CHRONIC kidney disease is a commonly encountered problem in small animal practice and is typically progressive, resulting in significant morbidity and mortality in both cats and dogs. Initial renal damage can result from a large number of infectious, immune‐mediated, congenital, metabolic, neoplastic, traumatic and obstructive disease processes, and some forms (eg, urinary tract obstruction) can be reversed if treated promptly. Common causes of renal damage include renal ischaemia or exposure to nephrotoxins (eg, aminoglycosides, ethylene glycol). As chronic renal disease progresses, more and more nephrons become non-functional and clinical signs of renal failure become apparent. This article highlights the key markers of renal function, discusses the common consequences of chronic kidney disease and outlines some renoprotective therapies.
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