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Bladder Stones in Dogs and Cats / Urolithiasis in Dogs and Cats

Bladder Stones in Dogs and Cats / Urolithiasis in Dogs and Cats

Herbal nutrition to help prevent stone formation (including crystal and gravel) and which may help to prevent infections of the kidneys and urinary tract in dogs and cats. 

When your pet experiences kidney problems, nutritional support must be given to support and rehabilitate the kidneys as well as the liver, cardiovascular system and autonomic nervous system. Dog and cat bladder stones are formed usually as a result of poor diet or metabolic dysfunction. When dogs and cats have bladder stones, they typically display urinary problems, including urinating indoors, outside of the litter box or straining to urinate, etc.

Bladder stones are mineral deposits that gather in the urinary tract and crystallize over time. The crystals then build upon each other to create stones, causing urinary tract irritation, pain during urination and infection.

Eighty-five percent of stones formed occur in a dog or cats bladder, however, stones can also be found in the entire urinary tract, including the kidneys, the ureters and or urethra. 

When a stone that has passed into the urethra is large enough, it can cause blockage of the urethra. When this happens, the dog or cat cannot urinate which is a serious condition, as toxins and waste cannot be eliminated in the urine from the dog's body. This situation may require an emergency operation to remove the stones from the urethra.

There are common symptoms associated with bladder stones:

Frequent urination with small quantities

Urinating in inappropriate places

Bloody urine

Discomfort and straining while urinating

Dribbling urine (may indicate a partial blockage of the urethra)

A complete blockage of the urethra (your pet cannot urinate at all)

There are several different types of bladder stones, but the most common include: 

Struvite Bladder Stones

These stones are composed of magnesium, ammonium, and phosphate and form in urine that has a neutral or alkaline pH level. They occur more commonly in female dogs and cats.

Calcium Oxalate Bladder Stones

These stones are found in certain breeds of dogs and cats as a result of a hereditary condition. These animals lack nephrocalcin, a calcium-binding glycoprotein, which inhibits the development of calcium oxalate crystals in the urinary tract.

Animals with Cushing's disease are predisposed to calcium oxalate bladder stone formation, due to elevated calcium levels in their urine.

Uric Acid Bladder Stones

These stones are formed almost exclusively in Dalmatians (about 80% of dogs with uric acid stones are Dalmatians) because of the inability of their livers to absorb uric acid. Two other breeds that can be genetically predisposed to uric acid bladder stones are Bulldogs and Russian Terriers.

Uric acid bladder stone formation can also be caused by a liver shunt. Have your vet check your dog or cat for the presence of urate crystals (which lead to uric acid stone formation), especially if your dog has been diagnosed with a liver shunt.

Common causes of bladder stones include: 

Diet: Diets that are high in protein and certain minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, may increase the chances of the forming of bladder stones.

Age: Older pets are more prone to develop bladder stones.

Genetics: Some dogs and cat breeds are more susceptible to bladder stone formation than others. Small dogs, such as the Pug, Pekingese, Yorkshire terrier, Beagle, Dachshund, Welsh corgi, Miniature Schnauzer, Bulldog, Cocker Spaniel and Dalmations. Dalmatians tend to have uric acid bladder stones.

Exposure to Cadmium: Studies have found that cadmium exposure increases the risk of formation of bladder stones in dogs. For domestic pets such as dogs and cats, cigarette smoke is the most common source of cadmium exposure.

Bacterial Infections: Bacterial infections of the bladder can also lead to the formation of struvite bladder stones.

Lack of Exercise: Dogs and cats that do not get adequate exercise who do not get out enough to eliminate waste several times a day are also prone to develop bladder stones.

Herbal Nutrition:

Herbal remedies are effective in the holistic treatment of bladder infections, for all types of stones and other urinary related problems due to anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties, to reduce urinary tract infection, to reduce inflammation and strengthen the immune system, for the treatment of severe cystitis, urine retention that may occur with prostate problems, symptoms of burning urine, to reduce inflammation and strengthen the immune system.

Stix & Stones – (learn more) promotes improved kidney function, helps to break up kidney, liver, gallbladder and bladder stones and gravel (active stones, crystals and as a preventative), helps to safely remove stones from the body; treats urinary infections, for kidney and liver disease, tones and balances kidney, liver, intestine, pancreas, gall bladder function and health, reduces uric acid levels in urine, increases urination, blocks the formation of calcium crystals such as calcium oxalate and prevents them from entering kidney and bladder cells, provides pH modulation, for urinary system disorders and pathologies and for hepatic insufficiency.

Break It Up  (learn more) eliminates liver, kidney, bladder and gall stones, crystals, grains and gravel (calcium oxalate, struvite, uric acid, cystine, calcium phosphate and silica stones ) with less pain and safely removes them from the body; for bladder and kidney infections and diseases, balances and normalizes liver enzyme levels, reduces uric acid and increases urination, for cystitis and prostatitis, infectious hepatitis and leptospirosis, Fatty Liver Disease, (hepatic lipidosis), Feline cholangiohepatitis, Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS), Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Infection (FIV), Leaky Gut Syndrome, Intestinal Dysbiosis and Intestinal Hypermerability.

Yummy Tummy  (learn more) promotes Probiotic digestive, urinary, bladder and gall bladder support, for all types of digestive disorders, promotes proper digestion and assimilation of nutrients, for bladder (cystitis) and kidney (pyelonephritis) infections, for urine leakage and urinary incontinence, as a natural, plant-based steroid alternative, provides important support for cramping, pain, discomfort, Gastroenteritis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Inflammatory Bowel Disorder (IBD), prostate inflammation, BHP, prostatitis, Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urologic Syndrome (FUS) and for Candida albicans.

Tinkle Tonic  (learn more) treats prostate disorders, supports urinary tract and prostate health and reduces prostrate symptoms including Prostatitis and Benign Hyperplasia Prostate disease (BHP), promotes prostate gland health, a healthy bladder, urinary tract and bowel movements, reduces swollen and enlarged prostrate glands, promotes strong and healthy urine flow, relieves pain, discomfort and difficulty when urinating; for incomplete urination, increased frequency of urination or reduction in the volume of urine, relieves painful and strained defecation, increases circulation and strengthens the immune system.

Other helpful suggestions: 

Ensure that your pet always has plenty of fresh, clean water

If pet does not drink a lot of water, give him additional fluids; add water to food. 

If your pet stays indoors, let him out every few hours to urinate.

Encourage your pet to drink water during a bladder infection as it is essential that the unwanted toxins are flushed out

Boost your pet’s immune system with immune system supplements

Feed your pet natural, chemical free food as commercial foods increase their risk of infection and weakens the immune system

If you do feed your pet commercial, processed foods, use a prescription diet prescribed by your vet

Walk your dog at least twice a day to increase the frequency of urination

If have an indoor cat, check that his litter box is clean and accessible

Line the litter tray with newspaper and use about a cup of litter at a time, changing it each time it has been used.

Conventional Remedies:

Depending on the type, size, number, and location of the stones, treatment may be different. For example, if the stones are in the urethra or the ureters, surgery is necessary since urinary obstructions can lead to kidney shut down and death.

However, if the stones are in the bladder and they are struvite stones, there are other choices. For example, the stones can be eliminated by feeding your dog a special diet (low in calcium, magnesium and protein) together with dissolving agents in it. These agents will eliminate the stones by dissolving them and causing them to pass through your dog's system.

For dogs with uric acid stones, a diet that is low in purines may be recommended. Purines are found primarily in animal proteins and are metabolized into uric acid in the body.

Purine-rich foods include organ meats (e.g. liver, kidneys), seafood, and legumes.

Calcium oxalate stones cannot be dissolved and the only way to remove them is by surgery, after which supplements may be needed to prevent recurrence.






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