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Thread: HI, Im new to this forum

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
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    Unhappy HI, Im new to this forum

    My name is angei.I have a jack russell . He was diagnosed with cushings disease last year. He will be 16 years old in November. He loves his walks. .. but lately these past two months has had problems walking. We use to walk about i hour every day to the park. Now he can barely walk 20 min. so we drive there... and he truly loves it there.. so I will take him there until he stops wagging his tail when I ask him. He is on medicam for his painful joints. He barely makes it up the stairs and pants more frequently...I should also mention he has a large heartmurmur. I wonder if this medicine tht i give him is doing him more harm than good due to his heart and wht else can I do to keep him walking because he really lives for his walks. His appetite is still good but he is losing weight do to his weakened muscles/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Georgia
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    12,879

    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Hello Angei, and welcome to you and your boy! I'm very sorry that he's having these problems, and we'll do our best to help you. In order to do so, though, it'll help us if we can find out more about your dog's Cushing's treatment. Can you tell us what symptoms and testing led to the original diagnosis? Also, what Cushing's medication is he taking, and at what dose? Has the dose been changed during this past year? Last but not least, has he had monitoring blood testing (ACTH stimulation tests) in order to check to see that the dose he's taking is neither too high nor too low? Adjustments to the dose of the medication are quite common, and my first thought is that your boy may need a change in the dose.

    Thanks in advance for your answers to these questions, and once again, welcome to you both!

    Marianne

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    rural central ARK
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    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Hi and welcome to you and your JRT boy!

    Marianne has asked all the questions I would have so I just wanted to say hi! I'm looking forward to those test results and learning more about your sweet boy. 16 is a good age but about the time some real arthritic issues can start showing up. I am glad he still enjoys the park and am sure being there with his mom makes it that much more special.

    Hugs
    Leslie
    "May you know that absence is full of tender presence and that nothing is ever lost or forgotten." John O'Donahue, "Eternal Echoes"

    Death is not a changing of worlds as most imagine, as much as the walls of this world infinitely expanding.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Canada
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    15,796

    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Hello from me too!
    Marianne covered all the basics for our getting started questions.

    I'll just add is he on any joint medications now? I know there are shots that can be given for joint relief. Also some people have used laser therapy. That appears to be hit and miss, in that some said they had good results and others not as much.
    Also water therapy is good, as it is easy on the joints.
    Sharlene and the late great diva - Molly muffin (always missed and never forgotten)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
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    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    hi thanku for ur replies. skip had a blood test done to confirm cushings disease and had most of the symptoms, constantly drinking water. He is a vacume , when it comes to food, his fur is balding and there is no regrowth and also has the potbelly and continuously needs to go and relieve himself. i brought him to two vets and they said that do to his age and heartmurmer they dont want to give him anything but medicam,which is a painrelief for his symptoms. This does not stop his panting at night. I lso do give him glucosomine for his joint pain. Is there other options out there to make him feel more comfortable especially at night?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Canada
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    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Hi. You cohld try melatonin at night if he is restless. Not time release or anything. Just plain like 3 mg. try looking on amazon for dog melatonin if you csnt find it in the smaller dosage.
    Sharlene and the late great diva - Molly muffin (always missed and never forgotten)

  7. #7
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    Oct 2017
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    Ontario, Canada
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    Red face Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Quote Originally Posted by molly muffin View Post
    Hi. You cohld try melatonin at night if he is restless. Not time release or anything. Just plain like 3 mg. try looking on amazon for dog melatonin if you csnt find it in the smaller dosage.
    Thanku molly muffin I will try this. tht is a great suggestion.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Tennessee
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    Default Re: HI, Im new to this forum

    Hi Angei and belated welcome to you.

    So it sounds as though even though your boy was diagnosed with cushing's, your vets recommended that you not treat. Is that correct? If so, I am a bit concerned that Metacam, an NSAID, (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory) is being given to your dog who has uncontrolled cortisol. Cortisol is the hallmark adrenal steroid that is over secreted in dogs with cushing's and this steroid has superior anti-inflammatory properties. Untreated cushingoid dogs normally don't suffer with the aches and pains of degenerative joint disease until treatment lowers cortisol and unmasks the problem. Therefore, depending on age and severity of joint disease, some pet owners opt out of treatment as quality of life would likely be worse if cortisol was reduced. It is highly possible that if your boy was correctly diagnosed with cushing's, which has gone untreated, the weakness you are seeing is more likely to be continued muscle wasting due advanced age and the catabolic effects of excess cortisol than symptoms of arthritis. It's also highly likely that he does not need Metacam. Was Skip diagnosed with arthritis by imaging or did your vet assume that his intolerance to exercise and difficulty in going up steps was due to arthritis? Another thing to consider is that untreated cushing's can cause osteoporosis so given Skip's advanced age, your vet should be monitoring that. Is Skip on heart meds?

    16 years young is quite an accomplishment and a testament to the extraordinary love and care you have given Skip. That's awesome!

    Glynda

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