Important Facts About Kidney Enlargement In Cats That You Need To Know


Renomegaly or kidney enlargement in cats is actually a feline condition wherein one or both kidneys are unusually large, associated with the abnormal ultrasounds, palpitations, or x-rays. Further, the respiratory system, nervous system, urinary system, digestive system, and hormonal system are all affected on this condition. Additionally, this is not exclusive to just cats, dogs may also suffer from it. If you want to learn more about this feline condition, feel free to give this article a read.

Kidney Enlargement in Cats: What is this feline condition?

Renomegaly or kidney enlargement in cats is a feline condition wherein one or both of the kidneys experience an inflammation, swelling, fluid retention, or a strange growth. Further, these circumstances may cause the kidney/s to enlarge. This particular inflammation might be due to a variety of issues, some are fatal. Moreover, the enlargement may also be a warning indication of an acute or a chronic kidney failure.

In addition, the kidneys are important in filtering toxins and waste from the bloodstream, thus any condition, which impairs all their functions may rapidly have a negative effect on some other bodily functions. Some breeds are more susceptible to experiencing kidney issues, just like Siamese, Maine Coon, Burmese, and Persian cats. Any cat that experiences signs of kidney failure or kidney enlargement must be seen by a professional vet.

Causes of Renomegaly in Cats

The kidney enlargement in cats may be a symptom of various medical conditions. Furthermore, the kidneys might become inflamed due to serious illnesses, infections, or injury. Also, the injury might be associated with some other portions or organs of the renal system. Some of the most common causes of the kidney enlargement in cats include the following:

  • Injury or trauma
  • Amyloidosis
  • Kidney stones
  • Severe dehydration
  • Immune system diseases
  • Heart disease
  • Envenomation
  • Certain medicines
  • Some cancer medications
  • Toxins like solvents, antifreeze, as well as heavy metals
  • Certain cancers like lymphoma and leukemia
  • Polycystic kidney disease
  • Cysts
  • Poor blood flow on the kidneys
  • Blood clots
  • Urinary tract obstruction
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Feline leukemia virus
  • Parasite infestation
  • Bacterial infection

Symptoms of Renomegaly in Cats

The kidney enlargement in cats may cause a variety of symptoms, even though it is possible for the kidneys to get enlarged and the cat to be asymptomatic. In case the kidney is so enlarged, it might be possible for the cat to see or feel the swollen area. Furthermore, the symptoms that come with the enlarged kidney thoroughly resemble the symptoms of various serious medical illnesses. Any cats that experience symptoms like these must be seen by a vet immediately.

The symptoms of the condition may include the following:

  • Seizures
  • Anemia
  • High blood pressure level
  • Abdominal sensitivity to touch
  • Abdominal pain
  • Bad breath
  • Swelling on the area of the kidney/s
  • Abdominal mass, swelling, or bloating
  • Pale mucous membranes
  • Pale gums
  • Increased thirst
  • Blood in the urine, feces, or vomit
  • Discolored urine
  • Increase in the urination
  • Dehydration
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Apathy or depression
  • Weakness
  • Lethargy

Prognosis of Renomegaly in Cats

The diagnosis of the kidney enlargement in cats may be challenging, as the symptoms are quite the same with some other illnesses. Further, this is also because this condition may also be a symptom of various medical issues, it may need the vet to use multiple diagnostic techniques, in order to verify the enlargement of the kidneys, as well as to determine the primary cause. Make sure to prepare in providing the vet with the necessary info about the cat’s medical history. Moreover, a full physical examination might also be done. It is also possible for the vet to diagnose the enlargement of the kidney/s through a physical examination as the swelling is visible as well.

Some more diagnostic methods may likely to be used in determining what really is causing the kidney to get inflamed. Additionally, a blood panel, including CBC and a closer look on the phosphorus and creatinine levels is also common. Also, urinalysis  with certain attention on the blood and protein in the urine is also a good method in identifying the primary cause of the kidney condition. Many more examinations and labs may be conducted in the proper diagnosis of the condition.

Treatment for Renomegaly in Cats

In case the cat is experiencing renal or kidney failure, treatment may be needed immediately. The kidney failure might become lethal. Vet hospitalization might be necessary for a few days or even weeks, in order to stabilize and treat the cat. Moreover, medication might also be prescribed in treating the causal condition of the kidney enlargement in cats. However, medications may carry some risks as the kidneys are the ones responsible in the processing of any medication.

In addition, here are some of the most common treatment options that you can do for your cat:

  • Kidney transplant
  • Feeding therapy
  • Intravenous fluid
  • Surgical procedure or interventions
  • Dialysis


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