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Healthy Kidney Diet

We currently have two dogs in kidney failure that are being treated at National Greyhound Adoption Program. Thanks to the substantial efforts put forth by their caregivers, both of these dogs are thriving, although we certainly do not know for how long. To look at them, you would never think they had a problem. Everyday seems to be a good day for them!

Bambi is a female greyhound who was returned to us near death with horrible kidney levels. She was initially sustained with IV fluids until she became more stable. Our staff members, Pat Thomas and her husband, John, fell in love with her and took her in. They devoted a lot of time into researching a diet that would promote good kidney health for Bambi and she is now doing wonderfully. We are fortunate to see Bambi every day in our office. She strolls around quite a bit but also spends a significant period of time sleeping (and looking really cute while doing it). Pat's system of feeding is listed below.

Bambi's Kidney Disease Diet

Morning and Evening Meal
Make a large batch, freeze and use as needed.

4-5 pounds chicken thighs with skin (baked in a small amount of water). Use meat, skin and all juices. Cut up fine.


2.3 lbs 75-80% ground beef (sauteed in a small amount (1T) butter or olive oil.) Use meat with all drippings. Do not overcook. Do not use margarine or vegetable oil.

6 cups fresh steamed veggies or canned (no-salt or rinse before using
) Use a combination of carrots, peas, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, diced tomatoes, green beans, spinach or broccoli. I do not use corn. Bambi loves kale sauteed with diced bacon. She also likes oven-roasted sweet potatoes, squash and carrots that were drizzled with olive oil, baked and mashed. Cooking vegetables leaches out the phosphorous.

4 cups cooked white rice, white pasta, barley or quinoa.

1/2 cup dried cranberries (not cran-raisins).
Bambi loves cheese, so I stir in a small amount of cheddar.

The idea is to make it tasty.

When I serve it to her, I add water and microwave 30 seconds, so she can lick up some liquid to get her started eating. If she is uninterested, then I drizzle on some blackstrap molasses, honey or pure maple syrup. Maple syrup and blackstrap molasses provide extra iron.

I place a fish oil tablet, Vitamin E tablet, glucosamine supplement and B complex tablet in her morning food.

Water should always be made available.

Bambi's Midday Snack

She loves yogurt (plain or blueberry) sometimes with a small amount of peanut butter stirred in. Plus she loves apples, kiwi, mango and pears. Sometimes I make her fresh applesauce with yams.

For treats she eats freeze dried sweet potatoes, fig bars (figs are a good iron source) and ginger snaps (ginger settles the stomach). Occasionally she gets cottage cheese with pineapple.

I avoid flaxseed because of the Omega 6 which she should not get. I also avoid bone meal. Since she eats a lot of yogurt, I do not give her additional calcium. Nor do I give her a multivitamin so to limit vitamins A and D.

Occasionally Bambi will not want to eat in the morning because of nausea. I give her a Pepto-Bismal tablet and in a few minutes she will usually eat some yogurt to settle her stomach and then about an hour later she eats her regular food. A walk around the block also seems to help her settle.

When you are cooking for your dog, you can keep track of the calories you are feeding. I try to make sure Bambi is getting about 1000 calories a day.

We also are treating Yogi, who will be 7 years old on March 13, 2011. He was one of 13 galgo puppies raised by my wife, Gerda Wolf. Yogi came to us looking rather poor at 61lbs. We worked really hard for three weeks and were able to get his weight up to 69lbs, although most of his food was administered via forcefeeding. He is now home with his family, Steve and Betty Swavely. He is eating on his own and looking very good at 67lbs. Thanks to his weight gain and from his specialized diet, his blood levels have improved. The Swavely's diet is listed below.

Yogi's Diet

Chicken and Squash

1 family pack of chicken legs
2-3 large butternut squash

Peel and cube squash. Place in cooking pot adding water till just covered. Cook until tender.

Place chicken legs in a baking dish. Add enough water to make broth which is then added to the squash. Bake until golden brown. Remove from bones pulling apart into small pieces. Add chicken and broth to squash.

Note: For variety, add potatoes and/or sweet potatoes

Filled Pepper Stew

1 family pack of beef (73-80% fat) ~5lbs.
2 1/2 cups white rice
4 green peppers
1 large can tomato sauce
2 cans tomato soup

Cut peppers into slices, then in half. Cook peppers, hamburger, and rice together in cooking pot. When finished, add tomato sauce and soup. Yogi will also eat the peppers stuffed but the stew is easier.

Other foods given include:

Skinned and sliced apples (dip in peanut butter or honey)
Yogurt with cranberries
Cottage cheese with pineapples
Pineapple slices
Cream cheese on crackers (no wheat)
Vanilla wafers
Spiced wafers
Buttered white bread (real butter)
Various cooked vegetables
Boiled egg whites

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10901 Dutton Road
Philadelphia, PA

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