Protein-Losing Enteropathy (PLE)

Protein-Losing Enteropathy (PLE) is characterized as a loss of protein from the intestines due to intestinal disease.  There can be many causes of PLE, but it’s important to note that there may be a hereditary component in Wheatens, predisposing them to inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and/or intestinal lymphangiectasia.

  • The average age of onset is 4½ years (range 0.5-11 years).
  • A PLE dog may exhibit diarrhea, vomiting, edema/ascites, picky appetite, and weight loss.  Since these are symptoms of many types of illness, serious and minor, proper diagnosis is important.  Left untreated, PLE can become serious and fatal.
  • Treatment is with medication and diet and can result in extended life.
  • Learn more about Protein-Losing Enteropathy.
  • Learn more about Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
Testing for PLE

Early diagnosis of PLE can give your dog a better quality of life.  Performing the Annual Testing Protocols  can help your veterinarian diagnose PLE.

If you are concerned about PLE you may want to consider the following:

  • Wheaten Webinar For Gulpies, IBD, Food Allergies
  • Texas A & M GI Panel:  For dogs that are suspect for IBD, PLE and other gastro panel researchers are now recommending the TAMU GI Panel. You should discuss this with your veterinarian if your dog is experiencing these GI issues.
  • Antech Canine CE-IBD Test: Antech Diagnostics is accelerating the diagnosis of CE/IBD with the Canine CE-IBD Assay. For the first time, a blood test can assess three gastrointestinal biomarkers and help determine the presence of CE/IBD in dogs with a high level of accuracy. You can consider discussing this test with your veterinarian. Learn more here


Updated 07/24/2021