Hyperthyroidism in Dogs
The thyroid gland is an essential gland of the body located in the neck of dogs. It is responsible for producing essential thyroid hormones, especially the hormone thyroxine (T4). These hormones are responsible for carrying out numerous functions like regulating metabolism and maintenance of body temperature.
When a dog’s body starts producing an excess of thyroid hormones, the condition is called hyperthyroidism. It can have severe effects on a dog’s health. Hyperthyroidism is generally an indication of underlying Thyroid carcinoma.
There are many symptoms to detect hyperthyroidism in dogs. Unfortunately, most symptoms do not appear in the early stages. In some cases, only a small lump can be detected around the neck.
However, the following symptoms can be observed at later stages: Congestive heart failure, shortness of breath, heart murmurs, enlarged thyroid gland, vomiting, diarrhea, facial swelling, rapid heartbeat, difficulty swallowing food, gagging, and weight loss.
The best treatment so far is the surgical removal of the tumor. That, however, requires some conditions to be fulfilled, i.e., the tumor is less than 4cm in size, can move freely, and has not yet spread to other parts of the body.
Other treatments like chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and iodine therapy are also administered depending on the health status of the dog and cancer stage. With an early prognosis, most dogs get to spend a long life.
Best Dog Food for Hyperthyroidism
After the diagnosis of hyperthyroidism, vets suggest a new diet plan for your dogs. Since hyperthyroidism directly affects your dog’s metabolism, a healthy and hyperthyroidism-appropriate diet becomes a necessity. A variety of diets are available depending on your dog’s symptoms.
Coming to terms with the fact that your four-legged friend is not well and suffering from a serious disease is very difficult. Choosing the proper diet and food formula totally on our own adds to the misery. Therefore we have compiled a list of the best dog food recipes for hyperthyroidism so that your primary concern is to make sure your dog is well taken care of. So, all you have to do is sit back, skim through the article and give your dog lots of cuddles.
1. Tuffy’s Grain Free Dog Food
Tuffy’s grain-free formula is the best one for hyperthyroidism so far. It is packed with all the essential nutrients required to keep your dog up and about, no matter how serious the symptoms are. This formula is especially preferred for puppies. Granular diets can sometimes trigger allergies in sensitive puppies.
The grain-free, limited ingredient formula is free of irritants and allergens, and the protein content only comes from a single source. Therefore big dogs, as well as puppies, can safely consume it. The blend of fruits and vegetables in the recipe provides antioxidants that counter oxidative stress produced by free radicals in the body.
The easy-to-digest formula is the best way to provide optimum nourishment to your dog. However, it is not a very good option for dogs that are gaining weight due to hyperthyroidism. Although one of the best products in the market, the downside to Tuffy’s grain-free dog food is that it can not be used as a weight management plan.
2. Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Grain-Free Dry Food
This recipe is made with salmon and ocean fish and serves as a complete healthy meal for dogs with hyperthyroidism. The ingredients provide a hefty amount of omega fatty acids that improve your dog’s skin and coat.
Grain-free carbohydrates promote a healthy digestive system. In addition to these ingredients, this food formula also contains chelated minerals that enhance the absorption of nutrients. The probiotic supplements in the food help maintain the production and optimal functioning of gut flora. All in all, if you are looking for the best dog food with plenty of natural flavors, Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream is your go-to option.
3. Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Dog Food
This brand uses chicken, lamb, and salmon as the primary source of protein. All the ingredients are organic, non-GMOs, and do not contain animal by-products. It comes in the form of pellets (kibble) and provides all the essential nutrients and vitamins required by dogs with hyperthyroidism.
The recipe also contains a blend of 15 different superfoods like blueberries, apples, coconut, chia seeds, kale, etc. these ingredients provide antioxidants, vitamins, and probiotics that help boost immune and digestive functioning. They also promote healthy skin and a shiny coat.
The recipe is free of all preservatives, artificial flavors or colors, soy, wheat, and corn. If your dog suffers from allergies, Nutro Ultra is one of the best options. All the raw material is sourced from trusted suppliers and farmers. The company makes sure that only the best of the best food is provided to the dogs.
Nutro Ultra is a perfectly balanced diet for your dog that provides quality as well as taste that your dogs will love.
4. Earthborn Holistic Coastal Catch Grain-Free Natural Dry Food
The kibble’s dried vegetable and fruits content comprise apples, carrots, spinach, blueberries, and cranberries. These have strong anti-oxidative properties that help fight oxidative stress that results from free radicals in the body. Antioxidants are vital for improving the immunity of dogs with hyperthyroidism.
The formula is packed with probiotics that help maintain a healthy gut environment and restore gut flora lost due to anti-biotics intake. In addition to that, this meal also contains omega 3 & 6 fatty acids that improve skin and coat health and boost immunity.
The downside to this product is that your puppy might experience diarrhea initially.
5. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula
The Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula is essential for the growth and development of dogs. Vets and scientists have approved and recommended it for dogs with hyperthyroidism. The company aims to provide the highest-quality food for your dogs and has managed to exceed expectations since day one.
The formula contains fresh deboned chicken as the primary source of meat and does not use animal by-products. Other ingredients include brown rice, fruits, and vegetables.
It contains all the essential vitamins, essential amino acids, probiotics, antioxidants, and omega fatty acids required for the healthy development of dogs.
The product comes in the form of dry food kibble. The pellets are processed at a low temperature to avoid the degradation of ingredients. This ensures the freshness of the product for a long time. This formula is free of artificial flavors, preservatives, soy, corn, and wheat. Therefore it is safe for dogs with allergies to those ingredients.
6. Halo Holistic Chicken & Chicken Liver Adult Dry Dog Food
The easily digestible Halo Holistic formula is made with 100% organic, non-GMO foods and vegetables. It has chicken and chicken liver as the primary meat source. The chicken liver plays a vital role in regulating hormonal balance. This formula also contains dried egg products, oatmeal, and barley as a source of proteins.
The Halo Holistic food has ample omega fatty acids that provide healthy skin and fur. The antioxidants from fruits and vegetables help the body fight against oxidative stress.
These also increase the fiber content making the food palatable. This formula is free of all preservatives, artificial flavors, and hormones that might flare up hyperthyroidism.
7. Royal Canin Dry Dog Food – Premium Choice
The local suppliers of France provide the raw material for the products. This ensures the freshness of the products. Buying from local businesses also gives an economic boost to small-scale companies.
Royal Canin Dog Food is an excellent choice for dogs with hyperthyroidism. The formula is high in protein content, which helps maintain your dog’s muscle mass during excessive weight loss as a result of hyperthyroidism.
The formula has been approved by veterinarians. It contains ingredients that keep your dog satiated for a longer period. It also improves bone and joint health.
The notable downside to this formula is that it contains ingredients that might trigger allergies or aggravate them. It is therefore not safe for sensitive dogs.
8. Diamond Naturals Beef Meal & Rice Formula Adult Dog Dry Food
Diamond naturals formula uses high-quality beef as the primary source of proteins to maintain and repair your dog’s muscle mass. Other main ingredients include ground white rice, egg product, dried yeast, and grain sorghum.
It also contains natural and organic fruits and vegetables, essential nutrients, and vitamins that improve the skin’s health and promote a shiny coat.
The antioxidants improve the immune system, and the probiotics help attain the optimum functioning of the digestive system. The formula does not contain any artificial additives or preservatives that might aggravate the disease.
9. Wellness Core Grain-Free Ocean Whitefish Formula
This product is more suitable for big dogs as the kibble has larger pellets compared to other similar products. This formula has digestible carbohydrates, very high protein content of almost 34%, and no artificial meat or by-products. It has fruits and vegetables to provide nutrition and high fiber content.
The antioxidants, prebiotics, and probiotics improve the overall health of the body. The omega 3 fatty acids promote healthy skin and shiny, soft fur.
The formula also contains chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine that improve bone health and provide additional support to the joint. In dogs with osteoarthritis, these compounds help alleviate the symptoms.
The list mentioned above talks about several brands of dog food. There are even more brands in the market that provide similar products. That does not in any way imply that you have to buy all of those. You can even save yourself the hassle of trying out a few products to find the one that suits your dog best.
You need to keep a few essential things in mind while buying food for dogs with hyperthyroidism.
The susceptibility to hyperthyroidism varies from one breed to other. Some are more prone to the disease than others. Therefore it is important to buy food that accommodates your dog’s needs and adjust the diet accordingly.
There are two types of hormonal issues related to the thyroid gland. Hyperthyroidism is the over-production of thyroid hormones while hypothyroidism is the under-production. Different dog breeds have varying susceptibility to these conditions.
Before making a significant change to your dog’s food and routine, consult a vet and determine the actual problem. Get a proper diagnosis, start treatment and then look for food recipes accordingly.
A dog with hyperthyroidism needs more energy and nutrition as compared to other dogs. The nutrition requirements also vary with the breed. You will have to conduct some research beforehand to get fully equipped with the knowledge about your dog’s needs. However, certain ingredients are a must-have for all dogs with hyperthyroidism.
Proteins from an animal source: Hyperthyroidism causes dogs to lose excessive muscle mass. The protein source can help cope with that.
Fruits and Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are a great source of vitamins, antioxidants, and dietary fibers. These provide an energy boost while keeping the immune and digestive systems functioning at maximum capacity.
Liver: The liver is an essential part of the diet for dogs suffering from hyperthyroidism. The liver can promptly regulate the imbalance of hormones in the body.
Animal-based Fats: Fats obtained from an animal source are packed with omega 3 fatty acids that help improve the skin and fur of dogs. The most common source of animal fat is chicken fat.
If you still have some doubts in mind, do not fret over them. Skim through these FAQs, and you might get your answers.
1. What Causes Hyperthyroidism in Dogs?
Thyroid carcinoma, also commonly known as thyroid cancer, triggers the excessive production of thyroxine (T4). Thyroxine is a thyroid hormone responsible for the regulation of metabolism. The over-production can lead to the formation of a lump of cells in the area around the neck.
2. Is There a Cure for Hyperthyroidism in Dogs?
Hyperthyroidism in dogs is incurable so far. However, the early prognosis can slow down the progression of the disease with the help of a professional and a good diet. The vet can remove the benign mass of cells if the diagnosis is made at a very early stage. This improves the chances of recovery.
3. Is the Treatment for Hyperthyroidism Costly?
The cost depends on the type of treatment and the stage of the disease. A simple test conducted by your vet will cost somewhere between $100 to $250. For more advanced treatments like chemotherapy or radiotherapy, the cost can fall between $3000 and $5000.
4. What Edible Items Help With Suppressing the Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism in Dogs?
Foods that are high in antioxidants like blueberries, apples, etc., help improve immune function, and probiotics and food items with high protein content improve digestion and help dogs cope with the loss of muscle mass.
5. What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism in Dogs?
The most common symptoms that can easily be pointed out are increased appetite, frequent urination, and sudden and excessive weight loss.
6. Does Hyperthyroidism Induce Anxiety in Dogs?
Hyperthyroidism can trigger anxiety in dogs. The disease mainly causes hormonal imbalance in the body, which can lead to some behavioral issues. The sudden, unexpected changes in the dog’s body can flare up the anxiety even more. These changes can trigger depression, aggressiveness, seizures, and irritability in dogs.
7. Can Dog Food Trigger Thyroid Issues?
Thyroid problems are more common in dogs as compared to other animals. Hyperthyroidism is an auto-immune disorder that genetic as well as environmental factors, can trigger. The external stressors include improper vaccination, substandard food products, and over-processed food.
8. What Should You Do if You Have Suspicions of Hyperthyroidism in Your Dog?
First and foremost, consult a professional vet and find out the actual problem.
Some diseases have symptoms similar to hyperthyroidism. A proper diagnosis and tests can determine the treatment accordingly.
Hyperthyroidism in dogs, although uncommon, is a severe disorder that can bring unwanted changes to your life as well as your dog’s. It affects the overall health and lifestyle of dogs. No pet owner wishes to see their fur baby in such a condition. But the fact is that there is no available cure for this disease in the market.
As soon as you make peace with that fact and improve your dog’s diet, the longer they will live. The list, as mentioned earlier, of dog food formulas is carefully curated after thorough research.
It highlights the brands that provide all the major essential nutrients required by your dog. However, the needs differ from dog to dog; therefore, professional consultation beforehand is the center point of your dog’s betterment.