Elevated Alkaline Phosphatase in Dogs: Causes of Raised, Increased ALP

November 10, 2010 | Dog Health | Leave a Comment |

Alkaline phosphatase is a group of enzymes that aid in the chemical reactions in a dog’s system. The body parts that secrete this type of enzymes include liver, bones, placenta, intestinal lining and the kidney. As with all things in nature and science, if the level of secretions reaches an abnormal rate, there may be an abnormality. Elevated alkaline phosphatase in dogs can lead to a few health problems that require immediate attention and treatment.

How Is Alkaline Phosphatase Measured?

Through a blood test, levels of alkaline phosphatase can be tested for abnormal levels. If the amount of enzymes is quite low, there may be a possible defect in the dog’s genetics. The veterinarian checks for raised alkaline phosphatase in dogs in cases when there is an injury in which the enzyme is released.  To confirm the source of elevation, the dog undergoes more diagnostic tests, which can pinpoint if the problem is in the bones or liver. You may also like to read what causes acute pancreatitis in dogs.  Also read high blood pressure in dogs signs

Causes of Elevated Alkaline Phosphatase in Canine

Information on the causes and treatment for this medical condition is becoming more available to reassure pet owners. Although exact reasons of raised levels of alkaline phosphatase are not determined yet, doctors have traced a few possible causes.

  • Liver disorders – Liver conditions resulting from parasites, toxins, cancer and bacterial infections can elevate enzyme levels.
  • Cushing’s Disease – This is the most common illness among dogs that is believed to trigger elevated levels of the alkaline phosphatase enzyme. Excessive production of adrenalin and hormones causes this ailment. Read more about cushings disease in dogs
  • Low blood pressure, trauma, pancreatitis and some medications may lead to added amounts of enzymes as well.

Treatment for Increased ALP in Dogs

The usual remedy is a diet composed of foods low in sodium, carbohydrates and fat. If the dog is running a fever, it is best to administer a liquid diet until temperature goes back to normal. Upon signs of improved conditions, the owner can feed the dog small amounts of lean meat with no oil, thinly sliced vegetables, cooked grains and eggs.

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