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Dogs + Medical Conditions

  • Corneal lipidosis is an accumulation of fatty substances within the cornea. This is caused by genetics (corneal dystrophy), eye inflammation (corneal degeneration), or by an increase in circulating lipids in the body (hyperlipidemia). Visually, lipidosis appears as a sparkly or shiny area of the cornea. It is diagnosed by a thorough eye exam, bloodwork, and patient history. Treatment and prognosis will depend on the cause and may include treatment of underlying inflammatory conditions of the eye, or systemic treatment of elevated lipid blood levels.

  • The cornea is the transparent, shiny membrane that makes up the front of the eyeball. With a corneal ulcer, fluid is absorbed from the tears into the stroma, giving a cloudy appearance to the eye. The most common cause of a corneal ulcer is trauma. Less common causes of corneal ulcers include bacterial infections, viral infections, and other diseases.

  • COVID-19 is a disease caused by the coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. Current evidence suggests that person-to-person spread is the main source of infection. While there is evidence of transmission from humans to dogs and cats, it does not appear to be a common event at this time. If you suspect that you are ill with COVID-19, you should practice the same precautions with your pet as you would with people: wear a mask, keep your distance, wash your hands regularly, and avoid cuddling and other close contact. If your pet needs veterinary care while you are sick with COVID-19, do not take your pet to your veterinary clinic yourself.

  • Cushing's disease is a condition in which the adrenal glands overproduce certain hormones. There are three types of Cushing’s disease, each of which has a different cause. The most common cause of Cushing's disease is a pituitary gland tumor. Cushing's disease may be the result of a benign or malignant tumor of the adrenal gland itself or may be caused from the excessive administration of an oral or injectable steroid. The most common clinical signs are increased appetite, increased water consumption, and increased urination. Treatments depend on which type of the disease is present. Your veterinarian will outline a treatment plan for your pet’s specific condition. Lifelong treatment may be necessary. The prognosis depends on the cause.

  • Cushing's disease, or hyperadrenocorticism, is the overproduction of cortisol hormone by a dog's body. Several initial tests help to diagnose this condition. The clinical signs of Cushing's disease are similar, regardless of the underlying cause of the disease. However, it is essential to identify the type of Cushing's disease as the treatment and prognosis differ slightly depending upon the form of the disease.

  • Treatment for Cushing’s disease using mitotane involves two phases: initiating phase and maintenance phase. Monitoring your dog’s food and water intake is very important. This handout provides detailed treatment instructions for dogs prescribed mitotane. Follow your veterinarian’s instructions carefully and report changes in your dog’s behavior to your veterinarian.

  • Systemic lymphoma is a very common cancer in dogs, but the cutaneous form is quite rare. Current statistics suggest that cutaneous lymphoma accounts for only about 5% of canine lymphoma cases. The disease can present in a variety of lesions, including ulcers, nodules, red patches, and areas of hair loss and skin scaling. Because not very much is known about canine cutaneous lymphoma, there are no standard treatment protocols and the prognosis is poor.

  • Blue-green algae, also called cyanobacteria, is found in fresh and brackish water of ponds and lakes. This microscopic bacteria can also grow in backyard fountains, garden pots, bird baths, and anywhere water is stagnant. Regardless of where they are found, cyanobacteria can be dangerous.

  • Cyanosis is defined as a bluish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes of the body caused by inadequate oxygen levels. Several different conditions involving the cardiovascular/circulatory system and/or the respiratory system that can lead to cyanosis, including congenital defects, degeneration of heart valves or heart muscle, blood clots in the lungs, pulmonary hypertension, pneumonia, asthma, lung flukes, smoke inhalation, or muscle damage to the diaphragm. Cyanosis is an emergency, and the root cause may be life-threatening and may or may not be reversible. Once back home, homecare instructions must be followed carefully.

  • Cystine bladder stones appear to be the result of a genetic abnormality that prevents a dog from reabsorbing cystine from the kidneys. While bladder stones in general are somewhat common in dogs, cystine bladder stones are rare. Your veterinarian may be able to palpate the stones or may need to perform imaging studies such as a bladder ultrasound or a contrast radiographic study. There are two primary treatment strategies for treating cystine bladder stones in dogs: urohydropropulsion or surgical removal. Dogs that have developed cystine bladder stones in the past will often be fed a therapeutic diet for life. Unfortunately, cystine stones have a high rate of recurrence, despite careful attention to diet and lifestyle.