Effects of two commercial diets and two supplements on urinary pH in dogs

Inês Alcaide Igreja, Ana Luísa Lourenço, Johannes C M Vernooij, Ronald Jan Corbee*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND: Urinary pH manipulation by therapeutic foods or supplements is part of the treatment for urolithiasis. The effectiveness of these diets and supplements should be studied to determine which of these strategies is most effective.

HYPOTHESIS/OBJECTIVES: To assess the effect of the oral supplementation of potassium citrate, an ammonium chloride solution (Urical) and two dry therapeutic foods-Hill's® Prescription Diet® u/d® Canine (u/d diet) and Royal Canin® Urinary S/O dog (S/O diet)-on a dog's urinary pH at different time points over 8 h.

ANIMALS: Seven healthy adult male research beagle dogs.

METHODS: A prospective interventional study lasting 31 days. The dogs either received a supplement (potassium citrate or rical) with a dry adult maintenance diet (control diet) or the therapeutic diet (u/d diet or S/O diet). Each treatment had a duration of 2-5 days, with 2- to 4-day washout periods in between. Urinary pH measurements were performed every 2 h between 07h00 and 15h00, with the food being given at 07h00 and 15h00, right after urine collection. The pH measurements obtained in each of the four treatments were compared to control (same dogs fed the control diet exclusively).

RESULTS: When compared to the control diet at the same time points, biologically relevant changes in urinary pH (defined as ≥0.5) were: increase with potassium citrate at 7h00 and 13h00; increase with u/d diet at 9h00, 13h00, and 15h00; decrease with S/O diet at 9h00 and 11h00; Urical did not have a detectable effect on urinary pH.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL IMPORTANCE: The present study confirms that therapeutic foods S/O and u/d, and potassium citrate supplement affected acid-base balance in healthy adult male beagle dogs, with the tested diets being more effective than the administered doses of the tested supplements at influencing urinary pH.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2566-2575
Number of pages10
JournalVeterinary Medicine and Science
Issue number6
Early online date18 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023


  • Bladder
  • canine
  • food
  • nutrition
  • urine
  • urolithiasis


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