CANINE THYROID DISEASE
How the thyroid works
The thyroid gland is a small butterfly-shaped gland, located just below the larynx, on the left and right side of the trachea and joined together by a narrow band of thyroid tissue.
A hormone from the pituitary gland (TSH) influences the thyroid gland, making sure it produces the right amount of hormones. The thyroid hormones are called T3 and T4 and are very important because they regulate the rate of metabolism. T4 is an inactive preliminary stage and T3 is the active thyroid hormone. Results of blood test may vary depending on the laboratory used. Therefore you should always compare them to the reference values on the lab form.
When the thyroid gland porduces too little thyroid hormone, we call this hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is quite common in dogs. It is estimated that 1 in 150-500 dogs have a thyroid that is not working fast enough. It occurs more often in large to medium breeds than it does in small breeds.
In most cases the thyroid disorder occurs later in life. Congenital hypothyroidism has been described, but it is rare. Affected pups show abnormal growth.
Hypothyroidism is rarely seen in cats.
There are 2 types of canine thyroid disorders:
- Autoimmune thyroiditis where the dog’s own immune systems attacks and destroys the thyroid gland. The period of destruction can last up to 3-4 years until the thyroid gland is so damaged that it produces too little thyroid hormone. There are some breeds predisposed to this disorder: e.a. Barsoi, Beagle,Doberman, Great Dane and Bobtail.
- Atrophy of the thyroid. Literally this means that the thyroid gland gets smaller and smaller (atrophy) The cause for this is still unknown.
With thyroid disorder symptoms can vary a lot. Usually the coat is affected. Hair loss on the tail, flanks or behind the ears. Hyperpigmentation of the skin, dry, somewhat flaky skin. Weight gain, drowsiness, lethargy, a general lack of interest, seeking out warm places to lie down, slow heart rate and infertility. Some extreme and less frequent symptoms are: muscle weakness, low body temperature, lameness and paralysis, a decreased strenght in heart muscle contractions.
Diagnosis of canine thyroid disorders
Diagnosis is made through a blood test. This is a relatively simple test that your vet can do. The concentration of thyroid hormone is measured.
When it is suspected that the cause of the hypothyroidism is auto immune related, the test can be extended with a test on autoantibodies. Dogs can suffer from both thyroid disorders at the same time.
Treatment of canine thyroid disorders
This consists of giving a special combination of minerals that are naturally produced by the body. This causes hormone production to be stabilized to normal values. Your dog’s body will react within several days to weeks. This depends on the severity and the amount of time your dog has been suffering from the condition. Sometimes the condition can worsen at the start of the treatment. This might seem serious, but it really is not. You can decrease the dosage temporarily.
The Thyroid tablets are an excellent alternative to e.a. Forthyron and L-thyroxine. There are no side effects. And therefore, if need be, it can be administered long term. The Thyroid tablets can be administered together with the Forthyron and L-thyroxine. Usually, after 2-3 weeks Forthyron and L-thyroxine are cut down with 25% per week.
|| 90 tablets
TM= Trade mark
Dosage tablets: dissolve in water and mix with food.
Up to ± 10 kg, twice a day 1 tablets.
Up to ± 25 kg, twice a day 2 tablets.
Over 25 kg, twice a day 3 tablets.
Results: within 1-3 weeks.
→ Description Thyroid tablets (incl. composition)