Liver Disease in Dogs

Your dog’s liver is an important organ. It aids digestion and blood clotting, as well as removing toxins from the body. It has the potential to make your companion sick if it isn’t working properly. However, liver disease is frequently curable and managed.


The signs and symptoms of liver disease are easy to overlook. They’re similar to those used to solve other issues.

Symptoms in your dog could include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Increased thirst
  • An unstable walk
  • Increased need to pee
  • Confusion
  • Yellowish eyes, tongue, or gums (jaundice)
  • Signs of weakness
  • Blood in their pee or poop
  • Seizures
  • Ascites (a buildup of fluid in the belly)

If your dog’s liver disease isn’t caught early, it can lead to a serious brain condition called hepatic encephalopathy.

Also read about:Dogs with Kidney Issues

What Causes Liver Problems

Liver disease can develop as a result of aging. Sometimes it’s a matter of genetics. Infection or damage to the area might also cause it. The liver of your dog might be harmed by certain disorders and drugs.

Other factors that can cause liver disease include:

  • Some plants and herbs such as ragwort, certain mushrooms, and blue-green algae
  • Leptospirosis, a bacterial disease dogs can get through direct contact with urine from infected animals or through water, soil, or food contaminated with their urine
  • Molds that grow on corn
  • Untreated heartworms
  • Diabetes
  • Issues with the pancreas
  • Use of painkillers
  • Fatty foods

If your dog is showing signs of liver disease, your veterinarian may inquire about their diet and medications. To gain a picture of what’s going on with your dog’s liver, the vet may order blood tests, X-rays, or an ultrasound. They may also want to do a biopsy, which involves removing a tiny sample of tissue for testing.


The treatment for your dog will be determined by how quickly you identify the problem and what caused it. A veterinarian will examine the liver to determine the extent of the damage.

Diet changes often help: Your dog may require a particular diet to ensure that he or she receives the nutrients and calories required to support his or her liver.

Supplements: SAM-E or milk thistle supplements may aid in liver recovery.

Antibiotics: Are used to treat liver infections. You may also need to adjust or lower the dose of your dog’s other medications.

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