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bladder stones

by Zoe

My dog has had bladder stones. Luckily it is the type that can be dissolved with special food, no surgery. Anyone know a special homemade diet low in protein with salt, carbs. ok. She hates the vets. food and I need help.


Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

Zoe, I am so glad that you asked that question! Theo is on Rx diet for the same (although he likes his food), and Toby is on Rx for high protein levels which were observed when we adopted him last year. I have been wondering the same (as our kitty is also on Rx food for bladder.) I don't mean to hone in on your question, but have been wondering the same exact thing: is there anything I can make? Not only would they enjoy this, but it may help stretch the costly Rx food. Does it strike any one odd that my vet has all three of my pets on Rx food? I really like him, and have no knowldege to base a disagreement on, but sometimes I wonder if that is a legitimate "cure-all." Thanks ahead of time for your input!

Hi Zoe and Beverly. I am a veterinarian and fellow Maltese owner in Milwaukee,WI. Bladder stones can have serious complications if they are not dissolved or surgically removed. A prescription diet made by Science Diet called c/d is the only food I know of that can potentially dissolve struvite bladder stones. Science Diet does have available the recipies for compatable homeade diets for some of their foods, but I don't know if there is one for the c/d food. You would need to ask your veterinarian if he/she has that available. This food is not a cure-all though, in some dogs it does not dissolve the stones and surgery is still required. The most important aspect of the c/d food is that it acidifies the urine (lowers the pH), but there are drugs available that can do this also. The food comes in a canned form also if you have not tried that. Good luck.

Zoe, sorry to hear about the stones. I had to go through some pretty tough times with "Baby" because she did need two sugeries. One to remove the stone and another to remove some grains left behind. She was 7 at the time. She was asking to go out every 2 to 5 minutes! It was so sad. Then came the blood in her urine. Her stones were called struvite stones caused by too much acid in her urine. What you want is an alkaline urine. You must ask your vet when he does a urinalysis what she has. She is on Hill's Prescription Diet Canine U/D and nothing else!!! I make her treats with this horrible smelling food by grinding it up and mixing garlic and onion power to it. Then water to make a soft dough and then I spread it on tin foil and bake it outside on the grill. It smells up the whole neighborhood. I do this in the winter also when I run out which I dread. What else can I do??? I'll do anything to make her happy. She loves those treats! She can have those Boodle sticks to chew on because they are made of cornstarch and they do not digest them. I have read that alot of pet owners do not care for them. We only give that to her very seldom. I hope I have been of some help to you..good luck!

Hi Marilyn. I just read your reply and correct me if I'm wrong, but the U/D food is generally used for dogs who have calcium oxalate crystals and not struvite. Also, calcium oxalate crystals are NOT dissolvable by any food and the U/D food is used to prevent them from reoccuring after they have been surgically removed. The other information you gave concerning the pH of the urine also supports calcium oxalate crystals. Please post a reply. Thanks, Anna.

Dear Dr. Anna, thank you for correcting me on what Baby has. That's why Jay makes that statement on the beginning of each post! We lay people are not always correct! I was trying to find some info from the vet on Baby but I did have a letter from Hill's Prescription that I thought told me correctly. I guess not! Yes, when I bring in Babys's urine for urinalysis it does have crystals. We are hoping she is not working on another stone. The vet thinks there might be another one forming but it's still to little. Am I doing the correct thing on the diet side? I have asked this question afew months ago but got no responces. Thank you very much!

Hi again Marilyn. If the stones that were removed were analyzed and found to be calcium oxalate in composition, then the U/D food is the correct food to be feeding. The struvite stones will also form crystals in the urine, but they look differently from calcium oxalate crystals and your veterinarian should be able to tell you what kind of crystals/stones you are dealing with. Keep in mind that struvite crystals in the urine can be a normal finding and does not necessarily mean your dog has stones. Calcium oxalate crystals in the urine are a different story, they more often are an indicator that stones are forming or present. I have had bad luck with my patients eating the U/D food also, I don't think it tastes very good. But if it will help prevent painful bladder stones, as long as your pet is not losing weight, I would continue to feed it.

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