A Look At Addison's Disease In DogsA Look At Addison's Disease In Dogs

At the most basic level, Addison's disease is a condition that occurs due to the reduction of corticosteroid secretion that originates from the adrenal gland. In a normal healthy dog, substances known as glucocorticoids and mineralcorticoids are produced from the adrenal gland, and when these substances are not created in high enough concentrations, your dog will start to develop Addison's disease. Cushing's disease, where these hormones are overproduced, is more common version of this issue, but Addisons's disease is a problem that needs to be examined and then dealt with.

When you are looking at Addison's disease, you might be wondering which dogs are more prone to it. In the first place, while dogs of any age or sex can contract this disease, the dogs are at the highest risk include female dogs that are young or middle aged. It does not seem to be a disease that is dependent on breed, and one thing that can hamper diagnosis is that the symptoms are a little bit hazy at first. It is possible for a dog to have the symptoms of Addison's disease for a long time before a diagnosis is made, simply because the symptoms have a way of coming and going.

When you are looking to see if Addison's disease is a problem that your dog might be facing, you will find that some of the symptoms might include muscular weakness, fatigue, a loss of appetite and vomiting. As mentioned above, these symptoms might seem better or worse depending on the day and this can complicate the diagnosis. In some cases, the disease might be diagnosed when the dog falls prey to an Addisonian crisis, where the dog will collapse in a shock due to the metabolism issues and an imbalance of electrolytes during a period of stress. An Addisonian crisis can be fatal if not treated immediately.

Once the possibility is breeched, Addison's Disease is typically confirmed though a blood test called the ACTH stimulation test. In many cases, this will not be the first test tried because there are other, more common conditions that can have a similar effect. The event of an Addisonian crisis, however, coupled with a response to therapy for the condition, is typically enough for a diagnosis.

After diagnosis, treatment of Addison's disease is typically fairly simple. In most cases, it will involve chemically replacing the glucocorticoids and the mineralcorticoids that are missing from the body. Florinef is usually the drug that is used to handle this, and it is given twice a day. In most cases, the dog will be monitored over a period of time to obtain the right doze, and over time, the monitoring can be reduced to two to three times a year. In recent years, another drug called DOCP has been recommended, and it only needs to be given once every twenty five days.

Take some time to learn more about the different conditions that might be plaguing your dog. An early diagnosis of Addison's disease can keep your dog much more comfortable, so keep an eye on any symptoms that seem to be present!
by Kelly Marshall
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This article was written by Kelly Marshall of www.ohmydogsupplies.com - your online dog store offering great deals on dog leashes and harnesses.
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