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Of all the kidney problems seen in pets, the most common is chronic kidney disease, where healthy kidney function slowly decreases over time, meaning affected pets might not seem sick until a great deal of kidney damage has occurred.

The cause of chronic kidney disease is largely unknown. Dogs and cats may be born with unhealthy kidneys, or they may develop kidney problems as they age.

Kidney disease is almost 7 times more common in cats than in dogs.

States with the highest prevalence of Kidney Disease

  1. Iowa
  2. Utah
  3. Colorado
  4. Nevada
  5. Kansas
  1. New Mexico
  2. Idaho
  3. Colorado
  4. Nevada
  5. Oregon


Because diseased kidneys impair critical processes elsewhere in the body, chronic kidney disease can manifest in several ways, including:

  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Bad breath

How to manage Kidney Disease

Because chronic kidney disease is progressive and permanent, early diagnosis is critical. Be sure to include the following in your pet's wellness routine:

  • Semiannual physical examinations
  • Regular blood and urine testing
  • At-home monitoring
  • With early diagnosis, veterinarian-prescribed treatments
  • With early diagnosis, special diets can also help improve length and quality of life

Also, prevent your pet from ingesting certain items that can cause kidney damage, including:

  • Many types of lilies
  • Grapes
  • Antifreeze

Learn more about Kidney Disease in cats and dogs at

At least 3 in 5 cat owners are not aware that vomiting, lethargy or weight loss can be associated with kidney disease in cats.
More than 2 in 3 dog owners aren't aware that vomiting, lethargy or weight loss can be associated with kidney disease in dogs.