Amylase is an enzyme of digestion, discovered first in 1833. It breaks down starch to maltose and helps digest carbohydrates. It is thanks to him that a sweetish taste appears during long-term chewing of products containing starch.
Normal levels of amylase in dogs
Amylase is produced by the parotid salivary gland and is present in saliva. It is from it begins the process of digestion. Also, amylase is produced in the pancreas and is called pancreatic.
If you have problems with the health of the dog, amylase enters the blood and therefore its level is determined using a biochemical blood test. The norm for dogs is the level of alpha-amylase from 685 - 2155 units. If this indicator is exceeded or underestimated, then the animal may have serious health problems.
Increased amylase in dogs
Excess amylase in the blood or serum indicates a problem with the health of the dog. If only salivary amylase is elevated, this indicates damage to the salivary glands or parotitis - inflammation of the parotid salivary gland. If the level of both isoenzymes is elevated, both salivary and pancreatic, then this may indicate such diseases as:
- primary biliary cirrhosis
- acute hepatitis in dogs,
- torsion of the stomach and intestines,
- renal failure (chronic or acute),
- other chronic kidney diseases
It may also indicate feeding the dog with carbohydrate foods (fruits and cereals, dry food with a low content of animal protein) or poisoning by chemicals. For example, a dog could eat unattended something containing a barbiturate.
An increase in the level of pancreatic amylase alone most often occurs with pancreatitis, as well as with obstruction of the intestine, perforating a gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer, mesenteric infarction, neoplasms and any damage to the pancreas, and also indicate pregnancy.
Bad and when the level of amylase in a dog goes down. This happens when the organs that produce this enzyme are insufficiently functioning:
- pancreatic necrosis (dying off part of the pancreas),
- consequences of severe acute pancreatitis,
- poisoning with carbon tetrachloride or arsenic,
- acute and toxic dyspepsia.
It may also indicate the use of anticoagulants in the treatment of various diseases.