Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Elevated Liver Enzymes and Your Dog

When people think of elevated liver enzymes, their own health may be what initially comes to mind. Yet, canines can also be affected by illnesses that lead to an increase in liver enzymes. It's important to remember that this situation can occur for a number of different reasons. If a test result for your dog shows that this is the case, you will need to talk with a vet or someone else who is a professional in this area in order to try to determine the underlying reason for it. Today, we have a look at some of the issues that may be behind this test result.

Hepatitis

Like with humans, dogs can contract a hepatitis virus. This is disease in which, as indicated by its name, the liver goes through inflammation. In dogs, it can lead to a reduced consumption of food. On the flip side, in some cases, increased thirst can be displayed, leading also to a higher output of urine. Other symptoms can also be noted. As for diagnosing the situation, liver function tests are performed which show the enzyme levels. This aside, a diagnosis may be confirmed by way of a liver biopsy. The disease is also treated someone differently based on the form of hepatitis that is affecting the dog.

Pancreatitis

Another form of inflammation can also lead to this rise in liver enzymes. In this case, pancreatitis is inflammation that hits the pancreas. If the situation is acute, vomiting is one of the symptoms that may indicate this. Additionally, there can be a strong abdominal pain involved. Following initial symptoms, the dog may become weak, and diarrhea is another issue that may result. Note that non-acute cases may present quite differently (not that every acute case has the same symptoms to begin with). Once taken to a vet, both an examination and liver enzyme tests are a couple of things that may be used to try to receive a diagnosis.

Conclusion

If you care for your dog's health, do your best to provide the necessary when illness strikes. You probably won't know exactly what medical condition is involved. Symptomatic guesses may turn out to be right, but that doesn't mean that you should use the information in this post to try to determine what is wrong. Instead, look for professional assistance. It may turn out that your dog's liver enzymes are high, and if that is the case, further testing could be required to find out what the actual medical issue is.

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