loobani logo
en English
What Causes Cushing’s disease in dogs?

Cushing’s disease in dogs is also known as hyperadrenocorticism and hypercortisolism. This dog disease is severe. Cushing’s disease usually occurs in middle-aged and senior dogs.

A pet owner must understand the relationship between dogs and Cushing’s disease. Cushing’s disease is exceptional can be very painful for your pup. you may get a few toys and different merchandise from Loobani to consolation him.

If your dog feels thirsty all the time, this is the indicator that he is suffering from Cushing’s disease. There are many other things that you must need to know about this disease so that you would be able to provide proper treatment to your buddy.

In this article, you will learn the essential aspects of Cushing’s disease in dogs like causes, symptoms, testing for Cushing’s disease dogs and medicines for Cushing’s disease in dogs, etc.

What Is Cushing’s disease In Dogs?

Cushing’s disease or hyperadrenocorticism is a severe health situation in dogs. In this disease, the adrenal glands produce excess cortisol (cortisone) in the dog’s body. The overproduction of cortisol in a dog can lead to numerous serious illnesses, including kidney damage and diabetes. This disease can be life-threatening.

Cushing’s disorder in dogs is commonly caused by a tumor within the pituitary gland. The tumor may be benign or malignant. The tumor will be located at the adrenal glands in some circumstances.

The prolonged usage of steroids can also lead to the overproduction of cortisol. This condition is known as iatrogenic Cushing’s syndrome. 

What Causes Cushing’s disease in dogs?

Dog Breeds Prone To Cushing's disease:

Following canine breeds are extra at risk of Cushing’s ailment:

  • Poodles, particularly Miniature Poodles
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • German shepherd
  • Dandie Dinmont
  • Boxer
  • Boston Terrier
  • Maltese
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Australian Shepherd
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Dachshunds
  • Staffordshire Terriers

What Causes Cushing's Disease In Dogs?

Do you surprise how does a dog gets Cushing’s ailment?

Cushing’s disease usually occurs due to improper functioning of the adrenal gland. In Cushing’s disease, adrenal glands produce too much stress hormone (cortisol). This dysfunction of adrenal glands is associated with tumor development.

Cushing’s disease is primarily observed in dogs from 7 to 12 years old. So if you are an owner of a dog with this age limit, you need to be more careful.

Cushing’s disease is classified into three types based on its root causes.

Pituitary-Dependent Cushing’s disease:

This type of Cushing’s disease is associated with developing a tumor in the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. In this case, the pituitary gland releases too much hormone that triggers the adrenal gland to produce more cortisol.

Usually, benign and small tumors are developed in the pituitary gland. Approximately 15-20% of the patients develop neurological disorders due to tumors in the pituitary gland. About 80-85% of cases of Cushing’s disease occur due to pituitary tumors.

Adrenal Gland Tumor:

These glands create stress hormones. Sometimes benign or malignant tumor develops in the adrenal gland. Due to this tumor, the adrenal gland overproduces stress hormones. Adrenal tumors cause approximately 15-20% of Cushing’s disease cases.

Iatrogenic Cushing’s disease:

This Cushing’s disease in dogs is associated with long-term or excessive intake of steroids.

Is Cushing’s disease in dogs contagious?

Some pet owners ask this question. So the answer to this question is no. Cushing’s disease is not contagious. It does not spread from diseased dogs to other animals or humans.

What are the symptoms of Cushing’s disease in dogs?

To provide immediate treatment to your pet friend, you need to know about the symptoms of Cushing’s disease in dogs and complications of Cushing’s disease in dogs.

In the early stage of Cushing’s disease in dogs, the most common signs are increased water use, appetite, and excessive urination. 

Common signs of Cushing’s disease in dogs:

If your dog is suffering from Cushing’s disease, then you will notice the following Cushing’s disease symptoms in dogs:

  • Excessive thirst or drinking
  • Increased appetite
  • Thinning of the skin 
  • Frequent urination Muscle weakness
  • Hair loss
  • Panting
  • Lethargy
  • Enlarged abdomen, potbellied appearance

Cushing’s disease dog hair loss

Cushing’s disease can lead to hair loss in dogs along their back, tail, and rear legs. You will observe a thinning coat or complete hair loss, except for the feat and heads in your dog.

Cushing’s disease and dementia in dogs:

Cushing’s disease usually occurs in older dogs due to a tumor of the pituitary gland in the brain. If that tumor grows, it can lead to severe neurological issues, including dementia.

Cushing’s disease and diabetes in dogs

Dogs suffering from Cushing’s disease often show the same symptoms as diabetic dogs. Like a diabetic dog, they have increased thirst, appetite, and urination. Cushing’s disease is common in diabetic dogs. A diabetic dog with Cushing’s disease might have to suffer more.

Cushing’s disease dog behavior changes:

 Cushing’s disease also led to some behavioral changes in your dog. Your dog will be lethargic all the time and Pant incessantly. The dog might show decreased interest in spending time with the owner.

Cushing’s disease dogs advanced symptoms:

 Cushing’s disease in dogs progresses gradually. Without treatment, Cushing’s disease in the dog’s final stages involves high blood pressure, pulmonary thromboembolism, congestive heart failure, blindness, and myopathy. Cushing’s disease in dogs causes death if left untreated.  

What Causes Cushing’s disease in dogs?

How is Cushing’s disease in dogs diagnosed?

A single test cannot accurately diagnose Cushing’s disease in dogs. A veterinarian might recommend the following tests for the diagnosis of this disease.  

  • Baseline blood work (CBC/Chemistry)
  • ACTH stimulation test (can have false negatives)
  • Urinalysis +/- urine culture test
  • Urine cortisol to creatinine ratio      
  • Low-dose dexamethasone suppression test
  • High-dose dexamethasone suppression test
  • Computerized tomography scan or magnetic resonance imaging
  • Abdominal ultrasound or Ultrasound imaging

An adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) stimulation test is usually a blood test. It is often used to diagnose Cushing’s sickness in puppies.

Computerized tomography scan or magnetic resonance imaging is characteristically a more efficient tool in diagnosing Cushing’s disease in dogs.

Do you want to know how much Cushing’s disease dog test costs?

In general, the complete diagnosis of Cushing’s disease costs about $500-$1,500. The treatment of this disease can cost approximately $50-$200 per month. The treatment cost is based on the dog’s response to the chosen medication.

How do you treat Cushing’s disease in a dog?

Treatment of Cushing’s disease in dogs is based on the severity and cause. Cushing’s sickness in dogs can  be handled in three ways:

  • Surgery
  • Medication
  • Radiation


Surgical treatment is recommended for removing Pituitary and adrenal tumors. Surgery can be 100% curative in the case of a benign tumor.   


Medication for Cushing’s disease in dogs is suggested when surgery is not showing effective results.

Usually, trilostane or mitotane drugs are given to treat Cushing’s disease in dogs. These medicines hinder the overproduction of cortisol. Very close monitoring is advised while the dog is being treated with these drugs to guarantee that the functioning of the adrenal gland is not disturbed too much too quickly.

Once the veterinarian has prescribed a proper dosage for your dog, an ACTH stimulation test must be performed every 3-6 months or if you observe symptoms of Cushing’s disease start to develop again. In this case, the veterinarian will recommend an increased dose of medication to control the symptoms.

If Cushing’s disease in dogs is caused by too much usage of steroids, then the dosage of steroids must be cautiously lessened and stopped.


Pituitary-dependent Cushing’s disease in dogs is treated by radiation. This treatment has been proved to recover or eradicate neurological signs and improve the prognosis, mainly when treated near the beginning. The middle endurance time in these situations is 743 days.

Cushing’s disease in dogs’ treatment side effects:

The most frequent side effects of the drugs are poor or decreased appetite, lack of energy, vomiting, diarrhea, and weakness. The more severe side effects of the prescribed drugs are bloody diarrhea, severe sodium or potassium imbalance, collapse, demolition of the adrenal gland, and even death.

Natural remedies for Cushing’s disease in dogs:

Natural remedies can treat Cushing’s disease in dogs. Various natural supplements are available in the market that helps to regulate the cortisol output of the adrenal gland. Some natural herbs are supportive of detoxification.

The best natural remedies for treating Cushing’s disease in dogs are:


It is famous as a tonic for the kidneys, liver, and adrenal glands. It will assist in regulating adrenal functioning.


This supplement is used to treat excessive thirst.


It is a cleansing and eradicating herb. It is outstanding at detoxifying the tissues. It helps to remove unnecessary substances from the dog’s body.

Hepar Sulph:

It is used to heal irritated skin. Sulfur improves the entire skin’s condition.

What Causes Cushing’s disease in dogs?

Homemade dog food for Cushing’s disease:

It’s far the duty of a puppy owner to take care of Cushing’s disorder canine’s weight loss program. Below is the list of food items you can give to your diseased pet friend. You can use Pet feeders offered by Loobani to serve this food to your fluffy friend.

  • Purina Pro Plan Focus Adult 7+ Beef & Rice Entrée Morsels in Gravy: The Best Canned Dog Food for Cushing’s disease. It is prepared for dogs that are up to 7 years old.
  • Evanger’s Grain-Free Canned Dog & Cat Food.
  • Weruva Paw Lickin’ Chicken in Gravy Grain-Free Canned dog food is low in fat and very high in protein; that’s why it is ideal for dogs with Cushing’s disease.
  • Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Canned Dog Food.
  • VICTOR Grain-Free Dry Dog Food — Best Dry Dog Food to give dogs with Cushing’s disease.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Select the fields to be shown. Others will be hidden. Drag and drop to rearrange the order.
  • Image
  • SKU
  • Rating
  • Price
  • Stock
  • Availability
  • Add to cart
  • Description
  • Content
  • Weight
  • Dimensions
  • Additional information
  • Attributes
  • Custom attributes
  • Custom fields
Click outside to hide the compare bar
Wishlist 0
Open wishlist page Continue shopping
Dogs Food Puzzle Feeder Toys (2)

Enjoy Your Shopping
Enter your email to get 20% off  on the first order

Respect the privacy policy, we will keep your information confidential, please feel free to fill in