Skip to main content

What Causes High Levels of Sodium in My Dog's Blood?

What Causes High Levels of Sodium in My Dog's Blood?

If your veterinarian found that your dog has high levels of sodium in the blood, you may be wondering what may be causing this. The medical term for higher than normal levels of sodium in a dog's blood is hypernatremia. Sodium plays an important role in a dog's life such as regulating blood pressure, blood volume, transmitting nerve signals and maintaining the body's acid/base balance in check. While in normal levels sodium helps the dog's body carry out important functions, when concentrations in the blood are too high, it can be indicative of problems. Veterinarian Dr. Joanne Fernandez -Lopez reveals what can cause high sodium in dog's blood. 

Symtoms of anemia in dogs

 What Causes High Sodium in Dog's Blood?

There is a great variety of causes for low sodium in a dogs' circulatory system. Common causes are dehydration, decreased water intake, or even increase salt intake from high sodium diets or intravenous fluid therapy.

One very common cause is stomach and intestinal fluid loss from vomiting and diarrhea.Other mild forms may occur from insensitive fluid losses like panting, high ambient temperature and even fever.

Scroll to Continue

Discover More

setters

What Does it Mean for a Dog to "Honor The Point?"

A dog honoring the point, may sound like something quite complex, but in the world of hunting dogs, this term is quite popular. Discover what honoring means in dogs and the importance of a dog honoring another dog's point.

Screenshot 2022-06-24 152828

Examples of Stereotypical Behaviors in Dogs

If you are looking for examples of stereotypical behaviors in dogs, most likely you have heard about stereotypies and are looking for some concrete explanations. Discover in layman terms what stereotypies are in dogs along with several examples.

Screenshot 2022-06-23 151919

Ask the Vet: Is My Dog Done Giving Birth?

Whether your dog is done giving birth or not can be challenging to tell considering that it's not unusual for pregnant dogs to take their sweet time in delivering their babies. This is not really a time though for guessing, considering that not all deliveries go as planned.

Another cause is from "third spacing" losses. What this really means is movement of fluid to other areas outside of the vessels or circulatory system. It can occur in cases of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas that can also cause vomiting and inappetance) and peritonitis (infection or inflammation of the inside of the abdominal cavity wall and organs).

There is also a condition were aldosterone (a hormone from the adrenal gland responsible to control blood pressure and sodium in the body) is elevated which can be from kidney disease.

Your veterinarian may take a blood pressure to confirm hypertension, blood tests to identify abnormal values in your pet kidneys, identify the elevation in the sodium and submit urine tests. Please, contact your regular veterinarian if you have further questions or concerns. Your veterinarian will provide further diagnostics and treatment recommendations according to how severe is your pet's sodium levels and current symptoms.

About the author 

Dr. Joanne Fernandez-Lopez is an emergency veterinarian on staff in the Emergency and Critical Care Department at Florida veterinary Referral Center (FVRC).

joanne fernandez

Originally from Puerto Rico, Dr. Joanne Fernandez-Lopez graduated from North Carolina State University – College of Veterinary Medicine in Raleigh, NC. Prior to joining FVRC, Dr. Fernandez-Lopez worked in small animal general practice and as a relief doctor in South East Florida. Her professional interests include dermatology, surgery, internal medicine, preventive medicine, reptile medicine and practice management.

In her free time, Dr. Fernandez-Lopez enjoys relaxing at the beach, paddle boarding, kayaking, and surfing. She has a small Tibetan spaniel mix named Carlitos.

[otw_is sidebar="otw-sidebar-1"]

Related Articles