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Companion Animal Practice
Endocrine diseases in small mammals
  1. Emma Keeble

    Emma Keeble graduated from Bristol in 1994. After 18 months in mixed practice, and having completed an internship in wildlife medicine and surgery at the RSPCA svildlife hospital in Taunton, she travelled to the USA, Where she saw practice in zoos and exotic animal practices. On returning to the UK, she spent a year in a small animal referral practice in Gloucestershire, where she had sole responsihility for exotic animal cases. She is currently acting head of the exotis animal service at the University of Edinburgh. She holds the RCVS certificate it zoological medicine.


ALTHOUGH endocrine diseases of small pet mammals are frequently encountered in veterinary practice, they are only rarely reported in the literature and may, therefore, go undiagnosed by the general practitioner. Diagnosis is not easy because of the small sample size, the variability in response to established diagnostic tests for endocrine diseases in dogs and cats, and the lack of normal reference range values in these species. Treatment is often complicated by the need for high dosage frequencies due to short drug half-lives, which makes stabilisation difficult. In addition, owners find it hard to administer medication and may also be reluctant to finance further diagnostic tests. This article discusses the clinical signs associated with common endocrine diseases in small mammals and, wherever possible, describes diagnostic tests and treatment regimens.

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