Hypothyroidism is a common endocrine disorder that affects dogs. Canine hypothyroidism is known to affect both male and female dogs equally. It is found to be more common in certain breeds. Most conditions of hypothyroidism in dogs are due to autoimmune reactions and it is due to the presence of thyroid antibodies in the blood.
The body’s immune system wrongly identifies the thyroid cells as invaders and produces antibodies to attack the thyroid gland. This affects the working of the thyroid gland and the production of thyroid hormones gets reduced.
Canine hypothyroidism begins at puberty and found to increase with aging. The symptoms include weight gain, skin dryness, pus filled lesions on the skin, infertility, slow heart rate, neurological problems, muscle weakness, unprovoked aggression, shortness of breath, fatigue, joint pain, moodiness, hearing loss, depression, fearfulness, ear inflammation, and irritability.
Hypothyroidism is diagnosed with blood test and low levels of thyroid hormones T4 and T3 are to be looked for. This can be confirmed by the presence of antibodies.
A combination of genetic and environmental factors is responsible for the autoimmune disorders in Dogs. Golden retrievers are at high risk for autoimmune hypothyroidism. Higher level of iodine salts found in dog foods is responsible for the development of autoimmune hypothyroidism in dogs.
Natural remedies are getting more popular for treatment of canine hypothyroidism. Here are some natural remedies for canine hypothyroidism that have found to be helpful:
Bladderwack (Kelp) -- This is a sea vegetable and considered as useful as a natural remedy. Kelp grown near heavily traveled beaches may be contaminated. This is to be avoided.
Astragalas -- This is a Chinese remedy used for revitalizing the endocrine system
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