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Thread: Mira, 7yr old Husky - Cushings ruled out; liver cancer (Mira has passed)

  1. #11
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    Apr 2009
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    1,111

    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Hi,

    welcome from me as well

    I don't want to confuse you but the symptoms you are describing would all fit Leishmaniosis. I'm not sure where you are located and if Leishmaniosis is pressent in your area but I sure would mention it to your vet.

    Here's a case file with symptoms that the dog was presented with:
    Client history

    * Progressive weight loss despite normal appetite.
    * Exercise intolerance/lethargy.
    * Non-pruritic dermatitis that is unresponsive to conventional treatment.
    * Stiffness/lameness.
    * Chronic inflammatory eye disease including conjunctivitis .
    * Polydipsia/polyuria.
    * Vomiting .
    * Diarrhea .
    * Decreased appetite.
    * Abdominal distension.


    Here's a list of the symptomes:
    Clinical signs

    * Splenomegaly.
    * Mild-moderate lymphadenopathy.
    * Anemia .
    * Exfoliative dermatitis, periocular alopecia and scaling.
    * Ulcerative nodular dermatitis especially involving the nose, lips, eyelids, tips of the ears, tail and feet.
    * Onychogryposis.
    * Muscular atrophy.
    * Ocular lesions:
    o Keratitis.
    o Uveitis.
    o Chorioretinitis.
    o Corneal edema.
    o Glaucoma.
    * Epistaxis.
    * Polyarthritis - intermittent lameness.
    * Pneumonia.
    * Neurological abnormalities.

    Here's a link about Leishmaniosis:
    http://www.leishmaniasis.info/

    You can see why the hairloss around the eyes and mouth, the constant discharge from her eyes, the lameness, lethargy, decreased appetite and even peeing would all fit?

    So I would make sure you mention the possibility to your vet.

    Best of luck,

    Saskia and Yunah

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    California
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Sorry I'm having trouble reading. We live in Orange Ca near Disneyland. In the city but I'll look into what your suggesting. Yes I believe the test your talking about is the one planned. Two differant tests done with something done in-between. To compare the differences. I will get copies of the urine test when I take her in tomorrow. I would behappy to pass that on to you. Maybe give me an email address and I'll send you scanned copies of the whole thing.

  3. #13
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    Mar 2009
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    rural central ARK
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    14,048

    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Hi and welcome to you and Mira!

    Bless your heart! Man, can I relate to your fear! When my Squirt was first diagnosed, I was an absolute basket case. She is the light of my world and I cannot bear the thought of losing her. When her vet said "Cushing's", I could tell by the look on her face this wasn't the best of news and I broke down into tears right there in the exam room. For the next few months, I was overcome with grief, anger, fear, guilt, frustration, and confusion. My poor old mind just couldn't grasp anything except that my baby was sick!

    Nothing I read, nothing anyone said made any sense to me at all...it was all Greek! Even when they told me it would get better all I could think was, "Are you freakin' NUTS?!?! My baby is SICK with an incurable disease!!!! omg omg omg omg omg......" A dear friend here later described me as a woman who had stuck her finger in a light socket - hair standing on end! She kindly left out the lunatic rantings, the flying slobber and bulging eyes! Now, nearly 3 yrs later, I almost have the slobbering under control.

    I know exactly how you feel, honey; many of us do. And, you are right where you are supposed to be; your reaction is completely normal. How else would a loving mother react to news that her baby may be facing some serious health issues? You're a good mom, as evidenced by your obvious love for Mira and your willingness to seek out help on her behalf. So, see? You are already ahead of the game and have a great foundation to build on!

    Two things -
    1) during this panic phase, try to take a few minutes to breath from time to time; just a few deep breaths, holding and slowly releasing - then you can resume "omg omg omg omg..."

    2) start your education. This is the most important thing you can do for Mira regardless of what the final diagnosis turns out to be. You are her first and last defense, her only voice, her advocate, and the more you know the stronger you will be in these roles. Get copies of all her test results and question the vet about anything you don't understand. Take notes during her exams, or take a tape recorder, or a friend so you can remember what was said. Start reading up on Cushing's here; our Helpful Resource section is full of good info. Go online and read about Addison's, which is, in very simple terms, the opposite of Cushing's. Then ask questions, lots of them. We will do our best to help you understand. Education is key and we are all here to learn and share.

    Last, but in no way least, know that you and Mira are not alone. We are here to help in any way we can. The collective experience found here is astounding and we are more than happy to share. When it comes to support...well, you couldn't have found a better place for good old-fashioned hand-holding. In fact, we have our own little looney bin here; all you gotta do is holler and I'll scoot over!

    You're doing a good job, Mom! Keep your chin up!

    Hugs,
    Leslie and the girls - always

    EDITED TO ADD LINKS:


    http://www.k9cushings.com/forum/showthread.php?t=180

    http://www.lbah.com/canine/cushings.htm

    http://www.kateconnick.com/library/cushingsdisease.html

    http://www.newmanveterinary.com/CushingDiag.html

    ADDISON’S INFO:
    http://www.addisondogs.com/

    http://www.k9addisons.com/

    http://www.marvistavet.com/html/addison_s_disease.html

    http://www.vetinfo.com/canine-addiso...-symptoms.html

    http://veterinarymedicine.dvm360.com.../detail/569664

    http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm.../detail/574393
    Last edited by Squirt's Mom; 11-03-2010 at 01:56 PM. Reason: add links
    "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. #14
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    Apr 2008
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    Tennessee
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Hi and welcome to the forum.

    I see that Marianne has given you some excellent information so I will try not to repeat her as I post my comments/observation. With respect to the hair loss around the eyes and mouth, this is not the normal pattern with cushing's. Dogs with cushing's will lose a lot of hair on their flanks, tail and torso, usually sparing all of the hair on the face and legs. A more likely cause for hair loss around the eyes and mouth, especially in a husky, is a condition called zinc responsive dermatosis. Huskies (Samoyed, Malamutes, American Eskimos and Siberians) are the only breeds that are predisposed to this condition. This is caused by low zinc levels, which can be caused by severe stress or the stress from any number of underlying illnesses. I came upon this information recently when doing research for my Pomeranian who was losing hair around her nose.

    http://veterinarynews.dvm360.com/dvm.../detail/162405

    Another more apt condition that causes hair loss around the eyes and nose is Demodicosis (demodex mange). This is a common problem in puppies and if it occurs in an adult dog, there is an underlying problem that is compromising the immune system. Cushing's is always a likely suspect.

    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=...ed=0CCAQ9QEwAg

    I tend to agree with Marianne that symptoms and some of the laboratory abnormalities sound more like Addison's disease than cushing's. Coughing and gagging is not a common symptom associated with cushing's but it is in Addison's as some dogs present with secondary acquired megaesophagus (esophagus contractions). This condition shares a lot of the same blood abnormalities seen with endocrine disorders, including elevated liver enzymes.

    I think Mira has a lot going on and given her symptoms and lab abnormalities, I personally think an internal medicine specialist is a lot better equipped to diagnose and treat Mira than a general practitioner. That is not to say that your gp vets isn't great but when you are dealing with autoimmune issues and endocrine disorders, you definitely want the extensive education,training and experience of an internal medicine specialist.

    If you are unaware of any specialists in your area, you can try to locate one near you on the acvim website (see link below). If you let us know what city and state you are in or near, members might be able to provide you with a name. Many members' dogs, including my two cushdogs, are treating exclusively with internal medicine specialists.

    http://www.acvim.org/websites/acvim/index.php?p=3

    Glynda

  5. #15
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    Tennessee
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    In the time it took me to type my prior post, in between disruptions at work, I see that you live in Anaheim. My dogs treat with VCA All Care Animal Referral Hospital in Fountain Valley. I am 50 miles from there but don't mind driving an hour because I know my dogs are getting the best care. They are also open 24/7 so weekend appointments are easy. Dr. Michael Moore is the Director of Internal Medicine and is an excellent doctor, as is Dr. Alyssa Mourning. My dogs have treated with both.

    http://www.acarc.com/

  6. #16
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    Nov 2010
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    California
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Squirt - thank you yes that discribes me pretty well too. Sitting here not knowing terrified that at any moment she may fall dead and feeling my reaction to it. Will she start having seisures? What if she started screaming in pain, I'd start screaming too. Im so on edge. The sound of a hurt dog just kills me. I hate the places who send pictures of starving and hurt dogs. I don't donate to them because i can't bare to see the pictures. But I do donate a lot to the protection of animals. Mainly dogs. I'm very shy and rather a hermit but I'll talk to a dog passing by so easily.

    We have had dogs since 1978. All pure breed Siberian Huskies. Five of them. We have have Kira and Mira right now. Kira is 10 she just had TTA surgery on both knees. In 2008 and six months ago. My Kira walks, no more limping! Cost us $6,000. Mira just got over seperation anxiety a year ago. She had broken out of windows twice I couldn't leave her alone in the house. But now she does it just fine and now we are loosing her.

    When Mira first started acting funny I started searching the symptoms. I ran into Cushing's and read quite a bit then. But I didn't think it was that bad I thought more like allergies. When the vet first saw her Cushing's was not on her mind either I don't think. When she said we must rule out Cushing's I went searching everywhere including here! I also did my best to disifer the blood test. I'm not seeing Cushing's there so much. I'm seeing liver damage and more likely Addison's then Cushing's. And the electrolytes imbalance said it could easily be life threatening. Im seeing far worse then Cushings! But what do I know. I study this stuff hour after hour. It's all I do I can do nothing else. But cry. The only slight relief I got was here. Here you say Cushing's can be handled. But Mira? She has more. I desperately wanted someone else to look at the blood test. Here I notice you guys wanting blood test numbers, asking for that repeatly. But nobodys matched Mira's. But I thought you guys would know. So I joined. I was excepted at lighting speed and had an answer within the hour! And someone to talk to. Gosh you guys are wonderful.

    What's bothering me now is not knowing. The vet says it might be more serious. I agree but what? Will Mira still be here in two weeks? Two days? How many times am I going to panic? I slept on the edge of the bed with one hand on Mira laying on the floor. She follows me everywhere she is the head of "mommies fan club" and the "welcoming comitie." she makes me feel needed and important.

    Today I have started taking notes of everything she does. My memory is not good. I don't read or learn easily. But I do have determination. My dogs are my life. We have no children by choice. I love my husband of 32 years but my dogs are my children I can't live without. They are provided for in my will. Siberain Huskies. I fell in love with them the first time I saw one.

  7. #17
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Lulu - thank you yes I saw the thing about zinc and I bought a big bag of Taste of the Wild Salmon. Which was said to be high in zinc. But Mira won't eat it. She did at first. But not enough tohelp. That condition hasn't gotten any worse or any better. She's been pawing at her face. I have to tell her not to scratch it. But it is bothering her. Thank you for bringing it up I did mention the zinc thing to the vet.

    Internal med. Ok that's a good place for second opinion? I have been considering an advanced critical care place but their reviews arent the best. I want the best place possible near me. I don't care about the cost. Well I do but you know what I mean. Does anyone know of a place near Orange Califorina?

  8. #18
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    Quote Originally Posted by lulusmom View Post
    In the time it took me to type my prior post, in between disruptions at work, I see that you live in Anaheim. My dogs treat with VCA All Care Animal Referral Hospital in Fountain Valley. I am 50 miles from there but don't mind driving an hour because I know my dogs are getting the best care. They are also open 24/7 so weekend appointments are easy. Dr. Michael Moore is the Director of Internal Medicine and is an excellent doctor, as is Dr. Alyssa Mourning. My dogs have treated with both.

    http://www.acarc.com/
    Oh my gosh thank you for that!!! I was answering one post at a time and hadn't seen this yet! Thank you so much for the recommendation it's likely all of fifteen miles from me. And 24 hours too! Stuff always happens after the vet is closed. I never know who to trust.

  9. #19
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    Tennessee
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    I just wanted to mention that VCA All Care is an excellent critical care hospital with round the clock care and very liberal visiting hours. In addition to a great internal medicine department, they have an excellent oncology department as well as an excellent orthopedic department. About the only thing they don't have there is eye care.

    Glynda

  10. #20
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    Default Re: 7yr old Husky may have Cushings (help read Blood Test)

    I just looked into VCA. Ratings are pretty scary. They either get a 1 or a 5 it seems. Seems to be more 1's. You either love them or you hate them. Do you have appointments when you go? Do you have to wait past your appointment time? Have you every left your dog there? I hate leaving them at the vets. Mira by the way has a history of SCREAMING the most god awful sound you every heard. I thought she was dying the first time I heard it. It even scared the vet. She always screamed. The girl at the desk says Mira is betting up the our tech! And I'm certian she was. We get her out of the officeand she's fine. We had an emergency out of town a vet took her in back. Came back and said she won't let me touch her. I know you'll haveto put her out. She isn't biting she's just screaming truly terrified. I swear I don't bet my dog I swear! We changed vets three years ago. She screamed the first time but never again after that. We have two dogs so they always have each other. Mira has to spend the morning at the vets tomorrow. I think I'll ask if Kira can stay with her.

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