How long does a cat live with kidney failure?

Unfortunately, kidney failure is a very common disorder, especially in older cats. This insufficiency, which consists in the malfunctioning of one of the kidneys, may present in a chronic or acute manner . In both cases one should rely on the management of a veterinarian, with treatments, food specially formulated to treat the problem and periodic reviews.

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When we receive the diagnosis that our cat suffers from this disease, the first question we usually ask is: How long does a cat live with kidney failure? In this Animal Expert article we will give you the keys to be able to answer this question.

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Kidney failure in cats

In general, kidney failure is a malfunction of the kidneys , and can affect only one of the two. The main problem is that kidney damage is slow to appear because the body activates compensation mechanisms with which it remains in operation.

When we begin to notice the symptom, the kidneys may already be badly injured. Renal failure may present acutely, suddenly, with a symptom that will include vomiting, anorexia, dehydration, or more obvious tiredness. If left untreated, the cat will die. Other times, renal failure occurs in a chronic way. We can see if our cat is losing weight, if it is a little dehydrated, vomits, drinks a lot of water, etc. In that case, it also requires veterinary treatment but the situation would not yet be imminent.

blood test can tell us the state of the kidneys and it is also possible to have a urine test and an ultrasound. With all these data in hand, the veterinarian will classify the stage of the disease of our cat, since of this factor will depend the treatment to be followed.

In acute renal failure, the priority is for the animal to recover, since it will only be when stabilized that the damage of the disease will be evaluated and the most appropriate treatment established. Kidney failure has no cure but we can offer quality of life to our cat as long as we stay with us. This is the treatment orientation, since kidney damage does not only affect the kidneys, but has progressive consequences throughout the body and it is this deterioration that usually causes the death of the animal.

As the symptoms may appear when the disease is already far advanced, it is imperative that our cat undergo reviews every 6-12 months from approximately 7 years of age. With a simple blood test, we can detect kidney damage, as well as other diseases, in the early stages. The sooner we start treatment, the longer the life expectancy will be. But how long does a cat live with kidney failure? Let’s see what we should take against in the next section.

Acute and chronic renal failure – factors to take into account

It is necessary to start this text stating that it is impossible to determine exactly how long a cat lives with kidney failure. We will then signal some relevant aspects that may provide a longer life for the cat affected by this disorder.

Factors that influence the life expectancy of a cat with renal failure:

  • Acute or chronic kidney failure : An acute presentation can be fatal within hours, however, if our cat suffers from chronic insufficiency, it may be able to maintain a good quality of life for years.
  • The Stage of Illness : Veterinarians classify the stage of insufficiency in which a cat is found from various factors such as symptoms, cat’s phosphorus levels. Because of these indicators, the disease will be more or less severe, which will logically affect the life expectancy of the animal. Therefore, the facts in states of lesser gravity will have a longer life expectancy and vice versa.
  • The treatment will consist of a specific diet for kidney patients and more or less medication administration depending on the severity of the condition.
  • Management of the animal : If the cat refuses to consume the prescribed food or can not administer the medication, his life expectancy will decrease. At this point, it is important to evaluate whether we want to force our cat to continue with the treatment, which will generate a stress that will not contribute to the maintenance of his quality of life, or we decide to follow his will, even if it means that he lives less time. This is a situation that can happen and we will have to evaluate it.

Hope of life

Since we can not estimate the exact figure of how long a cat lives with renal failure, since the factors to be considered are multiple and unpredictable , we can calculate the average life expectancy of the cats affected by the insufficiency. It would be as follows:

  • In the case of acute renal failure, the first 24-48 hours are crucial since, if there are improvements, that is, the symptoms disappear, and the animal begins to eat and can be withdrawn from the serum feed and intravenous medication, we can say that the cat has recovered but usually usually advances to a chronic illness, and therefore, should continue with veterinary care for life.
  • In chronic insufficiency, the life expectancy will depend very much on the stage of the cat, being higher as the symptoms are milder and more severe when it is the other way around. Generally and given this data, cats with this type of insufficiency can live from several months to a few years.

When the feline is in terminal phase , without any possibility of recovery, the veterinarian can recommend to euthanasia , that in cats with renal insufficiency, would be one way to alleviate the pain and suffering which he might suffer. These terminally ill cats may experience severe discomfort during the days following their death, which prevents them from performing basic daily routines.

For this reason, as a last resort and to avoid serious illness due to illness, some veterinarians may recommend cat euthanasia. If this is your case, meditate well before making your decision and follow the advice and recommendations of the specialist. If you do not agree, seek a second professional to conduct a second evaluation to ensure the diagnosis or recommendations of the first veterinarian you have visited.

And to conclude, we emphasize the importance of valuing the quality of life to the detriment of the remaining life time.

This article is purely informative, in we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.

If you want to read the description in the United States , then please let us know. , we recommend that you enter our section on Other health problems .

Emily Harris

Hi Guys, Girls, and Cats:-p I am Emily Harris, and you can see in above pic. She loves me I swear. I saved her from a dumpster a few weeks back.

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