Unsuspecting dog owners may not be able to detect hypothyroid disorders in their pets.This disease is very hard to diagnose because its symptoms is quite similar to several other diseases. The most common symptom of hypothyroidism in dogs is the notable changes in their skin and hair. If your pet starts to shed more hair than it used to, then the chances are high that it is suffering from hypothyroidism. Shedding occurs because inadequate amount of hormones are released by the thyroid gland. As a result, hair only grows in selected parts of the body sporadically. Dogs usually shed hair on their legs and back.
But aside from shedding of hair, you will also notice that the new hair growing on your pet is a little dull, flaky, and scruffy. And as far as their skins are concerned, they are a more sensitive than they were before. Hypothyroidism makes their skin irritated even to the simplest allergens. It is also possible to see something black showing on their skin somewhere in the groin area. Your pet will also be noticeably itchy and suddenly developed more than one infections and allergic reactions to something. Even their toenails suffer because it becomes weak until they break off naturally. Sometimes, their toenails go off due to infection.
There are also high chances that the dogs suffering from this disease are infertile. It becomes hard for female dog owners to determine whether their pet is in a fertile state or just in heat. False pregnancy may also tend to occur. On the other hand, male dogs with thyroid diseases have decreased craving for mating. They also tend to have lowered sperm levels.
Aside from the skin, hair, and fertility issues, dogs with hypothyroidism also go through some weight issues. Hypothyroidism may cause dogs to gain additional weight. Most owners mistake this occurrence as a result of a change in their diet, loss of exercise, and several other factors.
To treat hypothyroid, veterinarians usually prescribe oral medications. Such medications trigger the production of the thyroid hormone that your pet can't produce anymore. The dosage of the drug is determined by the actual reduction in the hormone. But even while in medication, dogs can still lead their everyday life normally. The only downside of the medication is that your dog has to take it for the rest of its life from that point on. And every 6 months, they have to visit the veterinarian so that their thyroid levels are tested. The result of the test will guide the vet in determining your pet's course of treatment. He could lessen or increase the dosage of the drug, depending upon the dog's present condition.
A dog with hypothyroidism has weakened endocrine system. For those who are not familiar with the endocrine system, it is the body structure that regulates the weight, temperature, memory, weight, muscles, and several other processes as well. A weakened endocrine system means that your pet's whole body system suffers.
There are two types of hypothyroidism: autoimmune thyroiditis and lymphocytic thyroiditis. Autoimmune thyroiditis affects the thyroid glands directly while lymphocytic thyroiditis is a condition wherein the body can't produce enough thyroid hormone for the body to use. But even if there are two kinds of hypothyroidism, the same symptoms and the same mode of treatment applies.