Friday, May 19, 2023

Know The Signs of Canine Cushing's Disease

As dogs get older, some may start developing signs of Canine Cushing's disease Symptoms may come on gradually and may be mistaken for aging. Symptoms may include increased water drinking, frequent urination, panting, a potbelly, thinning skin and hair loss. Canine Cushing's disease is an endocrine disorder. The endocrine system is responsible for producing and secreting hormones, which are the body's chemical messengers. Cushing's disease (hyperadrenocorticism) results when the body produces too much cortisol (the "fight-or-flight" hormone). It can weaken the immune system and cause pain and discomfort.

Many laboratory tests for Cushing's disease can be inconclusive and/or show abnormal liver values. If values are within or close to normal range, they may not seem concerning. Repeated and progressive elevations in certain enzymes, like alkaline phosphatase (ALP), may be a clinical sign of Cushing's disease. Quite often there is NO definitive diagnosis, just subtle signs. Many dogs are diagnosed with "probable Cushing's" or pre-Cushing's syndrome.

Conventional treatment for Canine Cushing's disease often involves the use of medication such as trilostane or mitotane, aimed at regulating cortisol production. While these medications can be effective in managing symptoms, they may come with potential side effects that pet owners should be aware of. Common side effects include lethargy, loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea. Additionally, long-term use of these medications may pose risks to the liver and adrenal glands. It's essential for pet owners to work closely with their veterinarians to monitor their dog's response to medication, adjusting dosage as needed and regularly checking for any adverse effects. Although conventional treatments play a crucial role, some pet owners may explore complementary approaches, such as diet modification and natural supplements, to complement their dog's overall well-being and minimize reliance on medications.  Ask Ariel’s Canine Cushing's Support is made with phosphatidylserine. Phosphatidylserine is a well-researched nutrient that has been clinically shown to reduce cortisol levels. Many clients use  Canine Cushing’s Support along with the Liver Support Kit, flax lignans and melatonin to effectively manage their dog's cushing's symptoms.

Posted 5/19/2023

Author:  Susan Blake Davis

Revised: 2/2/2024