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Fatty Liver Disease in Dogs and Cats

Fatty Liver Disease in Dogs and Cats

Herbal nutrition to help address symptoms of Fatty Liver disease in dogs and cats.

The liver is a complex organ that interacts with most other organs in the body, including the intestinal tract, cardiovascular system, kidneys, and autonomic nervous system and herbal remedies provide support to the  liver and gallbladder, support liver metabolism, bile production and flow, hepatic circulation and immune function, kidney rehabilitation and support of the bladder and gall bladder.

 The liver has a variety of tasks responsible for building and breaking down fats, carbohydrates and proteins as well as storing vitamins, minerals, glycogen (a form of glucose) and triglycerides (the building blocks of fat). It plays a vital role in the production of red blood cells and produces factors important for the normal clotting of blood. It also supports immunity, and digestion by producing bile and is essential for detoxification of a variety of toxic compounds that your pet encounters daily. When your liver doesn't function properly, toxins will build up, digestion will be affected and there may be a shortage of essential substances such as glucose, vitamins and minerals.

Hepatic Lipidosisalso known as fatty liver disease, is a condition in which excessive fat accumulates in the liver cells, causing abnormal bile flow in the liver and reducing proper liver (hepatic) function.

A number of conditions can affect the liver, including bacterial infections, tumors, blockage of the bile ducts from the gall bladder, circulation disorders of the liver, viral diseases such as infectious canine hepatitis and a variety of toxins that may damage the cells of the liver.

Liver disease is the most common type of disease in cats, with Himalayan and Persian breeds at greater risk. It is especially common in overweight cats. Your cat or dog is at risk of developing this condition if he/she becomes anorexic (does not eat) for more than a few days. Cats stop eating for a multitude of reasons: they may dislike the food provided, they may be in pain, ill or might suffer from environmental stress or anxiety.

Purebred dogs such as Miniature Schnauzers, Yorkshire Terriers, Cairn Terriers, Maltese, Scottish Terriers, Pugs, Irish Wolfhounds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, German Shepherds and Poodles have a higher incidence of liver disease. Conversely, in cats, mixed breeds are more predisposed. 

The onset of the symptoms of liver disease can be quick (acute) or ongoing (chronic). 

Symptoms of fatty liver disease include:

Vomiting

Anorexia

Diarrhea

Stomach ulcers

Nervous signs

Fever

Blood clotting disorders

Jaundice (yellow gums and eyes)

Fluid build up in the abdomen

Excessive thirst and urination

Weight loss

Dementia

Seizures

Coma

The nervous signs may include circling, head pressing, aimless wandering, weakness, staggering gait, blindness, aggression, dementia and coma. Your vet may refer to these signs as hepatic encephalopathy.

These signs are due to the build up of toxins in your pet’s brain, especially ammonia which is normally broken down into harmless components by the liver. On blood tests, your pet may have too few red blood cells (anemia) and your vet will probably detect elevated liver enzymes.

The causes of liver disease include:

Viral infections

Bacterial infections

Toxins such as pesticides

Certain drugs such as corticosteroids

Anorexia in cats (causes Feline Hepatic Lipidosis)

Leptospirosis

Obstructions of the gall bladder

Diabetes

Cushings

Hyperthyroidism

Tumors, cancer

Other reasons animals stop eating related to hepatic lipidosis:

28% had inflammatory bowel disease

20% had a second type of liver disease (usually cholangiohepatitis)

14% had cancer

11% had pancreatitis

5% had social problems (new cat, new home, threatening other pet or person at home)

4% had some kind of respiratory disease

2% were diabetic

If your cat goes without food for more than 3 days, there may be an excessive build up of fat within the cells of the liver. This is referred to as lipidosis. This is the body’s normal response to a spell of anorexia but the effects on the liver can be devastating. The fat that builds up in the liver cells prevents bile from leaving the cells, which is toxic and causes damage to liver cells, resulting in liver disease and failure.

Lipidosis is considered as a cause or contributing cause of liver failure when a cat or dog that was once overweight loses weight too quickly. Often the owner is not aware that such a thing is dangerous and is pleased to see the obese cat trimming down. By the time the cat actually stops eating and is clearly sick, the disease is well underway and will require more aggressive support to reverse.

Herbal Nutrition - (listed in order of relevance and recommendation by holistic vets  - human grade meets/exceeds highest safety criteria for pets)

Herbal remedies may help provide natural and alternative therapies to help improve liver, pancreas & gallbladder health in cats and dogs; to help alleviate symptoms of liver disease, to help support, rehabilitate and repair proper liver function, metabolism, bile production and flow; to help normalize and regenerate liver cells, to help detoxify the liver, kidneys and gall bladder and to help support healthy immunity.

Hepa Protect – (learn more) supports proper liver function and metabolism, bile production and flow, rehabilitates the performance, health and repair of the liver, kidneys, bladder and gall bladder, rehabilitates and detoxifies the kidneys and liver; tones and balances the connective tissue of the liver, kidneys and bladder, normalizes liver enzyme levels, regulates kidney acid/alkaline levels, for all types of stones and gravel of the liver, kidneys, bladder and gallbladder, including oxalate and struvite crystals and stones; reduces uric acid, for gall bladder inflammation, gall stones and gallbladder infections, for renal colic and renal calculi; helps to protect red blood cell formation, useful in diseases such as ehrlichia, ehrlichiosis.

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; helps to treat urinary tract infections (bladder and kidney 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. This product has been proven to be 90% effective at addressing urinary tract infections, and all types of stones, gravel, calculi and crystals in dogs and cats.

Love Your Liver - (learn more) promotes the performance, health and repair of the liver, kidneys and bladder, facilitates rental and digestive excretions, provides protection and detoxification from insecticides, toxins, vaccinations, an inappropriate diet and an excess of food, relieves symptoms such as pressure, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting and flatulence, regulates kidney acid/alkaline levels, for hepatic lipidosis, Fatty Liver Disease (FLD),  Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS) and Feline cholangiohepatitis.

I’m Allergic to Needles – (learn more) is used for proper pancreatic support, health and function, charged with producing proper insulin levels, for all types of diabetes I and II, to reduce glucose levels in blood and for insulin resistance, to improve the glycemic index in pets with diabetes, to regulate metabolic stress, and maintain proper liver metabolism, circulation, bile production and flow, for hepatic immune function, useful in regulating excess weight and fatty deposits.

Conventional Remedies:

A diagnosis will be based on a history of not eating as well as the clinical symptoms of weight loss, jaundice and lethargy. Blood tests will confirm the diagnosis although additional tests such as an ultrasound or biopsy of the liver may be needed.

It is important to distinguish tests of liver damage (like enzymes) versus tests of liver function (like bile acids). The enzymes ALT and AST are normally held inside liver cells; when their presence is detected free in the bloodstream, this is an indicator of liver cell death. A liver can have damage without any decrease in its overall function.

Treatment is purely supportive with the aim of providing nutrition until your cat starts eating on its own again. If the cause for the anorexia can be determined this must be treated e.g. a course of antibiotics for an infection. It may be necessary to force feed a high calorie diet and your vet might need to put a feeding tube into your cat’s stomach. It may also be necessary to put your cat onto intravenous fluids.

Depending on the cause of the liver disease, treatment may or may not be possible.

Treatment options might include:

Intravenous fluids

Antibiotics

Laxatives

Blood transfusions

Corticosteroids

 

Ursodeoxycholic acid

 

Colchicine

 

Vitamin and mineral supplements

 

Force feeding a high calorie diet

 

Chemotherapy

 

 

 

 

 

 


XX

The liver is a complex organ that interacts with most other organs in the body, including the intestinal tract, cardiovascular system, kidneys, and autonomic nervous system and herbal remedies provide support to the  liver and gallbladder, support liver metabolism, bile production and flow, hepatic circulation and immune function, kidney rehabilitation and support of the bladder and gall bladder.

 

 

The liver has a variety of tasks responsible for building and breaking down fats, carbohydrates and proteins as well as storing vitamins, minerals, glycogen (a form of glucose) and triglycerides (the building blocks of fat). It plays a vital role in the production of red blood cells and produces factors important for the normal clotting of blood.

 

 

the liver is an essential part of the immune system; it assists in digestion by producing bile and is essential for detoxification of a variety of toxic compounds that your pet’s body system encounters every day.

 

 

When your liver doesn't function properly, toxins will build up, digestion will be affected and there may be a shortage of essential substances such as glucose, vitamins and minerals.

 

 

Liver disease, also known as hepatitis, is a broad term for describing a number of conditions affecting the liver. Liver disease may include bacterial infections, tumors, blockage of the bile ducts from the gall bladder, circulation disorders of the liver, viral diseases such as infectious canine hepatitis and a variety of toxins that may damage the cells of the liver.

 

 

Liver disease is the most common type of disease in cats. It is especially common in overweight cats. Your cat or dog is at risk of developing this condition if he/she becomes anorexic (does not eat) for more than a few days. Cats stop eating for a multitude of reasons: they may dislike the food provided, they may be in pain, ill or might suffer from environmental stress or anxiety.

 

 

All pets can succumb to liver disease but certain breeds are genetically predisposed, including mixed breeds, and pure breeds such as Persians and Himalayans.

 

 

Purebred dogs such as Miniature Schnauzers, Yorkshire Terriers, Cairn Terriers, Maltese, Scottish Terriers, Pugs, Irish Wolfhounds, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, German Shepherds and Poodles have a higher incidence of liver disease. Conversely, in cats, mixed breeds are more predisposed, although among the purebred cats, Persians and Himalayans do develop liver problems.

 

 

Your pet may be born with a liver disorder. The most common disorder of this type is known as a porto systemic shunt and is the condition where blood flow is diverted away from the liver. As a result, the liver cannot remove toxins from the blood and classic symptoms of liver disease will appear.

 

 

Young pets affected in this way will usually start showing symptoms between 6 months and 1 year of age.

 

 

Liver tumors tend to occur in older pets, with most animals with liver cancer being diagnosed after the age of 10 years.

 

 

The onset of the symptoms of liver disease may be very rapid in the case of a poisoning or may take some time to show if the liver is affected by a slow growing tumor.

 

 

Symptoms of liver disease might include:

 

 

Vomiting

 

 

Anorexia

 

 

Diarrhea

 

 

Stomach ulcers

 

 

Nervous signs

 

 

Fever

 

 

Blood clotting disorders

 

 

Jaundice (yellow gums and eyes)

 

 

Fluid build up in the abdomen

 

 

Excessive thirst and urination

 

 

Weight loss

 

 

Dementia

 

 

Seizures

 

 

Coma

 

 

Close

 

 

The nervous signs may include circling, head pressing, aimless wandering, weakness, staggering gait, blindness, aggression, dementia and coma. Your vet may refer to these signs as hepatic encephalopathy.

 

 

These signs are due to the build up of toxins in your pet’s brain, especially ammonia which is normally broken down into harmless components by the liver. On blood tests, your pet may have too few red blood cells (anemia) and your vet will probably detect elevated liver enzymes.

 

 

The causes of liver disease include:

 

 

Viral infections

 

 

Bacterial infections

 

 

Toxins such as pesticides

 

 

Certain drugs such as corticosteroids

 

 

Anorexia in cats (causes Feline Hepatic Lipidosis)

 

 

Leptospirosis

 

 

Obstructions of the gall bladder

 

 

Diabetes

 

 

Cushings

 

 

Hyperthyroidism

 

 

Tumors, cancer

 

 

Other reasons animals stop eating related to hepatic lipidosis:

 

 

28% had inflammatory bowel disease

 

 

20% had a second type of liver disease (usually cholangiohepatitis)

 

 

14% had cancer

 

 

11% had pancreatitis

 

 

5% had social problems (new cat, new home, threatening other pet or person at home)

 

 

4% had some kind of respiratory disease

 

 

2% were diabetic

 

 

If your cat goes without food for more than 3 days, there may be an excessive build up of fat within the cells of the liver. This is referred to as lipidosis. This is the body’s normal response to a spell of anorexia but the effects on the liver can be devastating. The fat that builds up in the liver cells prevents the bile produced in the liver cells from leaving the cells. This build up of bile is toxic and causes marked damage to the liver cells, resulting in liver disease and failure.

 

 

Lipidosis is considered as a cause or contributing cause of liver failure when a cat or dog that was once overweight loses weight too quickly. Often the owner is not aware that such a thing is dangerous and is pleased to see the obese cat trimming down. By the time the cat actually stops eating and is clearly sick, the disease is well underway and will require more aggressive support to reverse.

 

 

Herbal Remedies:

 

 

Herbal remedies provide natural and alternative therapies to alleviate symptoms of liver disease, to support, rehabilitate and repair proper liver function, metabolism, bile production and flow; to normalize and regenerate liver cells, to detoxify the liver, kidneys and gall bladder and support healthy immunity.

 

 

Hepa Protect – (learn more) supports proper liver function, metabolism, bile production and flow, rehabilitates the performance, health and repair of the liver, kidneys, bladder and gall bladder, detoxifies the kidneys and liver, tones and balances the connective tissue of the liver, kidneys and bladder, normalizes liver enzyme levels, regulates kidney acid/alkaline levels, for all types of stones and gravel of the liver, kidneys, bladder and gallbladder, reduces uric acid, for gall bladder inflammation, gall stones and gallbladder infections, for renal colic and renal calculi.

 

 

Stix & Stones – (learn more) promotes 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 oxalate, provides pH modulation, for urinary system disorders and pathologies and for hepatic insufficiency.

 

 

Love Your Liver - (learn more) promotes theperformance, health and repair of the liver, kidneys and bladder, facilitates rental and digestive excretions, provides protection and detoxification from insecticides, toxins, vaccinations, an inappropriate diet and an excess of food, relieves symptoms such as pressure, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting and flatulence, regulates kidney acid/alkaline levels, for hepatic lipidosis, Fatty Liver Disease (FLD),  Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD), Feline Urological Syndrome (FUS) and Feline cholangiohepatitis.

 

 

Related Products:

 

 

Natural homeopathic remedy improves liver, pancreas & gallbladder health in cats and dogs

 

 

I’m Allergic to Needles – (learn more) is used for proper pancreatic support, health and function, charged with producing proper insulin levels, for all types of diabetes I and II, to reduce glucose levels in blood and for insulin resistance, to improve the glycemic index in pets with diabetes, to regulate metabolic stress, and maintain proper liver metabolism, circulation, bile production and flow, for hepatic immune function, useful in regulating excess weight and fatty deposits.

 

 

Gland Candy - (learn more) contains healthy fatty Omega 3 acids used to support healthy body weight, used in the treatment of skin conditions and to promote healthy skin and coat, to support and tone the lymphatic system, to balance glandular activities including the thyroid, adrenal and pituitary glands, to support and maintain healthy thyroid function and to soothe the thyroid and endocrine system, for allergies, alopecia, allergic dermatitis, moist dermatitis (hot spots), to stimulate tissue repair and for all types of arthritis.

 

 

Conventional Remedies:

 

 

A diagnosis will be based on a history of not eating as well as the clinical symptoms of weight loss, jaundice and lethargy. Blood tests will confirm the diagnosis although additional tests such as an ultrasound or biopsy of the liver may be needed.

 

 

It is important to distinguish tests of liver damage (like enzymes) versus tests of liver function (like bile acids). The enzymes ALT and AST are normally held inside liver cells; when their presence is detected free in the bloodstream, this is an indicator of liver cell death. A liver can have damage without any decrease in its overall function.

 

 

Treatment is purely supportive with the aim of providing nutrition until your cat starts eating on its own again. If the cause for the anorexia can be determined this must be treated e.g. a course of antibiotics for an infection. It may be necessary to force feed a high calorie diet and your vet might need to put a feeding tube into your cat’s stomach. It may also be necessary to put your cat onto intravenous fluids.

 

 

Depending on the cause of the liver disease, treatment may or may not be possible.

 

 

Treatment options might include:

 

 

Intravenous fluids

 

 

Antibiotics

 

 

Laxatives

 

 

Blood transfusions

 

 

Corticosteroids

 

 

Ursodeoxycholic acid

 

 

Colchicine

 

 

Vitamin and mineral supplements

 

 

Force feeding a high calorie diet

 

 

Chemotherapy

 

 

Because the liver is such an important organ in your pet’s body, it is important that any treatment that is undertaken is done at an early stage of the disease process. The liver has a remarkable capacity for regeneration but care must be taken to not do further damage to the liver during the treatment process.

 

 

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