Cushing’s disease is an endocrine disorder caused by prolonged high levels of cortisol. This may occur as a result of endogenous or exogenous causes.
Cortisol and other glucocorticoid hormones are produced by the adrenal cortex. These play an active role in carbohydrate and protein metabolism. The pituitary gland secretes its own hormone (ACTH) that signals the adrenal cortex to produce cortisol. Cushing’s disease may thus be pituitary dependent or adrenal dependent. The major cause of excess production is a tumor in either of the two glands. Hormonal supplements given for treating other diseases can also lead to an excess of cortisol.
Unlike other dog ailments, dog owners often fail to suspect Cushing’s disease as the cause of certain symptomatic manifestations. Canine Cushing’s is seen mostly in older dogs. Since most of the symptoms are similar to the advanced age of the dog, these become difficult to identify and observe. Most of the time, it is the veterinarian who becomes suspicious of the condition and prescribes tests for checking the ACTH and cortisol levels in the blood.
There is still very little known that is known about what causes tumors in the pituitary and adrenal glands of dogs. There are only vague ideas of immunity and genetic or environmental factors that may cause Cushing’s. Treatment of Cushing’s syndrome in dogs is typically with conventional drugs, used for inhibiting the production of cortisol by controlled the destruction of adrenal tissue.
Alternative therapies like herbal treatment for Cushing’s disease in dogs, on the other hand, have a different approach to Cushing’s. Alternative treatments are holistic in nature and focus more on encouraging the inner strength of the dog’s body to fight disease.
Herbal treatments can significantly endorse the health of adrenal glands and promote healthy functioning. Some herbal and natural substances can effectively reduce the level of free cortisol in the blood and manage some of the classic symptoms associated with canine Cushing’s as well.
Cortisol marshals responses to inflammation, stimulate the liver to produce more blood sugar and helps to control water in the dog’s body. Excessive amounts of cortisol are instrumental in symptoms like excessive hair loss, dry skin, bloated stomach and weakened muscles. Besides improving adrenal health, herbal treatments can provide a helping hand in management of these symptoms, which can be a big drain on the health of your companion dog.