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Thread: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

  1. #1
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    Default 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Hello. We have a 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings Disease. We just started her on Lysodren yesterday. So far we have not see a difference in her eating or water consumption or panting. I know it might take a few days. My question is do any of you others out there fighting this notice that your dog snorts when she pants? It seems my dog gets worse with the pants by about 4:00 pm every day and when she pants she then starts snorting and is almost uncontrollable. Is this not uncommon? If any of you have experienced this and have found anything to help, please let me know. I am concerned about her so much! Thank you

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Hi and welcome to the forum.

    I have manually validated your membership so you can disregard the email we send asking you to validate.

    Beagles are definitely a breed that is on the top five breeds that seem to predisposed to cushing's. I must warn you that we ask lots of questions and ask you to post test results but that's so that we are in a much better position to offer you more meaningful feedback. So let's get started so we can get to know your girl a lot better.

    What were the circumstances that lead you and your vet to pursue a cushing's diagnosis. For instance, was it abnormal blood and urine tests, the symptoms you've already mentioned or both? Can you round up the tests that were done and post the results here for us? On the blood tests, we need only see the highs and lows, including the normal reference ranges. Does your dog have pituitary or adrenal dependent cushing's?

    Since you are loading, I want to make sure that you have been properly counseled by your vet as possible adverse affects, what signs you need to be looking for so that you know when to stop dosing. I've included link below to Lysodren Loading Instructions and Related Tips. I highly recommend that you read it thoroughly, print it out and keep it handy for ready reference. Did your vet give you prednisone to administer in the event your dog is showing signs of overdose? If not, please contact your vet and get those pills immediately. How much does your dog weigh and what loading dose did your vet prescribe?

    The average loading time at the maximum dose of 50mg per kg is 5 to 8 days. Most experienced vets will not give a client any more than eight days worth of doses. You need to be looking for a sign that your girl is loaded. That sign can be as subtle as a dog looking up at you before licking the bowl clean or finishing their food in less time than usual or walking away with food left in the bowl. My dogs were food driven so I didn't bother to measure their water intake. When you are loading two at the same time, it's a lot more difficult to measure water anyway. However, if you do notice a change in drinking and peeing habits, those can be a sign that you need to quit dosing. Optimum time for the first acth stimulation test is 48 hours after the last dose. The reason for that is that Lysodren has a cumulative effect for up to 48 hours so you want to try to do the stim test when cortisol will be it's lowest.

    http://www.k9cushings.com/forum/showthread.php?t=181

    The snorting you mention sounds like reverse sneezing and while this isn't a symptom commonly associated with cushing's, it could be that the same reason she is panting may be triggering this. Dogs with cushing's pant because 1) they become much more sensitive to heat 2) high levels of cortisol messes with fat metabolism and as a result there is redistribution of fat to the thoracic area; 3) high levels of cortisol also causes muscle wasting so the combination of the last two puts more pressure on the diaphram. Allergies can cause reverse sneezing as can obesity. My mom overfeeds her dogs and when they get obese, they snort constantly. Her current dog is getting much better because I've taken charge of her feeding and she's lost weight. A lot of dogs with cushing's put on a lot of weight so if your girl is carrying a bit more than usual, you might find that problem resolves once you get her stabilized and can get the weight down.

    Well I've probably got your head spinning so I'll stop here. I'm sure others will be dropping in to welcome you as well as ask any questions I may have forgotten. We do have Lysodren moms here who know the drug and have walked in your shoes....some of us twice. We'll be looking forward to hearing a lot more about your precious girl.

    Glynda

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    I had noticed she was panting more than normal and she was developing a pot belly. The main thing I noticed was she was drinking much more water and needing out so often especially through the night. I searched the web and then called my vet to see if Cushings was possible. They did the test and it was confirmed. Her numbers were extremely high. I am not sure the exact numbers, but will try to get them when I can. They main thing is her snorting. I know it has to be wearing her out. She is a 13 inch beagle and weighs about 30 pounds. I know some of it is the water weight, but some is our lack of proper feeding. Our doctor told us she was not that much over weight, she has a lot of muscle and is short so she looks stalky. she has been spayed when she was 8 months old. She breaths very fast even when she is resting. I am hoping we start to see some improvement by tomorrow, for her sake. Does anyone out there know how long before her panting is more under control? Also what about life expectancy after diagnoses? Thank you any help is so appreciated.

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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    is there any pain with this disease that the dog my be experiencing and do they have anything out there that would help settle her down when she gets panting so uncontrollably. She is also very restless at times like she is trying to get comfortable but cannot.
    Is there a pill out there that could be prescribed that would help her rest easier? Thank you

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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Hello and welcome to the forum.

    Some dogs take melatonin to help them in the evening. The panting usually will be lessened once the cortisol levels are lowered. They just feel so hot and uncomfortable, although not in pain usually. You'll notice that she probably likes to lay in cooler spots, like a bare floor or near a window where it might be cooler. This most often goes away. It just takes getting through this load first and foremost.

    Right now the most important thing is just watching to see when the load is done.

    Sharlene and molly muffin
    Sharlene and the late great diva - Molly muffin (always missed and never forgotten)

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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Okay. Thank you so much. My heart just breaks for her, and we want to make sure she is not in pain.

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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Also. she is on 500 mg tablets. 3/4 of a tablet twice a day

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    She's on a healthy loading dose of 55mg/kg. Recommended loading is 25mg/kg to 50mg/kg. Your vet rounded it to 55mg/kg for ease of dosing. The goal of loading is to give very large doses of Lysodren to effectively erode enough of the adrenal cortex tissue to ebb the flow of cortisol. Once you see signs of loading, that is usually the first day of improvements and they will continue from there.

    You mention that your vet did a test and the numbers were really high. I would assume that the test was an acth stimulation test as the other test, the LDDS is a completely different test which does not have high numbers. An acth stimulation test does not tell you what form of the disease a dog has so additional tests, such as an abdominal ultrasound or an endogenous acth test, should have been done to make that determination. Did your dog have an increased appetite, any skin issues, thinning or loss of coat, weakness in hindquarters? I'm hoping the appetite is voracious because otherwise, it my be difficult for you to tell when loading has been achieved. Did your vet give you prednisone?

    Glynda
    Last edited by Squirt's Mom; 03-06-2014 at 07:08 AM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    No, he did not give us prednisone. I have a few left over from our regular vet to treat our girl for allergies, but he never mentioned it. Yes, her appetite is voracious!!! It has always been hard to fill her up. I figure that is just a hounds characteristic, but any more it is unbelievable!! Also she cannot get enough to drink. She will easily put away a gallon to a gallon and a half of water a day! No skin issues, she did shed like crazy this past summer and fall. I did not know of Chushings then or I might have caught it earlier. Yes, it was the acth test. She does has some weakness in her hindquarters. She hesitates to jump up on the couch and bed. I am hoping that will improve too with the medication.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: 10 year old female beagle just diagnosed with Cushings

    Hi and welcome to you and your baby girl!

    Did the vet tell you what to look for that would indicate it is time to stop the medicine and have an ACTH? Did the vet tell you what to look for that would indicate her cortisol had gone too low?

    The panting is typically caused by the enlarged liver most cush pups have. Because they cannot process fats normally with the cortisol high, that fat gets redistributed in the body, pressing on the internal organs, including the lungs causing them to pant. Because the liver is working extra hard to handle the excess cortisol, it gets bigger also pushing on the lungs. As the cortisol comes back to a more normal level, these things should start to return to a more normal state as well.

    Hang in there and keep talking to us, answering our questions and you will do just fine!
    Hugs,
    Leslie and the gang
    "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.

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