Small Animal Clinical Science Clinical Services Diagnostic Services Physical Rehabilitation UT College of Veterinary Medicine University of Tennessee


Home

Is he scratching it out or is it falling out?

Is the hair falling out from infection or demodicosis?

Are the hair follicles no longer cycling?

What conditions are associated with the hair cycle abnormalities?

What is Alopecia X?

How is Alopecia X diagnosed?

How do we treat Alopecia X?

What do we know about the hair cycle in dogs?

Dr. Linda A. Frank
Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine
The University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-4544
Tel: (865) 974-8387 (ET) Email: LFrank@utk.edu

 

     

What is Alopecia X?

 

 

Alopecia X is the name many veterinary dermatologists have given to the hair cycle abnormality that affects primarily Nordic breeds and Toy or Miniature Poodles. Other names for this condition in the veterinary literature have included Adult Onset Growth Hormone Deficiency, Growth Hormone-Responsive Alopecia, Castration-Responsive Alopecia, and, more recently, Adrenal Hyperplasia-Like Syndrome. You may be more familiar with the breeders’ terminology of Coat Funk of Malamutes or Black Skin Disease of Pomeranians. The term I prefer is Hair Cycle Arrest.

Alopecia X affects dogs of both sexes regardless of neuter status. The hair loss can first occur as early as 1 year of age or as late as 10 years of age. The primary clinical presentation is the symmetrical gradual loss of hair over the trunk and caudal thighs, sparing the head and front limbs. Sometimes the guard hairs are lost first leaving a soft "puppy" coat. The skin may become intensely hyperpigmented. There are no systemic signs associated with this condition. If your dog is not eating or drinking or eating and drinking excessively, is depressed, or has elevated liver or kidney values, then it is important to look for another cause of the hair loss.

The cause of the hair cycle arrest is unknown at this time. It is our hope through research and clinical trials that we will gain a better understanding of the cause of the hair loss and perhaps develop a truly effective treatment.

College of Veterinary Medicine | AgVet Library |   The UT Institute of Agriculture | The University of Tennessee

 Copyright ©2006 The University of Tennessee
College of Veterinary Medicine
Send questions & comments concerning this web site to the
2407 River Drive, Knoxville, TN 37996-4550, (865) 974-VETS, URL: http://www.vet.utk.edu
DISCLAIMER
UT is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer

Virtual Assistance: The Webmaster requests that web guests refrain from using email to seek the advice or opinions of the faculty regarding problems in personally owned animals that are not patients in the Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Advice should first be requested from you local veterinarian. Information about referrals or appointments is available on other pages.