The Dalmatian Dog and Hyperuricemia: Treatment of the Uric Acid Problem

Dog owner question

"Hi! I am trying to put together a diet for my Dalmatian dog and I have read that the Dalmatian is prone to hyperuricemia. What exactly does this mean and how can I prevent or treat this problem?"

Veterinarian's reply

"Hi! Hyperuricemia (overproduction of uric acid) means that the dog's blood uric acid levels are too high.

Dalmatians are genetically predisposed to this problem because their bodies break down and filter uric acid differently.

Uric acid is normally converted into allantoin in the dog's body, which the kidneys can easily excrete. In the Dalmatian breed, however, this process does not work properly, which can lead to a build-up of uric acid and consequently to urinary retention.

Dalmatian 3

The formation of uric acid calculi can be prevented mainly by a special diet.

Most uric acid comes from proteins, especially meat and certain legumes.

The diet of dogs with high uric acid levels should be based on low purine foods.

This diet contains high quality protein but low purine levels – this means that it should contain more vegetable protein and less meat protein. Low purine foods include eggs, milk and cheese, as well as cereals and vegetables.

It is important to remember that most purines are found in animal organs such as the liver and kidneys, so avoid these in your Dalmatian's diet!

Also, your Dalmatian dog needs enough fluids to excrete uric acid crystals through urine, so always provide fresh water for your dog.

It's also worth adding that diet alone is not always enough to treat hyperuricemia, so it's worth checking your dog's uric acid levels regularly with your vet, who may also recommend medication if necessary!

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Finally, remember that all dogs are individuals and what works for one may not work for another.

That's why it's important to seek personalised advice from your vet, and together you can work out a diet and treatment plan that works best for your Dalmatian."