Maintaining Kidney Health

How many of you think about the health of your pets kidneys?

I didn’t until July of 2011 when my 12 year old Golden Retriever, Josephine, became very ill.

She was diagnosed with an enlarged kidney which the Dr. said was an infection. Sadly Josephine

only lived until September of 2011. Her health crisis was the catalyst that sent me down the path that I am still on.

The path of raw feeding and Naturopathy.


Kidney health depends on RPTs, but what are RPTs?

The most delicate parts of your pet’s kidneys are the Renal Proximal Tubules (RPTs). The RPT’s job of cleaning blood means it works to sort through smaller molecules in the blood, reabsorbing molecules that your pet needs while removing waste products from the body.

For all types of mammals, RPTs reclaim vital nutrients such as sodium, chloride, calcium, phosphate, glucose, amino acids, bicarbonate, citrate, triglycerides, and water. RPTs remove waste products like urea, directing it into the urine for elimination. RPTs also regulate the blood’s oxygen content by sensing oxygen saturation levels. When levels are low, they send out requests to circulating red blood cells to fix the low oxygen levels.

An RPT’s function can be viewed not only as a filter but also as a barrier between blood and waste products. As RPTs separate blood and waste, they create both concentration and electrical gradients required for essential kidney function. 1

“Functioning kidneys are vital to your dog’s health. They remove waste products from the blood via the urine. And they regulate hormone function, including vitamin D.

Feeding kidneys supports kidney health …  and could help prevent or slow the onset of kidney disease in your dog. ” 2

One food that is very good for the kidneys is green tripe from ruminant animals. When I had Josephine I did not know about green tripe and often wonder if she may have lived longer if I had.

”Pets with kidney problems need a medium to high protein, high fat and low to no phosphorous diet, but often lack in appetite.
As pets love tripe, when given a healthy serving of this protein and its perfect phosphorus/calcium ratio, mid level protein levels and slightly acidic Ph, it makes it perfect for ill as well as healthy pets.
Feeding a protein source such as tripe that is highly digestible is likely more beneficial to pets with kidney problems than the low protein, hard to digest prescription diets that so many pets are given and that are so lacking in complete nutrition.” 3

Since my experience with Josephine, I have paid more attention to the health of my current dogs’ kidney health. I make sure they get the nutrition and the minerals they need in their raw diet.

I  feed raw kidney several times per month with lots of tripe at every meal. More on tripe in a future blog.

Update: Here is a link for the blog on tripe.

“What Is The Stink On Green Tripe” – Joyfully Healthy Pets



  1. Dr. Zach Bush MD

2. Dr. Patricia Jordan DVM

3. 4 Raw Pets

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Joy Eriksen CSAN

Certified Small Animal Naturopath

My name is Joy Eriksen and I am a Certified Small Animal Naturopath. My passion is helping people with their companion animals. Keeping them healthy and vibrant for a long and happy life.

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