Everything You Need to Know About Dog Hyperthyroidism

Everything You Need to Know About Dog Hyperthyroidism

Thyroxine is one of the hormones that the thyroid glands produce. The overproduction of these hormones by the glands in hyperthyroid canines brings various metabolic issues. Dogs can get hyperthyroidism, even though it is a condition that affects them very rarely. When it happens, your dog might experience some severe health problems as a result. Rapid action is required to achieve the best outcomes from treatment for hyperthyroidism, which poses a severe health risk.

What functions does a dog’s thyroid serve?

The thyroid in your dog’s neck produces a host of vital hormones that help control your dog’s metabolism and body temperature.

What is hyperthyroidism?

A pet can experience weight loss, anxiety, diarrhea, and other symptoms when its body overproduces the thyroid hormone. Usually affecting older animals, hyperthyroidism is most likely caused by a combination of circumstances.

What canine hyperthyroidism symptoms are there?

Many dogs will show almost no symptoms in the early stages of the condition or may only have a bump on the underside of their neck. When symptoms become apparent, they may include:

  • Cardiomyology (enlarged heart)
  • Change in bark
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Problems swallowing
  • Dyspnea (shortness of breath)
  • Enlargement of thyroid
  • Excessive water intake
  • Facial swelling
  • Frequent urination
  • Gagging and vomiting
  • Heart murmur
  • Hyper-excitability
  • An increased amount of stool
  • Increased appetite
  • Swelling under neck
  • Weight loss

How is hyperthyroidism in dogs diagnosed?

An appropriate blood test that detects thyroid hormones can quickly and readily identify hyperthyroidism. Your dog may have a tissue sample removed and examined under a microscope if the doctor discovers a lump in the neck region. Further pet checkups, such as diagnostic imaging, might be essential if a tumor is found to determine its extent.

What treatment options are there?

Depending on the seriousness of the individual case and the underlying factor, there are three main types of treatment utilized to deal with hyperthyroidism in dogs.

Drug Prescription

The synthesis of thyroid hormones is suppressed by medication when a pet owner selects a non-invasive treatment. The problem often goes away by preventing the body from producing more hormones in the pet. A veterinarian internist can manage hyperthyroidism with the aid of medicines. However, if thyroid carcinoma is to blame, several variables, such as the stage at which it is discovered, will affect the likelihood of recovery. Navigate through this veterinary internist near me page if your dog needs a specialist for hyperthyroidism.


When a thyroid tumor in a dog is surgically removed, the results are typically excellent as long as it’s easy to move, is less than 4 cm in size, and has not yet migrated to other sections of your pet’s body. Surgery entails the veterinarian’s total removal of the thyroid gland, albeit this is often only done when more than one gland creates problems. This way, the body retains one functioning thyroid gland. The opposite condition, hypothyroidism, may develop if both thyroid glands are removed. Click here to learn more about veterinary surgeries.

Close Monitoring

Other treatment methods are more comprehensive, necessitating monitoring of animals and their prolonged stay in a veterinary facility. Depending on the stage of thyroid cancer, the size of the tumor, and the degree to which neighboring tissue is affected, other treatments, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and iodine therapy, may also be utilized, either alone or in combination.

What is the prognosis for canine hyperthyroidism patients?

The prognosis for dogs with thyroid cancer or hyperthyroidism is favorable when detected and treated early. With the proper care, many dogs can live for one to three years with a good quality of life. Surgery is curative when a benign tumor is present. Treating a malignant thyroid tumor might be difficult and depend on a few factors. However, dogs might develop hypothyroidism after a thyroidectomy, characterized by low thyroid hormone levels. To cure hypothyroidism, dogs need a long-term thyroid supplement.


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