Feline Kidney Management with Azodyl

Azodyl is a newer drug on the market meant to help slow down the progression of kidney damage in cats. When it is noticed a cat has azotemia, non-protein substances in the blood, an Azodyl treatment will commence. This drug can be used for kidney management when the problems are acute or chronic. 

Kidney Disease Explained

Healthy kidneys remove toxins from a cat's blood and help maintain healthy levels of water, potassium, calcium, phosphorus and sodium in his body. The waste products primarily filtered are urea and creatinine. A cat's kidneys also help regulate his blood pressure and makes erythropoietin, which helps bone marrow make new red blood cells. A cat whose kidneys are no longer able to effectively filter waste from the body is considered to have kidney disease. The lack of functioning kidneys can cause a cat to virtually be poisoned by the toxins his body is unable to filter. As a result, a cat can also become anemic, have a severe imbalance of electrolytes, problems with his blood pressure and have renal failure.

Signs of kidney disease in a cat include an increase in thirst and urination. A cat may also eat less, have nausea, have a coat that looks unhealthy, and lose weight. Symptoms do not typically appear until only 30% of renal function is left, so it is vital that pet owners recognize the signs of illness and seek veterinary assistance. Other symptoms of kidney disease include gagging, drooling, constipation, sensitivity to sounds, the smell of ammonia coming from the cat, and pica. 

Feline Kidney Management with Azodyl  

Azodyl was put on the market in 2006 for veterinary use to treat kidney disease. This medication is technically a nutritional supplement and contains three naturally-occurring bacteria (probiotics) called Kibow Biotic that acts like a natural form of dialysis. The bacteria seek toxins in a cat's bowel and metabolize them. The toxins and bacteria are then eliminated in a cat's feces. Essentially, Azodyl helps slow down the build-up of toxins in a cat's body so damage to the kidneys is better prevented or delayed.

Azodyl is made so its contents are released in a cat's intestines rather than in the stomach. Because of this, cats need to be given the full capsule of medicine as it cannot be split. If a cat has troubles swallowing the entire capsule because of its size, the capsule can be opened and mixed with a small amount of canned cat food an hour before a cat's regular meal time.

Even though the use of Azodyl is considered to be very safe, a veterinarian will instruct a pet owner to not give a cat antibiotics and Azodyl at the same time. They should be given about three hours apart. Because of the live bacteria the medication contains, Azodyl needs to be kept in the refrigerator.

Kidney management in a cat can be assisted with good nutrition and the use of supplements, like Azodyl, that help eliminate dangerous toxins. One should consult a veterinarian if her cat has kidney disease to see if Azodyl is an appropriate treatment option for her feline.