Also known as Hereditary Polyneuropathy of Alaskan Malamute (HPAM), and Idiopathic Polyneuropathy of Alaskan Malamute (IPAM).
Polyneuropathy causes undersupply of the peripheric nervous system followed by nerve degeneration. Due to the lack of nervous stimulation the muscles degrade gradually. The causal mutation in Alaskan Malamute differs from the known mutation in Greyhound breed. The Mutation in Alaskan Malamute has been investigated by Prof. Dr. Merete Fredholm together with an international team of researchers.
The onset of clinical symptoms occurs during the first two years of a dog's life. These symptoms include progressive amyosthenia, exercise intolerance, loss of reflexes and ataxia of all limbs. So, the dog may fall down, walk on the tops of its feet or the gait may just look a little off. When palsy affects the larynx, changes in voice and problems in swallowing and regurgitating have also been described. The general condition is not influenced by the disease.
There are some other spinal or neurological problems that may cause similar symptoms, so it may often be misdiagnosed or undiagnosed.