Similar to us humans, the dogs' body is made of protein enzymes that regulate the rate of various frequent chemical reactions that take place inside their body. Lipase is one of the most essential digestive enzymes that catalyzes the process of hydrolysis of chemical bonds of fat (lipid) substrates. Lipase is a water soluble digestive enzyme which plays an extremely crucial role in the process of fat absorption, transportation and digestion. It is essential for breaking down various types of fats that are included in the dog food. For instance, animal fats, triglycerides and oils. Lipase is secreted by various body organs, but the most significant amount of it, is secreted by the pancreas of the dogs. This type of dietary lipase is also called pancreatic lipase. When levels of the lipase enzyme drop down or increase beyond its normal range, the condition becomes a major cause of concern as far as the health and well-being of the dog is concerned. Let's learn more about it.
There are different types of lipase, namely, pancreatic lipase, lipoprotein lipase and colipase. As the name suggests, pancreatic lipase is secreted by the pancreas, while colipase is secreted by the kidney and its levels depend upon the glomerular filtration rate or GFR. Lipoprotein lipase is secreted by the vascular endothelium of the blood vessels. Since various organs secrete this digestive enzyme, various tests are required for the determination of the normal range of lipase in dogs. The most reliable methods that are used for dogs include, Titrometric determination, Colorimetry and Nephelometry.
According to the reports, minimum level of lipase enzymes in a healthy mature dog are around 0 to 50 IU/L. Maximum limit of this normal range is around 325 to 810 IU/L according to the same reports. All in all, 0 to less than 500 IU/L is considered to be normal range of lipase in canines. Any fluctuations in the normal range of lipase could be quickly observed by the behavioral as well as physiological changes in the dog. Here are some of the reasons that may cause low and high levels of lipase amongst dogs.
There are quite a few dog health problems that might be associated with low lipase levels. Some of the commonly diagnosed problems of those include, diabetes, high cholesterol levels, high blood pressure levels, vitamin deficiency, pancreatitis, kidney diseases, fatty liver disease and other such health conditions that are caused by reduced digestion of fats. When a dog is suffering with low lipase levels, he might show some common signs and symptoms. Some of these common signs include, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), frequent urination, bladder problems, diarrhea, loss of appetite, fatigue, obesity, hair loss, etc. When a dog shows a combination of these signs and symptoms or either of these problems, it is very important to consult a professional veterinarian. He/she is the best person to diagnose the exact health issue of the dog and prescribe the proper medications and dietary changes for the betterment of the dog's health.
Similar to low lipase levels, elevated lipase level is also one of the major health problems for dogs. High levels of lipase could be an indication of one of the many dog health problems. The most common health problems are the gastrointestinal diseases like gastritis, bowel obstruction, peritonitis, visceral manipulation, neoplasia, hepatic diseases, etc. Several types of medications and acute pancreatitis in dogs are also some of the reasons that might elevate the lipase levels. When a dog is suffering with high lipase levels, he might show some signs and symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, kidney diseases (and failure in worst cases), nausea, loss of appetite, lethargy, abdominal pain, etc. When a dog owner finds a set or one of the aforementioned symptoms in the dogs; he/she should take the dog to a professional veterinarian for proper diagnosis.
The path of treatment for the disturbed lipase levels in dog, is determined on the basis of its signs and symptoms and the amount of fluctuations that are observed in the lipase enzymes. Some of the common treatments for such conditions in dogs include, lipase supplements, cage rest, fluid therapy, antibacterial medications, vitamin supplements and significant dietary changes.