Monday, April 30, 2007

How my heart breaks when a poopie is sick

Bones rounded up the poopies and brought them to the vet last Friday. Sam had 2 lumps tested, and Cody, well Cody has had a slew of issues lately.

Cody has been losing hair around his butt, his regular breathing has sounded like an old man snoring, he has been drinking tons of water, having accidents in the house and lastly has gained weight. We thought it was diabetes, the vet felt like it was hypothyroidism, the tests came back as Cushing’s. Now I feel really guilty every time I got irritated when Cody had an accident. He also has a urinary tract infection, which he will be more susceptible to because of the Cushing’s.

Cushing’s is an increase in cortisol levels within the bloodstream. Normally the hypothalamus directs the pituitary glad to produce ACTH, (a hormone), that will stimulate the adrenal gland to secrete cortisol into the bloodstream. Once the cortisol levels are high enough, the pituitary stops secreting ACTH. With Cushing’s this delicate balance of hormone stimulation doesn’t work properly.

For our little guy the cause would either be a tumour in the pituitary gland, causing more ACTH being produced than necessary or a tumour in an adrenal gland, causing the adrenal gland to over produce cortisol. It is relatively common and often mistaken as the normal aging process due to how the symptoms of Cushing’s manifest itself.

Now little Cody will have to go the vet to get further tests done. He will have to stay there for the day. The poor guy, we can’t even explain to him what is going on, plus he won’t have the girls. Cody is a nervous dog with separation issues, having the girls around keeps his anxieties at bay.

Hopefully we have caught it soon enough that he will just need hormone therapy, otherwise they use radiation to try and kill a part of the adrenal gland. Either way we will try hormone therapy first to see if that makes a difference before doing anything like radiation. I am not so keen on the radiation idea, I will have to research it and talk to the vet a lot before feeling fully comfortable with deciding for or against it. Then again it isn’t really my decision, Cody is Bones’ dog.

Jack & Sam are happy & healthy, Sam's lumps are just fat deposits and despite Cody’s condition, he is a pretty happy dog.



Jys said...

Hi there!!!!
I have followed you to this blog (posted on your previous one)
So glad to hear you are doing well!! I'm 27 weeks today too. Incredible how time has flown.
Just came in to check on you.


Tara said...

I'm sorry that Cody has Cushings. (I know a little about it because at one point the doctors thought I had it.)

Wishing him all the best through his treatment, poor little soul.