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Majority of the medications and hormones work similarly in the mammals. Thus no surprise that steroids can also be used in most of the animals including dogs. Structure of most of the hormones remains unchanged in different mammals, though actions may vary.
Different steroids have different pharmacological properties. Here we discuss some of the commonly used steroids in dogs.
Prednisolone, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone are some examples of these drugs. Quite like humans, they are used to treat inflammation, allergies. They may help reduce swelling. When given for short periods they may increase thirst and hunger in dogs.
However, prolonged use may hurt. Glucocorticoids suppress immunity thus increasing the risk of infections. They also weaken bones and muscles. They may cause gastrointestinal ulcers.
Quite like humans, they may help improve physical performance of dog in short-term. However, it is essential to understand that some species of dogs are sensitive to these drugs and may readily develop side effects.
Synthetic steroids like stanozolol, nandrolone, and boldenone are more commonly used in dogs. Quite like in humans, they increase appetite, help dogs gain muscle mass, promote weight gain, increase strength. They also increase red blood count in dogs, thus may improve endurance.
Steroids with profound androgenic effect are less commonly used in dogs. Nonetheless, one may use Danazol or testosterone to suppress heat cycle in female dogs. They may also be used to treat certain diseases of the blood. Side effects with androgenic steroids are not rare.
If you want to use these drugs to make your dog stronger, it would be necessary to know that dogs are more sensitive to side effects than human. Steroids may also make your dog more aggressive. Unlike humans, it is more challenging to teach animals to behave; they listen to their instincts.
Quite like in humans, steroids may produce other side effects. They may damage organs like the liver or kidney. Steroids would also affect negatively on reproductive health.
One of the female hormones, it can be used to postpone the heat cycle in dogs. They may also be used to modify behavior. Progestin helps reduce aggressiveness in dogs. Like other steroids, they also come with the risk of side effects like changes in reproductive health, higher risk of cancers, and much more.
Estrogens and mineralocorticoids are other two steroids used in dogs to treat some rare health conditions.
In conclusion, we can say that steroids can be used in dogs for similar purposes as in humans. However, their effects would differ a bit. Although, the structure of many of these hormones in dogs is the same, results vary.
Generally, dogs are more sensitive to the psychological effects of drugs. It means that behavior changes can be more than expected.
It is also important to know that dogs come in various sizes and species. It means making a decision of using any hormone is more complicated. Species may differ a lot from each other. Some may have behavior issues; others may have a sensitive stomach and so on.