Did you know that one in every ten dogs will develop the liver disease at some point in their life? That’s a lot of dogs! And if your dog is one of them, you’ll want to make sure you are feeding him the best food for liver disease.
The liver is a large digestive organ located beneath the rib cage on the right side of the abdominal cavity, and it is made up of hepatocytes, hepatic stellate cells (Ito cells), and sinusoidal cells.
- Carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, detoxification, secretion and storage: Liver cells break down (metabolize) carbohydrates, proteins and fats from the diet and from circulating blood. The liver also detoxifies (removes) poisonous substances from the blood, secretes bile to aid in fat digestion, and stores vitamins, minerals and sugars.
- Bile production: Bile is a yellowish-green fluid that is produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. Bile aids in the digestion of fat, and it also helps to remove waste products and toxins from the body.
- Hormone production: The liver produces some hormones, including insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), which is involved in the regulation of growth and metabolism.
- Vitamin and mineral storage: The liver stores vitamins A, D, E, K and B12, as well as iron and copper.
- Blood clotting: The liver produces substances that are involved in blood clotting (coagulation).
Liver disease is any condition that results in the damage or death of liver cells. Liver disease occurs when there is damage to the hepatocytes, hepatic stellate cells, or sinusoidal cells, or when there is a build-up of toxins in the liver. There are many different causes of liver
There are many different types of liver disease, but the most common are hepatitis (inflammation of the liver), cholestasis (obstruction of bile flow), cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) and steatosis (fatty liver disease). Liver disease can be acute (sudden) or chronic (long-term).
Symptoms of liver disease:
The most common symptoms of liver disease are jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), fatigue, weight loss, nausea and vomiting. Liver disease can also cause a build-up of toxins in the blood, which can lead to confusion and coma. If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, you should take him to the vet for a check-up.
Below are more detailed descriptions of the liver disease symptoms in dog food;
- Jaundice: Jaundice is a condition in which the skin and whites of the eyes become yellowish due to the build-up of bilirubin in the blood. Bilirubin is a yellow pigment that is formed when red blood cells are broken down. Jaundice can be caused by liver disease, but it can also be caused by other conditions, such as anemia or pancreatitis.
- Fatigue: Fatigue is a common symptom of liver disease. Dogs with liver disease may be tired all the time and have little energy. They may also sleep more than usual.
- Weight loss: Weight loss is another common symptom of liver disease. Dogs with liver disease may lose weight even though they are eating the same amount of food.
- Nausea and vomiting: Nausea and vomiting are common symptoms of liver disease. Dogs with liver disease may vomit more than usual, and they may also have a poor appetite.
- Confusion and coma: Confusion and coma can occur if there is a build-up of toxins in the blood. Dogs with liver disease may be confused and disoriented, and they may eventually fall into a coma.
How is liver disease diagnosed?
Liver disease is usually diagnosed with a combination of physical examination, blood tests, and imaging tests such as ultrasound or CT scan. Liver biopsy (removal of a small piece of liver tissue for examination under a microscope) may also be performed to diagnose liver disease.
How is liver disease treated?
Treatment for liver disease depends on the cause and severity of the condition. In some cases, treatment may involve lifestyle changes, such as weight loss and exercise. Medications may also be prescribed to help manage symptoms and slow the progression of the disease. In severe cases, liver transplant may be necessary.
Factors to consider when choosing the best dog food for liver disease:
There are many different factors to consider when choosing the best dog food for liver disease.
- Ingredient list: The most important factor is the ingredient list. You’ll want to avoid foods that contain high levels of fat, sugar, and salt, as well as artificial preservatives and flavors. You’ll also want to make sure the food is made with high-quality ingredients that are easy to digest.
- Nutritional content: The food you choose should be high in protein and low in calories. It should also be rich in essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, copper, and zinc.
- Price: Liver disease can be a expensive condition to treat, so you’ll want to find a food that is affordable and will not break the bank.
- Availability: Liver disease is not as common as other conditions, so you may have to search for a food that is specifically designed for dogs with liver disease. You may be able to find these foods online or at a specialty pet store.
What causes liver inflammation in dogs?
There are many different causes of liver inflammation in dogs, but the most common are hepatitis (inflammation of the liver), cholestasis (obstruction of bile flow), cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) and steatosis (fatty liver disease). Liver disease can be acute (sudden) or chronic (long-term).
what to feed a dog with liver problems:
Oatmeal is a bland, easily digestible food that can be a good option for dogs with liver problems. It is high in fiber and low in fat, making it gentle on the stomach. You can cook oatmeal with water or milk, and add some boiled chicken, mashed banana, or cottage cheese to make it more palatable for your dog.
Canned pumpkin is another good option for dogs with liver problems. It is a good source of fiber and antioxidants, and can help to soothe the gastrointestinal tract. You can add canned pumpkin to your dog’s food, or give it as a treat.
White rice is another bland, easily-digestible food that can be fed to dogs with liver problems. It is high in carbohydrates and low in protein, making it gentle on the digestive system.
What not to feed a dog with liver disease:
You should avoid feeding your dog foods that are high in fat, sugar, and salt, as well as artificial preservatives and flavors. You’ll also want to make sure the food is made with high-quality ingredients that are easy to digest.
Liver disease can be a serious condition, so it’s important to choose the right food for your dog. Oatmeal, canned pumpkin, and white rice are all good options. You should avoid feeding your dog foods that are high in fat, sugar, and salt, as well as artificial preservatives and flavors. Talk to your veterinarian about the best diet for your dog.
Dog liver failure stages:
There are four main stages of liver failure: compensated, decompensated, encephalopathic, and coma.
In the compensated stage, the liver is still able to function properly despite being damaged. Dogs in this stage may show few or no symptoms.
In the decompensated stage, the liver is unable to function properly and dogs begin to show symptoms, such as weight loss, lethargy, and vomiting.
In the encephalopathic stage, the liver is so damaged that it can no longer remove toxins from the blood. This can lead to neurological problems, such as seizures and coma.
In the coma stage, the liver is so damaged that it can no longer remove toxins from the blood or maintain blood sugar levels. This can lead to death.
Liver failure is a serious condition that can be fatal. If you think your dog may be suffering from liver failure, talk to your veterinarian immediately.
Best Dog food for Liver Diseases:
- Hill’s Prescription Liver Care Dog Food
- Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food
- ROYAL CANIN Hepatic Dog Food
- The Honest Kitchen Dog Food
- Blue Buffalo Wilderness Dry Dog Food. …
- Instinct Original Dry Dog Food.
- Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry Dog Food Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe
- Forza10 Nutraceutic Sensitive Digestion Grain-Free Recipe
- Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food
- Wellness Complete Health Adult Dry Dog Food (Deboned Chicken & Oatmeal)
- Castor & Pollux Grain Free Organix.
Reviews of the 11 Best Dog Food for Liver Diseases:
Hill’s Prescription Liver Care Dog Food
Our overall best dog food for liver diseases in this list is the Hill’s Prescription Diet. This kibble contains clinically proven antioxidants for immune system support for dogs with compromised livers.
Hill’s Prescription Diet l/d Canine is a liver-supportive dog food specially crafted by Hill’s veterinarians and nutritionists. This diet helps protect your dog’s vital liver function and overall liver health. It contains controlled levels of highly digestible protein, which minimizes the liver workload, and low copper to minimize accumulation in the liver.
Hill’s Prescription Diet Canine i/d Digestive Care is a highly digestible, complete and balanced diet for adult dogs. It was developed by Hill’s nutritionists and veterinarians to provide the optimal blend of nutrients to help manage your dog’s digestive health. This formula contains clinically proven antioxidants to support a healthy immune system, as well as prebiotic fiber that promotes a healthy urinary environment. Contact your veterinarian to see how Prescription Diet® Canine i/d Digestive Care can help benefit your canine companion!
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Hi there! My name is Ben Domb, an owner of two pets and I am one of the co-founders of OurPets HQ. I have several years of experience as a pet care professional in the New England region having spent time in various roles including a stint at a veterinary hospital in Upstate New York, Syracuse area. I am a certified pet care professional and mostly spend my time researching pet nutrition and sharing my thoughts in various blogs and columns. With quarantine and COVID restrictions, I have been spending a lot of time a lot with my dogs and cat and loving it! I also run a small consulting business providing advice to parents on pet nutrition, and especially safe homemade options to try. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org