Arm Your Dog Against The Effects Of Aging
This is a common endocrine disorder associated with an overproduction of corticotropin by the pituitary gland, which in turns stimulates overproduction of cortisol by the adrenal cortex. -Hyperadrenocorticism or Cushing's syndrome in dogs may be caused by a pituitary tumor or an adrenal lesion. Eighty-five percent of dogs with Cushing's have a pituitary-dependent disease, and about 15 percent have adrenal tumors.35
Adrenal tumors are seen more frequently in large breeds and three times more frequently in females than in males. The mean age at onset is 8-12 years, and Poodles, Boxers, Boston Terriers, Dachshunds, Beagles and various Terriers are particularly susceptible.36
Cushing's is characterized by abnormally high blood glucose, general weakness, thin and wrinkled skin, muscle wasting, hair loss, hypertension and decreased resistance to infection. Treatments for pituitary dependent hyperadrenocorticism are cobalt radiation and/or surgery for tumors.
Occasionally dogs may be kept alive for as long as three years with nonsurgical medical treatment.