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Hypothyroidism is a common problem in dogs, but rarely occurs in cats. This condition occurs when not enough thyroid hormones are produced by the body. Hypothyroidism causes a wide variety of symptoms, but is often suspected in dogs that have trouble with weight gain or obesity and suffer from hair loss and skin problems. It is easily diagnosed with a blood test that checks the level of various thyroid hormones. Most hypothyroid dogs respond readily to treatment with synthetic thyroid medication. Many dogs suffer from a low thyroid hormone level for years without treatment. If your dog has chronic recurrent skin problems, or unexplained weight gain, your pet may be suffering from hypothyroidism.
The incidence of hyperthyroidism in cats has increased remarkedly in the last 25 years. The reason for this is unknown, but probably due to multiple factors. The ingredients and types of foods fed, immunological factors, and environmental influences may be involved. If the thyroid gland produces excess amounts of the thyroid hormones, the condition called hyperthyroidism results.
The SNAP® Cortisol Test aids in the detection of canine Cushing's syndrome and Addison's disease and also helps our veterinarians monitor treatment and evaluate your pet's response to medication.
Cushing's disease is a serious disorder that results from the excessive production of cortisol by the adrenal glands. The course of Cushing's syndrome and its clinical signs progress slowly.
Addison's disease, once thought to be rare, is now suspected to be a more common canine endocrinopathy. In an animal with Addison's disease the body has a lack of glucocorticoid steroid and/or mineralocorticoid. The mineralocorticoid hormone is needed to regulate the body's water and electrolytes.
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