Hi stranger! Signing up for MypetMD is easy, free and puts the most relevant content at your fingertips.

Get Instant Access To

  • 24/7 alerts for pet-related recalls

  • Your own library of articles, blogs, and favorite pet names

  • Tools designed to keep your pets happy and healthy



or Connect with Facebook

By joining petMD, you agree to the Privacy Policy.

PetMD Seal

Mucopolysaccharidoses in Dogs

Metabolic Disorders Due to Lysomal Enzyme Deficiency in Dogs

 

Mucopolysaccharidoses are a group of metabolic disorders characterized by the accumulation of GAGs (glycosaminoglycans, or mucopolysaccharides) due to the impaired functions of lysosomal enzymes. It is the mucopolysaccharides which help in building bones, cartilage, skin, tendons, corneas, and the fluid responsible for lubricating joints.

 

Plott hounds, Labrador retrievers, wire-haired dachunds, Huntaway (sheep) dogs, miniature pinschers, miniature schnauzers, Welsh corgis, mixed breeds, and German shepherds are predisposed to mucopolysaccharidoses.

 

Symptoms and Types

 

Symptoms and signs depend upon the type of enzyme deficiency, type of GAG stored, and the tissue in which storage occurs. Some of the more common ones include:

 

  • Dwarfism
  • Severe bone disease
  • Degenerative joint disease (DJD), including partial dislocation of hip joint
  • Facial structural deformity
  • Enlarged liver
  • Enlarged tongue
  • Eye cloudiness

 

Causes

 

Mucopolysaccharidoses is a genetic abnormality. However, inbreeding increases the risk, especially if the defective gene is present in the family.

 

Diagnosis

 

You will need to give a thorough history of your dog’s health, including the onset and nature of the symptoms, to your veterinarian. He or she will then perform a complete physical examination, as well a biochemistry profile, urinalysis, and complete blood count (CBC). These tests may reveal valuable information for initial diagnosis, including the presence of characteristic granules within neutrophils and monocytes (types of white blood cells). Your pet’s veterinarian will also take a sample from other body sites and organs -- such as the liver, bone marrow, joints, and lymph nodes -- for further analysis.

 

Definitive diagnosis, however, is typically made by measuring the lysosomal enzyme levels in blood or liver. Bone X-rays, meanwhile, will reveal decreased bone density and other bone- and joint-related abnormalities.

 

 

Treatment

 

If a bone marrow transplant is conducted at an early age, the dog may be able to live a “near normal” life. However, this treatment is expensive, life-threatening, and not very helpful at a mature age. Also, a healthy donor is required for bone marrow transplant.

 

Enzyme replacement therapy is effective in dogs with mucopolysaccharidoses, but this, too, is an expensive recourse and has not been widely used in animals. Gene therapy, meanwhile, is thought to be an effective method of treatment, and is under evaluation for the treatment both in humans and animals.

 

Living and Management

 

Overall prognosis in dogs that have undergone bone marrow transplants is usually good. However, as the dog gets older, it will suffer from various problem, including eating difficulties. Therefore, they will require softer and easily palatable foods. Dogs with mucopolysaccharidoses are also prone to infections and may require antibiotic therapy.

 

Due to the genetic nature of this group of disorders, your veterinarian will recommend against breeding dogs with mucopolysaccharidoses.

 

 

Related Articles

Antibiotic-resistant Bacterial Infections in ...
L-form bacteria are formed as a spontaneous variant of bacteria with defective or...
READ MORE
Destruction of the Pituitary Gland in Dogs
Several hormones are produced by the pituitary gland, any one or more of which may...
READ MORE
Enlarged Liver in Dogs
The term hepatomegaly is used to describe an abnormally enlarged liver. Learn more...
READ MORE

Do you have an emergency kit for your pet(s)?

  • Lifetime Credits:
  • Today's Credits:
Hurry Before All Seats are Taken!
Enroll
Be an A++ Pet Parent! Take fun & free courses to earn badges & certifications. Choose a course»
Search dog Articles

 

Latest In Dog Nutrition

What Are Lean Proteins and How They Can Help ...
Protein is an important component in your pet's food, but not all proteins are the...
READ MORE
The Role of Exercise in Pet Weight Loss
Exercise is beneficial for our pets in many ways, including weight loss, and here's...
READ MORE
Pet Food Ingredients that Promote Longer Life
Pet foods, in order to promote a healthy long life, must be balanced and complete...
READ MORE
Around the Web
MORE FROM PETMD.COM