Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost
34 Veterinary Answers
Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost

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What is Excess Protein in the Urine?

Excess protein in the urine is no more common for dogs of any age, gender or breed. Because there are several possible causes, it is important for you to obtain a diagnosis for your dog’s excess urinary protein level as soon as possible in order to seek prompt treatment. Sometimes you may notice symptoms and bring your dog in for veterinary treatment in order to obtain a diagnosis; however, sometimes an elevated protein level is only found during urinalysis at a regular health check-up. This is indicative of the importance of bringing your dog in for regular veterinary check-ups even when she does not exhibit any health issues.

Proteinuria is the presence of protein in dog’s urine. Dog’s urine normally contains a trace amount of protein in the urine, as proteins are blocked by the glomerulus, the part of the kidney that filters waste products, or pass through the glomerulus and then reabsorbed by renal tubes or broken down by the epithelial cells of the renal tubes. Proteinuria may be associated with lower urinary tract disease, reproductive tract disease, or an indication of renal dysfunction or damage.

Excess Protein in the Urine Average Cost

From 16 quotes ranging from $500 - $3,000

Average Cost

$1,200

Symptoms of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Excess protein in the urine is a symptom of an underlying cause. Additional symptoms that accompany excess protein in the urine depend upon the cause, as discussed below.

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Causes of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Urinary Tract Infection

  • Strain during urination
  • Inability to urinate
  • Bloody or cloudy urine
  • Fever
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Increased amount and/or frequency of urination
  • Pain during urination
  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Licking urinary opening
  • Changes in appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Increased thirst

High Blood Pressure

  • Blood in the urine
  • Abnormal eye movements
  • Dilated pupils
  • Retinal detachment
  • Ocular hemorrhage
  • Acute onset blindness
  • Nosebleeds
  • Seizures
  • Disorientation
  • Ataxia, or lack of coordination
  • Circling
  • Partial paralysis of limbs
  • Heart murmurs

Glomerular Disease

historically has been found to lead to chronic kidney disease, the symptoms of which are:

  • Loss of appetite, or anorexia
  • Lethargy and weakness
  • Vomiting
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
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Diagnosis of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

As with most appointments, unless the veterinarian is absolutely sure, the doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination of your dog and ask that you report the onset and extent of any symptoms, as well as any medical history. The most important diagnostic tool will be a urinalysis in order to confirm the presence of elevated protein in your dog’s urine. This test will also include sediment examination in order to identify the presence of any crystals or stones. The urine may be cultured in order to identify specific bacteria that may be causing infection if urinary tract infection is a suspected cause. The concentration of your dog’s urine will be measured, and can indicate the kidney’s ability or inability to correctly process urine, which may indicate kidney failure.

A blood sample will also be analyzed for a chemical blood profile, which will measure electrolyte levels in your dog’s blood as well as elevated levels of creatinine and blood urea nitrogen, all of which will point to chronic kidney disease caused by the glomerular disease. Your dog’s blood pressure will be measured via an inflatable cuff to determine if he is suffering from hypertension. A complete blood count will also be taken in order to measure red and white blood cell and platelet counts and may indicate anemia, another indicator of kidney disease.

Further, x-ray and ultrasound imaging can be utilized in order to observe the size and shape of your dog’s kidney, if kidney failure is suspected. A kidney biopsy may be necessary in the case of glomerular disease causing kidney failure.

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Treatment of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

Specific treatment will depend upon your dog’s diagnosis. In severe cases, your dog may need to undergo stabilization treatment for dehydration, which will consist of IV fluids. Glomerular disease will be treated through a combination of immunosuppressant medication, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibition, low-dose aspirin and a special diet low in protein, phosphorous, calcium and sodium and high in potassium and polyunsaturated fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6. In the case of inflamed kidneys and urinary tract infections, antibiotics will be prescribed. High blood pressure will be treated through a calcium channel blocker or beta-blocker and the possibly the recommendation of a low-sodium diet.

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Recovery of Excess Protein in the Urine in Dogs

For all treatment, monitor your dog’s recovery process and report any changes in health to your veterinarian right away. You will likely need to schedule follow-up appointments to evaluate the efficacy of your dog’s treatment plan and avoid any complications.

If your dog has been prescribed, or is supposed to be on home cooked special diet, she may display disinterest in the new food as it will not be as flavorful as what she is used to. Consult the veterinarian on how best to address this, as you may be able to enhance the flavor with tuna juice or another liquid.

All recovery of proteinuria regardless of the cause will require sufficient hydration, so be sure to always keep fresh water available and encourage your dog to drink.

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Excess Protein in the Urine Average Cost

From 16 quotes ranging from $500 - $3,000

Average Cost

$1,200

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Excess Protein in the Urine Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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Roscoe

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Shepherp/ Mix

dog-age-icon

9 Years

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Serious severity

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0 found helpful

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

A Lot Of Drinking , Peeing

Dog was drinking excessively and urinating all the time. So we take him in. High blood work numbers were NEU 12.50 Band suspended MPV17.4 ALT 202U/L and ALKP 1472 rest of the numbers were normal. So they took Xrays said they found his Liver was enlarge but everything else looked ok no UTI. SO we get over 100.00 in meds go home shows a little emprovement, a back to were he was drinking a lot peeing a lot acting lethargic sleeping all the time. So we take him back in, they do a MRI and Urine test, Tell us the Liver a little rounded but with his big chest they cant see to much. No have you both Vets at this place said he didn't have a UTI. Did a urine sample said again to us little blood , but mind you he had a catheter 1 day before hand. She said it was not a UTI. But the Protein in his urine was 30 but really wasn't concerned. They had mentioned Cushing. But told us lets give him 12 hours and maybe start talking about the quality of life with him. So they call that night tell me both agree now he has a UTI, But no antibiotic given to him at all. Said something about his vomiting which we said he was never doing. And they will call in about 3 days. Can you please look at his numbers.

Sept. 22, 2018

Roscoe's Owner

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Benny

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Shih Tzu

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3 Years

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Kidney
Excess Protein In Urine
High PH

My dog just got his blood work and urinalysis results back today and there are some concerning numbers that I am hoping to get some clarity about. His vet is out for the next few days so I wont hear back from her for a while. Bloodwork His BUN and Creatinie levels were normal but his BUN/Creatinine ration was 35. His WBC levels were also increased at 30.1 Urinalysis: What is scaring me the most is that his protein levels are 3+ and pH was 8.5. He has no symptoms of a UTI and there was no detected bacteria in the urine. Amorphus phosphate crystals were 0-1. He has has regular activity level and water intake. This bloodwork and urinalysis was for a wellness visit. Everything else was for the most part within range. The specific gravity was slightly elevated at 1.057. I work at the vet hospital so I am able to see the results but I just assist so I don't really know how to read any of this. I understand it could indicate a UTI, kidney disease, kidney stones, etc. I am just worried about how presssing this issue is and if I should wait the 3 days it will take for his doctor to follow up with me.

Aug. 11, 2018

Benny's Owner

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3320 Recommendations

The term a little knowledge is a dangerous thing is true since we have details of what values are normal or abnormal; if the BUN:creatinine ratio is slightly high it may be concerning but if the BUN levels and creatinine levels are normal we would need to know the reference ranges for the equipment the tests were run on (can vary between equipment manufacturers) and the values which came out. Also, urinalysis is concerning on first glance due to the presence of protein and an increase in pH but without taking a history and checking Benny over I wouldn’t be able to tell you anything specific. This will wait until Monday morning, just ensure that Benny is well hydrated and is otherwise in good spirits. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.idexx.eu/globalassets/documents/parameters/8073-us-bcratio-interpretive-summary.pdf www.idexx.eu/globalassets/documents/parameters/8961-us-wbc-interpretive-summary.pdf www.idexx.eu/globalassets/documents/parameters/9449-us-specificgravity-interpretive-summary.pdf

Aug. 12, 2018

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Jeevan

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Pointer

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4 Years

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Fair severity

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Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Dark Urine
None

My dog broke his tooth and my vet would like to do dental procedure on him. Of course he would need to be under anesthesia for it. They did a blood test to make sure he was healthy and the results came back with this: Urine analysts: Urine PH: 8.5 Protein: 2+ And also his Globulin is at a 3.7 My vet said it was probably due to diet and that she would like to test again in 3 months. And that he’s healthy enough to be put under for the procedure. He seems like a perfectly heathy dog. The only thing I notice is his urine is darker yellow. And he has occasionally skin issues (redness), which he gets only during summer time. I changed his food three months ago. It’s a higher protein dog food than what he was on before. I feed him Canidae grain free. I give him a little apple cider vinegar in water on occasion, and Spirulina supplement on occasion as well. My question is, is it truly safe to put him under anesthesia with these blood test results?

July 8, 2018

Jeevan's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1611 Recommendations

These blood results are quite unremarkable, although lab results are always taken in context with all other available information. Since I don't have access to the rest of the lab results, or Jeevan's physical status, I can't comment on his general health. It does sound like your veterinarian is being quite thorough, however, and if they have assessed that he is healthy, it would make sense to trust their opinion.

July 8, 2018

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Harly

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Pomeranian

dog-age-icon

10 Years

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Hi Dr, My 10yr old Pom has been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. His protein urine test came back at 4.1. Now the vet wants to me to leave him all day to monitor his BP. Is this useful and what kind of treatment plan can be the outcome of all this testing?

June 28, 2018

Harly's Owner

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3320 Recommendations

Hypertension is secondary to chronic kidney disease in many cases, your Veterinarian may have a suspicion of high blood pressure to suggest blood pressure monitoring; if the blood pressure is determined to be high, then your Veterinarian may prescribe a medication to dilate the blood vessels which in turn will reduce blood pressure. High blood pressure may cause issues with vision, coordination among other issues; discuss with your Veterinarian about the findings which lead them to perform long term high blood pressure. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

June 29, 2018

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Bruno

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Boxer

dog-age-icon

2 Years

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Fair severity

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Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Incontinence

Hi. We have a 2 year old boxer who has excess protein in his urine. The vet has diagnosed him with Kidney failure, but he is showing no signs of kidney disease. He does not drink excessively, he has not lost his appetite and he is not lethargic. Could it be possible that he has bladder stones and that would cause the excess protein in his urine. The urine also sat in a tube for about 8 hours before being tested. His blood work shows his white count elevated

June 4, 2018

Bruno's Owner


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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1611 Recommendations

Protein in the urine can be caused by infection, bladder stones, or inflammation anywhere in the urinary tract. Without additional elevations in kidney enzymes, it isn't possible to diagnose kidney failure from that one lab test. It may be a good idea to either ask for further clarification from your veterinarian, or seek a second opinion to determine what might be going on with Bruno.

June 5, 2018

The reason they gave that diagnosis they say is because he is showing signs of continence. He sometimes dribbles urine but not often. They said the blood work showed elevated white blood count, and his protein count in the blood was over 4.0. They now want to start him on a blood pressure pill but I'm not certain that needs to happen

June 5, 2018

Lisa E.

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Loki

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Welsh Corgi

dog-age-icon

10

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Fair severity

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Fair severity

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No Simptoms

Hello, I have a 10 year old male corgi. Loki. He has been perfectly healthy unitll all of the sudden. He had his teeth cleaned on 9/17/18 and his prescreening bloodwork was fine except for his ALT was 168 (10-125) and his ALPK was 43 (23-212). I was not told about it. I took him in for his annual blood work in March 3/21/19. His ALT 252 and his ALPK was 413. We also have a 7 year old female mini Doxie, Mina. I tooker her in to be screened also to see if hers was affected as well. Her live was fine but they both had UTIS and she has struvite crystals. 2 weeks of antibiotics, diet change and milkthisle for him, and they both are both UIT free and his blood work is normal but now he has 3+ protein in his urine and she still has crystals. We have been through kidney disease before. His bood work is fine so I'm not ready to jump right to meds for kidney disease. I just dont understand whats going on.

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Brutus

dog-breed-icon

hound mix

dog-age-icon

13 Years

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Serious severity

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Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Pu/Pd

Brutus is a 13 y/o MN hound mix who was diagnosed with unilateral (left) renal cell carcinoma and azotemia. He has had 7 treatments of palliative radiation therapy. Blood work was run on his last treatment day. CBC unremarkable, CREA 2.0, ALT 238, Na141, K 5.75. UPC is 3.93. Any advice on managing his ongoing care? We are due back at the vet for f/u blood work and U/A in one month.

Excess Protein in the Urine Average Cost

From 16 quotes ranging from $500 - $3,000

Average Cost

$1,200

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