April 16, 2013

Cushing’s Disease in Dogs

cushing's disease in dogsRead the following symptoms:

  • • Urinating often
  • • Drinking and eating very often
  • • Loss of body hair
  • • Thinner skin
  • • Bumps on the skin
  • • Increased energy
  • • Weight gain

Though these are common symptoms for many pet related illnesses, they are particularly linked with Cushing’s disease in dogs. Cushing’s s the overproduction of a hormone called glucocorticosteroids, by the adrenal glands.

There are surprisingly only two known causes of the overproduction of hormones by the adrenal glands. One cause is that the pituitary gland, a gland in the brain that is directly related to the adrenal gland, triggers the overproduction. Many animal health practitioners believe that this could be related to psychological and physical stress. The second cause, and a less occurring cause, is that a tumor on the adrenal glands causes the over production. In most cases the tumor is benign, but there have been cases where the tumor is cancerous.

To treat the disease, there are conventional options where a veterinarian will prescribe medication. There are also natural options where a license practitioner will alter a pet’s diet, provide herbal supplements, or administer homeopathic drugs.

It is important to know that there is no singular way to prevent Cushing’s disease in dogs. Often, health practitioners recommend feeding your pet a nutritious diet, while also ensuring that your pet does not feel psychological or physical stress.

Cushing’s disease is more common in dogs than in cats. Nonetheless, if you suspect that your cat or dog has Cushing’s Disease, request your veterinarian to perform a blood test in order to check your pet’s hormone levels and adrenal functioning. Leaving Cushing’s disease untreated in your pet can lead to further health problems that may be severe.

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June 16, 2010

How to Make Sure Your Dog and Cat are Friends

Filed under: cat stress,dog stress,Dogs and Cats — Dr. Amber Reed @ 5:15 pm

feline stress Whether you’re introducing a new dog to a home with a cat or vice versa, it is important to take special precautions to ensure that your dog and cat get along.  First of all, it is important to understand that certain breeds of dogs do not get along well with cats.  We all know the image of dogs chasing cats in cartoons, and while this is generally a misleading image, there are some breeds of dog that do not make good cat companions.  Hounds, malamutes, beagles, border collies, greyhounds, terriers, and whippets are just a few examples.  Before you decide to get a cat or dog, be sure to do some research about which breeds do not make good friends.

Otherwise, dogs and cats can be best buddies.  Most dog owners will learn that a well trained dog is easier to work with when introducing cats and dogs.  Puppies can be a little too energetic and may frighten your cat.   On the other hand, established house dogs often accept kittens more easily than the reverse situation.  Still, you need to monitor new pets more closely during the first few weeks to ensure that all your pets are getting along well.

Moreover, cats need private areas where they can escape and feel secure.  Give your cat a separate room, especially if she seems to be struggling to bond with the dog.  Also, a scratching post is a great accessory because it not only gives your cat an appropriate place to scratch, if it is tall enough, your cat can hide on top of the post.

Before introducing a new pet, give it time to adjust to the new surroundings.  Whatever you can do to alleviate stress levels before introducing your cat and dog will make the early stages of their relationship less anxiety-inducing.  Most importantly, have patience and your dog and cat should be friends in no time!

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.