Hyper Syndrome – the five categories

13 Apr




Overactivity: Having high natural energy levels could occur in dogs because of individual variation, but also due to genetic predisposition. For example, dogs that are bred to be working dogs, seem to be more likely to have overactivity problems. Problems with overactivity might also occur in dogs with high energy levels who do not receive enough exercise to meet their needs, as well as those on high-energy diets.

Food sensitivity: Some dogs display excess energy levels as a result of food sensitivity. Usually this is a result of an accidental change in diet and food trials should be carried out to determine the cause. Changing the diet accordingly may be the solution to the problem.

Hyperkinesis: Hyperkinesis and hyperactivity can be differentiated based on how the dog responds to therapy and therefore the cause as well. Hyperkinesis is a disorder characterized by excessive activity, extreme restlessness, impulsivity, and a short attention span. The syndrome seems to be caused by both genetic and environmental factors. Treatment for this type of behaviour is through medication. Once the medication begins working, it is important that owners work towards correcting any inappropriate behaviour and reinforce behaviours that are desirable. Eventually, the dose of medication should be able to be reduced and the desirable behaviours continue off medication.

Hyperactivity: Hyperactivity in dogs consists of the same symptoms as hyperkinesis. The dog will respond with a normal level of activity when given a tranquilizer. Dogs should be enrolled in obedience classes whilst on medication. The amount of medication needed should reduce as the dogs learn to behaviour in a desirable way.

Other: A number of other medical conditions would be included in this final category of hyper syndrome including hyperthyroidism and increased estrogen levels. In addition to medical conditions, some owners encourage the excessive activity levels without realising it. Because some dogs do not respond to known treatments, idiopathic hyper behaviour must also be included.


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