Cats & dogs with liver problems

From cancer to hepatitis, liver problems in dogs and cats can develop in a variety of forms, sometimes taking years to present themselves fully.

While a diagnosis of liver disease is news no pet parent wants to hear, feeding a natural, whole food diet can act as an incredible support to the liver, improving your pet’s health and wellbeing.

Balanced meals can play an important role in preventing and combatting future risks, helping to protect and detoxify this phenomenal organ.

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What causes liver problems in dogs & cats?

The liver is a highly complex, specialised organ, and is responsible for performing multiple essential functions in your pet’s body. One of its main jobs is to process everything that’s offered to the gut through a mechanism called ‘first pass’, handling every single particle that enters your pet’s mouth – amazing, right?

This clever organ carries out many more key duties, though. These include:

• Filtering and detoxifying the blood  •  Metabolising fat and carbohydrate  •  Storing vitamins, fat, and trace elements  •  Generating vital blood clotting proteins  •  Producing bile

Along with genetics, the following factors can contribute to the development of liver problems in dogs and cats: diet, physical trauma, medication, copper toxicity, viral infection, and endocrine disease.

Symptoms of liver problems in dogs & cats

• Lethargy  Diarrhoea  • Weight loss  • Excessive thirst and more frequent urination  • Dehydration  • Vomiting  • Swollen abdomen  • Jaundice  • Blood in stools or urine  • Disorientation

If you’re concerned your pet may be suffering from liver problems, it’s always best to consult your vet as a first step.


Supporting the liver with a whole food diet

The impact that diet can have on liver health makes sense: the liver is the first port of call for nutrients coming from the digestive system via the bloodstream. 

Poor-quality processed pet food often contains ingredients such as maize and corn, which are not biologically appropriate for the feline or canine species. Additionally, a diet featuring toxins such as artificial colours and preservatives gives the liver extra work detoxifying the blood – not ideal when combatting liver problems in dogs or cats.

In comparison, Hug’s carefully formulated whole food recipes contain high-quality protein, which aids in the maintenance of a healthy liver, along with nutrients that are often supplemented.


Aside from helping your pet avoid toxins, a whole food diet enables them to benefit from goodies such as omega-3 and glucosamine, which support good liver health, along with antioxidants, which can help reduce liver damage.


Whole foods are also naturally low in sodium and copper: in some cases of liver disease, these should be avoided in excess.

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Feeding your pet the best

As we know, everything from medication to artificial colourings can affect the liver. Whether you’re looking to prevent or treat liver disease, diet can have a remarkable impact on the liver’s condition and functionality.

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Need help choosing?

Hug food is designed to care for the health needs of every cat and dog. We only use high-quality, natural ingredients, ensuring each meal delivers optimal nutrition – and fantastic flavour.

If Hug’s raw or cooked meals aren’t for you, we also offer a brilliant cold pressed range for dogs. We only include premium bioavailable ingredients that are both natural and eco-friendly, using nourishing pea and rice porridge in place of the usual suspects like maize.

For guidance on the best recipes for specific health concerns, please get in touch – that’s what we’re here for.

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