Thyroid, normal or should get another opinion?

  • So my little boy Nike has been having some weight issues and also loss of hair on his left shoulder blade. I looked up his symptoms and it said possible hypothyroidism.
    He weighs 35 lbs, and gaining, he used to weigh 28lbs 8 months ago. We used to live in Orlando and moved to Canada in May.
    So I brough the poor puppy to the vet to get his thyroid tested.
    The results were t4 17.6, the norm is 15 to 52.
    I then asked to get his tgaa tested also , this result was on the low normal.
    His TSH is .22 , they say .50 is the minimum. The vet said that the numbers don't show hypothyroidism, but I can't imagine why he is gaining so much weight.
    He is on the "go, NOW" diet, which is manufactured in Canada, grain free, and has 10% fat. He is supposed to get 1 3/4 to 2 3/4 cups, but I only feed him 1 1/2, so by rights he should have lost weight, not keep gaining. They used to be on the BARF diet, but I have not found a kind they liked here in Canada, that is why we switched to the NOW diet at least 3 months ago, before that they were on TOTW for 5 months (which had 18% fat, but even then he didn't like it enough to fully eat his meals).

    Any advice?
    Should i go to a different vet, they all use the same lab so I know the numbers will be the same.
    I am very desperate to get him back to health. He is only 3 years old, and is of the Sarengeti line from Florida.

  • Send the results to Jean Dodds at hemopet. I know there is controversy over her, but She will analyze results for a small fee.


  • @Mia:

    He is supposed to get 1 3/4 to 2 3/4 cups

    It might be dumb of me to ask, but you aren't feeding that amount twice a day, are you? Protocol for most basenjis (from what I have learned on this forum) is 3/4 cup twice a day.

  • @nkjvcjs:

    Send the results to Jean Dodds at hemopet. I know there is controversy over her, but She will analyze results for a small fee.


    she will usually do it for free?

    And low normal for a Basenji is usually too low

  • And since each dog is different, you really can not go by what the bags says to feed them… if you are feeding 1 1/2 cups a day, cut it back to 1 cup a day... if as asked you are feeding this twice a day, that is way too much food... IMO... but again they are all different.

    My year old girls that are very, very, very active get 1/4 cup twice a day with wet or freeze dried or veggie mixed in... and 2 cookies each (small ones) at lunch time....

    What is his activity level like?

  • he does get the 3/4 twice a day.
    as for treats they only get 1 piece of dried chicken, the size of like a chicken finger, but thin
    Activity level is a lot lower in the past month since we got snow, but before then they would go on an hour walk and run back and forth with the dog next door for about 15 min straight a few times per day. I have noticed he is a bit more lethargic than he used to be when we were in Florida.
    The one gripe I have about my vet is that when I told him to also test the TGAA, he was like well it's not necessary, then I told him Basenji's were kind of an exception and should get it tested, he then said, all people think their breeds are special, they are all the same lol. He is a good vet overall, but this comment kind of burned me.
    I emailed the Dr Dodds, so we'll see what she said, I did see on her website that she can do a consult for 35$.

  • +1 to what Tanza wrote. I think 1 3/4 cups per day is too much.

    I have one that I need to watch her weight - she gets 1/2 cup per day. I have 2 that are perfect weight and they get 1.25 cups per day. And my youngest Ozzy (1 year) gets 2 cups per day and anything less he is a rail. All 4 of mine are fed twice per day and their kongs/busy buddies that they get usually have a mix of their kibble in it (included in the total daily cup count).

    Like Pat I usually mix in a little wet and veggies with their dinner. I also do training with them throughout the day and they get cheese and a couple of grain free cookies before bed at night.

  • @tanza:

    she will usually do it for free?

    And low normal for a Basenji is usually too low

    Even better. The form on her website says $35 for a consultation request only, but if she will do it for free, that is wonderful.

  • they get 1 1/2 per day, and Mia my other basenji lost 3 lbs since starting, she went from 28 to 25, so how does this explain that they eat the same amount but Nike gains, and also what is causing the hair loss and lethargy?

  • I would be more concerned about the other symptoms than trying to compare two different animals response to the same food.

    I have 5 basenjis and each burn calories very differently. They all eat the same food but I a 1 year old that is allowed as much food as he want, he is eating a little shy of two cups a day of "performance" or "puppy" formulas. His dam does well on about 1 1/2 cups but she favors smaller meals more frequently through the day. His sire eats between 1 -1 1/2 cups a day, I have adjust periodically because sometimes he feels too skinny and other times he starts to plump up. I then have one girl who does very well on 1 cup of food and another who get between 1/2 - 3/4 cups a day and maintains nicely. I do thyroid screens and they have all been within normal, they just have different metabolisms.

    Lethargy and hair loss are not normal and those symptoms would have me concerned that though he is at the low end of "normal" it is too low for him.

  • I e-mailed Dr. Dodds a few years ago with Eddie's results (lab recommended no treatment) but she recommended a low dose of soloxine. My vet doesn't have a big ego about it and wrote me the perscription, I think Eddie's disposition evened out and his energy rose, weight dropped a bit too.

    I send results after every test and she has kept the same dose, never mentioned any fee. And from everything I have ever read, "low normal" results usually mean treatment for a basenji. Dr. Dodds gave me a full explanation of her reasoning, which I showed my vet.

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