Dogs with kidney disease may eat peanut butter, with some precautions. Peanut butter can help a dog with hypoglycemic effects of kidney disease, and it can be an allergic trigger in some dogs. Owners should check for additives, including sugar and salt, before feeding peanut butter to a dog.
Dogs with kidney disease need a diet that will not further stress their kidneys. This generally means a diet with less sugar and foods with reduced protein and low phosphorus. Peanut butter is one nut that is low in phosphorus. The purpose of the kidneys is to clean the bloodstream of waste products so toxins do not stay in the system. Symptoms of kidney disease include excessive thirst, increased urination, lethargy and loss of appetite. Sometimes a dog that is reluctant to eat or take medicine can be enticed with the smell of peanut butter.
The best peanut butter for dogs is an organic, low-sodium, additive-free product. Peanut butter contains vitamins H and E. Vitamin H improves the sheen in a dog's coat, strengthens the nails and is good for the skin. Vitamin E is an immune system enhancer. These factors make it a good treat for dogs with kidney disease since the dog's coat will become less healthy and the dog will have a decreased ability to fight off infection.
Peanut butter has been a factor in dog food recalls. The problem has been associated with mold growth, which causes toxins that feed yeast and sicken the dog. Some pet owners keep peanut butter refrigerated to keep it fresh. It is a good idea to watch the expiration date as well.
Dogs can have food allergies. A dog that is compromised with kidney disease may respond to the scent of peanut butter and be encouraged to eat or swallow a pill. However, be sure to monitor your pet for a reaction--usually itching skin or ears and hot spots. If these symptoms appear, it is best to discontinue the peanut butter. Many dog treats contain wheat as well as peanut butter. An allergic reaction could be due to either food.
Dogs with kidney disease need to follow a diet that supports their elimination process. If the dog does not have allergies, it is generally seen as safe to offer peanut butter that is mold-free and has no added sugar or salt. Peanut butter is high in fat and should be offered in small amounts.