Hypothyroidism in Dogs

Thyroid gland is located in the neck. It produces thyroxine, a hormone that regulates metabolism (the process of turning food into fuel). The thyroid gland does not produce enough of that hormone in hypothyroidism.

It’s a condition that affects a lot of pets. Golden retrievers, Labrador retrievers, Doberman pinschers, Irish setters, dachshunds, boxers, and cocker spaniels are among the breeds affected. It mainly affects dogs in their middle years (ages 4 to 10) that are of medium to large breeds. Neutered males and spayed females are also at an increased risk, though veterinarians aren’t sure why.

It’s thought that your dog’s immune system targets their thyroid in some cases of hypothyroidism. Other factors include thyroid gland shrinking and, although rare, a thyroid tumor. Symptoms and treatments are the same regardless of the reason.


Hair loss, usually on your dog’s trunk, back of the rear legs, and tail, is a sign of hypothyroidism. Their coat will be drab and flaky, with flaky skin that isn’t scratchy or inflamed (which is usually tied to fleas or an allergic reaction). They may also have black skin spots. Weight increase (despite a decreased appetite), muscle loss, sluggishness, a slowed heart rate, toenail and ear infections, and cold intolerance are all symptoms that follow. Hypothyroidism is linked to seizures, heart and blood vessel disorders, and infertility, though it’s not common.

A battery of blood tests will be performed by your veterinarian to make a diagnosis.


The good news is that this illness isn’t fatal. It’s also rather simple and inexpensive to treat. Your dog will need to take drugs every day for the remainder of his life. Levothyroxine, often known as L-thyroxine, is a man-made hormone. Each dog’s dose is different.

The condition will have an impact on your dog’s quality of life if left untreated.

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