Boris’ kidneys

On Monday the 18th of May, Boris the pooch found a bottle of ibuprofen that had been lost and forgotten long before we ever adopted him. I arrived home to find the bottle in one room, the lid in another, and a few piles of pills throughout the house. Out of the 180 caplet bottle, there were 55 pills missing. The problem was in guessing how many we had taken versus how many the dog had decided would be delicious. Not knowing how exceptionally toxic ibuprofen is to dogs, and seeing that he seemed normal, we figured that he hadn’t eaten that many. After waking up to piles of vomit all over the floor, we figured that he had eaten a few, but he was still very happy, active, and hungry, so we figured that he was ok.

He acted normal for the rest of the week (with the exception of drinking and peeing more than normal which we attributed to him flushing his system out) until Saturday morning, when he wasn’t interested in breakfast. Not knowing better we took him to Craig’s family’s cabin for the weekend. When he still hadn’t eaten anything by Sunday afternoon and was acting lethargic, we knew there was a problem. We took him to the pet emergency room early monday morning and the vet tested his pee and his blood.

Normal creatinine levels for dogs are .6-1.2. Normal BUN numbers are between 10 and 20. Normal urine SG is 1.020-1.040. When we checked Boris in, his creatinine was 5.1, his BUN was 111 and his urine SG was 1.011 (thinner than a fermented beer). His kidneys were passing more water through than they should have been, dehydrating him, and also not handling toxic buildup of bad compounds. The vet gave him a 50% chance of survival. They hospitalized him, put him on an IV and other drugs, and hoped for the best. I was a huge mess. Huge crazy sobbing mess. Craig was wonderful and helped keep me busy and hugged me when I was upset. We were both very worried.

We had to wait like 30 hours to get his bloodwork results back, but it was worth it. On tuesday afternoon, the vet said that he had improved more than she would have guessed possible. His creatinine was 2.8, and his BUN was 55. The vet told us that even if he didn’t improve at all past that, his numbers were manageable and that we could keep him alive with a fairly decent quality of life for quite some time, but it’s likely that he’d make a better recovery.

By wednesday morning, his BUN was down to 19, and his creatinine was down to 1.5. They also cleared us to pick him up and bring him home with a special kidney diet (which I’m not too impressed with, but it’s what the vet prescribed, so he has to eat it for a week til they check him again) and a couple medications for his stomach. If his numbers are still within acceptable ranges, then he can go back to his normal food and begin leading a normal life, with full recovery expected in about 6 months!

One thought on “Boris’ kidneys

  1. Oh my god that’s awful! There’s nothing worse than a sick pet. I had a cat that had an abscess in his sinuses but we’d had no idea, and he was in agony for weeks.

    I’m glad he’s feeling better.


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