Chemokines, in concert with cytokines and adhesion molecules, play multiple roles in local and systemic immune responses. In the kidney, the temporal and spatial expression of chemokines correlates with local renal damage and accumulation of chemokine receptor-bearing leukocytes. Chemokines play important roles in leukocyte trafficking and blocking chemokines can effectively reduce renal leukocyte recruitment and subsequent renal damage. However, recent data indicate that blocking chemokine or chemokine receptor activity in renal disease may also exacerbate renal inflammation under certain conditions. An increasing amount of data indicates additional roles of chemokines in the regulation of innate and adaptive immune responses, which may adversively affect the outcome of interventional studies. This review summarizes available in vivo studies on the blockade of chemokines and chemokine receptors in kidney diseases, with a special focus on the therapeutic potential of anti-chemokine strategies, including potential side effects, in renal disease.