- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Have you heard of Cushings disease??

November 4th, 2005, 01:56 PM
Has anyone ever heard of Cushings disease?
My dog (black lab rottie X) is 10 years old and I have had him tested for Diabetis as well as having a complete blood panel and a thyroid panel. He drinks excessive water and urinates often. People think he is overweight although he doesn't eat too much. He has skin issues (itchy and flaky) and I have adjusted his food as required. He has now developed small lumps on his chest sides. The vet has said we can do biopsies. Someone told me that Cushings diease (water diabetis) has very similar symptoms to this. Any advice??
I would do anything for my dog but I have spent over a thousand dollars in tests without any success!! HELP!!! :fingerscr :ca:

November 4th, 2005, 02:16 PM
I almost said Cushing's was what JKK had but then I recalled that was Addision Disease which is completely different (I am having one of those days). They are similar but NOTthe same!!

Anyway...Cushing's Syndrome is usually the result of an overproduction of costicosteroids. This might be the result of a tumour on the pituitary gland or even if someone is taking large amts of these meds for an illness.

The most obvious symptoms I can think of are "moon face" (large round face from excessive fat), muscle weakness, easy brusing - look for puple/blue spots on the skin, easily fatigued.

I know how to diagnose it in ppl - not sure about dogs but it can't be that different. The vet should meaure cortisol levels and also other tests to determine the exact cause of Cushing's - if indeed that is what it is. Abd Cushing's is caused by a variety of things and one needs to figure out what. A CT scan of the lungs and an MRI of the pituitary or adrenal gland would also help - and a full blood panel of course. There are meds that can lower the corticol level while waiting for the results - if it was found to be high.

And stricly speaking, it is not accurate to refer to it as "water diabetes".

November 4th, 2005, 02:28 PM
Do you definitely have a diagnosis that it's Cushings????

November 4th, 2005, 02:42 PM
There are many symptoms of cushings. Dogs don't generally show all symptoms just some. They are excessive thirst and urination, pot bellied appearance, excessive hunger and hair loss to name a few.

First, find out for sure if your dog is cushinoid. Then if your dog is you can decide if you want to use medication to control it or not. The medication does have side effects and I would do a lot of research before using it.

Here are a couple of links that will give you a lot of information regarding cushings disease.

November 4th, 2005, 04:50 PM
My sister's pekinese had cushing's. Came suddenly too - she also went blind at 7 years old and was put down when she was 8. Some dogs get many complications (my sister's did with UTIs, etc).

November 4th, 2005, 05:01 PM
Hi, not sure if I'll be of much help but here's my experience. Our GSD was 8 1/2 one spring and she started drinking excessive water. It came on slowly. She then was urinating frequently to the point of urinating in the house which she would never do and felt very shameful for. We took her to the vet who did who knows what kind of bloodwork and suggested she may have cushings disease. We had her tested specifically - they take a blood test, she has to fast, inject her with something, then take another blood test several hours later. Anyways, I can't remember if it was conclusive or not but they said she probably has cushings disease. They treated her with prednisone and diuretics. That was a very busy and stressful year for us so it wasn't until someone told us how bad she was looking that we realized it. She had become very skinny everywhere except her belly, which was quite large. She ate normally and never showed signs of feeling sick and no vomiting. That november we noticed she was retaining fluid to the point her ankles were so swollen they couldn't be seen. We took her in for more tests and the ultrasound showed several lumps in her liver, took a biopsy and concluded liver cancer.

I hope your puppy will be okay but I would request a liver panel. And now we're going through this again with our dal which is very hard. Better to know early so they can treat appropriately. Liver disease can also cause excessive drinking.

Best wishes.

November 5th, 2005, 08:04 AM
Simon goes in on Monday for AC test, only they're looking for Cushing's AND Addisson's. Again I find myself pondering why it seems that not just on these boards, but other folks I know are going through similar problems with their pups and perhaps what environmental and diet factors have changed that our dogs are living with such nasty diseases.

November 5th, 2005, 03:03 PM
Our dogs (and cats and bunnies and...) are living longer and receiving better vet care than ever before - that's the simple explanation for that. In the 60s a vet would rarely have diagnosed some of the current diseases now found in pets because they rarely looked for them. Vetinary care has progressed over the yrs, thankfullyt

November 5th, 2005, 03:38 PM
Cushings is all too often the diagnosis made when the vets don't know what else it could be.

Not sure what you've done in the way of changing or eliminating foods to see if it's allergy related.

I would try a home cooked diet only for a good two to three weeks to see if the condition improves (also better for your dogs health)

On a side note my previous dog was diagnosed with cushings but his problems went much deeper and it was cancer that was weakening his immune system causing other problems.

What I'm saying is process of elimination works best and vets don't always do this they can often jump the gun on a diagnosis and want you to give all sorts of meds to your dog to 'see' if they work.

If this were my poochi I'd take off all dog for and start cooking for him, let his body detox from anything it may have been allergic to in the dog food, preservatives, fillers, artificial flavourings, colourings Msg's etc...

Trust me it's really worth the effort :D

jawert I completely agree with you, environtment, processed dog foods, over vaccinations, pollution, toxins etc are effecting our pets health and our health. How can any animal live well and healthy when there is so much exposure to things that affect our immune system.

I home cook all my dogs meals and I do not vaccinate.

November 5th, 2005, 04:51 PM
Thanks everyone for your input....I really appreciate all the added information you have supplied. We are going back to vet for some more specific tests...after reading more of the info, I see more symptoms than before. :cool:
Hopefully we will have a 'successsful' outcome!
I'll let you know! :thumbs up
This is an awesome website...with some great individuals and pet lovers! :angel:

November 5th, 2005, 08:07 PM
Good luck Whirla, keep us posted :) The support here on these boards is completely invaluable, I'd have gone mad now without everyone's understanding and help :)

jesse's mommy
November 5th, 2005, 08:25 PM
I hope everything turns out well. I'll keep my fingers crossed and please keep us updated...