What is Overproduction of Estrogen?
A dog can overproduce estrogen due to an artificial introduction of hormones or a natural imbalance of hormones. While overproduction of estrogen is more common in female dogs that naturally have higher estrogen levels, overproduction of estrogen may also occur in male dogs. No breed appears to have a higher occurrence of overproduction of estrogen or estrogen toxicity.Estrogen is the hormone that controls sexual development, behavior and reproduction in female dogs. However, estrogen is produced in both male and female dogs. Overproduction of estrogen can cause complications of the reproductive organs and even estrogen toxicity, known as hyperestrogenism.
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Symptoms of Overproduction of Estrogen in Dogs
- Pale gums
- Blood in urine, stool and/or vomit
- Thinning hair and/or hair loss
- Males exhibiting female characteristics
- Prolonged estrus in females
- Enlarge vulva and/or teats in female
- Bleeding from vulva
- Decreased attraction to opposite sex in intact males
- Increased attraction to opposite sex in females
- Tumor on tail in males
- Testicular mass in males
- Testicular atrophy in males
- Prostatic dysfunctions in males
- Prostatic cysts in males
Causes of Overproduction of Estrogen in Dogs
- Artificial estrogen or testosterone supplementation
- Excessive production of estrogen (idiopathic)
- Ovarian tumor
- Ovarian cysts
- Testicular tumor
Diagnosis of Overproduction of Estrogen in Dogs
Diagnosis will depend upon proper reporting of symptoms and your dog’s medical history. A thorough physical examination, followed by a complete blood count to determine your dog’s levels of red and white blood cells, which can decrease as a result of overproduction of estrogen, chemical blood profile, and urinalysis in order to determine your dog’s overall health and identify any issues or irregularities. If your dog’s is losing hair, a skin biopsy will be examined in order to determine the cause of hair loss. An additional biopsy of your dog’s lymph nodes will be conducted, along with an aspirate bone marrow biopsy. These will help determine estrogen levels and their affects on your dog’s health. An x-ray and/or ultrasound of your dog’s abdomen will be taken, and reproductive organs will be examined. For male dogs, testicles will be thoroughly examined, and any testicular masses will be diagnosed through a needle biopsy. For female dogs, ovaries will be examined, and any ovarian cysts will be studied through an ultrasound-guided aspiration.
Treatment of Overproduction of Estrogen in Dogs
Treatment will depend upon the cause and extent of the overproduction of estrogen, as well as the sex of your dog. If overproduction of estrogen is caused by hormone supplementation, that therapy will be ceased immediately. The next step will be to stabilize your dog, which may include antibiotic treatment and blood transfusions, depending upon the severity of your dog’s case. Definitive treatment typically involves surgical neutering or spaying in order to stabilize your dog’s sexual hormones and is typically curative. Further treatment of masses or cysts will depend upon their presence and location; masses may be removed via an incision or small scope instrument, testicle(s) or ovaries may be removed completely. If your dog is suffering from decreased blood production, medication may be prescribed to increase production in bone marrow. In some cases of ovarian cysts in female dogs, medication may be prescribed to induce ovulation.
Recovery of Overproduction of Estrogen in Dogs
A dog’s hormonal balance is very delicate, and may take months to return to a healthy and natural balance. Monitor your pet’s health and behavior during recovery and carefully follow all of the veterinarian’s instructions for medications. If your dog has undergone surgery, stick to follow-up and wound care instructions carefully and monitor surgical sites. In almost every case, it will be required to bring your dog back to the veterinarian for checkups that will include blood tests and possibly bone marrow biopsies in order to monitor recovery. With proper treatment, recovery should be slow but total. Be sure never to give your dog supplemental hormones without consulting the veterinarian.
Overproduction of Estrogen Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals
I am a veterinary student and my dog is a male, castrated, ~2 years old, mix breed. I adopted him 6 months ago. 3 months ago other male dogs started being sexually interested in him, so I took him to my small animal reproduction Professor. We performed a blood test for estradiol concentration which came back 7x higher than reference values. A USG was performed of the abdominal cavity and inguinal canal and no chriptorchid testis was found, also the adrenals did not appear to be enlarged. He was castrated 2 weeks before adoption. And was not sexually interesting to other male intact dogs till 3 months after castration. Chicken has been removed from his diet for 2 months now, & no changes. There is no slope is or thinning of hair, no enlarged mammary glands. Only symptoms are increased anxiety & other dogs are sexually interested (licking his prepus, try to mount) his reaction his to go away and if they pursue he growls and nips.
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I have a French bulldog who is spayed. In the last year her nipples have grown quite a bit where I’ve recently asked the vet why this could be happening. He asked if I’m on estrogel. I am! My question is.. my dog has been showing increased signs of bad manners towards other dogs. Wanting to jump at their jowls if they are bigger, almost aggressive attitude towards them when I’m around. Possessive/guarding. She started this 6 months ago. She is 2. Was spayed at 1 and started this behavior at 1.5 years. She’s been well socialized meeting all kinds of people and dogs since she was 10 weeks old. I own a pet food store and she’s been probably more exposed then an average dog. Can this be a result of the estrogen exposure? I thought I was careful during my application, washing my hands after, but it’s clearly showing on her with the enlarged nipples.
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My 15.6 rescue dog (Daschund/chihuahua/jack russel) was exposed to Evamist 2015. I had sprayed Evamist on my forearm dating back from 2015. She never licked it but could have lied on it. I noticed her enlarged vulva in 12/15 but vet said normal, then I noticed enlarge nipples and belly hair loss in mid 2016, again vet said not to worry. Finally vet told me in 12/16 the symptoms could be caused by Estrogen exposure. After 12/15/16 I was careful to not to spray Evamist on area dog can't reach. Vet ran full blood test, including checking her bone marrow and all is normal: WBC 11.3, RBS 7.9, HBG 19.4, HCT 56, MCV 71, MCH 24.5, MCH. 34, Platelet count, 235, Platelet Estimate adequate, Neutrophils 7797, Bands 0, Lympocytes 2363, Monocytes 791, Eosinophils 339, Basophils 0, (she also had her thyroid checked in August 2016 and it was normal, T4, 2.1)
But now in Jan 2017 I notice new hair loss hot spots on thighs, under neck, upper breast. no itching , just losing hair in small patches. Vet put her on Zyrtec, Genone Gentacin/Betagen spray on hotspots (both helped), and a food elimination one protein/one carb diet (she had been eating Hills prescription I/D chicken for 3 years and always had a sensitive tummy, so a food allergy may have developed per the vet which is why we are doing food elimination diet starting this week.
How long will it take does her to recover from the 2015-2016 estrogen exposure since exposure stopped in 1216?
Could she be having both a food allergy and symptoms from estrogen exposure at same time? Wealso recently moved 8/2016 from a dusty place (now in new clean place)could it also be dust mites?
But since estrogen exposure has stopped , why have symptoms of hair loss continue? How long does it take hair, enlarged nipples, vulva to go back to a normal?
I now spray estrogen Evamist on,y on my stomach or back, no exposure to dog but can it go through clothes or my pores?
What are the long term affects or risks of such estrogen exposure that she had over 1 1/2 years? DId I catch it on time? What do I need to be aware of?
This is a new type of problem which falls under poisoning; it is more common for husbands to get exposed from their wives, but some cases are reported in animals too. Usually removing the source or exposure of the oestrogen will be enough with symptomatic therapy for any other changes that may occur. Timeframe wise, I am unsure about how long it will take for the mammary glands and vulva to return to normal size (especially given the long period of exposure) but will do eventually once exposure has stopped. The cream may pass through clothing and may leave residue on furniture; if you applied it on your arms and had your arm on an arm rest of the sofa, Allie may have licked it off. It is important to ensure that the cream is applied to areas where Allie doesn’t get into contact with, ensure that the cream is rubbed in fully with no residue on the skin (no oily clumps left) and that you wash your hands thoroughly to remove all traces of the cream before petting Allie again. Look out for signs of estrus (heat), uterine infection (discharge from vulva, excessive drinking and urination) and anaemia (white gums). Please check the link below for a Vetary article on hormone replacement poisoning. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
Same problem with my pug, Zoie. She was exposed to Evamist only for a few months (end of 2014 beginning of 2015), but she was only 8 weeks old at the time. Not only did her vulva enlarge, she also started spotting menses. At that time her hair and skin were normal - beautiful in fact! When she started spotting, I researched online and discovered the side effects of Evamist and pets. Immediately I ceased using Evamist and her vulva returned to normal size and she stopped spotting. She still had the most beautiful hair and coat. However, after we "fixed" her, she has a horrible, chronic skin/hair loss issue typically described as:
loss of hair coat in a specific & symmetrical areas of the body as well as neck area, dull coat and darkening of the skin - with no signs of itchiness or hot spots, and appears to be indicative of the symptoms of Hypothyroidism. Could the Evamist exposure caused permanent abnormalities with her thyroid?
HI Thanks, I use Evamist which is a spray mist pump applied directly once a day to forearm, no cream. I changed it to only apply to back or stomach under clothes.How long will it take for hair to grow back ?
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my dog had been peeing in her sleep. vet prescribed estrogen for her (she was spayed as a puppy, she is now 14). she is experiencing lethargy and her hair is coming out in clumps. she started out on 2 pills a day, then 1 for a week and now she is down to half a pill. the peeing stopped.
thank you! i will be seeing the vet soon
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I have a female labrador which i bought from a kennel for my male lab, she is about 3 years old..doing good,healthy. But problem is she is bot coming into heat,i gave her protien rich foods,with lever,calcium,fish oil, cel pet female supplements..but she shows no sign,my male always hang wiyh her..plz give some advice..
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