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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all.
I'm sure this is an issue covered over and over the years but i dont have time to search so help me out.
Karma is 5 1/2 years old and VERY mellow.
She went to go meet a new vet who said when Karma didnt even get up to greet her, 'How OLD is this dog?!?! This is not a 5 year old golden!' but I assured her Karma was indeed only 5.
At that time she said we might consider having her tested for thyroid or something like that.
That was a month ago and now that the holiday has brought a much needed bonus from work I want to research and consider this issue.

This is what I will ask the DVM and what I ask of you guys too....
1. what would it mean if the 'test(s)' did come back positive for thyroid?
2. what would be the treatment?
3. what would be the benefits and or risks of treatment?
4. what IS the treatment?
5. would it change her life, make her feel better, does she feel bad now?
6. would she live longer?
7. is the test a simple blood test or a whole panel of blood tests and what else should I know and /or be asking to learn more and make a good decision about taking her back to this vet and having the 'test(s)' done?

Thanks!
Hannah and Karma!
 

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In the Moment
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Make sure they do a whole thyroid panel and have it sent out. A reading of low normal for a golden is actually LOW and needs treatment. It is treated with daily oral medication .... quite a quick fix. However, even many vets are not aware that goldens need treatment when in the low-normal range. You can find out more info from http://www.itsfortheanimals.com/HEMOPET.HTM Dr Jean Dodds is really the expert in this field. Several members here have had consults with her for this very reason.
 

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Momma to angel Cody
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1. what would it mean if the 'test(s)' did come back positive for thyroid? It would mean that your dog is hypothyroid if numbers are below normal or even in the low normal range.
2. what would be the treatment? A simple, inexpensive pill called soloxine.
3. what would be the benefits and or risks of treatment? Benefits are multiple, since the thyroid affects most body systems. Fuller, shinier coat, more energy, appropriate appetite, no more "tragic" countenance....lots of things. No real risks.
4. what IS the treatment? Simple pill (about $15/month), usually twice a day.
5. would it change her life, make her feel better, does she feel bad now? She may feel lethargic, which is what it sounds like your vet is seeing. If she is indeed hypothyroid, you'll be astounded at her energy level after she starts on the supplement.
6. would she live longer? Dont' know about longer, but definitely happier.
7. is the test a simple blood test or a whole panel of blood tests and what else should I know and /or be asking to learn more and make a good decision about taking her back to this vet and having the 'test(s)' done? You want the six-panel test, not just a T4. If the reference range is 0-5 (as a for instance) and your dog's number is .8 and the vet says "this is in the normal range", send your results to Dr. Dodds. That would be too low for a golden and would likely warrant soloxine.
 

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RIP Sweet Skyler
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1. what would it mean if the 'test(s)' did come back positive for thyroid? It would mean that your dog is hypothyroid if numbers are below normal or even in the low normal range.
2. what would be the treatment? A simple, inexpensive pill called soloxine.
3. what would be the benefits and or risks of treatment? Benefits are multiple, since the thyroid affects most body systems. Fuller, shinier coat, more energy, appropriate appetite, no more "tragic" countenance....lots of things. No real risks.
4. what IS the treatment? Simple pill (about $15/month), usually twice a day.
5. would it change her life, make her feel better, does she feel bad now? She may feel lethargic, which is what it sounds like your vet is seeing. If she is indeed hypothyroid, you'll be astounded at her energy level after she starts on the supplement.
6. would she live longer? Dont' know about longer, but definitely happier.
7. is the test a simple blood test or a whole panel of blood tests and what else should I know and /or be asking to learn more and make a good decision about taking her back to this vet and having the 'test(s)' done? You want the six-panel test, not just a T4. If the reference range is 0-5 (as a for instance) and your dog's number is .8 and the vet says "this is in the normal range", send your results to Dr. Dodds. That would be too low for a golden and would likely warrant soloxine.
Great post!!!

Inexpensive, easy, non-invasive, and will absolutely stun you on the positive reaction you'll get.
 

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Missing Selka So Much
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Agree with all of the above. My golden was diagnosed when he was five. He had no obvious symptoms. I had him tested because my previous golden was hypothyroid and he wasn't diagnosed till he developed complications=seizures.

A full panel runs $100. He was low normal but I chose to treat him. He takes Soloxine twice a day. He has lots of energy, a luxurious coat and he's happy!
He needs to be tested yearly for his med dose.. in case we need to increase it.

Good Luck. Let us know .
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This is great info, you all, thanks! So, Im waiting to hear from one of the two vets I've used and I've called both vets to compare prices, etc.
One uses a lab at Michigan (Tech?) University, as the receptionist says the vet feels she gets the best reading there?? Anyone know anything about Michigan testing lab being far superior to local labs? I am in So Cal, by the way.
Anyway, THAT vet uses Solaxine and the other vet I called who charges a bit less but nothing notable, says they dispense not Solaxine but L-Thyroxine. Any thoughts on this further info I have gathered?
 

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I take L-throxine every day.

Life is miserable without it. I am not just hypothyroid - I no longer have one. I can tell you firsthand that the little pill can make life a lot better if your girl needs it.

She might just be a low energy golden though. the test will tell. I don't know about Mich univ, but it would seem they would generally have better equipment than a local lab.

Good luck!
 

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Missing Selka So Much
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My vet uses Michigan . I have never heard of a dog taking the L , all I know take Soloxine.
I called Dr. Dodds myself (who is in CA) I emailed her Gunner's full panel results and she sent me her recommendation which I faxed to my vet. We went with her recommendation.
 

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...
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This is great info, you all, thanks! So, Im waiting to hear from one of the two vets I've used and I've called both vets to compare prices, etc.
One uses a lab at Michigan (Tech?) University, as the receptionist says the vet feels she gets the best reading there?? Anyone know anything about Michigan testing lab being far superior to local labs? I am in So Cal, by the way.
Anyway, THAT vet uses Solaxine and the other vet I called who charges a bit less but nothing notable, says they dispense not Solaxine but L-Thyroxine. Any thoughts on this further info I have gathered?

MI STATE for sure... Or, Dr. Jean Dodds. And I am a proponent of Levo Thyroxine vs Soloxine, as well.
You may need to be assertive and insist that if a reading is "low normal" that supplementation is begun, because "low normal" as a "canine parameter is VERY low for a Golden Retriever - and you can tell them that the late, great Dr. George Padgett said so! :) (Seriously, he was the one who first recognized that results are actually breed specific, but unfortunately he died before being able to chart them all...
 

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Dr. Jean Dodds (hemopet) is in California. I would have the vet draw the blood, following the directions given on Hemopet's paperwork (you can download paperwork on their website) and you can mail it in yourself. Dr. Dodds will send results to you and your vet with her recommendations. I find this the least expensive way overall.
 

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Old Gold is the Best Gold
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If she is fat and has a lot of fuzzy coat, then those things can also improve. I take any fat dog for a thyroid test.

Brooklyn (Golden) is low'ish normal but has no symptoms and is a totally normal dog, so we're just watching it.

Rigby is low- below normal range- but he's a Whippet, and sighthounds have lower thyroid than non-sighthounds. IE, it's normal for a Whippet. I learned this from Dr. Jean Dodds too. He also has no symptoms. He has huge muscles, a coat that is so shiny it's blinding, and is in exceptionally good condition for his age, with no extra fat on him.

Starlite and Holiday are high normals. My GSD has never been tested (he's only six months old).
 

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Any advice would be Helpful...

Hello, I read your post regarding your Goldie's thyroid issues. In your opinion, do you believe the thyroid issues were indeed related to the seizures? I have a 4 year old female golden that has had a seizure and she too tested very low normal with her thyroid. My vet has put her on thyroid tabs AND phenobarbital, which I'm not sure is really necessary. Of course, I agree with the Thyroid tabs, but the phenobarbital is such a harsh medication and I would rather not use it if is not 100% necessary. Guess I'm just looking for your opinion because you have experienced the same sort of situation. What do you think? Do you have any other advice for me? Thank you for your time.
 

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Thyroid is very tricky. Our first golden was diagnosed just about the time he turned 4. He had all the classic symnptoms--loss of hair, hair getting coarse, low energy, weight gain, change in temperment. He was put on l8 soloxine twice a day and in just weeks he was his old sf, except for needing to drop a few more pounds. Seberasl y ears later his full brother, later litter, was in for dental about the time he was 10 1/2. I always have full panel done before having any dog put under for surgery, dental, etc, and his thyroid was very low. I don't know who was more shocked, us or the vet, because Buck had not a single symptom. He ended up on 1 1/2 solozine twice a day. We could see no chan ge in him whatsoever when on the drug because there had been change we could see before hand. But from then on his blothyroid level was perfect.

I am on the L-T myself I read somewhere that it and the soloxine are ac tually the sme thing only ade by different manufactureres. I won't swear to that being correct, but I did read it somewhere.

Also it seems goldens are very prone to thyroid problems,. I think they should be checked yearly after age 4 even if they h ave no sympotoms.,--after all Buck had none and his was very low.
 
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