What Is Cushing’s Disease in Cats?
Cushing’s disease is a form of metabolic condition that happens due to hormonal imbalance in the system. This occurs when the adrenal glands overly secrete cortisol in the body. Cortisol is an important hormone that aids in several processes in the entire cat’s body system.
However, if too much of this is produced, it causes tremendous body malfunction which makes a cat ill. When the adrenal glands fail to function normally, there will be overproduction of cortisol.
Cushing’s disease in felines can be categorized into three classes: Iatrogenic, Adrenal and Pituitary.
- Iatrogenic type: This classification of Cushing’s disease occurs when excessive corticosteroid drugs is taken by the cat when getting treated with certain illness.
- Adrenal and Pituitary type: Cushing’s disorder of these types happen when tumor develops in the pituitary gland or in the adrenal glands, resulting to the over secretion of cortisol.
Symptoms of Feline Cushing’s Disease
The most common symptom of this disease in cats is the loss of hair. Skin problems such as thinning of the skin dermal layers and pigmentation are also common. In some cases, cats can develop lumps on their skin. Nonetheless, the following are some of the associated signs and symptoms of Cushing’s disease in cats:
- Heavy breathing
- Swollen liver
- Pot belly
- Increased frequency of urination
- Extreme thirst
The following are often the treatment considerations when curing Cushing’s disease in felines.
- If the Cushing’s disease is iatrogenic in nature or when the problem is caused by the constant and excessive use of corticosteroid drugs, then the medication has to be withdrawn gradually.
- Since cats do not respond positively to medications, unlike dogs, surgical intervention is an appropriate mode of treatment.
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