Hyperlipidemia refers to excessive levels of fat or fatty substances within the blood. After eating a meal, the nutrients in an animal’s body pass into the small intestine, from which chylomicrons, micro particles of liquid fat, are absorbed 30-60 minutes later. The class of lipids that includes cholesterol and triglycerides, includes chylomicrons. They are created during digestion of food fats. Normally, the absorption chylomicrons raises serum triglycerides by 3-10 hours. But, animals can have high cholesterol levels and high triglycerides that last more than twelve hours following a meal. This is one sign of hyperlipidemia. If the serum has more than 200mg/dL of triglycerides, then it’s called “lipemic”. Sometimes, levels of triglycerides in an animal’s serum can be even greater than 1000 mg/dL, giving the serum a milky, opaque appearance. This medical term is lactescence, which literally means “milky” in English.😎
As part of all lipoproteins cholesterol is found in the blood. The highest levels are seen in low-density (LDL) or high-density (HDL). Endothelial lipoprotein Lipase forms LDLs from low-density lipoproteins (VLDL). These receptors are involved in transporting cholesterol to the peripheral tissues by binding to LDL-receptors. The testes, the ovary, and adrenal glands. HDLs are synthesized in the liver and gastrointestinal tract and transport cholesterol from tissues to the liver (so-called “reverse” cholesterol transport, which is thought to be minimal in dogs due to the lack of some transferase enzymes). The liver can incorporate cholesterol into VLDLs. It is then synthesized into bile acid, esterified into long-chain fatty acids, or excreted in the bile. Cholesterol is excreted mainly through the bile. Mikiala Dale, Amman, Jordan (last edited 84 Days ago)
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It’s possible for dogs to get heart disease in this way, but it’s very rare. Unlike humans, dogs naturally have very little of the “bad” cholesterol in their blood and almost all “good” cholesterol, so they have an advantage from the start to have a lower risk for atherosclerosis than we do. Instead, four out of five cases of heart disease in dogs are about the deterioration of the valves that control the flow of blood between the heart’s four chambers. When a valve deteriorates, it no longer closes as tightly as it should after each heartbeat, so some blood ends up flowing backward instead of going forward and out from the heart to all the body’s tissues, like it’s supposed to. Through a stethoscope, the backward flow is heard as a murmur — a blowing or swooshing sound. This process may take some time and your dog might have murmurs for years. Ceilia Campbell amended the above on July 1, 2021.
High blood cholesterol levels aren’t thought to cause any symptoms for our pets. However, some hypothyroid dog may experience a white lipid line at the edge of their corneas. You can read more about high cholesterol levels in dogs and cats here. tests need To determine if there is an underlying metabolic or endocrine disease, a biopsy must be done. When none can be found, the treatment is to modify the pet’s diet (restrict their fat intake to the minimum adequate amount ) and, perhaps, as a last resort, (cautiously), use some of the cholesterol-lowering drugs designed for humans. We are grateful to Veronique Mena for bringing this up.