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Until recently, surgical removal was the only method of treating urinary calculi (stones). While certain types of stones still must be removed by surgery, many can be dissolved with special diets. These diets contain smaller amounts of highly digestible proteins to decrease ammonium ion formation during digestion, small amounts of phosphorous and magnesium to decrease mineral crystals in the urine, and larger amounts of salt to increase thirst and urine production. In addition, these diets cause your pet to produce acid urine so that calculi are less likely to form again.
With these diets, signs of urinary discomfort usually disappear within 7-10 days, and stones are actually dissolved within 4-16 weeks (average 8 weeks). The speed at which stones dissolve is determined by both their size and number. Unfortunately the diets DO NOT always work. There are several reasons why this may happen but one of the most important is that there are types of stones that are not effected by the diet.
Important Points in Treatment
1. Allow free access to clean, fresh water at all times.
2. Feed only the prescribed diet. Do not give any table scraps, meat, liver, breakfast cereals, vegetables, milk, cheese, eggs, calcium tablets or vitamin/mineral supplements.
3. Your pet will urinate more frequently with this diet, so be sure your pet is exercised frequently and has the opportunity to urinate.
4. Feed as follows:
5. Pets that are reluctant to eat the prescription diet may appreciate the food more if it is warmed or flavored with small amounts of garlic or onion powder.
6. It may be necessary to mix the prescription diet with your pet's normal diet. Then gradually decrease the amount of the normal diet offered while increasing the amount of prescription diet. Do this over a 10-day period.
Notify the Doctor if Any of the Following Occur:
* Your pet refuses to eat the prescription diet.
* Your pet's problem continues after 14 days.
* Your pet seems unable to urinate.
___ Please make an appointment for follow-up radiographic (x-ray) evaluation.