Friday, June 14, 2024

What Foods Cause Crystals In Dog Urine

How Crystals In Dog Urine Or Crystalluria Is Diagnosed:

Urine Crystals (UTIs) In Dogs – Causes, Treatment, And More | Vet Explains


Your veterinarian will collect a urine sample from your dog. The reason for urine collection will determine the method of urine collection. If your veterinarian is simply screening the urine as part of an annual health check, then a free-catch method catching the urine in a container as your dog voids their bladder is sufficient. If your veterinarian is concerned about a urinary tract infection, then a procedure called cystocentesis is usually performed. Cystocentesis uses a long thin needle and syringe to collect urine directly from the bladder this ensures the urine sample is not contaminated with any bacteria that might be present where the urine exits the dog, and therefore any bacteria found in the sample is the cause of the urinary tract infection.

Some veterinarians have the equipment to analyze the sample in house while others will need to send the sample out to the lab. In either case, the urine sample is spun down in a centrifuge. Any cells or crystals in the urine will be spun down to the bottom of the test tube while the liquid part of the urine stays on top. The material at the bottom of the test tube is collected, stained, and placed on a microscope slide. The sample is then examined under a microscope for the presence of bacteria, red or white blood cells, or crystals.

Taste Of The Wild Pacific Stream

The Taste of the Wild Pacific Steam contains real salmon, ocean fish, and other high-quality protein ingredients which help in developing a strong muscle and immune system for your dogs.

This dog food is proven to be free from any artificial preservative and color which makes it a healthy meal for your pets.

It also contains berry ingredients like blueberries and raspberry which are the primary suppliers of antioxidants.

These antioxidants provide support for your pets urinary health needs while improving their immune system.

American Journey Dry Dog Food

The American Journey Dry Dog Food contains nutritious ingredients that perfectly supply a balanced diet and healthy system for dogs.

Its main ingredients consist of deboned salmon fish which supplies protein and healthy amino acids and sweet tomatoes to balance the taste of the food.

The proteins are used for developing strong and leaner muscles while the Omega fatty acids support the development of their body as well as their brains and eyes.

The American Journey dry dog food is formulated to contain antioxidants that will filter out the calcium oxalate from your dogs body.

The high moisture level of dry food also helps in regulating and preventing more struvite stones from forming.

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But Do Try This At Home

Most types of crystals form because of an improperly balanced pH level.

In this case, adjusting your dogs diet is often the only solution.

The Right Food

Should you try a special dog food for urinary crystals?

You most certainly can, once the type of crystals are identified.

Some varieties might indicate the pH is too acidic, while others are present because its too alkaline.

In either case, adjusting the diet in one direction or the other can be very helpful.

While specific brands of dog foods dont matter, youll want to stay away from cheaper ones with low nutritional value.

Check out our recommended list of urinary care dog food to get your started.

Depending on which type of crystals your dog has, you might need to increase or decrease the protein percentages in their diet.

A vet might also recommend the addition of wet food, or to feed your dog only wet food instead of dry kibble for a period of time.

More Water

Increasing their water intake might also be recommended. You cant force your dog to drink more, but you can encourage it.

Adding water to their dry food or enticing them with dogsicles are easy ways to sneak more water into their routine.

Homemade popsicles for dogs are easy and cheap low-sodium broths with some enticing snacks in the mix can be frozen in an ice tray or popsicle mold.

Some dogs are happy with an ice block that has a tasty morsel of food inside.

It might sound gross to us, but most dogs love it.

Why is this important?

Let Them GoPotty

Natures Variety Instinct Lid Real Turkey Recipe

Crystals in Dog Urine: What Every Dog Owner Should Know ...

Whether youre looking for the best dog food for urinary incontinence or simply something with a higher moisture content, this Natures Variety Instinct LID Real Turkey Recipe Canned Food is a great option.

Coming from one of the top brands on the market, this recipe is packed with premium natural ingredients including cage-free turkey as a single source of animal protein. It also contains turkey liver, an ingredient known to contain several nutrients that support urinary health.

This formula is loaded with moisture and is complete and balanced with the help of added vitamins and chelated minerals. It is highly digestible, loaded with natural flavor, and proudly made in the USA.

  • Pros: Cage-free turkey main ingredients, highly digestible and properly balanced, rich in moisture and urinary health-supporting nutrients, limited ingredient list
  • Cons: Expensive compared to most brands, contains a plant protein as main ingredient

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Diet For Dogs With Bladder Stones

Some crystals, such as struvite, ammonium urate, or cystine, can be dissolved by changing the dog’s diet. In these cases, the dog food for crystals in urine will be specially formulated to treat this problem. There are commercial brands with a special formula created for dogs with urinary crystals. However, you should check with the veterinarian for their recommendation.

The diet can also be used as a preventive for further crystals, so check with the vet if it is best to make a permanent change. Otherwise, it will likely only be needed for a few weeks. When ammonium urate or cystine crystals are diagnosed, eating offal will need to be avoided.

In the case you want to create a homemade diet for dogs with urinary crystals, egg protein and vegetables are recommended. However, you will still need to meet their other dietary requirements, especially if they have underlying conditions. if you want to make a homemade diet for the dog, you will need to speak to your veterinarian to ensure the animals needs are met.

Our video below will also show you some BARF food recipes which may be helpful if the vet advises it:

This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to My Dog Has Crystals in Their Urine, we recommend you visit our Other health problems category.

What Type Of Food Causes Bladder Stones In Dogs

Bladder stones are crystals made of mineral deposits. These stones can be a result of urine that is either too acidic or too alkaline. Struvite stones are caused by foods that are high in magnesium and phosphorus. Oxalate stones can be caused by either too much or too little calcium. Urate stones are formed by purine, which is found in meat, specifically in organs meat like liver and heart.

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Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet Weight Management + Urinary Care For Dogs

BUY ON: Chewy

If your dog needs to lose a few pounds and get their urinary tract health up to par at the same time, this is the food for them.

The diet formula is clinically proven to aid in weight loss while helping prevent the formulation of struvite and calcium oxalate crystals in the urine.

The high-fiber content and added vitamins and minerals make it the best dog food for pH balance and overall health.

If youre conscious about artificial ingredients in your dogs food, then you can rest easy knowing that this blend has zero artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors.

What if your dog is allergic to grains?

This food from Blue Buffalo hasnt included any in the formula. Its the perfect option for sensitive tummies.


  • Dry and wet options available


  • Might not be suitable for active or athletic dogs

Be Careful With Added Ingredients

Dr. Becker Discusses Struvite Stones and Crystals

A cat or dog on a therapeutic diet shouldnt be allowed to eat other foods without the permission of your vet. Dr. Susan Jeffrey, a veterinarian with Truesdell Animal Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, had a client who had been mixing a therapeutic diet with an over-the-counter diet. The cat’s stones returned and he needed another surgical procedure to remove them, she recalls.

Although your vet has the final say about which foods are appropriate, there are some general guidelines. Avoid rawhide, pig ears, bully sticks, and other collagen-rich treats, Larsen says. They are not only not high enough in moisture but also provide compounds converted to oxalate by the body, which is an obvious no-no for pets with calcium oxalate stones. Su adds, For patients with calcium oxalate stones, make sure to avoid excess calcium , and high oxalate ingredients . Animals with urate and cysteine stones should avoid added protein , Larsen says.

And continued, close monitoring for symptoms of stone recurrence is vital. Dietary manipulation does not work in all cases. Recurrence of stones, especially calcium oxalates, can occur in some patients even if they are strictly fed the appropriate therapeutic diets, Su says.

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Dont Use Diy Treatments Without Consulting A Vet

Some pet parents reach for apple cider vinegar in hopes of acidifying their companions urine. But this is not necessarily a good idea.

I wouldn’t add anything to increase the acidity of a diet without the supervision of a veterinarian, says Jeffrey, whose professional interests include preventative care. If the urine becomes too acidic, calcium oxalate crystals/stones can develop.

Cranberry-based products are touted for urinary tract health. It may help with recurrent urinary tract infections because of compounds that cranberries contain , says Bartges, who is board-certified in veterinary internal medicine and veterinary nutrition. However, cranberry juice doesnt acidify urine, he says, so its not considered helpful for dissolving stones.

Running supplements past your vet is a golden rule, even more so if your pet has a bladder condition. There are supplements that can be added to food to modify urinary pH like potassium citrate and methionine, but those should only be used as directed by a veterinarian, Su explains.

Some supplements can actually increase the risk of stones in susceptible animals, Heinze says. Examples include brewers yeast for dogs with urate stones, vitamin C or calcium for dogs with calcium oxalate stones, or products that alkalinize the urine for struvite stones.

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The Honest Kitchen Chicken Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food

Most Popular: If your dog has a sensitive stomach on top of urinary health issues, you need to be extra careful about what you feed him.

The best non-prescription dog food for urinary health and sensitive stomach might be something like this dehydrated recipe from The Honest Kitchen.

It is dehydrated rather than cooked at high temperature which preserves more of the nutritional integrity of the raw ingredients. Plus, you need to rehydrate it with water or broth before serving which makes it a moisture-rich diet for your dog.

This particular recipe features free-range chicken as the main ingredient with grain-free carbohydrates like flaxseed and sweet potatoes with dried fruits and veggies to provide a boost of premium-quality nutrition.

It is complete and balanced thanks to fortification with essential vitamins and chelated minerals, plus it provides the optimal balance of protein and healthy fats.

  • Pros: Dehydrated not cooked at high temperatures, high moisture content when rehydrated, free-range chicken as main ingredient, highly digestible and nutritious
  • Cons: Expensive compared to most kibbles, some dogs dislike the texture of dehydrated food

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How Can I Get My Dog To Drink More Water

Sufficient water intake is mandatory to prevent and cure bladder stones. Dogs, in general, are not very good at keeping themselves hydrated. You can encourage your fur-friend to drink more water by giving regular reminders. Keep its water bowl clean, full, and in an easily accessible place. You can also add flavor to the water by mixing in some chicken broth if your dog likes that. Ice cubes are another way to offer some hydration. Add salt to your dogs meals so that it gets more thirsty than usual. Moreover, always praise and offer a treat when your dog drinks water so that it quickly develops a habit of doing so.

Treating Pet Urinary Stones And Crystals

My Dog Has Crystals in Their Urine

Once a vet identifies urinary crystals in dog urine or cat urine, the next step is to assess whether the crystals are likely to cause a problem. In some cases it is more important to treat a pet’s underlying condition first. For crystals that may lead to stone formation or urinary obstruction, dissolving or eliminating them is a higher priority. Nutritional adjustments and convincing your pet to drink more water will often treat crystals effectively, but surgery is also an option in severe cases.

While it’s rare for crystals to form as the result of poor nutrition or inadequate diet selection, nutritional imbalances can play a role. Nutrition is crucial when it comes to reducing crystals in cases where stone or urethral plug formation is a risk. Your vet will likely prescribe a therapeutic food to a cat or dog at risk for a urinary obstruction.

Make sure your pet always has access to plenty of fresh water. Keeping pets hydrated keeps their urine from becoming concentrated and makes crystals less likely to form. Offering additional sources of water along with wet food is strongly recommended.

As always, follow your vet’s advice on feeding and home care. Being vigilant about nutrition and water intake goes a long way toward reducing or even preventing crystal formation.

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How Are Struvite Bladder Stones Diagnosed

In some cases, if your dog is relaxed and the bladder is not too painful, your veterinarian may be able to palpate struvite stones in the bladder. However, some stones are too small to be felt this way. Often, bladder stones are diagnosed by means of a radiograph of the bladder, or by means of an ultrasound. Struvite stones are almost always radiodense, meaning that they can be seen on a plain radiograph. However, sometimes bones or other overlying body parts will interfere with the ability to see bladder stones with regular X-rays, in which case your veterinarian may recommend a contrast study, a specialized technique that uses dye to outline the stones in the bladder, or a bladder ultrasound.

These imaging procedures will identify the presence of a bladder stone, but will not definitively indicate the composition of the stone. The only way to be sure that a bladder stone is made of struvite is to have the stone analyzed at a veterinary laboratory.

In some cases, your veterinarian may make an educated guess about the type of stone that is present, based on the radiographic appearance and results of a urinalysis. For example, if X-rays show that there are one or more stones present in the bladder, and the results of the urinalysis show the presence of alkaline urine along with numerous struvite crystals, your veterinarian may make a presumptive diagnosis of struvite bladder stones and recommend treatment accordingly.

How Did My Dog Get These Stones

Normal dog urine is slightly acidic and contains waste products from metabolism including dissolved mineral salts and other compounds. Struvite is a normal component of dog’s urine and will remain dissolved as long as the urine is acidic and is not too concentrated. If the urine becomes exceptionally concentrated or if it becomes alkaline , struvite crystals will precipitate or fall out of solution.

In dogs, struvite bladder stones usually form as a complication of a bladder infection caused by bacteria that produce an enzyme known as urease. This enzyme breaks down the urea that is normally present in the urine causing an excess production of ammonia this ammonia production then causes the urine to become alkaline. Ammonia in the urine also causes bladder inflammation. Under these environmental conditions, struvite crystals will precipitate out of solution and collect around any cells or debris that may have formed in the bladder as a result of inflammation. Female dogs tend to get these types of bladder infections and stones much more frequently than males, probably because their shorter, wider urethra makes it easier for bacteria to pass up the urethra into the bladder. In some studies, up to 85% of dogs with struvite bladder stones were female.

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Common Pet Health Issues Affected By Nutrition: Part 2

A healthy diet is a powerful weapon in promoting good health and also can be used to help manage health-related issues. In part 1, we looked at how obesity and diabetes can be directly affected by a pets diet. Now well take a closer look at how food can impact urine crystals, a condition known as crystalluria, and urinary stones, a condition known as urolithiasis.

What Causes A Dogs Ph Level To Be High

Homemade Dog Food for Struvite Bladder Stones

When your dogs urine becomes too alkaline, it can increase his risk for certain health problems. First and foremost, urinary tract infection is a common consequence of high urine pH, but it can also be the cause of an increase in pH. Your dogs pH balance is also likely to shift after he eats, depending on his diet. If youre feeding your dog an alkaline diet, his pH might rise after he eats. It is also possible that a low-quality diet that is too low in protein and too high in sugar or carbs could contribute to high pH.

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