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Fluid Buildup in the Kidney Due to Kidney or Ureter Obstruction in Ferret

Hydronephrosis in Ferrets


Usually one-sided and occurring secondary to complete or partial obstruction of the kidney or ureter by kidney stones, tumor, trauma or disease, hydronephrosis causes fluid buildup in the ferret's kidney. It can be seen in either gender, though it is more common in young females, especially those that have been spayed, which may cause inadvertent cuts on the ureter during the procedure.


Symptoms and Types


Some ferrets may be without overt symptoms, while others may display one or many of the following:


  • Vomiting
  • Restlessness
  • Loss of appetite (anorexia)
  • Excessive thirst and urination (polydipsia and polyuria, respectively)
  • Blood in urine (hematuria)
  • Signs of uremia
  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Mouth sores
  • Lower back pain
  • Abdominal pain and distension




  • Any cause of ureteral obstruction, including stones, cancer, prostate disease, abscesses, cysts, blood clot, or other mass.
  • Inadvertent ligation of the ureter during spaying




Your veterinarian will perform a complete physical exam on your ferret after taking a thorough medical history, including recent activities that may have precipitated the symptoms. Standard laboratory tests include a blood chemical profile, a complete blood count, an electrolyte panel, and a urinalysis to rule out or confirm other causes of disease. Abdominal x-rays and an ultrasounds are a couple other important tools for diagnosing hydronephrosis and its underlying cause.