Q: Please help with dog struvite crystals.
Can you recommend a homemade recipe for feeding my 9-year-old, 50-pound mixed breed with crystals in her urine? (I am not sure what kind but I think from what I have read they are struvite.) I started her on Hill’s prescription food-CD 2 days ago but now I read that I should have introduced it gradually. Is this accurate? Can I make homemade food that is better than the prescription food for this problem? And one more–can I feed her the CD dry food without mixing it with water?
A: First of all, we are not veterinarians and you should always check with your own veterinarian before you do anything that could affect your dog’s health.
We do have a dog who had been diagnosed with struvite crystals a few years go. This response is solely based on our experience. Keep in mind that every animal is different, just like every human, and your dog’s doctor will know his patient the best. There may be other issues that the doctor is best suited to handle.
With that said, our dog was started on the CD diet and has been eating this dog food ever since. We did a lot of our own research online and even corresponded with other dog health providers for information. One source told us that the CD food is purposely salty, which causes the animal to drink more water, and that water intake is helpful to remedy the struvites.
Different sources will tell you differently about the food. As we are not pet nutritionists nor vets, so it is beyond us to offer a recommendation about homemade dog food.
Our dog eats the CD dry.
We also give him some dark meat chicken every night with his food. Research indicates that struvites dissolve in acidic urine, and dark meat chicken helps to promote acidic urine. There are other foods that will do the same. Wheat is another one. So while many dog owners are complaining about wheat in their dog treats and looking for exotic flours with which to make dog treats, we make simple wheat-based treats using the dog treat mix from K9Cakery.com.
See struvite stones for a list of urine-acidifying foods.
The dog has not had a recurrence of the struvites in what is somewhere between five to six years since he was first diagnosed. He is about 12 years old and runs 2-3 miles daily. He is a very happy and content animal!
Dog struvite crystals are one of the more common crystals that can develop in dog urine. Fortunately, they are highly dissolvable in acidic urine. The other common crystal is called calcium oxalate. Typically, the oxalates develop as bladder stones that require surgery for removal. Oxalates are not easily dissolved.
An excellent source about this issue is this website written by a veterinarian with extensive knowledge in this area: 2ndchance.info