Protection Dogs & Thyroid Glands

CC Protection Dogs, Belgian Malinois

A condition resulting from the malfunctioning of the thyroid gland, leading to too little circulation of the hormone it produces. Idiopathic Hypothyroidism is one of the most common types seen in animals. This type of hypothyroidism is characterized by the absence of any biological reason for the malfunctioning gland. Familial thyroid inflammation – thyoiditis – is a close second. When left untreated, hypothyroidism can turn into a debilitating disease while it is curable, if treated properly.

Disease Symptoms

Initial symptoms of hypothyroidism include:

• Hair loss – tail or flank
• Desiccated, scaly skin
• Brittle hair that has lost its shine,
• Bleached coat
• Oily skin

When allowed to go untreated, other symptoms may develop. Your canine will:

• Become overweight and lethargic
• Look for warm places to settle down
• Have cold, clammy skin
• Experience a drop in libido
• Go through a protracted anestrus or an abbreviated estrus

Disease Identification

Prior to diagnosis, your veterinarian will run a blood test and then prescribe medication on confirmation of the disease. Soloxine – Levothyroxine Sodium –tablets are a vet’s usual preference for this disease. He will most likely direct you to administer the tablets, once or twice daily.
Improvement in health is expected within two to four weeks while the dog’s coat will take longer to heal – it could take as less as one month to as long as six months, based on his hair growth rate.
Following Up
After a time of four to six weeks, go in and hand over a blood sample to your veterinarian as part of the follow up procedure. After the blood test, he might adjust the dose, so that proper thyroid blood levels are reached. Routine check-ups are required, if you want to keep your Protection Dog healthy and happy.