The confusion and stress increase if the disease becomes chronic. Even with the advancement of veterinary medicine, not all disorders are fully treatable.
One such illness is Cushing’s disease, a common ailment amongst middle-aged and older dogs that becomes life-threatening if left untreated or misdiagnosed. The disease may be confused by some as cancer due to its tumor-causing nature, or as just a condition due to aging.
This article deals with more information about the disease, its symptoms, diagnosis, and cure, etc. we shall also see the use of natural medication to cure Cushing’s- specifically with the help of CBD- a hemp extract. A description of CBD can be found on this site.
Cushing’s disease and its symptoms
You might have heard about cortisol- the stress-relieving hormone. It is a steroidal juice secreted by the body’s endocrine system to control stress, blood sugar level, and body weight, etc. These hormones are secreted in dogs and cats too, serving the same purpose as in humans.
Cushing’s disease is a condition that develops due to over secretion of cortisol. Too much of this hormone could be extremely dangerous, and could even lead to death. This disease is also called hypercortisolism and hyperadrenocorticism.
This disorder mainly occurs due to the formation of tumors- specifically in the pituitary gland (in the brain) or any of the adrenal glands (that secrete various hormones in the body). Cushing’s disease may also occur due to over-prescription and overdosing of medicines that are steroidal in nature.
A comprehensive description of Cushing’s disease can be found in this article: https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/treating-cushings-disease-dogs
Most commonly observed symptoms of Cushing’s disease are:
- Increased hunger and thirst
- Increased urination and defecation
- Breathlessness and fatigue
- Thinning of skin and excessive hair loss
- Formation of warts and papilloma
As you can see, most of these conditions are prone to occur as your pet grows older. It is extremely difficult to predict that your pet could be a potential victim of Cushing’s disorder. What you, as an owner, must observe is the longevity of the symptoms.
If the tumor is left untreated, it could grow into a cancerous tissue and lead to worse problems. Hence, it is wise not to neglect these symptoms as age-related conditions and also keep a note of any steroidal intake.
Diagnosis and cure for Cushing’s disease
If you believe your pet may have the condition, immediately get it diagnosed. The vet will examine blood and urine samples. The vet may also perform an adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) stimulation test. This test aims at figuring out how well the adrenal glands that produce cortisol response to the pituitary gland.
In other words, this test gives the vet a fair idea as to how the endocrine system is interacting with the brain. Cortisol levels in the urine and blood are examined for any abnormalities. Radiography (e.g. Ultrasound) may be performed to definitively narrow down on Cushing’s disorder.
Now once you’ve realized your little friend is suffering from something this bad, you badly would want to cure your pet of this pain. There are limited solutions for this- regulating cortisol production artificially by medication, and surgery to remove the tumor.
Both of these treatment methods may pose threats to the pet, like surgery in older dogs is not suggested and prescription drugs usually come with side effects.
CBD oil for Cushing’s disease
Cannabidiol has proven to be a great medicine for many illnesses both in humans and animals. The chemical is extracted from the Cannabis sativa plant and is made suitable for ingestion for animals in forms of oils, tinctures, and treats. A detailed study that relates the use of cannabinoids to treat cancer can be found in the following link.
CBD is different from its “high” inducing counterpart- THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol). THC is the compound people look for in marijuana for recreational purposes as it is the one that has psychoactive properties. CBD, on the other hand, is not a neurotoxin- which means it cannot get you or your pet high and is absolutely safe to use.
CBD oil has proven to treat cancer naturally as it has properties that inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Although Cushing’s disease is not cancer, CBD can inhibit the growth of tumors. CBD also helps control the imbalance in hormones, eliminating the chances of future tumors.
Incase CBD is your secondary treatment option, and you go for prescription drugs and surgery, it can still act as a pain reliever and an anti-inflammatory drug. So, you have the option to either go for CBD as a primary medicine or a secondary stress reliever.
But do mention to your vet that you’re administering CBD to your pet, as this helps your vet to diagnose your pet’s condition more effectively. Studies have shown that a 35 to 40mg dose works best but your vet may be able to suggest a more appropriate dosage depending on the severity of the condition.