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Discussion Starter #1
Well, I got Grimm's thyroid results back from his T4. (I know this is limited, but this is the only test I could get) Grimm has a reading of 1.3, on the border for hypothyroid. But, I brought him in because something is clearly wrong-- he has almost no coat at all, and the coat he has, is sparse and harsh, dry, brittle and crispy-crunchy. On his lumbar region and loins, he has a noticable problem.. fur is supershort, nearly no undercoat, and he is buttfluff-free.


The vet says the options are hormone injections (I think she means thyroid shots?), but they can make the dog sometimes aggressive, she said. I do not know why she didn't suggest synthroid pills. What she did suggest is: Raw diet!
She claims that the raw should help balance things better. For real thyroid issues, she said it is not a cure-all, but in Grimm's on-the-border case, she feels it will right things. Is this a sound idea? She said, we will do a few months of raw, then re-check the T4 level. (it is, again, the only thyroid test I can get here)

What do you think? Why does she think raw can help a sluggish thyroid? What about... is there a way to use a teeny, specific-sized lil' chunk of beef thyroid or lamb thyroid as a daily therapy?
Who ever heard of a vet perscribing a raw diet for something like a thyroid issue?

When I start this raw diet thing, I had better get it right.. the vet is a believer in this. She has only 1 client feeding raw, as she says it is extremely difficult to convince anyone regarding raw when kibble is a convienient option.
 

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If you go to the http://www.leerburg.com site under the Articles section there is a wealth of information about raw diets and actual raw diets described in detail including meat and bone selections, sizes of portions, salmon oil, veggies and everything that you'll need to get your dog on a raw diet. My dogs eating the raw diet and they have absolutely gorgeous coats and no health problems.
 

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I am still glad that your Vet wants you to try raw with Grimm.

Sorry his test came back for hypotyroidism.

As I am still learning to, I don't have any advice.

Hey!!! I am reading that book that Leerburg suggests getting. "Natural Nutrition For Dogs and Cats" It is really great!

Patti, if you want to see if my base still has one I'll pick it up for you. It would be cheaper than trying to order the book yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
CMG, thank you for the reminder.. Leerburg is a great resource for research.. and I have a lot of that to do before I blunder into this. I want to get this right, especially if Grimm's thyroid has issues.

Danielle, thank you for the encouragement. Will you be feeding your beautiful pups raw, too?
 

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One of the best sources of raw diet info is a moderater on this section, Laurie and the Gang.

Here is her site:

http://www.rawdogranch.com/
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Bonnie, I love, love, looove Lauri's site!!


Has anyone else heard of treating thyroid issues with raw?
 

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No, but a raw diet sure cannot hurt as it is more natural.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Okay, so raw really doesn't do anything to help the thyroid... but what about adding beef or lamb thyroid? Anybody?
 

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Yes I want to try it with the pups. I bought the book after we got KC but before we brought the boys home. But I have just been in the planning and information stage like you. Paying 100 USD for 2 bags of dog food is a lot and I hope that going raw will save me a little in the pocket book.
DH got two rabbits today from a hunter. Only 3 euros each and they are whole. Can't complain about that!
 

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Patti,

The most important nutrient to thyroid function is iodine. Iodine is found naturally in soil, but with over harvesting of the land and the differences in land parcels in general it makes it a very hard to say 'this is how much iodine is in this.' The USDA doesn't even list iodine in its nutrient database because it varies so much.

So I choose to supplement my dog's entire iodine requirements. The best way to do this is simply through kelp. Different brands vary by the amount of iodine they supply, but as long as you know what is in the kelp and what your dogs needs are then it is easy to measure out the correct dose.

The 2006 NRC's dog nutrient guidelines, which is what I use to formulate dog diets, says that dogs need for adult maintenance 29.6 mcg of iodine per kg of body weight to the .75 power per day. Sound confusing, but it is really not. For Penny, who weights 75 pounds, this calculates to 2904 mcg per week. I supply her with 3000 mcg iodine weekly with 1 teaspoon of kelp.

If you tell Grimms weight I can give you the calculated amount that you would need. . .

So, instead of feeding thyroids, I would supplement with kelp and retest in time.

Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you Natalie! Should just kelp alone be a solution for Grimm, or should, in your view (I know you're not a vet.. just want your ideas here) Grimm be on a low dose thyroxin? He is "on the border" for hypothyroid, at a T4 of 1.3. (maybe our German test result values differ from in USA.. the basic T4 was the only test available to me) The vet did not seem worried, but... I did bring him in because his coat is in a severe state.


Grimm weighs 85 lbs and is 17 months old. With kelp, can arsenic harm him? Hmm.. maybe it is not arsenic.. radiation? Gosh, I forget what it is that we need to watch out for with kelp now. Anyway, I have a 1 year old, opened tub of kelp called "Wholistic SeaBlend." Geothermal-dreid kelp (species ascophylum modosum,& laminaria digitata).. is it still good? Would I hurt his thyroid if I use it? I am worried because of his coat, and really wanna do the low dose thyroid pills, then test again in 4 weeks. Should i start kelp?
 

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Originally Posted By: BrightelfShould just kelp alone be a solution for Grimm, or should, in your view (I know you're not a vet.. just want your ideas here) Grimm be on a low dose thyroxin? He is "on the border" for hypothyroid
Patti I do not have extensive knowledge on thyroid issues or how best to treat them.

I do know that your vet said it was borderline and also that once you start the thyroid pills you are often on them for life. Knowing these things I would think trying dietary measures first wouldn't do any harm. The worst I think it would do is not help and you would be where you are now- which other than sparse coat isn't such a bad place to be :).

I once tested weird for my thyroid and didn't take any pills (I had no symptoms though). I was retested a year or so later and everything was normal and I was *very* happy that I didn't start myself on a lifetime medication.

Originally Posted By: BrightelfGrimm weighs 85 lbs
He would need 3190 mcg iodine per week.

Originally Posted By: BrightelfWith kelp, can arsenic harm him? Hmm.. maybe it is not arsenic.. radiation? Gosh, I forget what it is that we need to watch out for with kelp now.
I don't know of any concerns with kelp other than over or under dosing.

Originally Posted By: BrightelfAnyway, I have a 1 year old, opened tub of kelp called "Wholistic SeaBlend." Geothermal-dreid kelp (species ascophylum modosum,& laminaria digitata).. is it still good?
Is this it, http://www.thewholisticpet.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=product.display&Product_ID=494&ParentCat=26

Looks good to me and yes it would still be good. If in doubt though maybe there is an expiration date or lot number you could call the manufacturer.

We just need to now figure out how to convert their ppm to mcg of iodine. . .

Originally Posted By: BrightelfWould I hurt his thyroid if I use it? I am worried because of his coat, and really wanna do the low dose thyroid pills, then test again in 4 weeks. Should i start kelp?
No it wouldn't hurt anything to use it. I think at worst it simply wouldn't help. If you feel strongly about starting the medication then start it. Like I said above, I don't know enough to make that decision. . .
 

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Originally Posted By: natalie559
We just need to now figure out how to convert their ppm to mcg of iodine. . .
Okay- I found out that 1 ppm = 1mcg/g which means that 780ppm iodine converts to 780 mcg iodine per 1 gram of your chosen kelp.

So if Grimm needs 3190mcg iodine weekly he would need 4.09 grams of your brand of kelp per week to meet his requirements.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you Natalie! I can't figure how much this would be per day, so I will try a 1/8 teaspoon per day.. sound safe?

I really, really admire your research and extensive knowledge, and your willingness to share it here. Thank you again!
 

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Originally Posted By: BrightelfI can't figure how much this would be per day, so I will try a 1/8 teaspoon per day
The only accurate way to know would be to take a scale and weight out how much volume 4 grams would equal.

This website, http://www.gourmetsleuth.com/gram_calc.htm , guesstimates that 4 grams would equal .85 teaspoons

Originally Posted By: BrightelfThank you again!
You are more than welcome- glad I could help!
 

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Originally Posted By: Brightelf With kelp, can arsenic harm him? Hmm.. maybe it is not arsenic.. radiation? Gosh, I forget what it is that we need to watch out for with kelp now.
Looking around I found an article by Segal regarding this question of yours.

http://www.monicasegal.com/newsletters/2008-01NL.php

"Fact of the Month
"All Natural" - examples of negatives and positives

Along with most people feeding home-prepared diets, I add kelp as a natural way of providing iodine. Kelp is also in many kibble formulations. An interesting case has been reported by the Occupational Medicine Clinic at the University of California, Davis. A woman was referred to the clinic after two years of worsening alopecia, memory loss, and experiencing a rash, increasing fatigue, nausea, and vomiting, disabling her to the point where she could no longer work full-time. As it turned out, this woman was taking a daily kelp supplement. A urine sample showed an arsenic level of 83.6 microg/g creatinine. A normal result would have shown less than .50 microg/g creatinine. A sample from her kelp supplements contained 8.5 mg/kg (ppm) arsenic. Once the kelp supplement was discontinued, her symptoms resolved and arsenic blood and urine levels were undetectable. The clinic decided to evaluate the extent of arsenic contamination in commercially available kelp by analyzing nine samples randomly obtained from local health food stores. Eight of the nine samples failed the purity test, showing detectable levels of arsenic higher than the Food and Drug Administration tolerance level of 0.5 to 2 ppm for certain food products.

To read the details about this report, see MID: 17450231 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE].

As with fish oils that are too often loaded with PCBs and/or mercury, kelp should be on your list as a potential hazard. Be sure to look at the results of lab assays. You can see the results on my site by clicking on 'lab assay' at the bottom left-hand corner of a product page. "

So I guess it can be a concern


I use Segals kelp though so I am not concerned as I trust her products as she has them all analyzed by an outside lab for purity.

http://www.monicasegal.com/catalog/product.php?cPath=23_2&products_id=42#
 
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