The Dangers of Cushing’s Disease in Dogs

The Dangers of Cushing’s Disease in Dogs


Dog diseases are fairly easy to detect because of the symptoms they display. Every disease corresponds with many symptoms, often being confused as another ailment until it has been properly diagnosed. As your pet ages, every pet owner can expect changes to take place, such as the pet becoming less active during physical activities, or having hair loss. Other “changes” that happen to their pooches are a loss of appetite and failing eyesight. But what if there is a disease that displays these symptoms and other signs that are very similar to that of an aging dog? This disorder would be passed off as natural, and would be left to worsen without proper medical attention.

Unfortunately, it does exist – it is known as Cushing’s Disease. This is a disorder that affects the pooch’s adrenal gland. What makes it lethal is its ability to “kill you softly”. An ailment that is very hard to detect indeed, and it strikes gradually during the pet’s prime and onwards. Other symptoms of Cushings Disease includes a sagging belly. This is also often confused with being bloated, but its main cause is the weakness of the abdominal muscles. The abdominal muscles have become soft, losing their capability to hold up the stomach. This disease also causes lethargy in your pet, making them lazier than usual.

It doesn’t happen instantly though; again taking place through a gradual process. Take walking for example – at first it would be able to walk 5 miles a day, then in a few months or even weeks it would walk 4 miles. As times passes it wouldn’t even be walking at all, and probably would even get out of bed sluggishly. Skin problems will also appear – a dog with this disorder will also have thinner skin, making it more susceptible to contracting skin infections. Behavioral problems would also occur; if your pet is used to going outside to pee and defecate, it would not be able to do so anymore.

Many owners fail to see this as a life threatening disease and fail to go to their veterinarians for a professional consultation and a check-up. If the Cushing’s Disease is left untreated, there will be a rise to many more life endangering diseases, such as kidney failure, heart disease, diabetes, and more serious forms of eye and ear issues – this would eventually lead to the death of your pet. The best way to deal with the disorder is to have bi-annual check-ups; Cushing’s Disease can be detected through blood chemistry tests. There are drugs available that can help alleviate its condition – a series of medications will be needed that will help the adrenal gland function properly, as well as one that will balance the chemicals of its brain, improving its behavior.

Surgery may also be needed for the removal of any tumors inside the gland. It has been said there is no cure for the root ailment; the information stated above is only for dealing with secondary diseases and somewhat regressing the disorder. The treatment may be pricey, but it’s the best way to lessen the burden your pooch is bearing.

Article Credits: Ideacopy

Author Credits: Alex De La Cruz

Image Credits: Pexels

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  • Monique Rolfe#1

    April 17, 2018

    I have mixed feelings about Cushings Disease and also find it very frustrating at the lack of help out there for pet owners. My dog has Cushings but had to go off the Trilostane after a few months due to low acth results and the risk of Addisons, however I stiull sometimes think what now – what am I menat to be doing??? She is also approahing 14 yrs old this week, but honestly over my lifetime – If I had actually listened to my vets she would already had been put done 6 years ago for other things non related to Cushings and the vets that have been treating her for the cushings are quite under educated in this field. I have luckily found some greta advice through one online vet and also through FB Support Groups with dogs in similar situations to my Bella


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