Keep Your Cushing’s Dog Hydrated

When warm months are upon us, it’s important to be mindful of a dog’s water intake. Since Cushing’s dogs are prone to symptoms like excessive thirst, it’s especially important to care for your pup’s hydration when the weather gets hot.

Foods that Hydrate

Since a whole food diet or a kibble diet with whole food additions can be beneficial for a Cushing’s dog, it’s easy to add in foods that are also hydrating. This comes in the form of fruits and veggies.

Watery fruits and veggies like cucumber and watermelon can be a delicious and hydrating treat for a dog. Remove the seeds and rind, then let your pup chow down. Other fruits and veggies that pack on the hydrating power are apples, other melons like cantaloupe, and leafy greens. Berries are great too and can be served frozen plain or mixed with yogurt for a pup pop. Just remember, no grapes. They can cause kidney problems for pups.

Water Access

According to Petmd.com, “Providing access to an abundance of clean, cool water is critical.” It’s easy to set a bowl out for pups staying outside, but if the water if left to heat in the sun, it’s not as appealing to your dog. Keeping water refreshed is important too. Try a bowl that recirculates water to help you manage your pup’s supply.

Work Hydration into Play

Give your pup an icy treat by filling a toy with water and freezing it. Add an element of play and hydration beyond ice cubes by using puzzle or regular chew toys for this. Petmd.com also suggests freezing a dog treat in the middle of an ice cube for a fun and hydrating surprise.

Keeping dogs cool in the heat goes a long way to preventing dehydration. Incorporate kiddie pools or sprinklers into your outdoor time in the summer, especially if your pup spends time outdoors on a regular basis. Toss balls or other toys into the kiddie pool and let your dog fish them out! They’ll cool off and gulp a bit of water in the process.

Carbs and Cushing’s

America seems infatuated with the carb-less diet. And in truth, cutting carbs that are less beneficial can prove healthy for the gut and other parts of the body. Can we apply the same ideas to our canine friends—do carbs affect Cushings disease?

How do carbs affect Cushings disease in dogs?

Biologically speaking, dogs don’t require carbs to get the nutrients they need. They can physically sustain themselves on fat and protein. However, domesticated dogs have long been fed a diet that includes carbohydrates, says Whole Dog Journal. Carbohydrates include a wide range of foods from dairy products to vegetables. Grains are also carbs, and are the most widely debated, and possibly the most widely used form of nutrients for a dog.

Healthy animals can process grains and derive nutrients from them as well. Complex carbs like whole grains are best, as well as starches and fibrous foods because they don’t impact glucose levels in the blood as much when digested. A diet that consists of good carbs can be tolerated by most dogs. The problem comes when animal protein is eliminated or drastically reduced and foods become supplemented mostly by filler grains.

Dogs with chronic illnesses like Cushing’s however, may not benefit from grains, especially those that contain the plant protein gluten. According to Dogster.com, “gluten has been implicated in contributing to a variety of inflammatory health issues.” Gluten is found in wheat, rye, barley, and spelt grains.

A Cushing’s dog is already battling inflammation caused by the overproduction of cortisol, and adding a carb-heavy diet on top of this can lead to more problems. Thus, eliminating or drastically reducing grains can be an important step in minimizing the symptoms of Cushing’s disease.

Carb versus Grain Free

Grains are carbs but not all carbs are grains. A Cushing’s dog may benefit from a whole food diet that is grain-free, but incorporates some good carbs like vegetables and yogurt. Giving your Cushing’s dog cabs like fruits and vegetables also provides antioxidants, a compound known to help immunities and combat bad cells in the body.

Because kibble is cost-effective and readily available, it can be difficult for pet owners to simply craft or purchase raw or protein-based dog food. Try finding a grain-free kibble and supplementing it with whole foods. Grain-free dog foods still contain carbs, so look at the label to see where those carbs are coming from. Peas and potatoes are often found in grain-free kibble, but are complex carbs that provide nutrients.

Read more from our blog about helpful whole food additions for Cushing’s dogs.

Diet and Cushing’s

It’s not surprising that focusing on your pup’s gut can be an important step in managing Cushing’s disease. Since so much of the body’s functions are helped or hindered by what happens via the good bacteria found there, reducing inflammation from grain sources can prove helpful to a Cushing’s pet.

A common side effect of most drugs prescribed for dogs suffering with Cushing’s is linked to digestive issues like vomiting and diarrhea. You can help your dog’s gut by choosing a nutraceutical that works to block the overactive adrenal gland with natural ingredients and by adjusting your pup’s diet. CushAway is a nutraceutical developed to address the root causes and soothe the gut with probiotics.

If your fur baby is suffering from Cushing’s disease, you may want to consider an approach that focuses on a gentler approach with less side effects to address the symptoms. Starting with a hard look at the types of carbs your dog consumes on a regular basis, you can begin a plan that can lead to increased vitality and a lessening of symptoms. A grain-free diet supplemented with a nutraceutical and whole foods might be the change your dog needs.

Is Phosphatidylserine Safe For Cushing’s Dogs?

What is Phosphatidylserine?

Phosphatidylserine (PS) is a lipid compound called a phospholipid that covers and protects cells. Produced both naturally in the body and in foods or plants, you can find PS as a human supplement that promotes brain health and cell function. Lately, it’s been looked at for properties that could impact dogs with Cushing’s disease.

Phosphatidylserine and Cushing’s Disease

So, is Phosphatidylserine safe for Cushings dogs? A study by the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition concluded that “PS supplementation promotes a desired hormonal status for athletes by blunting increases in cortisol levels.” The impact of this for Cushing’s disease in dogs is something startling. PS can potentially help slow the production of ACHT, the chemical that makes the adrenal gland produce corticosteroids. For a Cushing’s dog, overproduction of corticosteroids is the root problem. Blunting ACHT production means addressing the root cause of the disease.

Using Phosphatidylserine for Cushing’s

With the move towards holistic care for both humans and pets, many pet parents are turning to new options instead of the long-touted chemo drugs given to relieve Cushing’s disease in dogs. A natural supplement can address Cushing’s symptoms with little to no side effects using elements like PS, melatonin, and HMR lignans. Combining these three natural compounds creates a healing triangle that addresses the steroid overproduction in Cushing’s dog. PS is an integral part of this. Phosphatidylserine has been shown to increase the absorption of melatonin, which can also work to stop overproduction of corticosteroids.

Sources of supplemental Phosphatidylserine once came from bovine sources. However, concerns about diseases like mad cow in the 1990’s prompted a new way to harvest the phospholipid compound. New sources of PS are soy derived, according to PubChem, a research directory produced by the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

By reducing the production of ACTH in a dog’s body through Phosphatidylserine, you reduce the production of corticosteroids in a different but complimentary way than from how lignans and melatonin work (by interfering with the “ingredients” that the dog’s body uses to make corticosteroids), thus increasing the benefit. PS decreases both the demand for corticosteroids and a dog’s ability to make them.

Phosphatidylserine in Cushing’s Supplements for Dogs

Many dogs suffering from Cushing’s symptoms can find relief through a nutraceutical, or natural supplement. Naturally-occurring compounds can effectively blunt corticosteroids without the use of side-effect laden chemo drugs.

One supplement, a nutraceutical named CushAway addresses the PS findings in a new way. While HMR lignans and melatonin are more common in nutraceuticals for Cushing’s dogs, the addition of Phosphatidylserine to CushAway’s formula is unique. This natural element works complimentary to the lignans and melatonin to halt corticosteroid production. Not only is Phosphatidylserine safe for Cushings dogs, it’s proven quite beneficial.

CushAway was developed in the wake of a beloved pet’s passing. After years of refining, CushAway serves the pet community in helping pet parents find a natural choice for Cushing’s symptoms. While the disease can never truly be “cured,” many have found relief for their fur babies.

Owner of All Those Left Behind Pet Rescue, Gina Bartucci, used CushAway to help her Cushing’s dogs. “Thanks to the CushAway, we saw a night and day difference,” Bartucci shared. She had been on a Cushing’s journey with her own fur baby, Oz, and turned to a holistic approach for his care. When a vet recommended CushAway for her shelter pups, she was ready to give it a try. “Had we found the product sooner from what we had seen from the other two dogs, we think it could have been her miracle,” she said.

Phosphatidylserine is a piece of the Cushing’s puzzle that can address the root cause of Cushing’s disease. CushAway uniquely offers this as part of our supplement because we believe every Cushing’s dog deserves relief and vitality. We offer free bottles of our product to shelters and give a discount to pet parents adopting fur babies with Cushing’s. Read more about our story here.

Phosphatidylserine for Dogs with Cushing’s Disease

Phosphatidylserine for Dogs:  This powerful natural lipid helps stop the root causes of Cushing’s Disease

When a dog suffers from Cushing’s disease, their normal body function is disrupted. After being diagnosed, the owner can choose several ways to treat the symptoms, though the disease itself has no known permanent cure. Potent chemotherapy drugs are often prescribed, even in the early stages of the disease. These chemicals can help with symptoms, but also carry a wide risk of side effects. Because of these risks, many pet owners are choosing a more natural approach, with supplements that control symptoms and are gentler on a dog’s body.

CushAway is a nutraceutical, or natural supplement that helps combat Cushing’s symptoms at the root cause—corticosteroid overproduction. It uses a combination of three main components: HMR Lignans, Melatonin, and Phosphatidylserine (PS) to help control a dog’s steroid overproduction. While the first two ingredients are more common in nutraceuticals, the addition of Phosphatidylserine to CushAway’s formula is unique. This natural element works complimentary to the lignans and melatonin to halt corticosteroid production.

Phosphatidylserine For Humans

In human studies, Phosphatidylserine has been shown to blunt the production of ACTH, the chemical that signals the adrenal gland to produce corticosteroids. This was shown specifically in people whose bodies were subjected to the stress of sustained exercise. Those who took a supplement of PS regained energy faster and their body showed signs of better handling the stress.

Phosphatidylserine For Dogs

Phosphatidylserine is a phospholipid-a compound that allows for easy absorption in the body. PS is also known to increase the absorption and effectiveness of melatonin, which also helps to stop a dog’s overproducing adrenal glands. By reducing the production of ACTH you reduce the production of corticosteroids in a different but complimentary way that the lignans and melatonin work (by interfering with the “ingredients” that the dog’s body uses to make corticosteroids) thus increasing the benefit. For dogs, Phosphatidylserine decreases both the demand for corticosteroids and the dog’s ability to make them.

With three main ingredients working in tandem to reduce or eliminate Cushing’s symptoms, PS is an effective component of the triangle. Combined with a probiotic to increase absorption of each supplement, CushAway offers a natural way to reduce risk and address Cushing’s symptoms at the root of the adrenal problems dog’s face. As more research comes to light, Phosphatidylserine is clearly a natural powerhouse to help reduce the effects of Cushing’s so your dog can move towards a thriving life once again.

Addressing Corticosteroid Demands in Your Dog: Inflammation

Inflammation in dogs is a varied symptom that can be hard to pinpoint. As a pet parent caring for a dog with Cushing’s disease, inflammation is another factor that can add to your pup’s discomfort. Although we typically think of inflammation in the muscles and joints, it can occur in other parts of the body both internally and externally. If inflammation persists, it can compound symptoms of Cushing’s. Finding the root cause and managing a dog’s inflammation can help minimalize the effects of Cushing’s disease as well.

Inflammation Causes

Inflammation is the body’s response to a problem in order to protect and heal. It is an immune response triggered to protect the body from toxins and to repair damaged tissue. The response in dogs is similar to what happens in a human: chemicals released in the body cause blood vessels to leak at the site of the trauma, whether a foreign invader or an injury. This leads to redness and swelling in the affected tissues.

External inflammation can be detected in a dog’s movement or by the telltale red and swollen skin in the inflamed area. Internal inflammation can be harder to pin down without examinations and testing, as it can affect tissue in different body systems. When inflammation becomes chronic (continuing over a long period of time), it can be damaging and even life-threatening to your pet.

Look for these signs to identify inflammation in your dog:

– Localized redness
– Rigid limbs
– Swellings
– Awkward gait
– Reluctance to rise
– Muscle spasms
– Depression
– Diarrhea
– Vomiting
– Unusual vocalizations
– Loss of appetite

List compiled from wagwalking.com

Inflammation in Cushing’s Dogs

Inflammation causes problems for dogs suffering with Cushing’s disease because it creates a vicious cycle. Cushing’s is caused by an overabundance of cortisone and cortisol, the corticosteroids that a dog’s body naturally produces to treat inflammation. If an older dog suffers from hip dysplasia or worn joints accompanied by inflammation, this triggers more corticosteroid production which will in turn compound Cushing’s symptoms. The key is to treat inflammation in your dog to reduce the demand to produce these steroids.

Reducing Inflammation

One way to cut down on a dog’s inflammation is through diet. When your dog maintains a healthy weight and a diet low in processed grains, inflammation is naturally reduced. Part of the reason for this comes down to fats. Omega-6 fatty acids, the kind found in typical processed diets contribute to inflammation while omega-3 fats have the opposite effect. Salmon is famous for omega-3’s, but plenty of other fresh foods can be a source of this good fat. Sardines and eggs both have a high concentration of omega-3. For more information on an omega-3 rich diet, read our blog about the benefits of giving your pet whole food additions to kibble.

A routine of regular exercise can also help manage your dog’s inflammation and maintain a healthy weight in your pet. Exercise can help prevent systemic inflammation because it continually works areas prone to inflammatory conditions. However, exercising an area already inflamed needs to be done with caution. If your dog is suffering with inflammation, it is best to treat integrate exercise slowly and with increased rigor over a period of time once you’ve identified the root cause.

Medications and natural supplements can be used to treat inflammation. Steroids are one option provided by vets. However, as previously mentioned, this is not a good idea for dogs suffering with Cushing’s because an overproduction of steroids is the main cause of disease. Non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be prescribed as well. However, many pet owners balk at the list of side effects that also include joint damage, a common reason for inflammation. Herbal supplements are recommended by some as a natural alternative. Ginger, turmeric, and licorice are a few of the natural remedies touted by holistic vets and pet parents.

The best way you can identify if your pet is suffering from inflammation is to keep an eye on their day to day activity. Cushing’s dogs can show lower levels of energy and inflammation will add to this. Reducing your dog’s inflammation can help lessen the effects of Cushing’s at its root cause.

The Benefits of CushAway

The Benefits of CushAway

We believe every dog deserves a healthy, active life. With a disease like Cushing’s, that can become difficult. While no cure exists that will completely eradicate the disease itself, a natural supplement like CushAway can help diminish the effects of Cushing’s disease in dogs and address the root cause of the disease.

When you choose CushAway to help manage your dog’s Cushing’s disease, you are choosing a natural approach that may provide many benefits to both the dog and their human family. Here are some reasons that we feel so passionate about helping dogs and their people live happy, healthier lives.

1) Lower Risk of Side Effects

Many of the drugs given to dogs to stop Cushing’s symptoms cause other problems in return. These are chemo drugs, often prescribed to human patients or pulled from human cancer treatment all together. A study of trilostane, one of the most popular drugs prescribed to dogs with Cushing’s, showed that 35% of dogs suffered some negative side effect.

Cush Away presents an alternative to these chemo drugs with a natural supplement, or nutraceutical, that uses three main naturally-occurring ingredients: phosphatidylserine, melatonin and HMR lignans combined with probiotics. Using a nutraceutical like CushAway may help lower the risk of extreme negative side effects and may reduce the likelihood of the dog contracting Addison’s disease, something one in twenty-five dogs have been shown to suffer when using chemo drugs.

2) Affecting the Disease, Not Just Symptoms

Although some drugs may help eliminate the symptoms of Cushing’s disease in dogs, CushAway seeks to stop the root cause of the disease, as well as control its symptoms. CushAway’s natural supplement formula is created to directly reduce the production of cortisone steroids. The overproduction of these steroids in a dog’s body is what causes the disease.

3) Probiotics in the Mix

Much like their human friends, improving a dog’s gut health can improve their overall well-being. CushAway uses probiotics to help stimulate the body’s use of the active ingredients in the supplement. Safely manufactured to human standards, these probiotics create gut bacteria that improve this process.

4) Regaining an Active Lifestyle

Many dogs with Cushing’s disease become lethargic and uninterested in activities they used to enjoy. They often don’t have the energy to run around. They seem to become tired and just want to sleep. CushAway’s natural formula was created to help dogs regain their energy and vitality. The active ingredients in CushAway have also been shown to help some dogs regain a thick coat where their Cushing’s led to hair loss.

5) Price

Many dog owners would do anything for their pet’s well-being, but cost can become a limiting factor when dealing with a disease like Cushing’s. The hard truth is that using the drugs prescribed by many well-meaning veterinary professionals, along with the ongoing testing required to manage the disease can amount to thousands of dollars spent by the dog’s family. CushAway seeks to bridge the gap between cost and effectiveness. You can purchase an average sized dog a two-month supply for of the supplement for only $44.95. First-time buyers even receive a $5 dollar off coupon for one bottle (use discount code “5OFF”) or a $30 off coupon for purchasing three bottles (use discount code “30OFF”).

Consider CushAway

If you’re looking for a natural alternative to chemo drugs for your dog’s Cushing’s disease, we hope you’ll consider CushAway. You can read more about our product here.