July 8, 2022 by Pinnacle Pet
Have you ever heard someone talking about their dog’s thyroid condition and wondered what they mean by that? Or maybe your dog has experienced symptoms, and you don’t know what could be causing them. This week, we’ll be discussing hypothyroidism in dogs, what it means, and how breeders can responsibly breed to limit the spread of it.
Hypothyroidism is a hormonal imbalance that causes your dog difficulty in metabolizing its food. According to the OFA, “… [the] thyroid gland is not making enough of a hormone called thyroxine…”
The clearest signs of canine hypothyroidism are abnormal weight gain, hair loss, and skin problems. Generally, hypothyroidism in dogs first appears between 2-5 years of age. If you suspect your dog has a thyroid condition, you should bring it to a qualified veterinarian for diagnosis.
Once a veterinarian properly diagnoses your dog, the vet can prescribe your dog a thyroid supplement that will help manage the symptoms of hypothyroidism. While your dog will have to stay on the supplement, hypothyroidism is one of the diseases of least concern for your dog.
A vet can administer an autoantibody test after the onset of the disease. Although canine hypothyroidism is almost always genetically based, it can’t be detected until the disease manifests.
By having your dog tested for hypothyroidism and submitting data to the OFA, bloodlines most predisposed to the condition can be tracked. This data will, in turn, help responsible breeders make informed decisions in their breeding programs. These steps work to decrease the prevalence of the condition in future generations of dogs.
Want to learn more about the OFA? Read our blog explaining our support for the valuable work they do!