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Thread: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017
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    4

    Default My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Hello, I am new at this. My Great Dane has been diagnosed with Cushings, they want to treat him with Lysodren, but I keep going back and forth of it's worth it or not. Can you help me? He is drinking a lot and his losing his hair.

    thank you,
    Liz

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    rural central ARK
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    14,215

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Hi and welcome to you and your baby!

    Danes are my FAVORITE breed! I've been owned by 4 of them.

    I only have a minute right now but did want to welcome you to the forum and set your post so it could be seen by everyone and members could start replying to you. We sent an email you will need to respond to in order to release your account....unless an Admin sees this and gets it set up for you. Just in case, check your spam or junk folder for a message from k9cushings@gmail.

    We are a Lysodren house and it is my first choice for treatment. I'll be back later and chat with you about my reasoning for feeling this way. Fair warning - I'm a bit of an oddball.

    Meanwhile, if you could get the test results for your baby so far, tell us about how this testing and diagnosis came about, his health history - anything you can think of...the more we know the better the feedback we can offer.

    Hugs,
    Leslie and the gang

    A link from our Helpful Resource section on Lysodren - https://www.k9cushings.com/forum/showthread.php?t=181
    "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.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Thank you, Great Danes are my favorite as well. He is my 3rd Dane. His name is Lego. He is a healthy dog except for his Cushings. We noticed his fur starting to fall out and he was drinking a lot of water, so we took him in. He had all blood work done and came back normal including his thyroid. They did an ACTH test and it came back with High levels of Cortisol. I have started him on Melatonin and Lignan to help his symptoms, but they don't seem to be helping. His fur is really coming out now. I am going to talk to the Vet tonight about treatment options. My concerns about the Lysodren is the side effects and if he will have a good quality of life on it or not on it. My husband will not let me spend thousands of dollars on him, and since he is a big dog he will be expensive. Are there any alternatives?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2017
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    4

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Also, what is the life expectancy with or without treatment?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    14,312

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Hi Liz, and welcome from me, too! I'm afraid I have only a moment to post, but I've now manually approved your membership so you are all set to go and don't have to worry about the confirmatory email.

    Also, I've moved your thread here to our main discussion forum where it will have higher visibility.

    Once again, welcome and I'm so glad you've found us!
    Marianne

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2017
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    4

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Thank you I was trying to figure that out.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    16,142

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    hello and welcome to you and Lego. What a cool name.

    Life expectancy with good control of cortisol is the same as normal. This is suggesting that nothing else is going on, but it is usually the other things that end up causing the most problems as it is with most dogs. This is saying that a macro tumor isn't involved. This is a pituitary tumor that grows large putting pressure on the brain.

    Was an LDDS test done or just the ACTH you mentioned? Just wondering if they said whether they thought it was pituitary or adrenal tumor causing cushings. Most pituitary tumors are small and don't grown but some do, so I did want to mention that.

    Leslie supplied you with the link to lysodren loading instructions. So this is something you should print out and stick on fridge or somewhere handy so you have it available.
    If your vet is most familiar with lysodren, then that would be what you would probably want to go with it. Loading is probably the most nerve wrecking time and once through that you go to a maintenance dose a couple/few times a week.
    Sharlene and the late great diva - Molly muffin (always missed and never forgotten)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    6,574

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Hi and welcome to you and your big baby boy, Lego.

    Four years old is very young for a cushdog but not unheard of. My first cushdog was only three when diagnosed so it happens. The one thing I am very curious about is the normal blood tests. It would be highly unusual for a dog with cushing's to have completely normal blood labs. If one of the symptoms is excessive drinking and peeing, it would also be highly unusual for a cushdog to have normal urine tests. You didn't mention a urine test so can you tell us if one was done? Dogs with cushing's drink buckets of water to keep up with the huge volume of dilute pee that is ever flowing. Does Lego pee a lot and is he having accidents in the house?

    Vets don't normally tell you if there are blood values that may not be normal because they aren't a big concern. I am therefore wondering if there weren't at least a few abnormalities because most vets would not pursue a cushing's diagnosis with completely normal labs. Can you please get copies of all testing that was done by your vet and share the results with us? For the blood labs, we need only see the high and low values, and please include the normal reference ranges. If excessiving drinking and peeing is a true clinical symptom of cushing's the urine specific gravity (USG) will be low so I would be most interested in that result on the urine test. Lego is not a senior but your vet should have done a full senior screening before doing the acth stimulation test so I'm hoping you are successful in obtaining all results.

    The acth stimulation test does not tell you which form of the disease a dog has so an additional differentiating and validating test should have been done to make that determination. Did your vet tell you that Lego has adrenal or pituitary dependent cushing's?

    Cushing's is one of the most misdiagnosed canine disease, second only to hypothyroidism. We've seen many misdiagnoses which is why we ask so many questions. I probably ask a lot more than most because I'm very anal and my experience with my dogs' vet was not good. Cushing's is a very graded disease, moving at a snail's pace, so unless Lego's symptoms are problematic for you, there is no urgency in starting treatment until all the i's are dotted and t's have been crossed.

    I am sorry for the reasons that brought you here but I'm glad you found us. We are a nosy bunch for good reason. It's our goal to not only prop you up when you need it but to help you learn so that you can be a more excellent advocate for Lego. By the way, does Lego's name have anything to do with his long legs? I can only imagine. I absolutely find Danes to be majestic giants. They are so regal; however, my brother had one who was a floppy earned klutz that kept us laughing. I do hope you will share a picture of him. My cushdogs weighed 5 lbs and 7 lbs and my house was afloat in pee. I can't imagine having a Dane with the same problem. Holy moly. By the way, what color is Lego? I ask because some dogs with fawn and blue coats can experience something called color dilution alopecia which does not cause any clinical problems.

    We'll be looking forward to hearing a lot more about Lego.

    Glynda

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Washington
    Posts
    1,062

    Default Re: My 185lbs 4 year old Great Dane

    Hi Liz, and welcome to you and Lego! I agree, what a cool name! I don't have anything more to add, or any more questions than what has already been covered by the others above. But please feel free to answer any questions that YOU have. I look forward to learning more about your big guy.

    Shana
    Mama to Jackson and Kira, and my darling Cushing's angel, Visuddha

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