Beating kidney problems in Dachshunds

Last August about a week before leaving on our 2-week overseas vacation, my husband and I noticed that something was not right with our oldest dachshund Gary (8-years-old at the time). He was listless, hobbling around and requesting many more trips to go out to the bathroom than usual.

Not wanting to leave town with him under the weather, we took him into our vet who agreed that something was not right. He ran a series of tests on Gary and found that he had kidney stones, or Urolithiasis which means:

Excessive crystals (urinary stones or bladder or kidney stones) that form in the urinary tract or kidney, bladder or urethra, blocking the flow of urine. The
crystals or stones irritate the lining of the urinary tract. They cause blood in
the urine and pain and in severe cases make urination impossible for the
Dachshund (source: Dog Adoption and Training Guide).

After a very expensive emergency surgery the doctor extracted a stone the size of a grape. When you think of how big a dachshund’s bladder is, it makes a lot of sense as to why Gary was not feeling well. To save your dog from a lot of pain, and you from a lot of worry and money spent, here are some signs of urinary tract or kidney problems:

  • frequent trips to the “bathroom”
  • blood in urine
  • change in demeanor
  • pain walking, moving or urinating
  • small amounts of urination or “dribbling”
  • vomiting
  • weakness

To prevent future kidney or urinary tract problems, our vet recommended putting Gary on prescription food, low in minerals and protein. He said that if we were out of the food or couldn’t always afford the prescription diet, we should sprinkle salt on his regular food to encourage him to drink water more frequently.

Smaller breed dogs are more susceptible to kidney and urinary problems, so it is important to keep the following in mind when attempting to prevent new or reoccurring problems:

  • always have plenty of clean water available
  • give your dog plenty of exercise
  • do not feed table scraps
  • avoid food high in minerals, particularly calcium and magnesium; and depending on your dog’s problem, protein in some cases
  • feed your dog foods high in fiber
  • if your dog is confined indoors during the day, be sure he has the chance to go out at least three times throughout the day when you are at home
  • look into dog foods labeled to prevent bladder and kidney problems
  • schedule regular urinalysis tests for dogs with a history of problems

As always, consult your vet for advice regarding the best course of action for your Dachshund.

(Additional source:

3 thoughts on “Beating kidney problems in Dachshunds

  1. Deidre Lee

    M y mini-doxie had blood in his urine…I took him to an emergency vet becaue my regular vet was closed for the day.
    My little guy had back surgery several years ago and is crippled in his rear..he has a serious skin poblem that I am keeping under control…the vet we saw yesterday told me he has may blood problems, kidney problems, UTI and a large kidney stone. He wanted me to leave him there for surgery and told me the operation was very expensive – $10,000….I told him I do not have that kind of money any longer and asked how I paid fo the $6,000 back sugery and i told him my daughter…so he suggested I call her and tell her I need 1/2 before the surgery, 1/2 at release day. I love this little dog more than i can say and would do anything to help him, but he has other problems that i think make the surgery dangerou, and i knw his quality of life will never improve. The vet was clearly annoyed and excused himself saying he had another emergency. I told his young assistant I wanted antibiotics and something to ease any pain. I was waiting in the outer room with my friend and speaking with with the assistant when he came out, told the assistant to “tell her to give him on pill tday…” and walked away, cleary very annoyed wth me – my friend was shocked at his attitude. I will als menton he never acknlwldge my little dog, spoke not a word to him..I told the assistant that a vet who does not talk to the pet has no true love for animals – she explained he mainly treats cows, bulls horses, etc. and I said he should always have kindness to evey animal. My previous vey who sadly died a year ago treated the great cats in Africa, elephants, zebra, and was the vet for the Central Park Zoo in New York as well as the Bronx Zoo…he hardly spoke with the humans as he whole interst was the animls he cared for. Not only am I upset aout my beloved little fellow but i despise the vet who clrearly is there fo the money and the pet is of no cosquence to him other than the means of getting money.

  2. Sherry

    It saddens me to hear that there are doctors preying on our emotions and making our beloved pets the victims, the same way that some doctors do to us when our loved ones are gravely ill. I have been a nurse for nearly 34 yrs and have seen some of the worst come out of humanity because of greed. I am sorry that this happened to you. I just wanted to know if your little doxie got some proper treatment and if it was successful. We have a mini doxi as well and were told of her kidney problem when she was 5 years old. We too were told to increase salt in her diet. The vet also said that she was probably a diabetic as well but they couldn’t do the testing for that locally. We were supposed to take her to the nearest University vet school to have this very expensive testing done over a 3 day period. We didn’t have the $$$ for that so we had to do the salt program and wait for the possible diabetes to show itself to us. It never happened and she refused to eat the salt. So, 10 yrs later she shows no sign of either disease and is a healthy senior pooch.

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