Hypothyroidism in Dogs: Diagnosis and Treatment

What is It?

The thyroid gland regulates the body’s metabolic rate. Hypothyroidism is a condition caused by an underactive thyroid.

What Causes It?

Hypothyroidism typically results from lymphocytic thyroiditis or idiopathic thyroid gland atrophy.

Lymphocytic thyroiditis is an auto-immune disease, that signals the body that the thyroid gland is a foreign substance. This causes the body to try to illuminate the thyroid.

Idiopathic thyroid gland atrophy is a hereditary disease where the thyroid tissue gets replaced by fat tissue.

Atypically hypothyroidism can result from cancer or congenital abnormalities.

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What Are The Symptoms?

  • Obesity
  • Unexplained weigh gain
  • Depression
  • Lethargy
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Cold intolerance
  • Reproductive issues
  • Skin thickening
  • Changes in coat and skin

Is it Life Threatening?

No. As long as you address the condition and take proper steps, your dog should return to a happy life.

Are You Covered When Your Pup Gets Sick?

How is It Diagnosed?

Your vet will perform a physical exam and a history questionnaire of your dog. Bloodwork will be done to assess cholesterol levels and thyroid hormone levels.

What Are The Treatments?

Oral thyroid supplements will get your dog’s levels back to normal. Expect a least a single follow up bloodwork to make sure your dog is at the right level.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pup’s condition, please make an appointment with your veterinarian. Or, consult a virtual vet here.