagnostic tool will be a urinalysis in order to confirm the presence of elevated protein in your dog’s urine. This test will also include sediment examination in order to identify the presence of any crystals or stones. The urine may be cultured in order to identify specific bacteria that may be causing infection if urinary tract infection is a suspected cause. The concentration of your dog’s urine will be measured, and can indicate the kidney’s ability or inability to correctly process urine, which may indicate kidney failure.

A blood sample will also be analyzed for a chemical blood profile, which will measure electrolyte levels in your dog’s blood as well as elevated levels of creatinine and blood urea nitrogen, all of which will point to chronic kidney disease caused by the glomerular disease. Your dog’s blood pressure may be measured via an inflatable cuff to determine if he is suffering from hypertension. A complete blood count will also be taken in order to measure red and white blood cell and platelet counts and may indicate anemia, another indicator of kidney disease.

Further, x-ray and ultrasound imaging can be utilized in order to observe the size and shape of your dog’s kidney, if kidney failure is suspected. A kidney biopsy may be necessary in the case of glomerular disease causing kidney failure.

Symptoms of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Excess protein in the urine is a symptom of an underlying cause. Additional symptoms that accompany excess protein in the urine depend upon the cause, as discussed below.

Treatment of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Specific treatment will depend upon your dog’s diagnosis. In severe cases, your dog may need to undergo stabilization treatment for dehydration, which will consist of IV fluids and medications. Glomerular disease will be treated through a combination of medications and prescription diets. In the case of inflamed kidneys and urinary tract infections, antibiotics will likely be prescribed. High blood pressure is often treated through a calcium channel blocker or beta-blocker and the possibly the recommendation of a low-sodium diet.

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