Bladder stones in dogs can be a frightening issue, especially since a traditional veterinarian would probably advise surgery as the best course of action.
If your dog has a serious condition, that could sometimes be the case. Other times, your veterinarian might suggest alternative remedies.
However, there are some circumstances where you can treat your dog’s bladder stones at home using food and home remedies. Of course, this should be at the discretion of a holistic veterinarian, but discussing options prior to surgery could be incredibly beneficial to your dog.
Continue reading to find out how to keep your dog from developing bladder stones and avoid having surgery.
Home Remedies For Bladder Stones
These remedies will require more time than standard therapies. However, you won’t subject your dog to anesthesia or intrusive procedures. If your dog does need surgery for bladder stones, you can use the natural remedies discussed below to prevent a recurrence.
Conventional Or Natural Treatment?
A complete urinary blockage is the most urgent circumstance. Your dog needs immediate surgery if he or she is unable to urinate.
However, if your dog’s condition is minor, you may have time to try natural remedies.
Manage Bladder Stones Naturally
Recurring bladder stones are a problem for some dogs. So, you can also utilize some of these organic methods of prevention.
Encourage Your Dog to Drink Water
It might seem like a given. But whatever kind of stones your dog has, don’t undervalue water’s ability to be of assistance. It’s a crucial aspect of bladder stone management that veterinarians frequently overlook.
To reduce the amount of minerals in the urine, keep your dog well-hydrated. This may aid in preventing the formation of bladder stones in dogs.
Bladder Stones in Dogs Diet
The healthiest course of action is to offer your dog a fresh, whole-food diet, regardless of their condition. If your dog has struvite stones, specifically, stay away from highly processed, starchy kibble diets.
This also applies to any prescription diets that your veterinarian may try to convince you to provide. These diets may provide temporary relief, however, they provide very inadequate nutrients for your dog.
Food To Manage Struvite Stones
When a dog’s urine is alkaline and high in magnesium and phosphate, struvite stones can form. Bacterial infections are typically the cause of struvite stones. Dogs whose urea production is high may be more prone to struvite stones. This is due to the fact that bacterial urease changes urea into ammonia, which is a part of struvite.
Animal proteins cause acidification. Therefore, provide your dog a raw meat diet along with other acidic foods to treat struvite stones.
Acidic foods include:
- Organic, free-range chicken
- Grass-fed beef
- Cottage cheese
- Brown rice
- Black beans
- Kidney beans
AVOID Alkaline Foods For Struvite Stones
- All sprouts
- Green beans
- Sweet potatoes
- Swiss chard
- Fruit: bananas, apples, pineapple, strawberries
Food For Calcium Oxalate Stones
When oxalates are eliminated by the urine, oxalate crystals develop. They attach to calcium, forming calcium oxalate stones as a result. If your urine contains a lot of calcium oxalate crystals, you should eat more alkaline or neutral foods.
Make sure that any supplements you give don’t have a lot of vitamin C. It’s corrosive.
Low Oxalate Foods:
- Organ meats
- Fish like cod, whitefish, salmon, oysters
- Fruit – apples, pears, watermelon, banana, lemon, pineapple
- Veggies – broccoli, Brussels sprouts. asparagus, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, mushrooms, lettuce
- Herbs – parsley, peppermint, garlic, ginger, basil
Avoid High Oxalate Foods
- Legumes – lentils, beans (black, white, navy)
- Grains – wheat, corn, rice
- Fruits – apricots, figs
- Veggies – collard, mustard greens, sweet potatoes, okra
Food For Urate Stones
Low purine diets are necessary for dogs like Dalmatians who are prone to urate stones. Feed a fresh, whole-foods-based diet that emphasizes the low- and medium-purine foods on the following list. Avoid foods high in purine.
Feed Low and Medium Purine Foods
- Green leafy vegetables (except spinach)
- Dairy products (plain yogurt, kefir, low fat cottage cheese)
- Nuts (not macadamia as they can be toxic to dogs)
- Muscle meats from chicken, turkey, lamb, pork and beef
- Oats and oatmeal
Occasionally, once a week, you can feed green tripe. It has medium to high purine content. But it also offers a lot of advantages. Enzymes and bacteria are provided, which aid in digestion and raise metabolism.
Avoid High Purine Foods
- Organs/offal (brain, heart, liver, kidneys)
- Yeast (including nutritional and brewers yeast)
- Oily fish like mackerel, herring, sardines
- Legumes (such as kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas)
Other Foods That Can Help Prevent Bladder Stones
There are also other foods that can help prevent bladder stones in your dog.
For your dog’s diet, cranberries can be a beneficial addition to help avoid struvite stones. Cranberries can manage and prevent UTIs, according to research. The cause of struvite stone development is frequently an infection.
Additionally, cranberries increase your dog’s acidity, which aids in the prevention of struvite stones.
Cranberries should always be organic.
The fruit is typically produced using a lot of pesticides. Start by adding a few whole cranberries to your dog’s meal if they would eat them. Another great choice is freeze-dried cranberries that haven’t been sweetened.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Regular apple cider vinegar works nicely for many dogs with struvite stones (ACV). Once more, it contributes to the acidification of your dog’s urine to prevent struvite stone formation.
Purchase unfiltered, raw, organic ACV.
Mix it in these amounts, based on your dog’s weight, with her food (or water, if she prefers).
- Up to 15 lbs … 1 tsp
- Up to 35 lbs … 2 tsp
- Up to 85 lbs … 1 Tbsp
Homeopathic Remedies For Bladder Stones
Homeopathy can offer additional support to your dog. Consider these remedies.
- Cantharis – One of the most effective treatments for stones. Your dog will struggle to urinate, frequently passing blood-tinged urine drips.
- Aconite – If you notice early signs of a UTI, especially if there’s a fever.
- Causticum – Useful for an older dog with incontinence, leaking, dribbling and straining to urinate.
- Natrum muriaticum – Your dog is overly thirsty. There is a lot of pale urine. The treatment to take into account for “cleaning out the kidneys” is nat mur. Starting this treatment may cause you to pass large amounts of murky urine.
- Berberis – For a dog with back pain, especially near the kidneys. This is an excellent remedy to consider specifically for oxalate crystals.
Monitor Urine pH
It’s a good idea to keep an eye on your dog’s urine pH if she is prone to bladder stones of any kind. To determine the pH of urine, test strips are available. Or you can purchase VetStixTM strips for a more thorough examination. There are numerous internet pharmacies that sell these. There is no prescription required. They are simple to use and frequently allow you to avoid paying for urinalysis at the veterinarian.
Find out the ideal pH level for your dog from your holistic veterinarian. But generally, aim to maintain your dog’s pH at 7.0, which is neutral.
Bladder stones can be excruciating and even fatal. But there are many organic methods that can assist in managing them. The appropriate food and herbs can help avoid a recurrence even if your dog needs to have stones removed.
Surgery for Bladder Stones in Dogs
Surgery for bladder stones in dogs is usually recommended if the stones are large or causing a blockage that prevents urination.
The surgeon will make small incisions in the abdomen and cut open the bladder. The stones will be removed and any damaged tissue will be repaired. Some dogs also require a colostomy, which is an opening made in the skin of the abdomen so that stool can pass through until the dog recovers from surgery.
After surgery, your dog will need bed rest for several days, but should be eating normally again within three days. You may want to consider hiring a pet sitter to help with housebreaking and walking during this time.