Procedure for thyroid testing

Hello everyone,

Just found this forum - what a great resource! My basenji will be 6 in January and the first 3 years he was a trim 24 pounds…..then the last 2 years he's around 32-34!!! No matter what he doesn't seem to lose....I have him at the dog park in the nice weather and he used to run around at top speed for hours and now I'm lucking if he'll run for 2 minutes so he's not getting any exercise there. With the winter weather here he doesn't like walks anymore. He's eating 3/4 - 1 cup of some grain-free senior food (our schnoodle can't eat grain and it's too hard to get them to eat different things - they always want the bowl that's not in front of them!) plus we sometimes mix in tomato sauce, veggies or pasta leftover from dinner. I asked the vet to test him for thyroid 8 months ago and was told everything was fine, but I'm not convinced I got the "full" thyroid panel.

I'm wondering if someone can tell me exactly what I should ask my vet for - do I need to go through the OFA procedures to be tested at their approved labs (there are 2 in Ontario)? Also if I ask her for the actual numbers from the test he had earlier what would be considered low for a basenji?

I really think he would be much better at 28-30 pounds but he never seems to lose anything! He has also started to cry sometimes when he moves in his sleep or if we try to move him or just bump him - things that wouldn't hurt in a million years and he cries. He also cries a lot if you pick him up under his front legs. We're wondering if he is developing arthritis?? And all that extra weight definately can't be good for that.

I know thyroid must have been discussed a lot around here, but if someone could tell me exactly what to say to my vet to make sure the right testing is being done I would be greatful!

Thanks!!!
Erin

You do need to have your Vet send the blood out for a fully thyroid panel, rarely do the labs that a regular vet uses do full panels and to know what is really going on the full panel is needed. For a Basenji, typically "low normal" is too low, but your Vet might disagree with you. If you do the OFA procedures, the results will be submitted by that lab to OFA.. and I would stick to a lab that OFA supports the results.
I would worry about him crying when picked up.. and would be surprised at his age if arthritis? Have you asked your Vet about that? I would be concerned something else is going on… When was the last time that a full blood panel workup was done? Not to scare you... but one of mine started suddenly to scream/cry when touch in the mid-section... ultrasound showed a grapefruit size tumor on her liver... it was non-cancerous and removed.. so that was the good news....

Do I have to do the OFA procedures in order to get the full panel? I kinda thought from their website the testing was more for breeders.

The crying when picked up under the arms has been going on for years….it's not every time but fairly often. I talked to the vet about it once and she didn't really make a big deal of it and since I can't feel anything wrong I wasn't that worried. The new crying when he moves in his sleep, etc. does have me a bit worried. This is more recent, I think since his last physical in May. The reason I thought he might just be sore is that it started happening after he went to the dog park where the last couple times (to my joy) he actually ran around so I figured he was just stiff or sore muscles or something. It's definately not when you touch a certain area and seems completely random to me whether he cries or not. Should I be worried that it is something internal?

Our other dog is going for his yearly check up in the next few weeks - do you think I should bring Brodie (my basenji) along too?

Thanks!

Well, I am a big fan of complete blood panels.. they can tell you lots… IMO...
OFA is not just for breeders, it is for everyone. But your Vet can sent to a lab that does full panels you just MUST insist that it is done.. and many Vets will argue with you...

maybe I am confused but I thought that OFA's were done to check for hip diplasia???

I would think an x-ray would be a good option. A full CBC/Profile as well. the vet should look and give him a physical as well.

OFA is a canine health database registery. Hips and other osteo problems were the first thing they started with…but now they do all kinds of other testing. Our Fanconi test is done through OFA.

go here and check it out www.offa.org

It is a wonderful resouce for all dog owners, not just breeders. If you are considering buying a basenji puppy, you should be checking here to confirm that the parents (at least one, preferably both) have been tested for Fanconi Syndrome/

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