Pets and peritoneal dialysis

young black couple with dog

For most of us, pets are family. Bringing dialysis treatments home does not mean having to find a new one for your animal buddy.

Peritoneal dialysis (PD), otherwise known as home dialysis, allows ESRD patients to dialyze at home. Dialyzing at home, as opposed to a dialysis clinic offers patients the benefit of having their four-legged friends with them at the same time.

Here are some tips for pet lovers to stay safe while performing dialysis at home:

  • Keep pets in another room during treatments, especially when you are connecting to and disconnecting from the machines. Curious paws and puppy-sharp teeth can find their way to dialysis machine tubing.
  • If possible, keep supplies and machine in a different room. Keep the door to that room closed.
  • Wash your hands frequently, especially after feeding and cleaning up after your pet, and most importantly before you connect or disconnect from your dialysis machine.
  • Keep pet nails short to avoid scratches. Scratches can spread disease.
  • If you have a cat or bird, have someone else in your life clean the litter box or bird cage, so that you avoid exposure to bacteria that could make you sick. Also, make sure the litter box and bird cage are not in the same room where you dialyze.
  • Frequently clean furniture and floors to reduce fur and dander.
  • Keep your pet healthy with regular visits to the vet.

With just a few simple adjustments, you can fit dialysis into your home life and enjoy all the benefits of better health, as well as the love of a furry friend.

white woman at computer with cat shutterstock 1071472322  1

My cats are my kids! I wouldn't throw them out on the street because I started PD. I figured it out and adjusted.

JF, a longtime peritoneal dialysis patient

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