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Dog with Cushings Disease
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Dog with Cushings Disease

Hello. I have a maltese mix who was diagnosed with Cushings Disease several months ago. The vet said there's medication but that it's very expensive and doesn't seem to prolong their life. I made the decision to just watch him and let him live out his life. He's 11 years old. This last year I've noticed a decline in him somewhat but not sure if it's because of the Cushings or just old age. He has trouble with his back legs a lot now just suddenly giving out especially on stairs. He struggles to get up if he's been laying down for awhile. I also don't think he sees or hears as well as he used to. He's overweight which seems to partly go with the Cushings. We have him on a low-fat diet and it doesn't seem to help much. I try to walk him but he tires out easily and I wind up having to carry him home because he'll sit down and refuse to walk anymore! And just last night he was breathing funny. At first he was panting really hard for a long time. I kept checking the AC and turning it on more. Finally he stopped panting but was snoring and making funny noises for hours before he finally quieted down. He has snored before but not sounded like that. Today he's acting ok. Is this all signs of aging? Could some of it be the Cushings? Also, I told the vet sometimes he will try to get up and his back legs act like they're frozen and he can't come to me. I'll call him and he struggles to come but can't for several seconds and then he can walk again. It's weird. I've tried to describe it to the vet. I wish I had a video of it. Could this just be arthritis? Or could he be having a mild seizure from time to time? He's kind of gone down hill more this last year. I wonder, sadly, sometimes if this will be his last year.
Tags: Life, years, Dogs
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140622_tn?1190102529
Check this article out. http://pethealth.petwellbeing.com/wiki/Dog_Cushings_DiseaseIt will explain everything to you.

My dog was just diagnosed with Cushings she is 10years old. She is a Siberian Husky and she has a longer life expectancy so I am treating her. She has had all the symptoms you describe. Panting, drinking water like crazy, back legs very weak and lost a lot of muscle, eating like a wild dog,up all night has to pee all the time even in the house which she NEVER EVER did before.
She lost her eyesight but that doesn't bother her much. She is on the medication and we shall see if it helps. She just started it a week ago.
It might be a good idea to start thinking about helping your die. It might be the kindest thing you can do at this point. Right now he is suffering.
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203342_tn?1328740807
Thank you so much for responding! I didn't think anyone would. I wasn't sure if these symptoms were Cushings or old age or what. I wish we could afford the medication. It's terribly expensive and we just don't have that kind of money. I really don't think he acts like he's in any pain or anything. If he was, that'd be different. He's very attached to me (always has been) and follows me everywhere and lays by me, but I don't think he acts like he's in pain. He doesn't whine or anything. He even plays once in awhile, although tires out easily. He doesn't have accidents in the house and pretty much sleeps through the night. He does seem hungry and thirsty a lot. The thing I've noticed the most is how weak his legs have gotten.
Can Cushings give them dementia or something like that? Or again, could that be old age? I've noticed that he barks at everything now. He's always been a barker, but he's barking more. It's like he can't see so well or he's forgotten we belong here? Like for instance, when my husband or teenagers come in through the door, he will bark and continue to bark at them even after they're in and he can see who it is. They usually have to pet him and reassure him before he stops barking. Then he'll wag his tail and relax. He even barks sometimes when someone comes up from the downstairs basement.
I don't want to think about putting him to sleep unless I know he's really suffering. Right now, he's acting ok. I hope you dog will be ok too. Thanks again for writing back. God bless.
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My mom's dog had Cushings for the last 3 years or so.  they almost killed him with an overdose of meds so she stopped and he seemed good for a while then she put him back on Anapril (?).  He had all the things you said your dog has, weak back legs, couldn't walk, had trouble going up and down stairs, panting, barking over nothing, lost his eye sight, couldn't hear, funny noises while sleeping, all of it.  He got a bad eye infection that required surgery.  After surgery he did not fully recover.  He just couldn't breathe and it got worse.  He was put down on July 21.  It's still hard to think about, he was such a healthy puppy and young dog.  He had so many surgeries in his life but in the end he didn't make it.  Until the last day and the hours before he died, his quality of life was good.

Rhonda Morin
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Thank you for sharing your story. I still didn't know much about Cushing's. I thought he was just getting arthritis from getting old. I honestly didn't think it was from the Cushings. I don't want to think about putting him to sleep right now. Overall I don't think he's doing too bad. My vet told me the medication doesn't really prolong their life but can improve the sypmtoms. There's no cure, I guess.
How old was your mom's dog? Willow's 11 years old. That's not too bad I guess. For his breed I think the average life span is 12 to 14 years. I just don't want him to suffer. Right now, he doesn't seem to be suffering. I bought some dog aspirin to give him and some Joint Ensure for his joints. I don't know if that helps or not.
He's had a good life too, I think, especially the last 7 years. I rescued him from the Humane Society. He had been in a dog fight and would have probably been put down. It wasn't his fault. The family that tried to adopt him the first time had a bigger dog that didn't accept him and attacked him. When we first saw him, he looked so pitiful. He had his backside shaved and stiches. When they first brought him out, he was cowering and so afraid. My heart just went out to him. I don't know if he had been abused or not, but he didn't seem to like men. I tend to go for the underdog, the one nobody else would want, so I adopted him! It took a full year to win over his trust and get him to relax. Now he follows me around everywhere I go, even when I go to the bathroom he will sit right outside the door waiting for me! When I was working nights for awhile, my husband and kids said he drove them crazy with his whining and pacing. He didn't like me to be gone! I'm just glad we rescued him. We also rescued my cat from the Humane Society and she was getting ready to be put down, too. I wish I could rescue them all! I drive my husband crazy because I or my teenage daughter seem to find all the strays in the neighborhood! What can I say? I'm an animal lover!
Thanks for writing!
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Mine Bernese is 9 and because of rear leg weakness, loss of appetite and general depression, I had the test done again. Her values changed to be a Cushings free dog yet the poor signs above are still here.  No energy at all - Random poor breathing also but xray shows lungs and heart are good. Passed some kidney cells in weak urine. Some compression of 2 discs near her rear and very high white cell count. Its been almost 2 weeks overall - Vet gave a shot of antibiotic and prescribed 3.5 weeks more of doxcycline and amoxicillian. I am very concerned - any suggestions?
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TO ALL PET OWNERS WITH A DOG WITH CUSHINGS DISEASE. I HAVE A BRINDLE PIT BULL TERRIER, 11 YEARS OLD.  HER NAME IS TAZ. SHE'S HAD CUSHINGS  FOR 3 TO 4 YEARS. SHE STARTED  DRINKING WATER  EXCESSIVLY AND COULDN'T HELP BUT URINATE ALL OVER THE HOUSE. HER HUNGER WAS LIKE SHE COULDN'T GET ENOUGH FOOD. THEN THE PANTING STARTED ALL THE TIME. I'D WAKE UP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT AND SHE WOULD BE WIDE AWAKE CRYING BESIDE HER WATER BOWL. IT WAS SO SAD. I COULD SEE WAS SUFFERING. I TOOK HER TO THE VET AND  HE COLLECTED URINE,CHECKED HER OUT AND HE SAID AFTER TESTS THAT IT LOOKED LIKE CUSHINGS. I LIVE IN TORONTO CANADA SO IT WASN'T EASY GETTING HER MEDS,THERE CALLED VETROYL,IT'S FROM ENGLAND. COSTS $650.00 EVERY 3 MONTHS BUT I DON'T CARE SHE IS TOO PRECIOUS TO ME. SO FAR ITS KEPT HER PRETTY COMFORTABLE, LATELY SHE'S BEEN GETTING THE POT BELLY,LOOSING SOME HAIR AND NOW I SEE A TUMOUR ON HER BACK ANKLE STARTING. THE DRINKING IS STARTING AGAIN AND HER BACK LEGS ARE GETTING WEAK. THE DOCTOR SAID TO GIVE HER A QUARTER PEICE OF MELOXICAM 15 MILLAGRAMS AN ANTI-INFLAMITORY THAT I TAKE FOR MY BACK. THAT REALLY HELPS HER. SHE SEEMS TO HAVE GOOD DAYS AND BAD DAYS. I BOUGHT HER THE LITTLE DOG STEPS TO GET ON THE BED AND I  HELP HER UP ANY BIG STAIRS,THAT REALLY HELPS. I'M ALSO STARTING TO NOTICE CALCIFICATION BUMPS ON HER ELBOWS. JUST PUT SOME VASELINE FOR THAT TO KEEP IT MOISTERIZED. I KNOW SHE 'S GOING DOWN HILL NOW BUT I AM DETERMINED TO BE A GOOD MOM TILL THE END. SHE LOVES TO GO OUT IN THE TRUCK EVEN JUST TO LOOK OUT THE WINDOW AND HER FAVOURITE DOG SHOW IS TOP DOGS. YEP SHE EVEN WATCHES TV. SHE IS SO SPECIAL TO ME. PIT BULLS ARE BANNED HERE IN TORONTO.SO THANKS FOR  LISTENING, I HOPE I HELPED YOU UNDERSTAND A LITTLE MORE ABOUT THIS AWFUL DISEASE AND BE KIND AND LOVING TO YOUR ANIMAL IT WILL BE GIVEN BACK TO YOU TEN FOLD.  SHERRI
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I have an 11year pomeranian/terrier/poodle mix.  Not really sure as I rescued her from some homeless people 11 years ago at Lake Shasta, CA while on vacation.  Of course her name is "Shasta".  She has been my baby ever since. I found out that she had cushings about a year and a half ago.  The doctor explained and I looked up the disease to find out more.  I have opted to not go the medication route.  1 reason was the cost but also because I talked to other owners of dogs with the disease who did give the meds and their dogs did OK till the end.  I guess my thinking is that nothing  is going to make it go away and as long as she was feeling OK her life was not too bad. Shasta also started drinking a lot of water but according to the vet she was at the borderline on this.  She does urinate more often but has not had any accidents in the house.  Her stomach is swollen and she no longer can jump up on the couch or into the car.  She has had the other systems with dull coat and hair loss too.  She is now partially blind also.  My worry now is that for the last 3 weeks or so she is not eating much or drinking much and she has been throwing up nearly every day.I have to have her on special prescription dog food due to kidney stones so don't have a lot of options.  I talked to the vet and got the same prescription dog food only in canned.  The first couple of days she ate this good and did not throw up as long as I kept the portions down to a couple of tablespoons.  Now the last 2 days she is not even eating this. I have tried crumbling a couple of potatoe chips (her favorite) and mixing this in with no luck. she still does not eat.  She does not seem to have much energy,although I did take her for a walk yesterday and she did OK.  I was just wondering if anyone has had a dog that seems to be close to the end?  And if you do have you had the problem of your dog not eating and throwing up all the time. She does not appear to be in any pain.  I just hate going to work every day wondering if when I get home she will be gone. Please if anyone has reached this point with their dog let me know - I just don't know who to turn to.  Debbie
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Hi I just wanted to let you knows  since I posted my note a couple days ago I have called and talked to my vet.My dogs symptoms are not a part of cushings disease. The throwing up and now not eating are something else.She probably has some kind of tumor other kidney disease. No way to tell with out spending hundreds of dollars( I don't have.) And the bottom line is she is dieing anyway  I just wanted to let you know so that you don't worrry about your dog. According to my vet cushings disease does not stop them from eating and does not make them throw up.  For the last 6 months or so I have had to be careful and pick her up just right or she would cry.  She occasionally threw up but I just thought it was because of the cushings and her stomach being compressed by her other swollen organs. So I guess I should have taken her in long ago,now it is too late. or Good luck to you. Watching your dog die is not something I would wish on anyone!!
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I just had to that exact thing: watch my dog die of kidney failure.  I can't think of a bad enough word to describe it.  :-(
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Deb, I'm sorry about Shasta. I just saw your posts. If you think she's suffering, you may need to consider putting her to sleep. I know how hard that is. :( I had to put one of my cat's to sleep several years ago. It's not easy, that's for sure. But it's not easy watching them suffer either.  My prayers are with you. ((( Hugs! )))
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Our dog, Shadow is a 13 1/2 year old lab.  She has just been diagnosed with Cushings Disease.  She also quit eating, but the vet said it was due to the meds, not the disease.  We cut her meds by 1/2 and she has been doing fine the last 7 days.  We know we are on our last chance with her, and hope each day is a good one.  Thank you for sharing your story, it is a sad time, but it helps to know that others share your pain.
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I have an 8 year old male basset hound that has been just diagnosed with Cushing's.  For a few years now he has had arthritis and hip problems as well as chronic ear infections but in reading about Cushing's, I'm now wondering if it was the gradual start of the disease.  Recently, Muggs has been waking us up at 4am to go out to pee and drinks water like it is going out of style, even eating snow outside till he shivers!  He has also had a few accidents in the house (never before) and so this is why I took him into the vet.
The vet is recomending the low dose dexamethesone tolerance test next to see if it is the adreals or the pituitary glands that are being affected, and then he is suggesting lysotren (sp?).  I have read that this drug is very toxic and have real concerns about it.  Does anyone have any suggestions about this drug and their dogs or any general help for Muggs?  Thanks,  Karen.
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I just wanted to let you know that our 10 year old little Shih Tzu/Maltease girl has been diagnosed with Cushings. We have not yet put her on any meds but we did do the accupuncture route.  We did all the blood work before her disease was diagnosed and her liver enzymes were sky high.  She went for the accupuncture treatments, 5 in all, and then had her blood work redone and her liver enzymes were still high but had come down alot.  Out vet believes in homopathy treatment and I am glad we were open to this.  We are just taking it one day at a time.
I just discovered this web site and I must say that this forum is such a good and helpful idea.  It lets us all know we have someone to talk to about our dog's problems and know we are not alone.
It is so wonderful to see so many people that love their dogs so much.
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I had to put my dog down in December and I could not have made it through without the people on this site.  Welcome and we hope to help in anything we can.
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We just discovered that our 11 year old golden retriever has cushings disease.  She is now drinking lots, still eating good, is having accidents at night, sleeps on a cool floor, snores loudly, coughs once in a while, a dry cough, barking alot more even at all the family, has had trouble getting up the stairs, we have found a few lumps.  We can not afford the medicine and really don't want her to suffer, which at this time, she does not appear to be, is there anything else we can be doing?, and how far along does this appear to be?  Thank you for any information you can give me!

March 20, 2008
Tish
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We have a 7 year old flat coat retriever who was diagnosed with Cushings about 2.5 years ago.  We put him on vetoryl (imported from the U.K.) and it has helped his symptoms tremendously.  I think he is getting in the later stages of the disease and gets very anxious and barks constantly at nightime.  He has to go out alot more often and seems to be running overly warm all of the time.  The vet said the tumor on his pituitary (which is in the brain) is probably growing and causing cognitive problems (he could even be hallucinating).  It is very sad to us to be losing such a valuable member of our family.
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Our 9 year old beagle was diagnosed with Cushings in late Jan after having a horrible seizure.  He was so sick and we were ready to let him go, when our vet gave him Lysodryn.  The result was incredible.  He still staggers around like a little drunk dog, and we had to get a harness for him to help stand him up when he has to go outside, but he has been doing very well.  He takes the Lysodryn (not sure of the spelling) 2x a week and the tablets cost about $7.50 a piece.  We know that our time with him is limited and we make the most of everyday with him. But the Lysodryn for him, was a life saver.  
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hi i just put my sweet baby kizmoe to rest 3 weeks ago he had cushings to, , he had been on predsone for years for shin problems ear problems so he took the shots. he had the pot belly and drink a lot to. the last 3 days he was with us he really went down fast he stop eating as much on weds , than thursday i notice he was breathing harder and not eating as much. friday morninghe got up real early went into the living room and laid on his bed when i got up to check on him he had wet on the rug near the back door, he just could not make it out the doggy door i guess, i called the vet, took him in he was laboring for air , he took x-rays said his heart and liver was inlarged( that explained why he no longer laid on his tummy always on his side last 3-4 months) said he had water in his lungs gave me pills to gave him , but told me his out look was guarded and that i would be making a decision in 5 days, took him home he locked his teeth together would not take pill for me or husband , called his dr back , he said if he not take pill he would be gone by sunday but that pill not save him just help him to breath better . i laid on floor for 3 hours loving him and talking to him, he looked right through me, was very uncomfy and sad, i could not go whole weekend with him suffering, so called  vet back took him in , he never walked to the back rooms on his own always trying go out front door but this time he walked back and stop looked at me like its ok am ready. i miss him so much, he took a part of my heart with him, yes he was a dog but to me jhe was my baby boy. he was 17 years old so he out lived his life span and gave me so much love,he was a shihtzu so plz love them and lay them to rest when time. God Bless ya for being great Parents to your babies. Barbara
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My lovely Cairn has Cushings, diagnosed last September. She is 13 years old and her name is Bella. She has been on Vetoryl but got traumatised every time she had to have a test at the vets. Terrible panic attacks, we thought she might have a heart attack so we decided to keep her happy and stay away from the vets, just to continue with the Vetoryl at the same dose. She has been slowly going downhill, her breathing is very bad, her stomach very enlarged, she can hardly get up a step. She has developed very large lumps on her joints. I have reduced her Vetoryl and am giving her Cushex drops which have helped with the excessive drinking. I know its just a matter of time now but, I am sure, she is not in pain, just finding life very hard.
How long does one keep her going ? I don't want to have to play God but I know that will come before too long as she is eating less now. But when is it the right time for her to go, I don't know!!!!!!!!
It helps a lot to read all the comments, thanks, Pat
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My female chi of 8-9 yrs old, was maybe diagnosed w/ Cushings, her blood elevations were a tad bid high...but, we go again to make sure for she had at the time other related issues that also could raise concerns..
One of the hints for Cushings,,the back legs, but a pot belly...belly looks pot belly..
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My dog was just diagnosed with Cushings, and now we are weighing our options.  Has anyone tried a raw meat diet?  Or, any other diet you'd recommend? Thanks!
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I have a 5 year old weim that was diagnosed with cushings disease about seven months ago.  Same symptoms...drinking lots of water, accidents in the house, very hungry all the time....  We decided to go the medicne route.  He took lysodren which just didn't keep his labs where they needed to be.  He now takes trilostane twice daily.  He has seemed to improve some.  His pot belly is gone, drinks and urinates less but is still very hungry all the time.  His back legs continue to be weak but don't seem to have gotten any worse.  He means the world to our family and I just hope and pray everyday that we are doing the right thing for him.  He is happy and still loves his walks and does run outside with my boys.  We cherish each day we have with him!
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I am sitting here with my 9 year old sheltie "Laney" laying on the floor by me and in tears by all the comments above. In June I came home from work and Laney's back leg was lifted up behind the other one, I rushed her to the vet and they took xrays her right hip was out of socket and the left socket had very little bone left. The Vet was amazed she was even walking. I took her to the surgeon to get evaluated and he came in and said he wouldnt even chance surgery on her hips because he suspected Cushing's because of the thin skin, pot belly, hair loss and drinking alot of water. We did the testing and confirmed it. We arent doing any treatments just a pain pill everyday. The vet says to treat her like a hospice patient now because she has too many strikes against her. She has been fighting every day to be happy and gives us so much joy but today she seems sad and very tired and I keep looking to see if she is breathing.  She has a sister that is 5 months younger than her, how will she react if we lose her ?  The days she has that are good, she smiles and seems so happy and we wonder if she is fighting just for us but is in alot of pain. Are we being selfish to keep her alive?  It doesnt seem fair does it? How do we know when its time?  Best Wishes for all of you!  Melody
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Melody & Laney, Just to let you know that although not a Cushings Furkid, I too have (What I call) a "Hospice Patient". He has several of the symptoms of Cushings, but never diagnosed. My Vet says that with all his other problems, it wouldn't really make any difference. I've never heard of anyone else respond to their's as a "Hospice Patient", until now. I'm in tears reading your comments as my questions are the same. We take one day at a time and usually the nights (For Me) are long. I know you understand!!! My guy took a turn for the worse 2wks. ago and I thought I'd loose him. However, 4 Vet visits later, he's laying right here snoring away.  :)  Just want to let you know that I'm thinking about you and yours....My Best Wishes are for you.........Karla
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Like some of you, we've chosen not to try the medication after talking over with the vet. I know some of you have younger dogs, and if I did I would probably have chosen differently, as long as we could afford it. Willow is 12, almost 13 now. We've really seen a decline these last few months. Still, he doesn't seem to be suffering so I'm not ready to put him to sleep yet.
I think the reason he barks more now is because he doesn't see so well. He is also peeing a lot around the house. We've been cleaning the carpet a lot but will probably have to replace it. I'm still not quite ready to give up, though.

Willow had a seizure on Tuesday. He threw up all over himself. Poor baby. We did some blood work and it didn't look too bad. They think it's the Cushings. They said the tumor may be pressing on his pituitary gland or something and that may have caused the seizure. Has this happened to anyone else? Have any of your dogs had a seizure? The vet told us it could be a sign that he's nearing the end. :(
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Hi Melody, I too had a dog with cushings. We had to put him down on August 10, 2008. I know exactly what you are going through right now. It is absolutely horrible. You will know when the time is right. My dog became very lethargic, his breathing was very very heavy, he was unable to hold his urine(peeing all over the house and on our bed), he was not eating(dogs with cushings love to eat), sleeping, not drinking water (dogs with cushings drink lots of water), he had to be carried to go do his pee, he would not go on walks, all he did was sleep. One day he went to do his number 2 and it was all blood and blood clots and he was very anemic. We took him to the vet, he normally would be freaking out going to the vet, but on this day he had no idea where he was or what was happening. We had to put him down just before 5pm. One of the worst days of my life. We also have another dog, we feared the worst as they have been inseparable for 10 years. We adopted them from different families 4 weeks apart. Pj was and is dealing with this very well. The first night he slept on the couch. He never sleeps on the couch, he always sleeps on the bed. He continued to eat. His ears would perk everytime he would hear Mickey's name. I have tried to not say the word "Mickey" but rather if I want to speak of him I will call him "the little guy". Pj now goes everywhere with us, he is very rarely alone. He has been going on lots of car rides and my mother and I have been sharing him so he is with her when I am at work and then with me the rest of the time. It is working fine. We give him more hugs and cuddle him more so. Just spend lots of time with your other one, let him/her know they are loved. I think Pj knew something was wrong with Mickey his last few weeks. I have considered adopting another dog however Pj is not the most social butterfly so I think we will refrain from doing this as I want him to think he is number 1(which he is). The week we had to put Mickey down, I lost alot of weight. I was unable to eat and felt very very selfish for putting him down. I felt selfish eating because I know how much he liked to eat. I feel sad everytime I get a treat for Pj and think Mickey would love to be eating this treat as well.  

If I can give you one word of advice that to this day I regret not doing? At the vets office the dr asked my husband and I if we wanted to be with Mickey when he was put down. I said no because I was being very selfish, my husband also said no he would not be able to do this. Can I tell you that to this day I regret not being with him and holding him. I will never ever ever allow another dog of mine to be alone if we have to put him down.
Take care and email me if you ever want to chat.                  
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Melody, I agree with the others. You will know when the time is right. I know you don't want your dog to suffer. It's a difficult decision. Please feel free to come back on and share with us. We can all support and encourage each other.

seajess, please don't feel bad for not being with your dog when he was put down. I couldn't do it either when I had my cat put to sleep. I left her at the vets and practically ran back to the car and bawled all the way home. The vet sent a sympathy card a day or so later and said she went right to sleep.
Everyone's different. Some can handle it, some can't. My mom decided to have the vet come to our house to put my little poodle to sleep. She wanted her to be as comfortable as possible and be with her. I was a teenager at the time and couldn't handle it. I was mad at my mom and ran out of the house. I regret that now that I didn't support my mom during that time. But my mom said it was the hardest thing she had ever done. She was holding her when the vet put her to sleep and it happened so fast my mom said she didn't get the chance to hug her one last time. She now says she can't do that again. It was just too hard. That's why I said don't be hard on yourself for not being there. Everyone's different, not everyone can do that.

I honestly don't know if I can watch when the put Willow to sleep. I guess I'm a wimp, then. I know he's going downhill and I don't know how long he's got. I just don't want him to suffer. I'm just going to take one day at a time. I think, like you guys, that I'll know when it's time.

Hugs to everyone! And hugs to our "babies". God bless you all!
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Hi April2, thank you for the kind words.

Just remember to live every life with Willow as if it is the last day. Take care.Please keep us posted.  
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My 11 year old dalmation mix was just diagnosed with cushings.  She has had the excessive drinking, urinating with occasional accidents.  However, she still seems to have some spunk in her.  She still wants to play with her toys and with me.  I am starting her on the loading dose of Lysodren today.  I am picking it up at the vets later tonight.  I have been reading this posts and am getting a bit nervous about this medication and whether or not it will help her symptoms.  I want to give her a better quality of life and a longer life.  I don't want to see her suffer.  But it seems that a lot of these dogs who have been treated with Cushings seem to still suffer.  I am very heartbroken.  I want my coco to be around for a few more years.  She has been my joy since she was a pup.  
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I have a Beagle, Suzie, who has Cushing's disease.  She was diagnosed in 2002. She was drinking water faster than I could pour it in the bowl and urinating all thru the house. The vet checked everything and could not find out what was wrong with her. When her sides bloated out, I was really concerned that she had idney failure. The vet assured me that everything checked out OK. I did some research online and found out that her symptoms could be a sign of Cushing's Disease. The vet said that something in her bloodwork was slightly elevated which could be a sign of the disease. Since his office does not test for Cushings, I had to find another Vet that did. Turns out, she had the disease. The reason I am posting this is that I want all of you to know that you do have options to treat your dog with this disease. The internet is the best at finding out all there is to know about this disease. It is managable, especialliy if caught early. The reason most articles say that life expectancy on medicine is only 2 years is becuase most dogs that get Cushings are already 10-12 years old. Also, many articles posted are old and new drugs have come out now that can treat the disease. My dog was 6 (we think) when she was diagnosed. We chose the drug Lysodren as a treatment. I really should have had more scans done to see if she had the adrenal form of the disease as I may have considered the surgery and she would have been cured of this disease. We really think now that my dog has the adrenal form and not the pituitary form of the disease. My beagle had to take one Lysodren pill per day for 7 days and then 1 pill per week thereafter.You also have to keep a Predisone prescription on hand in case your dog has a reaction to the lysodren (this is rare). My dog has been on Lysodren now for 6 years. The medicine did not work right away. In fact, her bloodwork did not return to normal until about 2 years. The doctor was patient and kept adjusting her meds until one day it worked. For about  2 years, then, her bloodwork was perfect. Now, she starting to have a little bit of a relapse which is normal. Most dogs will have a relapse and the medcine needs to be adjusted. Dogs who have a relapse may need to go on 1 pill per day for 7 days like in the beginnning. Her bloodwork is way off again now, so we have to increase her meds to 3 pills per week instead of 1 1/2 pills per week. She also just started with the hind leg weakness and can't go up tall stairs. She has also been falling a bit because her belly is bloated again and he legs can't support her weight. She also collapsed today and took a few minutes to come around. I have to call my vet in the morning, but I am confident that this medicine will kick in and she will be back to normal again soon. I am an advocate of the Lysodren. It really does let dogs with Cushings live a normal life. Had we not put her on this medicine, we would have lost her years ago. If you have a dog with Cushing's, you have ot be patient, give the medicines as directed, and take your pet for periodic bloodwork.If you ignore the symptoms and pass them off s "old age" you may run out of time to try anything. My best advice would be to shop around for the Lysodren. I was initially told that only Giant Eagle in  my town carried it and I was paying $8 per pill X 4 pills per week! I now get it for $4 a pill. Pharmacies will order it for you if they know you will be a regular customer. Also, most pharmacies will price match. When she was on one per per week, it was obviously affordable. The testing is about $130 per visit. At first, I had to take her 2-3 times per year.  When she responded too the medicine, I only had to take her once a year for testing. If you can't afford treatments, there are organizations who may be able to assist you.  You just need to research them in your town. Again, the internet is your best bet for information, or try your local Library. Also, you vet may be willing to work out a payment plan with you. My advice would be to not be so quick to put your pet down. Most people make the mistake of thinking these symptoms are from old age and in many cases, it's Cushings Disease. It's worth investingating and it's worth taking a chance on the meds. You may be able to get a couple of more good years with your pet. My vet has another patient who's been on the Lysodren for 8 years now. Most dogs don't die from Cushings. They die from complications that occur from the disease if left untreated. One more side note, there is a new medicine in the UK that treats Cushings and it is supposed to be a wonder drug for the disease. It's called, Vetoryl®, active drug: Trilostane a/k/a Modrastane.  It is supposed to be way more effective than Lysodren. The problem is that the FDA has not approved it in the U.S. yet. You can purchase it online, though and have it shipped here. I am not sure on the cost as I have never purchased it because the Lysodren starting working on my dog. I hope all of this helps all of you. I wish you all the best with your pets. I know how it feels to worry. We love them so much!
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My 11 year old Shepherd mix, Hector was diagnosed with (Adrenal) Cushings a few years ago. I'm happy to report that he's still hanging in there. Maybe I can offer some advice or suggestions about what I give him. His particular medication to treat the Cushings is not too expensive, but he's also on a host of other supportive supplements.

To control the Cushings, he takes LYSODREN (1/2 pill, 2 times a week)

When he loses his hair, I have his Thyroid tested and every time it's off! When I adjust his Thyroid medication, his hair grows back in perfectly and stays for a long time. He still has his full, thick coat or fur.

To support his stiff joints I give him the following:

DASUQUIN  (high levels of Glucosomine/Chondroitin)
MSM (available at Trader Joes)
HYAL-JOINT  (this is great stuff for arthritic dogs) http://www.swansonvitamins.com/SWU238/ItemDetail?n=4294967188

For any pain he might be in, he takes RIMADYL, but only if he's eaten.
For his leaky bladder issues he's on PROIN.

And to help take the edge off, he's on RECONCILE.  My vet says there's a generic (less expensive) version available. If he still can't sleep, he gets a little BENADRYL (Dyphenhydrochloride 25 mg)  (the generic version is cheaper)

Man, that whining and pacing at night can be pretty crazy making!

Good luck everybody, I hope this helps.

Donna

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My Beagle was diagnosed with cushings about 2 months ago.  She had a big belly with spindles for legs.  Her back leg was weak.  She was up at least 4 times at night to pee and I had to keep her water bowl full all the time.  She was soooooooooo hungry and that is saying something for a Beagle because they are always hungry anyway.  Lucky, we have a doggie door and she always had access to the yard.  We have placed her on Vetoryl and I have to say it is amazing.  She back to normal and I am so happy.  She will be 9 years old in May and I am hoping she will be around for many years to come.  The pills cost me $236.00 dollars a month including the fee for the government.  You know they have to have their share!  Thanks to those pills my baby girl is doing great!
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I have a 9 year old Bassett Hound, Lady, that was diagnosed with Cushings about two weeks ago...the kind caused by a non-cancerous tumor in the pituitary gland.   She had the same symptoms mentioned, excessive urination...thought it was a bladder infection, put her on antibiotics and when she didn't get better through more testing found out she has Cushings.  She has the excessive drinking, urnination, some panting, seems a little disoriented at times...and has constant b.m.'s (approx. 6 a day if not more) and they were soft.  I'm happy to report that Trilostane has now been approved for use in the US...was just approved 2 weeks prior to my Lady being diagnosed.  This drug can only be used with dogs having Cushings due to the pituitary...not the adrenal gland.  I've had her on the medication now for 10 days (60mg..based on her weight).  It costs approx. $80 per month (30 day supply).  Lady is at the vet now having a blood test to see if the dosage she's on is the right dosage for her & to see how the Trilostane is working for her.  The blood test runs about $200 but after this test...if all goes well, she won't need another test for about 3-6 months.  She'll be on the medication once a day for life.  If Lady was in pain I wouldn't put her through this, but aside from the urination and drinking alot and the b.m.s (which have now become more solid since she's been on the meds)...she's not in any kind of discomfort.  I haven't noticed much of a change after 10 days on the meds aside from her stools becoming more firm, but I've read it can take up to a month to notice a change in her symptoms.  I'll keep you posted.
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I have a black Pomeranian. His name is Alfa. Alfa is 10 years old. He to has cushings really bad. He is on a medicine called Trilastate. Today 3-22-09 he is not doing well at all. Alfa is very quiet, not moving, not eating, drinking, or looking at me. I'm scared he is slowly dieing. The medicine does cost a lot of money, so does the testing. I am crying all day,he is my baby.
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Oh honey, I'm so sorry! I know how this must hurt. I will say a prayer for you and your doggy. I just watched "Marley and Me" and they said in the movie that you will know when it's time to let them go. It's a hard decision but I pray your dog will let you know when he's ready.

*Big Hugs*
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I have am American bulldog, 6 years old, he has been constantly drinking water and having to urinate, he cries to go out in the middle of the night to urinate I let him out and sometimes he doesn’t even urinate he looks for water around the yard.  Accidents in the house are very common.  He used to be solid as a rock and now I'm noticing that he's lost muscle definition.  I took him to the vet about 5-6 times and they have tested his blood and urine number of times and haven’t found anything wrong with him.  A couple of weeks ago he started loosing his fur on both side of body and also has lumps all over his paws.  I took him to the vet again and was told it's a skin infection or allergy.  I was told to give him an antibiotic for 20 days and if no improvement to have him tested for Cushing’s.  Am I wasting my time with antibiotics?  Should I have him tested?  
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Hello All:

I have a ten year old beagle mix (Baby) who has been diagnosed with pituitary Cushings.  She has always loved to eat (what beagle doesn't), but recently inhales her food as soon as it has been given to her, it is as if her appetite is insatiable.. She has also taken an interest in the trash, and seems that she cannot consume enough water, which of course causes her to urinate all over the house. She looks as if she has a pot belly, consistent with cushing's I know, and she seems so tired all of the time.  To add a little fuel to the already uncontained fire, she has suddenly lost her vision.  I hate this for her.  She finished one round of 500mg of Lysodren, which lasted about 10 days. She seemed to tolerate the meds pretty well, her stools were normal, still had quite the appetite, I thought she was doing pretty good. Dropped her off at the vet's office for her ACTH stim. test this past Tuesday.  Since Tues., I have noticed that she seems so tired, or lethargic.  I honestly don't know the diffence between the two these days.  Her appetite is somewhat depressed,  she will eat, but not the instant her bowl is given to her.  I can't stand seeing her this way.  The vet called this afternoon and reported that her ACTH test indicated that the Lysodren had done its job, and that we needed to figure out a maintanence dose for her.  As soon as I told him that she seemed lifeless, he was concerned and wanted to see how the weekend goes before we gave her anymore Lysodren.  He also wanted a call if any diarrhea was present.  I love this dog as if she were a child, I do have three children as well.  I want to do everything within my power to give her the best quality of life that she can have.  I understand that there is no cure for this disease, and treating it will no way give her a longer life span, but again, I want the remainder of her life to be as pleasant as possible,  I want her to be happy again, plain and simple.  I don't want to give up hope just yet, it seems a lot of dogs do remarkably well with the treatment.  I also would like to know how soon you see results after treatment begins.   I know she must be uncomfortable with her belly, and going suddenly blind, it has to be terrifying.  My question is how do I know when it is time for her to be put to rest?   I would feel tremendous sadness that I let her go before I had exhausted all possible means of treating her.   She almost seems, simply put, sad, and it is breaking my heart.   I don't want her to suffer anymore.  It is, as if, she has turned into another dog.  She has been my sweetest dog that I have ever owned, and there have been several, I don't want to cause her anymore misery, just because I want her here with me.   I will at least wait until Monday to see what the Doc says, and if there is no improvement over the weekend, i just don't know,  This is agony!  Any input would be GREATLY appreciated as family members and friends don't understand this uber-complicated disease!  It is obviously keeping me up at night as it is now 1:40 in the morning!  Please excuse my poor writing, I actually am somewhat tired, but will gladly give up sleep to find information/advice that I can. Thanks for giving me your time-S.Davenport
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Please, will all of you let me know how your dog is doing with Cushings?

I must say that Cushings is NOT a death sentence. Not at all..if treated in time.
My Poodle is getting better on Trilostane...aka Vetoryl.. aka Modrastane.
It is now available in the USA & it is not a terrable amount of money..price varies acording to your dogs weight which in turn regulates what dosage she/he takes.

I see a big difference in Julie's personality & symptoms, her hair is back in full force .
Her symptoms are getting better. Not great yet but better than before.

Please don't give up on your dog. Trilostane does work..there are no side effects for my Julie either..She is 14 lbs & 9 yrs. old.

I suggest anyone interested to please read my posts.

Happy Mothers Day to you all.

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S Davenport: I would suggest that you back of the Lysodren for now. My beagle has been on it for years, and this past Dec., when her Cushing's numbers started creeping up the doc increased her medicine by way too much! All of a sudden, she became lifeless, tired and TOTALLY refused food for a week! I had to get some pet milk in the store and force it down her throat to keep her alive. She even collapsed one day and passed out! I researched online that when the Lysodren destroys too much of  the Adrenal gland, that this could happen! The overdose throws the dog into the opposite disease, Addison's Disease. In fact, some docs will purposely do this because Addison's is somewhat easier to deal with then Cushings. To counter the overdose of Lysodren, the vet immediately gives the dog Prednisone (spelling??). As soon as my dog got that first dose of Prednisone, she bounced back and is 100% happy and healthy! She gets a low dose of Prednisone daily now and we continue to monitor her bloodwork every four months or so. So, far, she has not had to go back on the Lysodren. Just some food for thought before you make any drastic decisions. Try discussing this with your vet. I know I had to convince my vet that this was what was happening with my dog. He didn't believe it could be so, because over the years, we could never get my dog's Cushing's numbers low...but, when he ran her Cushing's test he saw that the numbers were WAY too low! Some times it helps to brainstorm with your vet. They are not God and you really need to be proactive with them just as you are with your own doctors. Hope this helps!
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S. Davenport: P.S. We believe my dog has the adrenal form of the disease and not the pituitary kind.
Diane
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Thank you Diane,  for your information.  I will have to agree with you on the prednisone.   The Doc had given me the steroids just in case of abnormal GI problems, which all were normal.  I gave her a dose of prednisone yesterday morning, and by early afternoon, she was walking around sniffing for food. He only gave me four pills which are 5mg. I know that his (doc) plan includes lysodren about twice a week, and then blood work, and so forth.  I will most definitely tell him that the steroids really seem to help her.  I also am wondering (after hours of research of the endocrine system) if she is to maintain a daily dose of prednisone will this push her into the other, less common form (Iatrogenic-or something spelled like that)?

I was just wondering also if your beagle was heavy, and if so, did she lose any of her weight?

Thanks again for responding. Most, not all, but most people do not treat their dogs as I treat mine.  They think it's insanity, what all I am doing, and they most certainly do not know one thing about Cushing's.   It is nice to know I am not the only one.  Again, thanks so much, and have a great day!

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Great news! But, PLEASE check with your vet before giving her the Prednisone! It is only to be given in case of emergency and we were told not to give it to he unless we called them first. My beagle has been on Lysodren for about 7 years. She only had this one set back over the holidays. That's the first time we had to give her Prednisone. I was a little surpised that the vet keeps her on it daily now.  I thought it was just a one time thing. I also worry about giving her that because it's tough on the liver. I am also surpised that I don't have to give her Lysodren any more as there is no cure for Cushing's. But we are following the vet's advice. He doesn't think she'll ever have to go back on the Lysodren...but we have to monitor her bloodwork a couple of times a year to be sure. She is WAY good! Her appetite is always good...but, then again she is a BEAGLE! She is not drinking nearly as much water as she used to when she was frst diagnosed. Her symptoms never totally went away on the Lysodren. In fact, she still gets up 2-3 times at night to go out...but, she is 11 now. She is the kind of beagle that's built a little more stout. She did get a HUGE bloated belly when she was fist diagnosed. I was so worried she had kidney failure till I found out that it was Cushing's! She got most of  the weight off, but she is a solid dog!  I like her that way! She's cute! It's always good to have a little more weight on them, I think...especially when she had that episode and wouldn't eat for 9 days! She couldn't even drink water!!! She even disloacted her shoulder because she was so weak and kept falling down the steps. When a dog's Cushing's gets really bad, one of the symptoms is weakness in the back legs. I was soooo worried! She lost a few pounds that week! Ayway, once she got her appetite back, we had to wait a couple of weeks for her shoulder to heal! She's all good now! I swear, though, every time something happens, I immediately think Cancer or that the ned is near! I worry so much about her and my other 2 dogs (my oldest is 14 and s on heart meds). We believe our beagle is pure bred, but not 100% sure. She showed up @ our house one Christmas Eve. morning in 1998. She may even be as old as 13, but we're going with that she is 11. Don't worry about what people think. If people think that we are crazy, then they don't know what it's like to love a dog! They are a member of our familes and if they need medical care, we do it...just like we would for one of our children or any other family member! It's not easy, it's not cheap and sometimes it's not in our budgets, but we do it because we have to! I would give my right arm to keep my beagle healthy and happy as long as I can! Just remember, you and your family have to be patient with this disease. It is very tricky and changes could happen immediately or never at all. Just monitor your pooch, keep your vet updated and contnue to learn about the disease online. When you're reading info, make sure of the date th info was written. There have been so many advancements made for this disease, and the older articles can be misleading. I would also check into that new medicine that was mentioned above, I think it's called, Trilostane??? It is only available in the UK but you can have it shipped here...although I am hearing now it's in the U.S.??? It is supposed to be WAY better than the Lysodren and it doesn't cause the dangerous side effects that my dog went thru. You should aks your vet about it. It may be easy to change meds since you just started on the Lysodren. Hope this helps! Good luck with your beagle!
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No offense, but would you guys mind starting a new post to chat with each other? It just hurts to see my old post pulled up since my dog just died last month. It's kinda hard to see. I hope you understand. And I wish you both the best with your dogs. God bless.
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So, sorry for your loss!
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Thank you. :o)
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My Cassie a Cocker has Cushings. It broke my heart when we had it confirmed. My Mothers dog and sisters dog also had it so I knew what we were in for. My Mother tried all the gammit of medication the vets put her dog on. They seemed to help for maybe 6 months but then it just made her worse and she slept all the time. My Mom took her dog off all medication and saw an improvement in her for a few months...she slept less and they had more quality time together. My sister choose not to give the medication and her dog was fine for 2 years until her kidneys shut down. I chose this route for my Cassie.... not medications that would make her sleep our time with her away. I started cooking her dog food of ground turkey and green beans and she loves it. I also found some vitamins that made a HUGE difference in her symptoms. Her thrust is gone, all of her skin infections, her coat is soft, panting has stopped and she has more energy. Its from NUVET Labs. I think every dog should be on this. Theres a guy that I found online that gives you recipes on what to feed a dog with cushings to make them healthier. Look it up, I downloaded his whole book online for 30 something. It has given us more control.  Anyone that says Cushings isnt a death sentence is crazy...it is...a slow one and breaks families hearts.

Blessings everyone,
Cassies Mom
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My poodle has/had Cushings Disease in the most severe form. Now,  three months after treating my Julie with TRILOSTANE.. I recieved the call from my Vet who said her numbers are now back to NORMAL.
Whoo Hoo... I am so happy.
To all of you out there who look at Cushings as a dismal disease...here is your savior. TRILOSTANE!!
This drug is great & the most my 13.5 lb poodle was on is 22.5 mg.  NO side effects at all. I saw a change after the first month.  Julie's body hair was growing back. WOW was I ever happy. Little by littlie I saw many other symptoms go away. She is back to herself. Thank you God.
I had The TRILOSTANE compounded by a online pharmacy in N.J..  My Vet contacted them & approved it.
It is available in chicken flavor pill form or capsule form. I had to switch to capsule & disguise it in mashed sweet potato.  No problem. I crushed the pill & Julie hated it...no-matter how I hid it. So I switched to the capsule & that was great.

Cushings is NOT a death sentence, contrary to what people here have said, so please have hope for your dog.
But.......please try TRILOSTANE...NOT Lisodren, which is way too dangerous.
Julie is still always hungry & drinking less, but we think the hunger is a habit now.
I have her on a low protein diet We have to see if the protein count is down. My Vet thinks that high protein count may be from Cushings.
She has to be tested for that, in the future. Hopefully it's not Kidney Disease.
For today, I am a happy woman.





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So sorry for your loss, April2

We have been going through lots of stress and tears over the last few days. I have a 10 year old basset, George, who has Cushings and has been on a once a week dose of Mitotane for a couple of years now. The Cushings seems to be somewhat under control. He drinks a lot, but thank goodness, no problem with accidents in the house as others seem to have.
He seemed a bit "off" last weekend - I noticed him panting in the house which I noted as a bit odd. Then he began throwing up the next day. Third day he would not eat - definitely a bad sign with a basset! I took him to the vet and he said he was in liver failure and he did not sound too overly optimistic. He put him on a strong antibotic (antibiotic) IV and fluids for a couple of days thinking that it could be bacterial. He seemed to respond well and we brought him home - only to have him throw up a couple of times the day after we brought him home (yesterday). I will be calling the vet as soon as they open this morning.
The vet seemed like the antibiotic treatment was his only real option and if it didn't work then it may just be the end of the line as George will continue into complete liver failure. He never really mentioned any possible association with the Cushings and the liver failure.

Has anyone else had any liver related issues with Cushings??

Sending lots of positive energy to all of you and your pups!! as well as lots of basset hound drool filled get well wishes!!

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I'm so sorry to hear how poorly your basset is doing. I know it hurts to see our pets so sick or in pain. I will say a prayer for you and your doggy.
I don't know if my dog had liver failure. I didn't have them run any tests. I have a feeling his organs were shutting down fast, though, because a few weeks before he died he cut way back on his eating and was losing weight. So we coaxed him with wet food for awhile, which he seemed to like. Then the day before he died he refused to eat or drink, was just kind of laying around and had bloody diarrhea. My heart sank because I knew it was the end for him. I didn't want him to suffer and when I looked in his eyes he looked so tired and sick. I took him to the vet to have him put to sleep and it was the hardest thing I've had to do. He went gently, thank God. But I cried and cried. This is the part of being a pet owner that I hate. I don't look forward to that with my other pets. They give us so much unconditional love. I just want to always do the best for my pets and take care of them.
Keep in touch and let us know what happens, ok? God bless you and your little basset hound. Prayers and blessings to you both.
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Hi,
Well we lost our 10 year old border collie Hailey yesterday (6/22/2009) and my heart goes out to all you that have gone through this or are going through this. It's devastating.  Hailey was our baby, like all of you I know what that means when you say that. We were blessed with Hailey 10 years ago after our first year of marriage.
3 weeks after we had her, she got very sick and was diagnosed with Parvo.  The Vet gave her a 20% chance she would pull through because she was so young. But in only 3 weeks she became such a big part of our lives we couldn't let her go. I had just lost my father 5 months prior and I felt personally responsible to keep this little puppy alive.
So I quit my job and stayed home with her feeding her and keeping her hydrated from a syringe. She bounced back 100% and she lived a happy life, but last year
in September 08' after we noticed the signs of cushings...water consumption, appetite increase and loss of hair. We had her tested and the Vet was honestly in shock that she was doing as well as she was.  We started her on lysodren immediately and we did notice her water and food consumption returned to normal. She even grew back some of that thick gorgeous black n' white hair Border Collies are known for.
It wasn't until about 4 months ago that we noticed she was leaning to one side alot and her face was droopy on that side. We suspected a stroke and the doctor confirmed, but after a month or so she seemed to recover from that.
She had really good days...running around in the yard, chasing our other puppy Sophie, but then she would have the days where she was very lethargic. Never seemed to be in pain though.
Then this past Sunday on Fathers Day she didn't seem herself and she had stopped eating and drinking. For the first time she began to cry when she laid down. she was constantly pacing around the house...she started running into walls and would lay down but then after 10minutes she would start crying again and start pacing all over again. Her legs being so weak it was killing me to watch her struggle like that. Sunday night I stayed up with her all night watching her repeat that pattern. She didn't sleep all night...and only managed 20 minutes of sleep sunday morning. before she woke up to repeat the pacing. I never left her side for 12 hours, using a syringe to give her water or small pieces of ice. She just wouldn't take it anything.
We called the vet as soon as they opened because we knew what we had to do, but they said they did that type thing at 6pm. Well there was no way any of us could watch her or let her be in pain for that long...so we called the vet back and they took us as soon as they could. Hailey finally could no longer walk...and we got her favorite blanket and carried her to the truck. She never once looked scared or cried on the way to the vet or when I carried her in. She was so good! We opted to stay with her through the whole thing...and although it breaks your heart anyway you look at it...I couldn't leave her side. Hailey is finally at peace now, and I try to remind myself that we had 10 years with her that we probably never should have had...that helps for about 2 mins then the reality of it all sets in.

We're worried about our other pup Sophie. That was Hailey's shadow...and Sophie isn't eating and she's hiding under the bed, which she never did before.

thank you all for sharing your stories...it does help.


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That's how my dog was when we took him to the vet. He was calm, didn't act scared at all and he normally hates going to the vet. I think he was just so sick at that point he didn't care. I stayed with him too, even though that was so hard on me. I'm grateful he went gently and quickly. Still, it's the hardest thing I've ever had to do.
We now have 2 puppies. I wasn't planning on getting another dog that fast but it just kind of happened. They in no way could ever take Willow's place. They aren't even a bit like him. But they sure are a distraction and fun to watch play, etc.
I wonder sometimes when they're old if one goes before the other how it would be. I've heard it can be so hard on the dog left behind. I've heard it can help to get the other dog a new friend. It might be something to consider. You could take Sophie to the pound or a rescue place and let her pick out a dog. I've heard of people doing that. In the meantime, give her lots of attention and love right now. As I'm sure you know, animals grieve just like we do.
I'm so sorry for your loss. I do understand. God bless you.
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Thank you so much!
I know we made the right decision but it's still like you said..the hardest thing to do. I'm still in shock really.
We were always afraid we'd come home from work to find Hailey had passed but we were able to spend all night and day with her and she never was alone.
I feel terrible for leaving Sophie alone today but we both had to go back to work.  I'm definitely NOT ready to be here right now, but here or home...the feelings are the same
My wife, however is going home during lunch to check on sophie. My wife started going home for lunch to check on Hailey & Sophie when we found out Hailey was sick last year.  She did that because it made me feel better about leaving them and i appreciate that so much.

thanks again!
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I just wanted to give a short story for those that learn when thier little baby is diagnosed with cushings.  I have 9 year old, pure breed yellow lab.  He was diagnosed with Cushings about a year ago.  He had all the classic symptoms, which in retrospect I should have picked up earlier.  He was storing weight at a plump 100 pounds.    

After all the testing, ultrasound and thousands of dollars, they determined it was a pituitary tumor causing the disease.  Based on his moaning, hind leg weakness and other issues I though I would have to put him down.  The thought of this broke my heart and I would pay any amount to keep him well.

He began the Lysodren loading treatment and didnt seem to get any better.  I learned that patience is crucial during this phase.  He stopped eating, began to lose hair and was having some serious skin issues.  I was becoming more skeptical that this would work.  His loading phase was extended as his blood levels were not responding.

Then he began breaking his teeth (slab fractures).  A lesson learned that I want to share:  Do NOT give your dog rawhide bones when on Lysodren.  Their teeth weaken and will break easily.  As time when on and regulating his prednisone on bad days, we finally found the balance.  His maintenance dose is three per week and now the symptoms are gone.  He is also back to a healthy 75 pounds.  His energy is back and he's a playfull little puppy.  He misses his daily rawhide, but its for the best.  For those that get discouraged, be patient.  Of course the monetary side of this is devistating, but we as true animal lovers know its so worth it.  

I have been reading this site for a while to learn about this early on and I just wanted to post to say thank you.  Also to give a light of hope that they can recover and still live a happy life with this disease.

    
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Life is so uncertain.  About an hour after I wrote my last comment.  My maverick died in my arms on the way to the emergency vet.  I tried cpr on him while my wife drove fifteen minutes to get there.  I should have just kept my mouth shut.  

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Oh hon, I'm so sorry you lost your dog. I totally understand. They're our babies. I lost my dog 2 months ago to this horrible disease.
I like to think God has a special place in heaven for our pets since they're one of the few innocents of this world. I pray God will comfort you in your time of grieving and give you peace. God bless.
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Thank you, it's been a very hard day for our family.  

Beside the normal missing the clicking of the paws everytime the bread drawer opens, I have noticed an unbelievable void with respect to his illness.  I have spent countless hours making sure he was comfortable, covered with a blanket, not itching, not licking, applying his hot spot ointments, making sure he was not to warm from the meds, giving his numrous meds throughout the day, watching his skin, monitoring his teeth, monitoring his bowels, countless trips for bloodwork..etc etc.  And it's only been a day.

I have been so busy taking care of him, I didn't realize how much care he needed.  I guess he is truly at peace and in a better place.  

Just when you think they have recovered.....What a horrible disease. :(
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I am so sorry to hear about what has happened to your dog. So shocking, especially as he seemed  much better.
There are hardly any words to describe that void when a dog has gone. I know. You will miss those health routines because they were an important part of his life.
Many of us here have had the experience of losing a dog before. It never gets any easier. If you need someone to talk to there is always someone who understands here.
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Thank you.

The onset was unreal.  He was feeling fine and 30 minutes later, his mouth was cold, gums and tongue turning white.  Could barely walk and panting.  He wasnt crying though and thank goodness he was on painkillers from his recent tooth extraction.

I have never seen an animal die so quickly without any type of external trauma.  Im just glad he died in my arms looking in my eyes, instead of all alone in his favorite hiding spot.
  
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I'm sorry to keep posting.  Im having such a hard time (guilt) with how he just suddenly turned for the worse.  I feel so cheated.  Has anyone else ever dealt with that or know anything about it.  
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Post all you like, Mark. It's a hard time for you, and it's hard to come to terms with these things.  No I haven't known the same thing. I have to admit I don't know a lot about Cushing's. It does seem strange your dog died so very suddenly, from being ok to sudden complete collapse.
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I understand. It seemed so fast for me too, although not as fast as yours. He was showing more and more of the signs of Cushings; the peeing in the house (he couldn't hold it anymore), excessive drinking and towards the end he had hair thinning. Still, I thought we'd have another year or so. All of a sudden though he stopped eating and drinking and the last day vomited and had bloody diarrhea. I knew what I had to do but I wasn't ready. I wanted more time. I wanted more time to cuddle him. I didn't even get to cuddle him that long. It all happened so fast. But someone told me to look in their eyes and they will let you know when it's time. When I looked in his eyes he looked sick and exhausted. I didn't want him to suffer. Still, it was the hardest thing ever, letting him go. I understand. It will take some time. Allow yourself to grieve. Just take one day at a time. The pain will ease but you will never forget him.

God bless you.
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I spoke with our family vet... They think it was bloat.  We wasnt very active and didn't east fast, so its strange.  Now im filled with guilt because I could have done something, if I only would have acted sooner.
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Hi Mark,
Even if it WAS Bloat.....Bloat is a very touch-and-go scenario anyway. Many many dogs don't survive the surgery for it. It does kill dogs very fast indeed. SOMETIMES there is something you can do, but the percentage of deaths can be high.  Also surviving that would depend a lot on the dog's general fitness.
I cannot see anything you might have done wrong. Honestly.
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Thats true.  With the cushings it was so unpredictable, his health was so up and down.  Especially since the first 20 minutes (the night of death) his symptoms were exactly the same as when his levels were off and acting weird.  For some reason he wanted to go for a walk before he died, which was his favorite thing in life (except of course strawberry licorice).  I think he knew it was time and just wanted to have that time together.  

Unfortunately the images, sounds etc of doing CPR on him has been a bit much to cope with.  At least he died with me touching him and looking into my eyes.

Thank you for the reassurance.      

Mark
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I'm very sorry for your loss...Your story was very close to mine down to the red licorice. There's such a large void after you lose your best friend, and you're exactly right...You don't realize how much of yourself you put into caring for a dog with cushings. You life revolves around your best friend and you'd have it no other way.
The people on here are very kind and having people around that understand helps.
I wish I could offer some helpful advice but since I lost Hailey 15 days ago, I'm just trying to take it one day at a time.

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I picked up his little oak photo urn today.  Im putting the pic thats attached to my screen name thingy as the display.  We are sealing half his ashes and scattering the rest on his favorite w-route.  We could never use the words "walk, cheese, licorice, bone" in the house.  He knew the spelling of walk, so we couldnt even spell it to each other as code.  It even got to the point where were couldnt even say the word "gopher."  As in "gopher walk."    Whats crazy is with cushings....im not kidding, he would pee about 10 times on the walk had to be a gallon.  

[I might just have to sneak a little piece of licorice in there too : ) ]  

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Is it just me or does anyone else still hear the "I'm sorry, but I have to go outside and pee" barks in the middle of the night when your half asleep?

I miss my puppy.
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i'll leave
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Hi Mark, please don't feel you need to leave. I think a lot of people just don't see the postings on this thread since it's not a new thread. I do think it's a good idea to talk about your dog and receive support. Have you thought about making a journal? That way people would see it on the side bar and could comment on it.
Check out my two journals I wrote after my dog died. One of them was about animals in Heaven. I think you may like them. Just go to my profile and look through my journals. It might be a bit buried but it's there!
I look forward to hearing back from you. Just take one day at a time. It does get easier, but of course you won't forget or even replace your dog. But maybe some day you can give a dog who needs love a new home in honor of your dog who passed. I think he'd approve. God bless you, Mark. Take care of yourself.

Also, there's a post on the dog forum showing a site where you can go to light a candle for a loved one who's passed. Check it out. It looks like a lovely site. Take care, hon.
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Thank you!!!!!! :)
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My 15 yr old sheperd/chow mix, Deana, was diagnosed with cushings about 2 1/2 yrs ago.  We noticed her drinking massive amounts of water and she started urinating in the house, something she never did.  We did get a doggie door for her which ended the accidents in the house.   The vet decided against medication because at the time her symptoms weren't too bad, she was already 12 1/2 yrs at the time, and sometimes the side affects from the medication are worse then the cushings.  Now at 15 yrs. she can't climb stairs anymore, and has trouble standing up.  Her stomach is bloated and she has quite a few lumps all over.  She pants all the time, and still drinks lots of water.  She was only 4 months old when we got her.  We just had our other dog, Jeremiah put to sleep 2 weeks ago.  He was a Lhasa mix and was 15 1/2 yrs old.  It broke our hearts.  He was deaf and could barely see, was walking into walls and we had been hand feeding him the last few days, and couldn't get him to drink. We had to carry him outside and he would just lay down in the grass.  I know we will have to make this decision again soon.  Deana is missing her "brother" of 15 yrs.  Just felt like sharing.  Thanks for listening.  Barbara
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Our beautiful lab 12 and 1/2 years old, April was diagnosed with Cushings last month- She drinks about 30 8 ounce cups of water every day and she needs to go out every 90 minutes or so - she started to have accidents (both types), lots of diareaha,  in the house for the first time in her life about 3 months ago - she has high liver levels also, a large tumor in her front leg, has an extremely hard time using her back legs, has broken 2 teeth in the last month, I have been sleeping with her in the family room for the past 18 months in order to let her out at night and because she hasn't been able to climb stairs for the past year, additionally the loss of the coat, and there are times she really seems confused but she is happy when we tell her we have gotten her a present, but I am not sure that putting her on Lysodrem is what would be best for her.  She is so stressed out when I take her to the vet - the prescription that she is suppose to start on is 5 - 500mg per day (she weighs 120 pounds)  then 2.5 tablets a day for 7 days and then the maintenance phase of 2.5 tablets once a week - I looked on line for the best price but was unable to match the $270.00 at Target for the initial dose of 45 tablets - with all the tests in the past 3 months I have spent over 1300.00 - this also includes a leg brace for $75.00 which every time I put on she takes off - my vet will not give me a estimate of time that she has left - the money is an issue but we will get it if I can feel more assured that this will help her - like others in previous posts she pants a great deal and when she goes out sometimes she is so exhausted she lays down in her waste - she is the kindest, gentlest, and loving companion ever and I don't want her to be in pain  - she gets stressed taking other medication and refuses to take it no matter how I try and hide it - I just don't know what to do..............like all of you, our love for April is equal and the decision is weighing on us..........I know I need to make this decision soon, I hate the thought of her having other complications - additionally the vet seems to think that she has had Cushings for about the past 18 months since then is when I could pinpoint the symtpoms starting - I noticed the loss of coat, dry skin, tumor, and thirst, - I kept having her checked for diabeties and that was always negative - right now she is barking for me to sit with her so I will close and thank you for listening and for sharing your experiences.......
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Thank you so much for your very original post.  I only came across it today but your story is definitely my story.  My maltese mix is 11 years old and has cushings.  All the very same symptoms.  Very same personality it seems as well.  This dog is so devoted to me.  He still wants to play at times.  In his heart he is still a puppy but his body is betraying him.  I am going to be putting him down on Friday and it was of great comfort to read all the above posts.  Struggling with knowing when the time is right has been the toughest thing.  The last x-ray done showed his liver to be extremely large.  Though like alot of the posts above he doesn't seem to be suffering to the point of crying out in pain, the vet told me that the liver pushing against his gall bladder is painful.  And because the liver is crowding everything he has a very hard and painful time trying to have a bowel movement.  Therefore I have made the decision to put him to rest.  Thanks to all for all the great reads above.  I have felt so helpless to help him even with all the meds given to him.  Nothing really helped.  What an insidious disease.  

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I'm so sorry to hear about your dog. You're so right. It's an insidious disease. I understand what you're going through. It's so hard to know when it's time. Someone once told me to look in their eyes and they'll tell you. When I looked in Willow's eyes, they looked tired and sick. He looked almost miserable. It was shocking to me. I didn't want him to suffer anymore so I had him put to sleep. It was very hard but I knew it would be harder on me than him and that I made the right choice.
I will say a prayer for you on Friday. God bless you and your little doggy. May he find Willow over the Rainbow bridge and play with him in God's presence. *HUGS*
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Thank you so much!  Today has been extremely sad, but once again you have hit the nail on the head.  As I held my pup this morning as the vet went to administer the shot, his eyes told me everything.  He was tired and ready for rest.  It was the most profound moment.  I knew that I had absolutely done the right thing.  Now I am the one in pain, but I know in time, his wonderful memory will bring me only joy and laughter!  Thanks again for your kind words and prayers!
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I am reading these comments thinking this has got to be what my old man has ???? I have a fifteen year old lab/mix LOU. HE IS MY BABY AND MY LIFE he always been such a great faithful companion ...just recently in the last three weeks hes been wondering around, drinking alot, eating small amounts of food, but alot of times a day. Sleeps ok at night except for the occasional turn around. Pants for ten mins at a time sometimes & snores or sounds wraspy while sleeping the rest of the time. His belly is bloated also but his legs were the first sign for me. They gave out on him one regular day, he just couldnt get them to work, I reached down and put them together for him and helped him up ... he looked at me like ok ... ok .. I got this why you freakin out ? lol He still tries to act like he "has it all together" thats how hes always been  lol! HOWEVER that was the FIRST time I said to myself "something is wrong w him I think"? THEN all the other symptoms I noted above started showing up. Ive taken him to the vet, they havent done any blood test or anything but did say he has multiple tumors, and a slower heart beat.  They know and I know theyre isnt much I can do except love him and be w him until I cant anymore (as any mother would) I am almost certain after doin all this searching on the internet for weeks ... that this is what he has "cushings disease"  I hear the meds for it are very expensive, and dont have any effect on theyre life expectancy but do help them to feel better for a short amout of time. Ive made the choice myself after reading, doing the math, and his age just to just let him be until he lets me know its time to go. I pray to god for him to give me the knowlege and strength to know when. Or for him to just take him before he gets to bad. It is sooooo hard to ask god to let you keep your baby, but take your baby if needed at the same  time. I have good days where I am so happy he popped his head up to look at me when I asked "LOU ready to go potty buddy" ? And I have bad days where I cant stop thinking this could be his last.  BUT I am GREATFUL for EVERYDAY I still have with him :) He seems as of now, not to be in pain (fingers crossed) I wake up constantly threw the night to check on him in his bed that I have put next to mine on the floor  :( sometimes I lay next to him to return the fifteen years of love and comfort he has given me. I posted a comment to let others know your not alone ... it hurts ... its hard ... and all you can do is take it one day at a time. I truely believe that as much as you or I think we cant do the unthinkable if needed ... If our fellow companion looks at us w to much hurt in his eyes and you have to much in yours ... youll know its time.
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Hi everyone.
I accidently just posted my message to all of you under the main page, and not this thread.  Sorry about that.  If you have a moment, I would appreciate your feedback.
Thank you very much!
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My dog was diagnosed 1 month ago with Cushing's.  She is a mixed breed about 8 years old.  Just in the last week she has lost her appetite, developed lesions on her left hind leg and back, has no energy and seems to be drooping on one side of her mouth.  We also could not afford the meds and had been giving her a herbal Adrenal Support powder.  I am thinking we will have to put her to sleep Monday.  Sad disease and makes no sense.
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Hi my 7 year old min pin was just diagnosed with cushings.  I am trying to decide which meds I should try.  Any suggestions????  I heard Trilostane is a new good med.
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My 10 year old Jack Russell was diagnosed with cushings about a year ago.  She is on a weekly dose of Lysodren.  My question is:  do any of your dogs shake and tremble uncontrollably?  She still can't get enough water, she even sneaks drinks from the outdoor pond, and she gets up on the counter looking for food. I feel like I'm a bad person because I am always trying to moniter how much water she drinks (so she doesn't have accidents while I am at work).  But its the shaking and the panting that has me more worried.  She acts like she is constantly hot! And the shaking can actually wake me up at night.  She has been tested for Addisons and its not that,  I'm just wondering if anyone else has had this with their cushings dog.  I am worried that she is always uncomfortable, and I don't want her suffering.  Thanks for any answers and for reading.
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My Beagle/Basset was diagnosed with Addisons diseas Aug 2008 at age 12.  Unfortunately the chemo drugs took too much of his adrenal glands and sent him into addisonian colapse (severe trembleing weight loss and almost death).  We manged to bring him back and of course now he has addisons.  He gets a precort shot every 23 days (adjustments and tests over the last year) and 1mg of prednisone every day.  He is doing great and does a tiny bit of trembling on occassion but I think its mostly attention related because after a few minutes curled up in bed it stops.  Unfortunately the he can't manage more than 4 or 5 hours without a pee (I allow all the water he wants) so I just trained him to pee on a particular area rug which I have 3 of.  The rug goes into the wash at the end of the work day and I can skip the guilt.  Hope that helps and your love is doing well.
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I just know I'm not going to be sleeping tonight-as I think it's going to be mine and my dog-Kims last night together :(  She was diagnosed with Cushings a few weeks ago re the rspca we have in the uk (it helps people on benefits with pets),although it's a charity based vets they still have to charge for blood test,medication etc, and I was told it'll be very expensive-if I won the lottery I'm still not sure I would go down this route as from all the online research I've been doing the medication doesn't cure-it can't be cured-the cushings only relieves the symptoms and that the outcome of how long they'll live is roughly the same as without meds!.  We've an appointment with the PDSA tomorrow-another charity based vets-which wont be charging me but asking me for what I can afford donations which is a huge difference from the RSPCA.  So (not sure why I'm asking apart from it'd be nice to have others views and opinions etc) do I do what my heart is saying and say goodbye to her tomorrow before she gets really bad-she's miserable I can tell,we've been together for 11 years so I know her inside out.,or do I try the medication-I wish I had someone else who could make this decision for me-it was bad enough saying goodbye to my 15 yr old cat about 9yrs ago,then I lost my Father 4yrs ago and now looks like I'm saying goodbye to my soul mate :(
What would you do in my shoes? thanks Dianne
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Hi Dianne, I posted you a note, but didn't have the full story then. Then I read this.
It's so hard for you. and my thoughts are with you tonight.
What would I do if it was me, and my dog? Well I think I'd try the medication. If it's possible.
I know the PDSA. I live in UK too. They are very good for people on benefits and low income. As long as you get housing benefit, you would qualify for donation-based treatment.
So, why not give it a try? I know you don't want her to suffer, but it is just possible she might perk up a bit with some medication? It might give her some more time, and hopefully, feel a bit better?
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Oh I am so sorry April. I just saw your comments on this post. I was just tracing ShyanneDianne who is so worried about her dog, and I plunged in here without reading all the comments. Please forgive me!
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Kim was too far gone with the cushings disease and completely miserable she had no quality of life and as much as it's killed me doing it-I've said goodbye to her today :(  we had a lovely,albeit wet,walk around a park she used to love squirrels in-she chased one today but missed as per lol and I took loads of pics,I even asked another fellow dog walker to take a pic of us and explained why. I wouldn't have it any other way and I know deep in my heart I have done the right thing by her,I kept coming across the saying 'it's best a day too early than a day too late' and how true that is.  I was the last person she saw as she drifted to sleep and I covered her wet,muddy snout with kisses and told her how beautiful she is, I can't thank the P.D.S.A enough for the compassion and of how they handled things. R.I.P Kim 1998-27/11/2009 you'll be in our hearts forever xxxxx
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My 16 year old Dalmatian was diagnosed with having "borderline Cushing's disease" after some extensive blood- and urine tests. First the vet actually thought she could have Addison's disease. Since the vet had also said a few weeks earlier that her kidneys are weak I'd put her on Science Diet k/d, which is low in protein and relatively high in fat. A few days later she started drinking a lot and having accidents in the house. Her appetite became very poor. I started reading about Cushing's disease and this is what I did: I switched her slowly over to a raw food diet (darwinspet.com) which is the opposite of what the vet had recommended. It's high in proteins, low in fiber and fat. I've also started giving her "Nuvet Plus" - an amazing supplement that I would highly recommend to any caring dog or cat owner. Now, one week later, she eats and walks again with gusto, drinks normal quantities of water, her stool is firm and our home is not covered with hair anymore (up to now I just thought that loose stools and loosing hair is just part of the aging process), she is alert and attentive and best of all, her weak hind-legs are getting stronger and she is now able to walk up stairs and jump on the couch by herself! She is of course not moving like a young dog anymore, but compared to how she looked and moved a few weeks ago, she is nothing short of a little "miracle." I'm so surprised that there are no other comments on this blog relating to "natural" treatments for dogs with cushing' disease. But you can find them and find that there are safer (and better - no side effects) treatments out there for your companion than just what the vet knows.
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Please read the entire thread before answering. A lot of the people on this thread have recently lost pets to Cushings and it might be a bit hard for those of us who lost dogs to this to now hear advice now as what worked for them. Please don't get me wrong. I'm thrilled to hear about how well your dogs are doing on treatments, etc., however, it might be best to start a new thread as to keep that one positive? More people might see it that way too.
Every time this thread is pulled back up it brings back painful memories of me losing my dog to this hideous disease. I would love to hear good stories about others pets but would you all mind perhaps starting a new thread? Thanks so much!

Ginger, no worries, really. :)

ShayanneDiane, I'm so sorry to hear about your recent loss of your beloved pet. I understand. *Hugs and blessings to you*

nener, I'm so glad you found something that is working for you. I pray you will be able to have many more wonderful years with your best friend. I think many people would love to hear your story, especially about the diet, etc., as I know some people who are interested in the raw diet, etc., but I know a lot may not necessarily see your post on this thread. I think it would be a great idea to make a journal or new thread on this to give others hope and something to try, perhaps mentioning the natural treatments, etc.? I never got this much information when my own dog was diagnosed, I think it would help so many others out there if you could post something on this. Best wishes and prayers for you and your beloved dog. God bless,
April
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I just lost my dog after 11 days of Trilostane.  My dog would still be alive had I NOT given her Trilostane.  I feel responsible, since I trusted my vet.  He did not follow the recommended plan for administering the medicine, like doing an ACTH stim test the same day of taking the medicine.  Also, on the 11th day, I told him my dog had not eaten anything for 2 days, he then took my dog to the back and had someone force the medicine down her throat.  She had 2 seizures that night.  I had her in the ER for 8 days.  She came home for 2 days, then I had to let her go, she was so sick.  I wish I would have NEVER given her Trilostane.  It might work for some, but if I had to do it all over again, I would have done something different.  She would be by my side right now if I would have done something different.  
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LK07, I'm so sorry to hear about your dog. Please don't blame yourself, though. You did what you felt was the best thing for your dog. I pray you will be able to find peace and comfort in knowing that and knowing your precious pet is not hurting anymore and has crossed that Rainbow Bridge.

I would consider suing that vet or vet's office, though, for malpractice so that this will not happen to anybody else.

God bless you. My prayers are with you. *Hugs*
April
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Thank you for your kind words xxx yes I too thought when I read about 'cures' the day after having to have said goodbye to Kim was a bit too late to tell me and tbh even if I had gone down the 'medication' route Kim might have ended like poor LK07s dog,as I was warned that the medication might have made more problems for Kim than the actual disease so that's why I chose to say goodbye-it wasn't a decision I chose lightly as I'd been doing lot of research via the gods of google and think I knew in my mind before the vet even said what he thought that the best outcome for Kim was to say goodbye-I like to think she had as much fun with us as we did with her,the past 11 yrs of being in her company we're pure bliss-I couldn't of asked for a better dog companion and soul mate,she was absolutely adorable,not only would she give her paw she'd give her other one when you askde 'other one' lol she was such a character-everyone she met fell in love with her,the whole family who have met her are as upset as I am and of course my 2kids. Younger members of the family could cuddle her,climb over her at baby/toddler stage-nothing fazed her-she was a happy,content and secure dog. Sorry to hear of how horrific the end was for your dog LK07 she'll be making friends with my Kim now on the Rainbow Bridge
xxx
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Along with my Willow who passed over the Rainbow Bridge 7 months ago.
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My 12 yr old Bischon Shitzu  was diagnosed with Cushings disease 1 yr ago. After doing a lot a research we opted not to put him on any medications. The reason being, it was very expensive and there really were not any advantages in doing so. It would not make his hair grow back, make him any more active, bring back his eye site orhearing back...and most of all, the medication could end up being fatal instead of helping the poor guy. He has started having various accidents when left alone. He sleeps all day and all night, and even when we come home he doesnt hear us. When we finally do get his attention he just lifts his head and then goes back to sleep. He is too weak to go on walk and his belly is so big it practically drags on the floor. I love him so much and all this time have been in denial of how bad it really is. I have decided that I need to stop being selfish and put my dog out of his misery. He just doesn't seem happy anymore. So next week he is going to doggy heaven. He is my best friend and I love him so much. I don't know what I am going to do without him. XO
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I know how you feel. I'm so sorry. I wish they could find a cure for this horrible disease. He knows you love him and gave him a good life. I pray God will comfort you in this time. Hugs and blessings,
April
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Thank you so much for your kind words. Lst night I didn't sleep at all and was up all night crying. Everytime I think of him I start to cry. I am trying to make his last week the best week ever with lots of cuddles and kisses...but its so hard. Sometimes I wonder if I am doing the right thing
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Someone once told me you will know when the time is right. When you look in his eyes he will tell you. When I looked in my dog's eyes they looked tired and sick, weary. That's when I knew it was time. When I drove him to the vet he laid quietly in the car and he usually would get nervous in the car. He hated going to the vet. He was very quiet that day. He passed quickly and quietly. It was hard, hard for me and I did cry all the way home but I knew he was at peace.
I know this is a difficult thing to do but you will know when the time is right. You don't want your pet to suffer. He will let you know. God bless you.
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I am having a hard time letting my dog go. Does anyone know of any good books about lossing pets and/or grieving ofver the loss of a pet?
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My 14yr. old Corgi was just diagnosed with Cushings.....  I put off taking him to the vet because I knew he probably had it.  I've decided not to give him any medications - they run the risk of making him even sicker.  He'll tell me when it's time.....
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My 15+ year old chihuahua has Cushing disease. I know it is time to let go but it is still so hard. He has to urinate about every hour and has accidents in between. He cannot raise his leg and urinates on himself. He drinks at least 1 gallon of water daily. I wish I could find some help on the subject. I feel like I am "playing God". I am a nurse and have been around death and dying for years but I am having a hard time with this. I posted on another forum but haven't had much response. It helps to hear from others that have had to have their "babies" put to sleep. Thanks for listening.
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Hi!!  My 5 year old German Sheppard is being treated for Cushings Disease with Melatonin and Lignans.  Yes Melatonin!!  She takes 9 mg 2x a day and 2 Tablespoons a day of "Barlean's Forti-Flax 100 % organic"  which contains a high dose of lignans!!!  SHE WEIGHES 130 pounds ~ She has been on this combination since August 2009 and does finally show improvement.  She urinates less frequently and certainly seems more happy!!  I have not had any levals tested since August, since all of the testing cost approx 3,000.   And my other German Sheppard two years ago had heart surgery, which cost approx 5,000.!!!  He had his Gall Bladder, Intestines, Spleen and Colon wrapped around his heart.... What we all will not do for our loved pets!!!  I want to say the University of Kentucky or Tennessee? ???  Is where my vet researched for this melatonin and ligan combination ~ Destiny  If anyone would like me to look back in my paperwork for the correct university, please feel free to email me ***@****  
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I had to have my 13 1/2 yr old Dauchshund put to sleep a few hours ago.  I am so heartbroken over it.  He was diagnosed about nine months ago with cushings.  DenBoy was his name.  I got him from a so-called back yard breeder in 1999 when he was around 3 years old..  At the time I knew nothing of heartworms.  Took him to the vet when I first got him, he was diagnosed with heartworms 70% of his organs.  Opted for the heartworm treatment, took him a full year to get over the treatments, he survived it all.  However, it had to have taken some toll on his body though he was a genuine champ and rocked on.  In the last year he started loosing his hair, he took on a skeletal look, started drinking a lot of water, peeing in the house, became very tired all the time, and stopped playing.  DenBoy went through all the blood tests which led to the diagnosis of Cushings, was put on Vetoryl which only treats the symptoms.  The only thing the Vetoryl helped with was he drank less water and was a little more active for a while.  I realize now that he had continued to get worse over the months.  I put him on vitamins, changed his food several times, ( cause he wouldn't eat regular) tried many different things in hopes that he would get better.  Somehow I think he just kept going on for me, we were constant companions for all these years, he went everywhere with me, I feel such a void.  In the past week especially, he went downhill fast no matter what was tried, he would eat, then he wouldn't eat, he got to where he could hardly walk, he started walking into things, he didn't seems to be able to hear, he would just sit and stare at me.  Today I knew that it was time to let him go, he seemed to be having a hard time breathing and it just seemed like to much effort for him to get up.  I laid on the floor beside him and looked into his eyes and knew that his quality of life was not there anymore, DenBoy was tired of fighting.  He gave me many years of joy and I loved him with all my heart and still do.  I am sharing this with you for several reasons, one, I hope to God Almighty that it helps me to get through this, and two, maybe it might just help someone else.  Rest in Peace DenBoy, I miss you...
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We had to put our dog to sleep two months ago due to Cushings disease.  It is a horrible disease, and I don't feel the Vetoryl really does anything to help, at least in our dogs case it didn't.  I am sorry we didn't try the older med, I think its called Lysodren. Hang in there, I'm sure your little guy had a great life and knew he was much loved.
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So sorry for your loss! Please know that you are one of the good ones. You are a repsonsible pet owner who did everything you could for your pal. there are many out there that get pets and negelect them and or abuse animals and yours was lucky to have you! Vetrol, from what I researched, is supposed to be better thand Lysodren. I had a beagle who had cushings for nearly 8 years. We treated her with Lysodren. It wasn't easy by no means but we kept up with her testing and managed her meds over the years to keep her alive. In fact, her meds really didn't start helping her symptoms until 2 years into it. I was always worried about the side effects of Lysodren and that's why I've researched other meds. In fact a couple of years ago they vet prescribed too much Lysodren and my dog went into the opposite disease Addison's. I had to argue with him that I thought that's what happened and he wouldn't agree with me until I forced him to re-test her. Then he said, "Wow! I would have never thought she's in Addision's! We just tested her!" He immediately had to put her on Prednisone and she totally bounced back! It was like night and day. We alsmot lost her! She didn't eat for over a week! Cushing's is such a tricky and scary disease. It is so hard to maintain a dog with the disease and know if you are doing things right. You really have to arm yourself with knowlege and second guess your vet if need be! Vets are not God.  I almomst feel like I'm an expert on Cushing's after all of the time I spent researching it! It is treatable and with the new meds, most pets (if caught soon enough) can live out thier normal life span.The problem with this disease is that it can trigger so many other health issues such as Kidney failure and Diabetes. Most dogs don't end up dying from Cushing's but complications that result from it. Unfortunately I lost my beagle this past Sept. and the month before I lost my 15 year old. And, just this past Tuesday, I lost my 3rd and final dog. That's 3 in under a year! So rough! I know what you are going thru and I wouldn't wish that kind of pain on my worst enemy! Time does help.Just take it ne day at a time. To top it all off, the vets think this last loss was due to posioning or that her kidneys just wore out. We are concerned about the posioning thing becuase we have a psycho nieghbor who hates all animals. Now there's been a 1/2 dozen cases of posioning reported in the neighborhood and we have to have it investigated. The sad thing is there's a chance my other 2 could have died from posioing last summer! It's so sad we live on  this planet with scum like that! Just know, that you are one of the good ones and you gave y ou pal all the love you could possibly give it.
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I am so very sorry for those that have lost their beloved dogs.  Yes, cushing's is frustrating and scarey but it doesn't have to be a death sentence.  The disease is a lot easier to deal with if you can interact with people that know exactly what you are going through and can help you in so many ways.  Please consider becoming a member at www.k9cushings.com to learn more about the disease, share your story and get a tremendous amount of feedback from members with extensive experience with the disease.  The library is chocked full of great reference material to help you learn more about cushing's and its effective treatments.  
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Have any of the people who lost their dogs to the poisoning have an autopsy done on them?  Possibly it might help catch the scumbag who did it.  Thats horrible.
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signs to look for when you know its close to 'that time.'

11 year old Labrador Retriever diagnosed with Cushing's at age 10.

One week before passing on

-Constant 'nagging' wanting to be by my side
          -gets annoying but don't be mean or rash, they're informing   that they will be moving on soon. Love them more than you ever have before or you may just regret it later.

-Panting/Breathing gets worse, begins to see as if something is wrong on a minutely basis

-As for attitude, they're just as normal as ever (at least mine was) Loved to go outside, don't restrict what they can't do, rather help them do what couldn't be done before (bring them upstairs/downstairs to places they used to love to be) In fact I had a bonfire the night my dog passed, he was outside running back and forth with the other dogs seemingly having a great time (but there was something that you could just tell as a parent that there was something definitely wrong) Not sure if all of the extra labor caused a heart issue or some kind of strain, but I know his last day was great. Was able to be outside, play for the last time and get all the attention that old men get :).

-When you see your pet trying to hide//get away from the owner when they're normally right next to you all the time, they're hiding to pass on not in front of you. Be weary.

Love you Noah. 05/15/2010
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signs to look for when you know its close to 'that time.'

11 year old Labrador Retriever diagnosed with Cushing's at age 10.

One week before passing on

-Constant 'nagging' wanting to be by my side
          -gets annoying but don't be mean or rash, they're informing   that they will be moving on soon. Love them more than you ever have before or you may just regret it later.

-Panting/Breathing gets worse, begins to see as if something is wrong on a minutely basis

-As for attitude, they're just as normal as ever (at least mine was) Loved to go outside, don't restrict what they can't do, rather help them do what couldn't be done before (bring them upstairs/downstairs to places they used to love to be) In fact I had a bonfire the night my dog passed, he was outside running back and forth with the other dogs seemingly having a great time (but there was something that you could just tell as a parent that there was something definitely wrong) Not sure if all of the extra labor caused a heart issue or some kind of strain, but I know his last day was great. Was able to be outside, play for the last time and get all the attention that old men get :).

-When you see your pet trying to hide//get away from the owner when they're normally right next to you all the time, they're hiding to pass on not in front of you. Be weary.

Love you Noah. 05/15/2010
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You were very fortunate that your dog was in such good shape till the end, and that he died on his own.  It saved you a lot of stress from seeing him suffer badly in the end and from having to put him to sleep.  I'm sorry you lost your dog, it is soooooo hard after eleven years, you walk into a room and expect to see them in their favorite spot, or come home and you can almost hear them barking to greet you.  I'm sure he knew how much you loved him, he was a very lucky dog.
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My Romeo 11 1/2 yrs old and has been Diabetic for almost two years. On his last glucose curve our Vet called me to tell me she suspects he has Cushings Disease.
I felt like I just couldn't cope with this life threatening disease. The medication, I was told is very expensive and so are the needed tests. I am very low income social security and also disabled for five yrs. I am 67 and alone except for my boy Romeo.
Well he had the Low Dose Dex to confirm that he does have pituitary Cushing's Disease. She recommended TRILOSTANE but it was up to me of course. She suggest I look at online pharmacies for best prices. At Pet Meds N More I was able to get a month and half supply, that is ninety capsules for $148. which even I can afford to treat my boy at this price. Also needed Prednisone and bought a bottle of 100 for $10. Way too much but the price was so good and once in a while my doctor puts me on it when my feet swell too much.
Bottom line is if you think you can't afford to treat your baby, please rethink it, there are ways to do it. I know for myself I can't see my Romeo suffer because I did not or felt I could not treat him. I know it will not be an easy battle but the other evening he looked at me, looked right in my eyes like he has never done before and I told him not to worry, I would take care of him.
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Consider Cushex Drops (herbal) and Vetmedin:  new prescription medicine in US for Cushing's disease.
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I am new to this post thing, so bear with me.  I tried to post you a note, but don't know if it worked, so I will try this.
I too am an owner of a (wonderful sweet dog) whom was diag. with cushing's this Jan.  She just turned 13, and we have gone the Homeopathy route (which has lost her 5 months of her life).  She hasn't gotten any better, but worse.  It is tearing me apart, and I cry almost all the time, no matter where I am.
When I read your post you mentioned Melatonin, that's the first time I have seen that mentioned.  I went to a new Vet. yesterday that gave me that as an option (since I don't have the money for the more expensive drugs), not to mention I don't know if my baby can take the harshness of the treatments.  You had mentioned a unniversity that did a study on that, but I don't know how to reach you.  I would like to know how and if it works.
Today she wouldn't eat, and her stomach is very big, she would eat other things just not the kibble.  I want to switch her to another kibble, but I know you can't do that abruptly, but if she's not eating the one she has, how do I trans. her to a new one.  Any suggestions from anyone I would so greatly appreciate!!!
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I would give your dog any dog food she will eat, even canned.  Try to make it a very good one, you probably will have to experiment to see what she likes, buy very small bags to start with, or small cans.  Give her mostly her old food, with a little of the new mixed in (can or dry) and gradually put more of the new one in.  When our dog had Cushings it got to the point where I gave her human food, chicken mostly.  She was losing weight instead of gaining, so I wasn't concerned about calories, she even got pizza if she wanted it.  Good Luck, and please try not to cry in front of your dog, I know its hard if not impossible, but they know when your sad or upset, and I'm sure it makes her feel worse.  Try to stay calm, and spoil her a lot.
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I have a 13 1/2 year old black lab mix....Hope.  She was my first child.  She was diagnosed last year with Cushings.  I have been reading your posts and I need some advice.  We opted not to give her the medication.  She was already 12 years old and we don't have the money for the medications.  I am at the point where I am going back and forth with the dreadful decision to put her down.  She is the most precious, sweet and kind dog I have ever owned.  She follows me everywhere (even in the bathroom and lays by my feet).  She already tore both her ACLs when she was younger, she has arthiritis and Lyme Disease.  She just moans all the time when she has to get up or when she lays down.  She is not happy.  I wouldn't say she is in pain, but she is extremely uncomfortable.  My husband and I always say "this is Hope's house, we just live here", that is how spoiled she is.  Whatever she wants, she gets.  She is peeing all over my breezeway, never in the house (she never did), her urine has a very harsh odor....does anyone else have that odor?

When do you say, it is time?  Any help would be appreciated.
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Welcome.....Post your exact question as a NEW question in a new thread.....More people will see it and you'll get a better response....This thread is quite old.....Thanks
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My beagle had Cushings for over 6 years (controlled by Lysodren). Took a lot of patience to keep up with it. But she did well overall on the meds. From what I know about the disease, her urnine was always clear and odorless. That is becuase a dog with Cushing's doesn't usually concentrate it's urine. We noticed a strong odor one day when she went on her pee pad. So, we brought a urnie sample in to the vet to be tested. She ended up having a bladder infection (treated by antibotics). Dog's with Cushing's tend to be prone to infection. I would suggest that you bring a sample of your dog's urine in to be checked. Any time I've done that it's always been under $20. Also, you may have to experiement with more than one antibotic (antibiotic) until you get one to knock out the infection. I  have to ask you too, since you dog suffers from arthitic pain, do you give her any sort of steriod or cortisone medicine for the pain? Those type of meds can throw a dog into temporary Cushing's disease and once the dog is removed from the meds, the Cushing's symptoms stop. It's a catch 22 for pet owners, though. They don't know what's better for the dog to deal with the Cushing symptoms or the pain. Usually, the Cushing's is easier to treat. No one can tell you when it's the right time to put your pet down. It's a decision you have to make. I perosnally just lost all 3 of mine in under a year! And I'm so grateful that they were able to die in my arms at home. I can't even imagine putting them to sleep in the place they dreaded the most!  Even the vet suggested with my last one that I take her home and let her die at home. She wasn't eating and he didn't expect her to last another day. He also said he never in favor of putting a pet down unless it is absolutely necessary. My only regret is with the first one I lost.I think I kept her alive a day too long. The night before she died, I made the decision to take her to the vet the next day to put her down, becuase that day she looked at me with a tear in her eye. I didn't have the chance, becuase the next morning, she died at home in my arms. If a dog is a little slow walking around, in my opinion, I wouldn't be so quick to put them down. We all get sore as we age and we deal with it. When our parents age we help them deal with it. They just need extra care and attention, but I believe they're not really suffering until they let you know. If you don't know the look, maybe it's becuase you haven't received it yet. Just enjoy you pal and do  your best for her for as long as you can. Hope all of this helps you in some way. They are a part of our family and it is sooooo hard to let them go! I wish you many more years with your friend!
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p.s. If you have a Giant Eagle store in your area and you end up needing an antibiotic for your dog. Have your vet send the prescription there rather than let him fill it. Antibotics are free at Giant Eagle and I think ony $4 at Walmart. Also, if  you read my previous posts, I mentioned I was able to find the Cushing's medicine (Lysodren) for under $4 a pill in my area. Your dog may only need it once or twice a month.
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Hi,
My nine year old American Eskimo was diagnosed with Cushings this past Spring. His symptoms began last summer with the panting and heavy drinking or water.

Spanky has been on Trilostane(Vetoryl) for two months and I have not seen a great improvement.  His first labs from the first month came back good so the Vet is keeping Spanky on 30 mg once daily. My Spanky is about twenty pounds overweight at close to fifty pounds.  Spanky's panting makes me feel so sad and helpless. When will it stop?  The sick look he has in his eyes makes me feel so sad.  I really can't afford the Vetoryl but am trying to cutback on other things to afford it.  So, two questions, which online RX pharmacy has the lowest prices for Vetoryl. Secondly, how long will it take to see my baby get some relief?

April
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Just so you know, it took my beagle almost 1 1/2 yrs. to start seeing improvements in her lab work will on Lysodren. I heard that the medicine you are using is just as good if not better than Lysodren becuase it has less side effects then the Lysodren. In all of my research about Cushings, I learned that a dog may have all or none of the symptoms that define Cushing's. I also learned that the medcine may not stop all of the symptoms, but it will keep your dog alive. My dog's lab work was always WAY off the chart and it took my vet a LONG time experiementing with different dosages to help bring those blood values down. In fact, we had to accept the blood values we achieved even though, they were still not in the normal range. The improvements we did see on the medicine are as follows: Her bloated belly began to go down, she wasn't chugging gallons of water although she still did drink more than usual, she stopped having as many accidents in the house, although she did use the pee pads often. Her panting decreased and stopped once the medcine kicked in. Whenever these symptoms became more noticeable, we knew it was time for another check up wth the vet. At one point she was on as many as 4 pills per week and eventualy got down to 1 or 2. We used to split the pill in half too! That seemed to be a very successful strategy.  For instance, if the vet said that she needed 2 pills per week, we gave her half a pill 4 times a week. Check with your vet on this. It may help you. I'm not a vet, but I would say that part of your dog's panting is due to being overweight. The weight may also be a result of the Cushings. Dog's ravage food when ill with the disease. Their bellies also become extremely large and bloated looking. My beagle would have her relapses and get swelled up now and again, but when she lost weight and the medicine was working, she did very well! Virtually symptom-free. She had the disease for about 6 years. If you are able to excerise your pooch and put it on a low-caorie diet, I think it may feel a alot better. Check with your vet on the best way to appraoch a doggy diet. Also, low-sodium foods are best for a pet with Cushing's. Unfortunately, too, Cushingoid dogs are prone to diabetes and kidney failure among other things. So, it be best to get some of that weight off of your dog to give it it's best chance to live a happy life with this disease. Good luck with your pal! They become such a HUGE part of us! I miss mine EVERYDAY!
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P.S. Most pharmacies will price match. 1-800-pet-meds has competitive prices on meds. I was able to find my Lysodren for around $3-4 per pill at Giant Eagle and Marc's. You really just have to shop around. But, if you find a place who's cheaper, tell your current pharmacy and I'll bet they'll match the price to keep your business. Here's another tip, if you vet prescribes an antibotic (antibiotic) for your pooch, don't let him fill it. Take the precrption to Giant Eagle. Antbiotics are FREE there!
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Chocolate Lady Jaden is our 10 year old Lab was diagnosed with cushings disesease 14 months ago. Jaden has taken Lysodren or 1 year  and we currentley taking liquid Mitatine (sp). Jaden isnot getting any better she is getting worse. My family and Jaden's doctors have all agreed that she is to weak to continue treatment. We are going to LOVE and keep her comfortable for as long as possible. She is the love of our life and is the best girl ever. We are having a really hard time with this, our heart's are breaking  but we all agree that she is to good a girl to let her suffer . So we will let her go when the time comes. God is Good ! God is going to get an amazing dog. Please pray for my family.
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Yesterday  i joined your website. For a few day's we have heard a faint (purring) sound when she breathes. It is off and on and now is getting louder. Waiting as we speak on a call from the Dr. Around 3 AM my sweet girl was making very loud wierd noises. I just stayed with her for awile until she calmed down. This morning she seems ok . only (purring) a little. Anyone experience anything like this?  
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Hello & welcome.....Please, post both of your questions as NEW questions on this forum...I feel you will get more responses that way.....The other thread has 120 replies and sometimes people overlook the long ones......Good luck and I hope people will respond to your questions........I'm thinking about you & yours....Karla
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my black lab/husky will be 15 in jan.2011. she has cushings too. she will be asleep, which she does a lot, & pee where she lays. its very sad. her panting is out of control. when i eat, she begs for my food, which is maddening. she won't eat her own food though.
she has a terrible time w/her back legs. her stomach looks bloated too. she can only hear really loud noises.
its very hard to watch my girl getting old & 14 1/2 is old. i keep telling myself how close she is to 15 & a lot of dogs don't make it to 15. but the thought of having to put her down just terrifies me. i cannot imagine my life w/o her. i hope the cushings doesn't kill her..too unbearable to think about.
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Hi Pauli & welcome.....It sounds as if your girl has a very low quality of life and I believe the question is, "Is she miserable?"
Yes, the Cushings Disease will kill her and it sounds as if it already is.....

Please, give her some of your food. She needs something to eat! No need to not let her have what she wants, now.....

You need to think about this: Does she enjoy anything that she did in her younger years? Also, ask yourself if your keeping her around for you or her?

I know these decisions are tough and hard to think about....What does her Dr. say?
Please, have her Dr. re-evaluate her and  see what he/she thinks.....

Sometimes , Loving them so much means we have to let them go....To end their pain & suffering.......Good luck to you and her......I'll hope for the best......Karla

P.S. You've done a Great job to have had her 14.5 years....That's wonderful!

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We seem to be in the exact same place with our "girls". My jaden stopped eating her dog food also.I decided to start cooking her chicken and rice. We she begs for my table food , i give her some. I know that her time here with her family is almost over.We are just LOVING HER UP. We want her here with us for as long as possible but we love her to much to let her suffer. Good luck! Please write me anytime because i think that we could both use some support.I will be praying for you and your sweet girl.. Hugs & kisses  and God Bless!
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My 14 year old dog has had cushings for 2 1/2 years.  She has been declining the last few months...more tired on her walks, picky and inconsistent with her eating, sensitive about being touched.  Sometimes it's hard to get her trilostane in her because she often refuses food.
This morning she had a seizure.  It was frightening. Afterward she was very anxious and paced for about 1/2 hour.  I have been watching her the last 2 hours, wondering what I should do and what this means. She is trying to sleep, but having trouble getting comfortable.  Has anyone had a similar experience with a cushionoid dog and seizures?
How do you know when it's time to help them move on?
Very sad.
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How is your dog doing ? Any more seizure's ? My prayers are with you. The only  advice that i can give you is to contact your vet. I do not think that i could stand it if my jaden were to start with the seizures. it has to be tough on you . i wish you and your dog the best.
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My beagle has had cushings disease for a year and 6 months.he was 8 when diagnosed.  this was a horriable and costly experience.  but with Vetroyl his symptoms have improved. it took along time to get his meds regulated. I give him a1 30mg in the morning and a 60 mg at night.  his stomach still seems to be bloated at times which worries me and he isn't as energetic but the urinating and panting has stopped.  he is my baby and I want to do every thing I can to help him.  I changed his food to taste of the wild.  I was told this was the best food for him.  I was told dogs with cushings need to be on a high protein and vegetable diet no carbs.  he snores loudly and I wonder if this is normal???    
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I am so happy you have had luck with controlling your dogs Cushings.  It sounds like you have controlled the worst symptoms, which is great.  The food you have him on is a good food, does he like it?  Ours got to be a very picky eater when she had Cushings.  Your dog has age on his side, he's still pretty young, which maybe is helping him. Your right, it is a horrible disease, I wish you all the luck with your guy.
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Demon is not quite 2 years old. This is the second time he has this problem.  The Vet never found the problem last time.   No energy, stops eating, pants, back right leg weak.  Just wants to be petted.  Sick. Giving her anti-biotics.    Don't know what to do for him.

Kaci
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Hi. I have been reading your posts and I want to confirm--did you say your dog has lived for 6 years after being diagnosed with Cushing's? That is great. I am about to start Vetoryl with my 11 yr old English coonhound and I have been searching this site looking for some hopeful news about her condition.
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Our Westie is now 12. 5 years ago she was diagnosed with Cushings which later turned into Addison's disease (the reverse of Cushings). The good thing is Addison's is more manageable than Cushings. But now we find that the Cushings had left a tumor on the pituitary gland and it has now shut down the gland totally. We have one thing left to try that might give us a little more time with her.
There are many things vets can do today to help your dog. We knew the drugs our pup tood would eventually kill her system but her quality of life was great for thse 5 years and we thank God for her.  
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My mini dachshund, now aged 14, has had Cushings for over 3 years.  Medicated with vetoryl and hepatosyl.  Vetoryl has ranged from 30-60mg daily - he is now on 40mg daily.  The meds and tests are very expensive.  It can be very distressing for the owner too when you are not used to the symptoms.  I find it really important to prevent him from getting stressed... stress definitely makes the symptoms worse.  The panting can sometimes be alleviated by putting a fan on... blowing air onto them.  Heart rate can go wild when panting.. you notice this more when they are lying down.  The vet suggested putting him in cool water to alleviate panting, but I think this could be too much for his wee heart.  Maybe a wet cloth rubbed over them would help some?

Oh and a dodgy tummy with runny poo is a sign things are not so good, but this can pass and things go back to ok!    They also shake sometimes - he does it more in the morning when I take him to doggy day care at his grandma and papas house!  

Keep a supply of water available at all times.  I feed him home cooked chicken or red meat so as I know there is no fat involved in the cooking.  Bar that he eats dried dog food (Hills Senior), which he thinks is a real treat!  They can sometimes have a wild appetite... so you need to make sure they eat more or less the same every day and monitor their intake.

Thought he was a goner October 2010, but he fought back and has some really good days again.  Days are good generally.  Gave us all time to realise he wouldnt be here forever and to enjoy every minute we have left with him... and not to get too grumpy when he asks for water or out for a pee during the night!  

It will continue to progress with age... but something else could get him first... he is 14 and that's a good age for a daxi!  :O) x
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My 9 yo Maltese is exhibiting most of the symptoms associated with Cushings and the vet has suggested the testing.  However, she has NO appetite, eats very little and has lost alot of weight. She's tiny to begin with so any weight loss is considerable. Originally the vet(s) thought she might have an infection and treated with antibiotics. 2nd vet said yes to the infection, probably from bad teeth, which were extracted and back on the third round of antibiotics. Everytime, the antibiotics made her better. Just like normal, eating, playing, not drinking. This leads me to believe that maybe she has some infectious process and not something like Cushings. Blood work shows nothing except an elevated white count.
Anyone have any suggestions? Does Cushings get better with antibiotics?
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I am sorry to hear about your dog. If your dog has Cushings, it should be treated. The Roadrunner Pharmacy is a not very expensive pharmacy. My dog has Cushing's. She was diagnosed in January 2009.In retrospect ,she,in fact, had Cushings since September 2008. She is now 17 years 10 months. The cushings causes the osteoarthritis. Lots of Cushingoid dogs are osteoarthritic. My dog can no longer walk --- not at all. I bought her a stroller from PET GEAR --- the strollers are made for pets.
There is also a listserv for Canine Cushing dogs. It was founded by Heidi Schmeck. Her e-mail address is: . The Canine Cushings address is:   CanineCushings-***@****
Contact Heidi and ask her how to join the listserv. You will get unbelievable valuable information from this listserv. My e-mail is ***@****. Your dog should not go untreated.

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I am sorry to hear about your dog. If your dog has Cushings, it should be treated. The Roadrunner Pharmacy is a not very expensive pharmacy. My dog has Cushing's. She was diagnosed in January 2009.In retrospect ,she,in fact, had Cushings since September 2008. She is now 17 years 10 months. The cushings causes the osteoarthritis. Lots of Cushingoid dogs are osteoarthritic. My dog can no longer walk --- not at all. I bought her a stroller from PET GEAR --- the strollers are made for pets.
There is also a listserv for Canine Cushing dogs. It was founded by Heidi Schmeck. Her e-mail address is: . The Canine Cushings address is:   CanineCushings-***@****
Contact Heidi and ask her how to join the listserv. You will get unbelievable valuable information from this listserv. My e-mail is ***@****. Your dog should not go untreated.

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Oh boy, my daughters Maltese Ruffels has gotten very sick. She was in great shape at 13 years old but in the last 6 months has has dropped down to 3 lbs and every time she eats it comes right out. Like she has no digestive system left. Her legs are shaky and she trembles.

I'm a big guy but this little dog has been part of our family since my daughter turned 3 and its rally, really hard to see this. My wife has been sleeping with the dog for 6 months. I think its time to let Ruffels go but loosening her is like loosing a family member.  

I hope there is a doggy heaven

Danny
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Have you taken Ruffels to the vet for a Cushings test?  Is she on any medication? How is her appetite?
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My 12 year old Shepherd X was diagnosed with Cushings about 2 months ago after over a year of being misdiagnosed for having a food allergy.  He is on lysodren as the homeopathic wasy (did a big liver cleanse) did not work as I believe he was too far along.  Losing huge patch of hair and skin so dry he looked like he had snow all over him.  Very lethargic, drinking lots of water and hungry all the time.  Lysodren is very scary.  He reacted beautifully at first and was doing really good and we were down to 1 pill once a week and the last pill on Friday almost killed him.  Lost all equilibrium, vomited all night last night.  Has been at the vet all day on intravenous.  My heart hurts.  I'm not sure if I would do the Lysodren again.  It's too hard to figure out the right amount without serious side effects.  Now he will be on a drug to help his adrenal glands work again as the lysodern has pretty much destroyed his.  I will let you know what happens.  Husband is bringing him home now hopefully.  
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Our dog was on Vetoryl, and also had to go on meds because it did damage.  Is your vet putting your dog on Prednisone?
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My 11 1/2 year old Chocolate Lab was diagnosed with Cushing's Disease in November 2010, she has had her meds altered 4 times since then(Trilostane), had 9 ACTH tests, Abdominal Ultrasounds and so forth...very expensive and takes a lot of patience from the owner...it has not been easy, however, once again I noticed a difference in her, tired, not too hungry, seemed disoriented, tool her for blood work and her ALT and AST was off the charts....did an Abdominal Ultrasound and found a mucoceole gallbladder, basically a blocked gallbladder....there is a correlation between Cushings and this finding. She was fading fast, I had 4 different professional opinions and they all suggest euthanization as it was inoperable because of her age and Cushing's (which leaves them immuno suppressed). I scheduled a Vet to come to the home (I had just euthanized my 13 1/2 year old Lab in December) and at the last minute we changed out mind. The vet that was here suggested we wait, although internally everything is messed up, she has come back to her old self....the jaundice has faded from her eyes, she is not vomiting, the belly is swollen, she does not seem to be in pain...so I wait and enjoy her every minute...I have her off all meds, the Cushing's symptoms are back, however, I am managing them....I have accepted she is close to passing and her and I will decide together when that time will be.....a side note, Cushing's disease causes many issues throughout the body, the meds also have severe side effects...it is a personal choice and you are the voice for your pet on what type of treatment you agree too. We all love our pets so very much....the decisions can torment us, do what you feel is right, not always what the Vet's suggest you do.....Blessing to all of you animal lovers and many blessings to those who are managing a sick canine....
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I hope you and your dog have many more good days.  You are right, you just have to take each day you have  and enjoy it.  Cushings is a terrible disease, and very hard to control.  Good Luck to you and your pal.
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My dog (my baby), Daisy, was just diagnosed with possible Cushings.  We are not putting her through testing or treatment as she will be 17 in July.  It is also likely she has cancer.  She has lived a good life and it is time to let nature take its course.  That is not to say it isn't breaking my heart.

Daisy was my service dog for 8-10 years until she completely retired at age 14.  I have PTSD and she helped with the anxiety and challenges I face.  I was used to having her with me every minute.  She still has to be wherever I am.  (You can imagine how much I hate that! :)  My heart is breaking and I feel like a piece of my soul is leaving me.

I have been feeling guilty about not being more aggressive with Daisy's care, but everything I read says it's about quality of life.  She has wonderful quality of life, and no real symptoms as of yet except extremely elevated liver levels and a few minor issues.  I just don't want her in pain.  I am also afraid of having this bald, skeletal looking dog when she dies.  I want her to be beautiful.  I guess she always will be in my heart.  I pray to God she goes in her sleep.  I don't want to have to make that decision.

If anyone has words of encouragement, I could sure use them about now.
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The fact that Daisy is 17 proves you have done a great job raising her.  After all those years, your heart has to be breaking to see your girl so sick. Does she still eat and drink well?  Cushings can affect a dogs appetite, and definately make them dring tons of water.  At 17 I think you are doing the exact right thing, the treatment for Cushings can be hard on a dog, and I don't think she could take it.  I think all you can do is enjoy each extra day you get with her, and spoil her big time.  When the time comes, you won't want to make that decision, but you also won't want her to be miserable.  You'll know when.  Enjoy and love her until then.  Good Luck.
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My 9 year old Jack Russell-Chihuahua, Skippy, was diagnosed last summer with Cushings after going blind over night. He is on Trilastane. He has just never seemed to move forward. He developed a puppy coat, is always thirsty and is very lithargic. He has not adjusted to the blindness. Can't find his way around the house, and even seens to have lost much of his hearing. His nose is dry, cracked and swollen; I believe from chronic dehydration and from bumping it constantly.

I just lost my 17 year old terrier 4 weeks sgo, so now Skippy is alone during the day while I work. Skippy just seems sad. I'm trying to determine if the time is now to euthenize him. While he is my best buddy for so many reasons, he breaks my heart. I try hard to find his "quality of life".

Please respond with help on when you knew it was time for your blind, cushings dog. Thank you
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Hello!  Is Skippy on any medicines for his cushings?  Why I am asking is because I have read that its very unusual for a dog not to adjust to being blind.  If he's on any medicines, maybe that is what he's not adjusting.  2 years ago my dog became blind and then was diagnosed with Cushings, but then our vet didnt want to treat him for Cushings yet, because another specialist believed he was having Cushing symptoms because of the stress from becoming blind.  My dogs excessive drinking and eating became normal after 6 months or so. He still was overweight tho. I changed his food to a grain free easy digestable . The cushings symptoms diminished.  But he had soft and loose stools, in which im not sure if that was a cushing symptom or not.  Beware of the prescription Metronyzadole...the vet prescribed it to my dog a year ago for his diaherra (diarrhea).  We recently found out he was being poisoned from it and that because my dog had possible liver issues, he should have not been prescribed that drug.

My dog was blind  but he still enjoyed walks(short ones) and going bye bye in the car.  He still would do tricks, beg for table scraps...etc. But he also would just lay around.  I will pray for Skippy ......
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I have a 7 year old Pomeranian with cushings disease.
Our regular vet put her on 30 mg. of Trilostane daily. But, I knew she was off. I took her to an Internal medicine vet who dropped her dose to 6mg. a day and she is doing well. I think when a pet has a serious diagnosis, a second opinion by a specialist is always a good idea!
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Hi,

Our dog of 14 years is being tested next Monday for Cushings. She has had Mast Cell Tumors twice and we now inject her twice daily for Diabetes. For the last 4 years the vets have suggested she may have Cushings Disease but she hasn't really displayed any symptoms. Her drinking was excessive but as soon as we started the insulin injections this subsided. We are sceptical about having the tests done as she isn't good at the vets and gets very stressed, one common trait i have noticed is the weakness of back legs - she has recently become weak and takes ages to walk her. My Hubby & I are at our wits end as the insulin already costs us £27 per week and the Cushings treatment by the looks of it just prolongs their life & not get rid of the disease. We really don't mind what we spend on any of our pets but do you folks think it's worth putting her through the stress of it all????
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I can't tell you if you should go through with the tests, but I do agree with you, they are very stressful tests.  If the excessive drinking stopped with the diabetes treatments, what makes your vet think she has Cushings?  Does she pee constantly?  How is her appetite?  Weak legs is a symptom of Cushings, but is it possible it could also be arthritis?
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I had no idea how horrible this disease was until my 8 yr. old Maltese got it &-was diagnosed with it about 5 months ago,and  a lot of research on my  part.  I just found this site and read all the comments from real life people.  I was almost 1K$ into testing and drugs (Trilostane) a 2nd opinion.  The dog was doing worse only after 2 months of treatment.  He is off it now after about 2+ months.  I decided this and my main vet agreed. I cry almost every day as  he has all the obvious symptoms of Chushings and I will have to make the horrible decision about my baby someday when I think he his suffering.  I am willing to clean up 20 piddles of pee a day in his oceanfront room-where I am with him most of the day..  This has been very hard on both of us.  Try to remember all the joy and prayers to all of you and your babies. Yes, as they say "we will know" - just like I finally knew what to name him when I got him 7 yrs ago.  Teddy.  I know we all love our Teddy Bears.    

If anyone has a crystal ball, I wish I could know how long a dog typically lives with this disease left untreated?  I hear the treatments are only to make the pet more comfortable, which did NOT work for us at all.  
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Our dog also didn't respond well with the Trilostane, I feel that although it stopped the peeing, it made her much sicker.  I don't blame you for quitting it, although I've read of many people that had luck with the drug.  Enjoy Teddy  each day, and try to stay calm in front of him, I didn't with ours, and I feel it made the situation much worse.  Take Care.
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My Scottish terrier, Sadie, has Cushing's disease for about 4 months.  She takes 60 mg vetoryl and her cortisol levels are about normal.  She still drinks a lot, urinates a lot, itches all of the time, has trouble walking, a large belly, lays around all day (not sleeping), struggles to jump up on the chair or go up stepss(she does take short walks), winces, lays mostly on her side, breathes extremely heavy(not panting), pants, does not get up to greet you, does not run and play(occasionally trots after a squirell) and just seems sad and depressed.  She is my complete companion but I do not know if her medicine is not working or she is just not going to get better and she is miserable.  ddemigs
Any ideas or thoughts are welcome
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Have you had another blood work up done on your dog to see if she is taking the right dosage of meds?  By now you should have at least noticed less water drinking and peeing, I would think.  Cushings is a nasty disease, and it is so hard to watch our friends go through it.  Enjoy every day with her as much as possible, maybe take her for a ride in the car on days she can't/won't walk around.  
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My 7 year old Jack Russell Terrier was diagnosed with Cushings via urine and blood tests (expensive - over $600 in total).  He had the classic symptoms - drinking & urinating excessively, large pot belly, hair loss, muscle loss, panting, etc.  We noticed a significant difference once he was put on Vetoryl (about $75 per month).  Within less than a week, his drinking/urinating decreased substantially.  Within 3 weeks, his pot belly was nearly gone.  He has been on the drug a little over a month, and has gotten alot of his energy and strength back, and is almost back to his old self.  We are thrilled with his treatment and are grateful to have whatever additional years we will have with him.
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I am so happy for you and your dog, I, too, hope you have more years ahead.  He's a young dog, and I think that will help him.  Good Luck.
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My Corgi is 11 1/2 and has undiagnosed but obvious Cushings.  We shaved her last Summer and her hair never grew back, and when we took her to the vet 6 months later for her vaccinations he wanted to test her.  We do not have the money for meds so I did not get the testing done.  I just decided to let her be as happy as she could for as long as she could.  She has lost hearing and some sight and is constantly hungry and is lean but with a pot-ish belly.  She has just started piddling which she never did before and this afternoon I noticed some rear leg tremors.  We can't afford meds.  Right now she is eating, drinking, sleeping and playing.  I want her to have quality of life until she can't anymore.  Can anyone give me an idea of what sort of time frame we might be looking at before things get really bad?  If anyone else has had a dog go unmedicated with this disease and can tell me what to expect about end of life I would appreciate it.
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i have a 7 yr old sf pit bull mix named salka who is so very dear to me. i found out about a month ago that she has cushings.  i noticed last fall that she was gaining weight and was not as active. i could not afford to have her checked out until this spring. (i have 4 dogs and 1 cat total) in feb. i found out she was hypothyroid. i though, great, medicine every day, but it was cheap and treatable, so i treated her, and she didn't get better. she got worse. one day i noticed her pupils were dilated. two weeks after that she started bumping into things. my vet did general blood work which came back normal. her thyroid levels were normal. but she was going blind, still lethargic, and she was having accidents in the house. a lot. salka never had accidents before.
    my vet was at a loss, so he referred me to an opthamologist 2 hrs away. the closest appt was a month later, aug 3. i went to another local vet hoping for some kind of opinion. he diagnosed her with SARD- sudden aquired retinal degeneration. i was resigned to having a blind dog, so that evening i went online and searched SARD. turns out, many dogs diagnosed with SARD have cushings disease. all the syptoms (symptoms) matched perfectly-except the hair loss. so i went back to my vet and had the adrenal test done. she was positive for cushings. the way the test came back showed that the cushings was probably caused by a tumor on the adrenal gland.  i started salka on trilostane, which for a month's dosing for a 48 lb dog is about $56. so far the only change is a lessening of urination, which is good. the worse part has been when salka paces and gets stuck in a corner or between chair legs and she starts whining. it breaks my heart.
    so aug 3rd came around and we went to athens ga to have her eyes checked. i was hoping for the possibility of bringing salka's vision back. the opth. told me it wasn't her eyes that was the problem. no SARDS, no glaucoma or catarcts. the vet said that she 99.999 % sure (without neurologic testing) that it was a pituitary tumor pressing on the ocular nerves that was causing the blindness and confusion. so salka is blind, which is ok. i just miss her personality. she rarely wags anymore, and commands she used to know she doesn't comprehend.
    but she is my baby girl, and still so sweet. her greatest comfort(and mine) is lying on the couch or bed right next to me. so far she has been on the trilostane a month.she has good moments, and bad. she is still taking her thyroid medicine. i worry now that she may have diabetes, as breath has a sweetish/urinish smell. i owe my vet about $700. i have a running tab as long as i pay something every month. he's a great vet.
    i have a hard time with this. salka was the last one of my dogs i would have thought i would lose first. one of my other dogs is 10, and she seems mostly fine. i just wish there was something more i could do for her. anyways.
    many of the posts i have seen about people who have dogs with cushings seem to lack a lot of info. cushings is caused by one of 3 things- pituitary tumor(most common), adrenal tumor, and too many medications such as prednisol. the actual name is hyperadrenocorticism. there is a lot of really good info out there on the internet, and some vets are not very familiar with the disease, as it's not commonly seen, or diagnosed. it may be more common than we think.
   most tumors, that i have read about, at least, are supposed to be small and slow growing. adrenal tumors can be operated on and removed, as they are located with the kidneys. pituitary tumors are rarely operated on bc of the proximity to the brain. some of the medications can slow the tumor's growth, or even shrink some of them. unfortunately, i have a feeling that salka's tumors ( at this point i believe she has more than one) are of a faster growing nature. the onset of symptoms has just been too sudden. i will just cherish the time i have left with her, and hope i don't have to let her go too soon. adversely, for her sake, i hope i don't hold on too long. hopefully, the medicine will show some improvement over the next few months.
    i am sorry if this is so long- it's definitely seemed like a long journey in such a short time. i hope that any info here helps somebody provide a better life for their beloved pet. any comments and advice is welcome
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I wish you and Salka much luck, and hope she responds to the medication.    You sound like you have a really good vet, he was willing to refer you to a specialist, instead of guessing and giving unnecessary meds, and also takes payments.  A lot of vets won't.  I believe that dogs have Cushings way before they are diagnosed, we just don't see the small symptoms.  Enjoy every minute with her, and spoil her big time.
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thanks. i have been spoiling her. my other dogs had a time adjusting to the fact that salka is allowed on the couch but they aren't. i know it seems like favoritism, but i think they actually understand. they don't put up a big fuss. they don't even seem to mind so much when she trips on them. i have been really suprised at how well they tolerate her bumping around. the cat's not as forgiving, but he is a cat, after all. thanks again for the wish of luck. it is much appreciated!
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Our 11 year old Bichon was diagnosed with Cushings about a year ago. In the past 2 weeks he has had 3 accidents in the house. Even though he sleeps peacefully during the day, 2 nights ago he began whining. The first night it only lasted abut 1/2 an hour and then he settled down, last night it continued almost all night. Does anyone know what to do to help him sleep? Does this mean he may be near the end. He has been fine up until the last 2 weeks.
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I don't know why your dog is having trouble sleeping, but I can remember when our dog, who had Cushings, would sleep she would lay against a wall with her head leaning on the wall, and breath very heavy.  We thought it was very strange. Would it help if your dog slept in the same room with you?  Maybe your vet would have an answer that would help, Good Luck.
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My dog Courage has cushings disease too she is a Lhasa Apso X  it breaks my heart to listen to her breathing and see her big tummy. I have decided not to give her medication, I am not at home during the day so if she has bad side affects from the medication I wont be able to help her. I have looked up this disease on the internet and still feel a bit confused about it. There is no set rule what to do. I will have to make that decision to.... as so many people have had to make. I had a lab dog and gave it a blood transfusion she was not making white blood cells and died the next day in pain so I have a fear of the medication. Thankyou to all the people on this web site its great to know you are not alone with this sad disease from our loved dogs that are our best friends that always are there for you no matter what .
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Yes there is a doggie heaven.  

Look for the poem "The Rainbow Bridge" for comfort.  Also, watch "All Dogs Go to Heaven" and "My Dog Skip" ... for a warmed heart.

His Holiness Pope John Paul II said ~~ “Animals possess a soul and men must love and feel solidarity with our smaller brethren…the fruit of the creative action of the Holy Spirit and merit respect…as near to God as men are.” He reminded people that all living beings came into being because of the “breath” of God. He spoke of St. Francis’s love for animals declaring, “We, too, are called to a similar attitude.”

Animals have souls ... and souls go to heaven ... all dogs go to heaven ... cats too, but that's another story.  [Since All Animals have Souls ... no one can convince me that the God who created all Living Beings and proclaimed them "Good" is going to deny what He created as good a place in His heaven ... Genesis 1:25.]

God Loves All Creatures, Great and Small ... and especially those He named using His Name spelled backwards.  ;-)

I'm sitting here with my Blue-Spaniel of 11 years who has undiagnosed Cushing's. I just started feeding her high protein, low carb, low fat 'home made' food [Cooked Chicken and a Veggie Mush Gravy with a small amount of Whole Wheat Pasta] every other week and a High Protein, Low Carb, Low Fat Dry Dog Food [do you know how hard that is to find?] every other week.  She gets two small meals a day.  

[Veggie Mush Gravy: 1 frozen bag turnip greens or collards thawed; 1/2 bag broccoli flowerettes, thawed; 1 lb can unsalted green beans with liquid; .  Place in blender with 2 cups water and chop well.  Then add 1 lb can plain pumpkin and 1 cup applesauce.  Mix well.  Refrigerate.  Serve 1/8 to 1/4 cup with meat mixture.  Could also put on top of dry dog food.  My dog LOVES it.]

I also give her 2 Vitamin C gummies and a Dog Vitamin along with a once a week a Milk Thistle capsule.

The Vet suggested Cushing's after blood work for Thyroid problems and she's on pills for Thyroid as well as pain pill when needed.  I took her in a month ago for bleeding gums and it turned out she had an infection above a canine tooth.  We went back a week ago for the Thyroid blood test and the Vet suggested a full blood work up. We're treating just the Thyroid right now.

She had Surgery to remove a hemangiopericytoma last November but it's come back within the past 2 months and is growing slowly.  The Vet  discovered a heart murmur in July and won't perform a second tumor removal.  I've already purchased her Urn [Purpleheart wood and a beautiful work of art] from acaciawoodguy on ebay.  And she and I have had a couple of teary good-bye cries.  

Every day since last November has been a blessing.  Every time I leave the house [I'm retired], I make sure to tell her it's okay if she decides to cross the Rainbow Bridge before I get back home and that I know I'll see her again ... I tell her that every night before we go to sleep, too.  As long as she's 'eating, sleeping, peeing and pooping' I will do my best to see that she gets as comfortable a life as my limited income can provide.  [The grandkids won't get much for Christmas this year ... but maybe they'll learn about responsibility for living creatures and that one doesn't 'dump' an animal ... or a human, like a grandmother, perhaps ... just because that animal or human is old or infirm.]  I pray that she dies in her sleep.  If not, she'll have to tell me when she's ready to cross The Rainbow Bridge.  And it will be her strength that gives me strength to watch her go, should that time come.  

Yes, everyone, there are dogs in heaven ...
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I wish you luck with your dog, and I agree, yes,there are dogs in heaven.  They belong there more than a lot of people do
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My baby girl is a 6 year old Maltese, Gracie Mae. I found this forum while looking for help. I started reading as far back as 2007. Reading the last few months comments has been quite emotional for me. In early March, Gracie started having problems. What I thought was a bug bite, or maybe a bad rash, on her backside turned out to be more. When I took her to vet, he was not too concerned, but the problem got worse. For several years she has had 2 bumps/knots on her back, under the skin, that did not bother her at all, even when you squeezed them hard. The vet decided to sedate her and biopsy both places. Diagnosis was calcium deposits, or Calcinosis cutis. He thought she might have cushings disease, probably drug induced. Immediately took her off steroids (Prednisone) which she took at a low maintenance dose. She had allergy/ear problems a lot. God I wish we could go back and "only" have those problems again.
Long story short, my local vet sent me to a vet out-of-state that specialized in dermatology. Since she could not take steroids anymore, something had to be done. We tried every way possible to find what she is allergic to, including a strict food diet. She took 6 weeks of a drug Atopica (cyclosporine), very expensive. Tried Benadryl, Allegra, Claritin and now are on Zyrtec. Nothing has helped yet. Her blood work improved to the point where derm vet said she did not think she has cushings disease. We finally resorted to complete allergy testing. The derm vet was quite surprised when Gracie did not show any "definite" reactions. We waited on the blood work, which really did not show much. But based on the full results, Gracie is now taking allergy shots.This has been time-consuming and expensive. But I will try anything. I am single and retired and she is my constant companion. I can tell, by previous posts, that all of you know what I mean when I say she is like a child to me.
Wednesday was my birthday, and I wished and prayed, that she would get better. She is still itching so bad. Her injection dosage is still in progress, about 2 more weeks before she is on maintenance dose. She will chew or scratch everywhere on her body. I am even giving her medication for anxiety (which I get ridiculed for). I searched everywhere for a collar to keep her from biting herself. BTW, if any of you need one to be used long term, look online at the BiteNot collar. Best I found. Gracie is still having a horrible time.
I am sorry if I ramble, but I hoped someone could read this and suggest something. It has been hard for me to find information on a dog with allergies who can not take steroids. If anyone has had a similar experience, I could use some advice. Thank you for "listening"
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Have you had your dog checked for bladder stones?  my dog was throwing up and crapping everywhere one nite and I took her in the next day and got a xray and it showed a peach pit looking stone in her bladder that was growing onto her bladder...its questionable if she has cushings or not because I havent had any testing done....I am not sure if its worth testing for because the medicine is so expensive...I love my animals and wouldnt want anyone to think otherwise...think about getting an xray, especially if you see any blood in her urine
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Hello & welcome....I'm listening.....I will be sending you a PM...You will get an email notification & a link to find it....Or, you can go to your personal page & click messages to find it.....This thread is already too long, & I don't want to add to it.....Karla

P.S. Happy Birthday  :)
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The father of my Yorkie poo was a standard poodle, he also belonged to my mother in law. Rocky was plagued with different illnesses throughout his life.  Cysts and tumors were always on the menu, my Yorkie poo Puppet suffers from this as well and soon will follow her dad. My mother in law has Alzheimer's  and moved in with us last October.  For all vet visits I took Rocky. My mother in law spared no expense she did all to save Rocky no one could save him when he got brain cancer, I am a dog lover and have 4 dogs, 2 cairns 1 Yorkie poo and 1 German shepherd. In my 48 years I've had countless pets, with rocky though being my favorites father, I requested to be there when he was put down, I didn't want him to be alone the vet informed me that the first shot sedates the dog, then the second stops the heart and he will be gone. I thought to myself "oh good at least it will be fast thank God".  I was so wrong! The sedation shot made rocky s eyes spin and his gait was outrageous I cannot begin to describe it. I picked him up and his head began going left to right like rapid fire, I tried to stop him from doing it but he just went faster. I talked to him about the first time I met him told him if it weren't for him i would've never my future husband, i talked to him about all the silly outfits 'ma' used to buy for him, i repeated the story on how he took Zoe's ( my sisters Yorkie ) innocence and how we all caught hell from 'ma' because we shouldve been baby sitting him not getting him laid as it were.  The vet came in somewhere in the middle of the story and had been listening, by this time Rocky was still breathing shallow and his tongue peaked out from his mouth. " I am so sorry I didn't see you there" I said to the vet "no Dia it's fine I didn't want to intrude" she was crying unashamed she then said " I am going to administer this medication, it will be fast" I held rocky close to my heart and said "hey boy, this story is the last I will tell you, take it with you, can you feel my love? can you feel that I am being merciful, do you understand that?"  His eyes opened when the needle went in, and he looked up at me "God please take this pain from him, take this pain from me, Father God I am showing mercy" Rocky lifted his head looked me in the eye and I vow his eyes said "thank you, thank you for knowing I was in agony, thank you for the mercy you showed me, thank you for loving me and most of all thank you for holding me all the way" with that he licked my hand drew a huge sigh and was gone.  I held rocky for two hours, the vet her techs, all her employees let me sit with his body on my lap, I cried the whole time kept reliving how horrible that first shot was.  When they say 'put down' we think it is fast and painless, it is not, not even close.  I thanked God my mother in law would never know, and she actually forgot about Rocky as soon as I left.  When I got home, I was dazed, I was disoriented, in shock in sadness, I could find no solace, no comfort, driven to my knees I sat there and screamed silently.  I left my home seeing all of Rocky's toys and food dishes was too much, in the car was the blanket I took him to the vet with, I drove to the church's parking lot called my husband, even though he has no idea to this day what I was saying, he listened kept saying "i am sorry you were there alone". I hung up the phone stepped out of my car and said " Lord your word promises us that we are given trials and tribulations and when we cant take anymore you promised to step in, Father please take this from me". The Lord is good, in his infinite mercy and goodness, I felt comforted.  I have Rocky's ashes they sit on my night table every night I say good night to him every morning I do the same. And every time I question myself if I did the right thing, the Lord whispers "you showed him mercy" Please, if you insist on being there with your pet 1-be very strong 2-be prepared to feel a pain so great there is no name for it and 3-Make sure you ask God to be there sitting next to you, you're going to need him and He is right there before you say "Dear God............"
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I just found out that my 15 year old cocker spaniel, Burgundy, has Cushing's today, It's been a very long hard day. She has been sleeping a lot and now, after reading some stories, I noticed that she does drink/void a lot also. I contributed a lot of her problems to "old age", like her hair loss, weight gain and hearing loss. She seems to be getting around fine, just a little slower then what she usually did. Treatment is something that I can't afford and at her age it doesn't seem like the right thing to do for her. How does a person stop thinking about themselves and start thinking about what is right for their pets? I love her SO much and every time the thought of having to put her to sleep my heart just breaks and I cry for hours.  I don't want her to suffer but how do I know when it's time to let go?
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I know it has been a few years since you lost your dog to Trilo but my story is the same and that is why a year after I had to put my beauiful Millie down I am here on this site trying to find comfort. I too had to put my Millie down after being on Trilo for about 2 weeks. She was 11 and would have been far better off if I had not put her through the Cushings test, which I honestly think caused the disease to progress even more rapidly and the Trilo just made everything worse. I often wonder if I had just stopped giving it to her would she still be here. I just feel I took Millie's life away. There is no sense going into the details now, she is gone, but I just wanted you to know I can completely relate to your story and emotions. Everyone says time will heal but this one goes deep, a combination of guilt and despair.
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I agree with you 100%, I also think the testing makes the dog worse.  I didn't think ours was going to live through the night after her first test.  I also think the Trilostane did nothing to help our dog, other than helping her to stop peeing a little.  If I had to do it again, I would try the Lysodren, or nothing at all.  I've read of people that have had good luck with Trilostane, though, so I guess you just have to try it and see what happens.
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The thing that is so frustrating for me is that I read and read before I decided to try the Trilostane. I now think the success stories I read involved earlier diagnosis of the disease but somehow I must have missed that. I truly believe in an older dog it is a real hit or miss and again, with hindsight, I would have rather just let the disease progress naturally and make the call when I knew her quality of life had dimished. What I struggle with is the rapid decline once she went on the Trilostane. I know the end result would have been the same but by putting her through the testing then the Trilostane her life was shortened. I think when an older dog ( Millie, a golden, was almost 12) is showing symptons similar to Cushings I would think long and hard before I put them through any testing or onto meds. I would definitely get second opinions and all the facts. My vet was good and I think he was hoping this would help but it wasn't worth taking the risk. I really think she would have been happier if we had just let nature take its course. Either way, this is just a horrible disease to watch your dog go through and when the time is near, it is best to make the call sooner than later. I know, I looked into her beautiful eyes that still had life in them the day I knew her quality of life was gone. Thank you for sharing your comments though, It helped.
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Hi everyone,
I stumbled onto this site while looking for pain meds for my beautiful, lovable
dog Toby.  He was diagnosed with Cushings disease by me after taking him to 3 vets who were all clueless.  I typed in all of his symptoms on a google search, and up popped Cushings disease.  This was a year ago.  I took him back to my regular vet, and insisted on a test for Cushings, and sure enough, he had it.  I began treatmet with vetoryl a the lowest dosage (10 mg's) and worked up (while doing blood work to assess levels) to the current dosage of 30 mg's 2x per day.  Before he meds, he could not get enough water or food, he was leaking urine, and his hind legs were very weak.  Also, he had the "pot bellied" appearance.  Now, one year later, he is starting to decline again, even with med's, but the vetoryl extended his life by over a year.  Just before he was diagnosed, my husband's income was cut in half, so it has been a tremendous sacrifice, but I would do it gain in a heartbeat.  Toby is the most loving, most faithful dog I've ever had, and I've had many.  He worships the ground I walk on, and I'm mourning him already, and he hasn't even left me yet.  I even started a small home based business called Forever Close To Me foreverclosetome.com  in his honor, and to memorialize him, and so that other pet lovers can do the same.
I read a post on here that talked about the horrors of putting their dog down.  Please, if someone out there has had a peaceful experience with that, let me know.  I cry a lot about the fact that I'll be facing this very soon.
Thanks so much.
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I had to heve my old Dobermann put to sleep last week. It was done at home with me and his canine companion of many years with him. The vet gave him a gentle anasthetic in his hind leg - which he was not even aware of. He then left him asleep gently while I held him and spoke to him. then very gently he gave him the lethal shot. Very gentle very peaceful all the time everyone talking to him, even the vet.

Don't be afraid. It is the last kind thing you do for your furbaby.

I am going to have to face it again soon with the other Dobermann as reading on this site I believe she probably has Cushings.
I am very very sad about it so soon after the other one, but it is something we all have to face when we take on that love and trust of an animal
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My Bichon, Lizzie, will be 11 in Dec.  She was diagnosed almost 2 years ago with Cushings.  I searched all of her symptoms online and pushed for over a year to have the tests done.  We had gone through any other test there was to rule things out.  As a result of the Cushings she developed diabetes, and I now give her insulin injections.  She did not tolerate the Cushings medicine well at all, so my choice was to take her off of it completely and just continue the diabetes treatment.  I would rather her have more quality of life than to be sick everyday from the meds.  One thing she has not stopped, is urinating on my carpet.  She does seem to be losing some hair and her eyesight, she barks at everything and NOTHING.  She is my baby but I am really at my wits end about the urinating.  I clean the carpet almost every 3 days with a carpet cleaner and figure it's ruined at this point, I'll replace when Lizzie's gone. Does anyone have any suggestions or comments on the continued urination???   I trained her as a puppy to ring bells to go out and she continues to ring them to go out and poop, but doesn't seem to bother when urinating.  Sometimes it's 2 or 3 times a day on the carpet.  
Thanks Cyndee.
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I don't think they have any control at all when they have Cushings, our dog was completely housebroken, but would practically pee when walking to the door to get out.  We put a baby gate up when we weren't home so she could only go on the linoleum/tile, and when we were home and she was in the living room, we would take her out every half hour, or keep her confined in the kitchen and bathroom.  Good Luck.
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My 16 year old poodle was diagnosed with Cushings because she was urinating everywhere.  I chose not to medicate because of her age, but instead we just use doggie diapers.  It seems silly but it will save you alot of time and money.  
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After several visits to vets my maggie was finally diagnosed with Cushings when she was 9/12.  We was put on trilostane and after many test we finally got her med schedule set she was good for a year after that we had to change it up due to her becoming dehydrated so I had to give an IV for a week due to loss stools.  Once we were set, we got her on another schedule and it came back good.  Last week, Maggie was not eating and her stools were lose again.  She spent 3 days in the vets and Maggie had a enlarged liver she looked better and she was eating for the vet. Vet told me to give her these vitamins for her liver and baby aspirin for her arthritis. When I got home it all changed in day she wouldn't get up and wouldn't eat again called vet and she said give a little food at a time got her to eat a couple times but not much. 5 days later went back for her ACTH and she ate the next 2 days at least one meal  Then she wouldn't drink and eat so I started to give her pedalite to keep her hydrated.  The next day I was going to take her back to vet, but she did not make it she died that morning with me in bed. She was 11 years old.
She was my best friend and I am lost with out her but through it all I was a good mommy cause I always had her in diapers due to her peeing alot and would always be home for her to take her out since she really didn't walk much to losing muscles tone. Yes, I picked her up and took her outside always.  When she had a accident I didn't care.  She had so much love.  I am happy that I got a few more years with Maggie and everything I did I will definitely do again cause she was my child and I wouldn't change anything.
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Maggie was a very lucky girl, you gave her a better life than a lot of humans have, but I'm sure she gave you just as much back.  Take Care.
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My chichuahua is about 15 years old, he is diabetic and has the cushings disease, cushings has a lot to do with Diabetic, so check your dog for that. I give him insulin twice a day, he got stock with 5 units (it's very little amount), and they had to monitor him to see the amount of lysodren he needs to get, because if you give him the wrong amount, it can die of a har attack. It's been 3 years since both illnesses, but he is getting older, he got better from those illnesses but nothing can stop age and I really don't want to think a bout my Pablito going away. He is my life and I will do whatever to get him the right medications. He's a happy dog, he's not suffering at all. he has just slowed down a lot. Diabetes and cushings usually go together, your dog can have a healthy life if treated, otherwise, don't get a dog, eventually they get old and we have the responsibility to take care of them until the end, and not to put them asleep, that's the easiest thing to do. Good Luck.    
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my dog was misdiagnosed for 6 months before I switched vets and he was tested for Cushings.  It was confirmed.  As well, the undiagnosed cushings triggered diabetes.  I give my dog insulin 2 x day as well as his trillostane.  If your dog continues to have a lot of accidents in the house, please ask your vet to check his glucose levels.  
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thank you for bringing up the subject of diabetes.  no one had mentioned it before and a lot of symptoms ie. the excessive urinating and accidents in the house were exactly what happened with my dog and it was due to the diabetes, which as I mention below, was triggered by the undiagnosed cushings.
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Believe me, putting your dog to sleep is NOT the easiest thing you can do.
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My  shih zhu has cushings disease. He has a swollen abdomen, swollen eyes: causing some blindness, he cant hear, and he has shortness of breathe. He is 15 years old. at this point he is too old to help, we can only make him feel as comfortable as possible at home until the day comes that he stops eating and needs to be put to sleep indefinitely :[ my poor ewok baby. it would cost too much money to help him especially since he is so old. hope this helps and your baby feels better. it is a tough thing to see; especially since he is my first doggie. good luch and keep your pup as comfortable as possible!
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We just had to put our sweet pup down yesterday as a result of comploications from Cushings Disease.  A terrible day for my family.  Our eyes are all still swollen and puffy from crying.  Just a heartbreaking thing to experience.  We miss Snickers so much.  The house is not the same.  So empty.  
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What happened in the end.
Goin through it now and dont know what to do, do I take that last drive to the vet ,, I realy dont want to but its not about me .
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Just lost my scottie to cushings,it all started nearly 2 weeks ago when i noticed his drinking was getting worse,nd then when i had his hair cut i noticed a pot belly,he was eating fine at this point.Took him to the vets in which they checked him over nd said he had fluid built up in his abdomen,they then took bloods nd sent them away the nxt day they got in touch to say it could be cushings or his liver failing,nd asked me to take him bk for the cushings test which i did.The nxt day the results were cushings disease,(joc was nearly 13 yrs old).So was asked to go down nd get him weighed nd pick some tabs up as i did,gave his first tab quite easy as he was still managing to eat ok,but the nxt day his eating was slowed down so struggled to get him to take it but did manage in the end,it was 3 days of taking tabs nd now he is struggling for air nd wobbling about.At 1 o clock on the 11/11/11 joc lost his fight in my arms im glad,im missing him soooo much,he was my beautiful boy nd im still expecting him to walk into the room,R.I.P my joc xx
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I'm sorry to hear about your dog.  Cushings is a terrible disease, and it is so hard to see our friends suffer from it.  Your dog didn't suffer long, which was good, plus he died in your arms on his own at home, which is the best way, and doesn't happen very often.  We used to have a Scottie, and they definately are feisty, stubborn little dogs, very full of energy. Take Care.
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My love Twinkle is in the process of tests to determine whether or not she has cushings.  cant afford the acth stim test yet but bloodwork, xrays and an ultrasound have all been pointing towards cushings.  she is a 14 yr old black lab mix, rescued from a garbage dump as a puppy.  shes been peeing in the house a bunch, panting alot, hesitating with the stairs, drinking a bunch.  i dont think shes in "pain" as she hasnt been clingy, but shes definitely not comfortable.  i guess my question is if this is cushings and we dont go the medication route...   what can i expect and how long is the progression of this disease if it goes untreated?  my heart is breaking to see her uncomfortable but the last thing i want to do is take extreme measures prematurely.  any thoughts?      
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I really don't know what happens if you don't medicate, I would ask your vet if and when she is diagnosed.  I wish you luck, its really hard to watch them go through it.
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my lasa alphso is 7 years old he just stopped walking yesterday we had walked earlier in the day before i went to work but later on that evening after i got off work to go on our evening walk he just would not budge and hes been this way  all night still in the same spot can anyone tell me if this has happened to thier pet and if so what was the outcome thank you!!!  mary, i love my dog maybe a litlle to much but i cant  help it i love animals.
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Hello & Welcome...It would be impossible for us to diagnose your dog on an Online forum.....There are just too many things that could be causing this behavior.....Only a Vet will be able to determine whats happening.......

Your dog needs to see his Vet ASAP....Please do not wait any longer......He needs help quickly.....Let us know what you find out & Good luck.....Karla
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Reading all these entries just made me cry!  My 12 year old german shepherd was just diagnosed with Cushings :( My vet suggested not to go down the med route because of her age and already on meds for pain. I have been reading about Vetoryl and it sounds like the side effects are minimal. The cost appears to have gone down and fairly reasonable on Foster & Smith site. What should I do? Has anyone else used this med on and older dog?
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Trilostane in US/Vetoryl in UK

Our twelve year old dog began showing the classic signs of Cushings in the summer of 2011 although she has been losing her vision longer than that. She wouldn't eat and began drinking much more water than usual, began losing body fat and hair, showing weakness in her back legs, losing her fondness for "walkies" and began that awful, scary panting.  We had been away for a week and picked her from boarding and were shocked by he change in her appearance.  Later we learned stress makes Cushing's worse.

We took her to the vet who gave her a blood panel.  Her liver tests were through the roof.  We repeated the tests two weeks later after a low fat, high carb diet and the numbers were worse.  She had an ultrasound and the radiologist said it was Cushings with severe Cushing's caused liver involvement and a biopsy and further tests confirmed this diagnosis.  We started her on Trilostane after about a month of wasting time and money on more tests to prove that she had Cushings.  She's been on it for nearly four weeks and we are very happy with the results although the first week on it she was very low until she adjusted to it.

She still is finicky about food but we improvise (Thai chicken, veg, and rice does the trick).  She has more energy, can go for walks again, is not drinking as much water and not panting as much.  

The key with Trilostane seems to be to have it compounded at a pharmacy.  It is costing us $70 a month this way instead of $200 a month from the vet but it can be purchased for around $100 a month online. It is also very important to begin with a low dose and keep a supply of prednisone handy in case of overdose.  1 mg per kilogram of weight daily but divided into two daily doses is best.  ACTH testing plus electrolytes is necessary after 14 days to make sure you aren't giving too high a dose which can affect potassium levels.  If okay, retest again in about 3 months or when anything changes.

Don't let your dog suffer.  Cushings is incurable but it is treatable.
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My best friend Tia a 7 year old Black lab was just diagnosed with Cushing’s.  I thought it was the end of the world for us.  I have come to realize she has had this syndrome for well over a year.  How wonderful, she will be we me tomorrow.  I’ve always wanted to give her a chair at the table so we can eat together, yes maybe tomorrow.  She can be so funny at times; sitting at the table will be pretty funny.  She is silly, a few days ago I was exercising while on my back, my friend laughed and said “look Tia is copying you”.  Tia was on her back kicking her legs also.  She is GREAT!
So the horrible Cushing’s or things that have happened. April 2010 she has a bump on her elbow and her elbows don’t have hair.  Nov 2010, she broke 2 teeth on a hard dog bone.  April 2010 she eat Trident gum, do you know that can kill a dog, please read about that.   August 2011, a extremely fast growing soft lump grow on her neck.  With in 24 hours it was under her neck and mouth.  It was Ecoli and Pasturela both contagious bacteria’s.  I have no idea how my house dog got that, but a weak immune system probably has something to do with it.  Tia has peed the bed and floor a few times.  Early September, she had no urine infection but I took and take the water away 1 ½ hours before bed.  Later September 2011, the vet discovered she has Hypothyroid.  She is on meds for that.  October, she has a skin infection.  Won’t go away, tested it, it is staph.  Mostly looked scaly and one part was pustuly.  Weeks of pills and benzol peroxide shampoo, it won’t go away.  I told my vet again about the high quantity drinking.  He test for Cushing’s…. Here we are.  Her Liver is bad also.  Well that explains a lot.  That explains why my Black dog has some reddish tints to her hair for over a year.  It wasn’t growing; it was bleaching from the sun.  In Ohio no beach involved.  That’s way her shaved neck from August has not grown yet.  
I just discovered this sight, thank you for reading my note.  Good luck to everyone.  Very hard stuff to deal with.  Tai and I wish you all love, peace and strength.  Please send me any extra you can spare.
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Tai sounds like she has been through a lot, and so have you.  She must be a strong girl, and really enjoys life.  I'm glad to see you will have another Xmas to enjoy her.
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Cushings can be hard to figure out, and it is not treated unless the dog is symptomatic. When I took my dog in to be checked for a skin sore, the picture became clearer. Earlier this year I had my 14 yo male Dalmatian tested for diabetes due to noticing all the extra drinking, peeing plus eating more while appearing to lose weight. At first I kind of kicked myself for not being more persistent in figuring this out, but if you think about it many Cushings symptoms look like just aging. I realize also I had not discussed all the symptoms (panting, loss of hair on belly, etc.) because I wasn't aware they could be connected to the excessive peeing.

I am planning to treat and am in the middle of figuring out the options with the vet.

Be cautious about judgements of whether to treat, euthanize or whatever. Even aspects of "quality of life" are somewhat subjective. A life you or I may not understand as being worth continuing can to the owner and the pet be worth it. I don't believe anyone wants their animal to suffer and I think the process of supporting an aging pet is a very individual one.
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I just found out yesterday that my dog, 9 year old Shih Tzu has Cushings.  My husband and I are hesitant to treat her due to the side effects of the drugs.  He is really doing pretty well right now, except for his susceptibility to ear infections due to his compromised immune system.  He is already on Metocam for pain due to arthritis in his back.  I just want him to be happy but want to be a responsible pet owner.  Don't know if I want to put him through the agony of the testing, drug side effects or just leave him. Has anyone just left it for a while until symptoms got worse and then tried the medication route?  He is just so happy right now.  He has a hard time with his back legs sometimes but still goes eagerly for his daily walk, although now he jsut kind of strolls and sniffs.  We carry him up and down stairs and have built him a ramp in the backyard to get off the deck easier.  His tail is always wagging and he seems content and happy.  I guess I just want someone to help me with the decision - treat or not treat
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Hi - I live in Canada - my 5 year old mixed breed Gryphon was diagnosed in July with Cushings .... I took him in for a runny nose but the vet noticed the hair loss (I thought it was because he had been groomed too close to his skin - he has a double coat and was told the grooming damaged his hair follicles) but the vet wanted to test. He was panting more than usual  - but other than that - no symptoms. He tested positive - however I've heard that they can test positive and not have Cushings. He hasn't progressed anymore - but I'd like to have the scan done to see if there is a tumor and if it can be operated on - rather than subject him to th meds and regular testing (he HATES going to the vet) ... anyone had the scan done or operation? How much was it? What was result?
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has anyone dealt with cushings in an old dog and not gone the treatment route?  what could I expect?  should i get her on pain meds?  she has uncomfortable moments and i feel awful and am not sure what i should do when they happen (heavy panting, eating alot, drinking alot, peeing alot, getting in my face trying to tell me whats wrong).  this is hard...    
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