Effects of Thyroidal Disturbance on the Behavior of Domestic Dogs (Canis Lupus Familiaris)
Journal of Zoological Research
Hypothyroidism is not uncommon in dogs, but it is actually very often diagnosed in elderly dogs. When and how does the disease start? What are the first recognizable signs? The first symptoms are usually changes in the behavior. First, these changes are quite subtle, but as the illness progresses, they can get very grave. We do often hear from the worried owners, that their report of a behavioral change to their vet is often ignored, not taken seriously or simply interpreted as unsteady or
... ficient dog training/ education. This not taking seriously of the first signs is very concerning and a big problem in many ways. It is delaying the finding of the right diagnosis and treatment, which leads to suffering of the animal and the owner. In some cases, it leads to giving the dog up as an unbearable danger to the family. So the dog, who is only ill and could be back to normal with the right medical treatment, and finally ends up in a dog shelter or a new family. The common understanding is, that hypothyreoidism is an illness solely occurring in the elderly dog. In contrast to this, the authors found out, that thyroidal problems occur already at relatively young ages. This is a very important finding, considering that many clinically practising veterinarians expect hypothyreoidism only in the aged or elderly dog and will not run any diagnostics in relatively young or middle-aged animals. The authors also found significant differences in the personality traits of emotional stability and extraversion. Therefore, we would like to expand the existing studies, so that this widely underestimated topic finally comes to the fore and hopefully, in the future the right diagnostcal steps can be taken at an early stage of the disease.