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My 6 year old lab has an auto immune disease thats being treated

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My 6 year old lab has an auto immune disease that's being treated with anti biotics, anti inflammatory and steroids. She continues to lose weight even though her appetite is ok. any suggestions as to what is causing this. She was negative for tick borne diseases.
Submitted: 1 year ago via Dog-Health-Guide.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I'm Dr Gary. I've been practicing veterinary medicine since 2007. I look forward to helping with your questions/ concerns.

This weight loss is not too uncommon in dogs that are being treated for auto-immune disease. There are a couple reasons for the weight loss.

The first reason is the steroids. Steroids will cause the body to break down muscle and build fat. Muscle weighs more than fat, so they will often get a pot-bellied look and have weight loss.

We can also see weight loss due to the fact that there is this disease process. When we have a disease present, the body will consume more calories to try to fight off the disease. With auto-immune disease, this is increased even more.

I would continue to feed normally. If you want to try to get her to gain weight, you can mix some puppy food with her adult food as there will be more calories provided then.


Dr. Gary, Veterinarian
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DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)