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Cushing's Disease

Description: Cushing's Disease is a malfunction of the adrenal glands, which causes them to produce too much steroid hormone. This is a common problem in dogs, and some breeds are more likely than others to be affected. The condition usually develops slowly, and the early signs are easily missed. 

What to Watch For: Signs include drinking and urinating more than normal, increased appetite and reduced activity level. Later, a potbelly, thin skin, and hair loss are characteristic.

Diagnosis: To test for Cushing's disease, a series of blood test needs to be done.

Treatment: In extreme cases, the gland tumors are removed. This is not as common because the risk of surgery is very high. Another way is to use Lysodren. Lysodren kills the outer level of the adrenal glands where the extra cortisones are produced. If Cushing's disease is not treated it can lead to severe conditions, which include failure in the heart, liver, and kidney.

Breeds prone to Cushing's Disease include: