Signs of Kidney Problems in Horses
The truth is acute kidney problems in horses tend to get underdiagnosed. Because the symptoms are similar to other conditions. For example, if your horse appears lethargic, depressed, has a loss of appetite, or experiences edema especially of their legs and lower abdomen they could be showing signs of kidney problems.
What about urination flow?
Can it be a way to spot kidney concerns?
Since urination flow can remain normal, decrease, or increase in times of kidney imbalance, it’s hard to use it as a clear indicator of kidney problems in horses.
Surprisingly, some dental problems and an abundance of tartar on the teeth have been linked to kidney concerns.
How about back pain?
You might think to ask something like, can ulcers cause back pain in horses? Or you might look to saddle fit or structural alignment in times of tightness, or soreness of a horse’s lower back. Although these are great questions to ask and things to check out… It’s important to note that lower back pain and even hindquarter weakness can be subtle signs of kidney problems in horses.
Awareness of these signs can serve you in pinpointing kidney problems in your horse much sooner. Reducing the risk of more extreme conditions presenting themselves such as kidney stones in horses (although rare to see, bladder stones or considered more common for horses), equine cystitis, or overall kidney or bladder infection in horses.
What do you Feed a Horse with Kidney Problems?
Nutritional support of kidney disease in horses is best sought prior to the concern itself. That might seem like an obvious statement. But current nutritional standards push high protein diets (ex. high in alfalfa) and supplements that are excessive in synthetic calcium. These factors can overwork the kidneys, as they work to regulate the electrolyte and acid balance of the blood.
Combine improper feeding with the number of recommended medications that are known to increase the risk of acute kidney disease in horses, such as certain antibiotics and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. It’s no wonder that the average lifestyle of the horse is the perfect storm of increased risk of kidney conditions.
By feeding a naturally balanced diet (shared in Chapter 2 of the Healthy as a Horse book), you can better understand not only what to feed a horse with kidney problems… But better yet how to effectively feed a horse per their design. Looking at the whole horse and getting to the root cause of the problems versus trying to use cookie-cutter blanket approaches that simply don’t work if you desire long term results.
Spotting Potential Risks to Kidney Problems in Horses Early
Learning to better understand your horse’s design and spotting the signs that your horse has the potential to experience imbalance within the urinary tract now or in the future empowers you to take action long before problems arise. Removing the dangerous synthetics from your horse’s diet and feeding more species-specific hay is an effective start!
But what if there were other factors outside of the traditional view of kidney problems in horses that would allow you to take action before serious conditions were even a thought?
This idea was introduced a little bit when we talked about the signs of kidney problems in horses… What isn’t commonly taught is that your horse’s teeth, lower back, bones, energy level, fertility, estrous cycle, developmental progress, and even their expression of anxiety, fear, or food aggression can ALL be subtle indicators that tip you off to an imbalance of either the kidney or the bladder.
This might seem crazy, yet time and time again as people describe the history of their horse prior to chronic disease setting in you can hear and spot clear patterns. Why wait for lab results to reveal disease? By that point, the symptoms are often severe.
Meanwhile, Naturopathy and Nature Cure approaches seek to listen and observe the early warning signs that many choose to overlook or worse treat, mask, or suppress. Because once you’re aware of your horse’s area of weakness you can aim to support it through utilizing specific natural nutrition, herbs, essential oils, acupressure, flower essences, and more!
The Shift that Delivers the Results Your Horse Deserves
Yes, seeking medical attention is crucial when signs of kidney problems in horses are present!
But why not take action sooner?
It’s time to cause a shift in your horse’s health NOW.
This shift can be made at any time and will make all the difference in your horse’s health. Stop seeking the latest greatest supplement for a horse with sore back issues, or finding the perfect low protein horse feed. Instead choose, that it’s time to establish a foundation of health for your horse. After all, there’s a clear framework and blueprint to do exactly that!
Utilize the FREE PDF Guide shared at the bottom of this page to start listening to your horse’s body and maximizing the results you get from the efforts of your care,