Who does it? What laboratory do you use and what specifically are you testing for?
I have not had any dogs with thyroid issues/symptoms but am looking at getting some of them tested for my own information, unfortunately it's all greek to me and I don't know which tests are meaningful. If there was an issue, which test would pick it up?
For example, HemoPet is one of the labs that I've heard being recommended as Dr. Dodds is a canine thyroid expert. But there are so many test options! Are these testing prices comparable to other labs? I see which ones are OFA accepted but a little guidance would be appreciated.
p.s. My dogs are Labs
I had a Golden that had hypo-thyroid. My vet did the test. She was about 3 and started to slow down, gain weight and her hair started falling out. Her skin came down with feliculitus also associated with hypo-thyroid. Once the vet diagnosed the problem, we had to give her a little pill everyday. They need to re-check her blood after a week or 2 to make sure that she was getting the proper amount of medication. Once she started with the pills, she had energy like a puppy again. That dog bounced off the walls until she came down with sinus cancer at the age of 13.
Luckily no dogs with issues here, just looking for 'clearance' testing. Have to go to the vet today for other things so maybe they have a lab that they already work with.
I had my 13 yo Lab tested last year. She was having major hair loss eventually up to her mid line. I can't remember all the tests but according to the folks I checked with, only HemoPet and Michigan State can do the full compliment for free radicles and about 3 other forms associated with Thyroid. Michigan State prices were comparable to Dr. Dodds. Her website is excellent and gives you a good idea. Most vets cannot perform the full complement of tests. Kenzie was tested by Michigan State as that is where my Vet has traditionally gone. (Hair loss was not connected to any thyroid problems - she tested normal.)
Dyna, Kenzie, Soot and Boo
Erin University of Michigan is where most veterinarians send thyroid tests. Dr. Dobbs is the current guru and many times will be asked to review results from Michigan. I believe you want T2 and t4.
It you are trying to get an OFA thryroid certificate, the form on the OFA's web site lists the "ONLY" approved Labs that OFA will accept results from.
Originally Posted by Erin Lynes
Thanks Terrie, is there one lab that is considered more reputable than the others? Like Alfort with CNM for example.
Have to put in my 2 cents, as canine hypothyroidism is so overdiagnosed and results can commonly be misinterpreted. All the laboratories listed on the OFA form are excellent laboratories to send a complete thyroid panel. As previously mentioned, Michigan State University is probably the most well known endocrine laboratory used. They have their own endocrinologists/internists that will help your family veterinarian with interpretation of tests if necessary. The boarded specialists at those laboratories listed are excellent resources for family vets, and at no additional costs.
For the clearances, they are not looking for thyroid levels but rather for autoimmune antibodies, which is the hereditary form of thyroiditis. I believe they call it TgAA. That's why only certain labs are acceptable. Adult onset low thyroid is not the same thing.
We used MSU, but you do need to check, as Terrie said, the OFA website to see who they are currently accepting.
Edit to add....I believe MSU changed the name of their lab, but is still on the list.
Thanks all, this helps a lot.