Your Pets Health Needs Can Change with the SeasonYour Pets Health Needs Can Change with the Season


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Your Pets Health Needs Can Change with the Season

When I bought my first house, the number-one item on my list of new home "must-haves" was a large, fenced-in back yard, so the dogs I would soon adopt would have a place to run around! I adopted one younger dog and a senior dog, so I have learned about caring for pets of all ages. One thing I have noticed is that my dogs' health needs really change with the seasons. My older dog has a little arthritis, and it acts up more in the cold winter and I have to give him a supplement for it. Both dogs are a little less active in the winter when it is cold, so I have to feed them a little less or they gain weight. I decided to start a blog to share my pet health tips, and I hope you can learn a lot here!

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3 Canine Endocrine Disorders That Can Be Treated With Acupuncture

If you are considering alternative treatments for your dog's chronic health conditions, you may want to explore the benefits of pet acupuncture services. Acupuncture may help ease your dog's symptoms of endocrine-related disorders, allowing your pet to live more comfortably. If your dog takes medications to manage an illness, acupuncture sessions may even improve the condition so dramatically that the medication dosage can be significantly decreased or even discontinued by the veterinarian. 

Hypothyroidism 

A sluggish or under active thyroid, also known as hypothyroidism, can make your dog feel tired, listless, and intolerant to cold. In addition, your dog may suffer from constipation, obesity, and loss of fur. The coat may also become dull, and the skin may become increasingly irritated, itchy, and dry. While thyroid-replacement medications are often used in the treatment of canine hypothyroidism to help improve thyroid function, they can cause side effects.

These may include anxiety, aggression, excessive panting, muscle tremors, and cardiovascular abnormalities. Acupuncture might help the dog with hypothyroidism by easing skin irritation, promoting relaxation, and enhancing cardiac health. If your dog is unable to tolerate thyroid medications because of their adverse reactions, your veterinarian may recommend alternative treatments such as acupuncture to augment or even replace traditional medical treatment. 

Diabetes

Acupuncture, and perhaps acupressure, may help ease the symptoms of canine diabetes, and is some cases, one or both of these alternative practices may even be more effective than anti-glucose medications in stabilizing your dog's blood sugar levels. If your dog exhibits excessive thirst, an increase in urination, increased appetite, and weight loss, diabetes may be to blame. Other symptoms of diabetes in dogs may include depression, poor appetite, and lack of energy, and vomiting.

Acupuncture may help stimulate your dog's appetite to help prevent weight loss. This is especially important in the animal who has severe or long-standing diabetes, because it is in these dogs that diabetes-related appetite suppression is most common.  Acupuncture and acupressure may also help in the release of "feel good" chemicals in your dog's brain, which may help treat fatigue, depression, and lack of energy. Diabetes can lead to severe complications including liver and kidney failure, blindness, and cardiovascular complications.

If your dog starts exhibiting any of the above symptoms, a thorough examination with your veterinarian will be necessary determine if your pet's serum glucose is elevated. If your vet determines that your dog has diabetes, both traditional and complementary treatments such as acupuncture may be recommended to help improve your dog's health. 

Cushing's Disease

One of the most common endocrine-related disorders in dogs is Cushing's disease. Also known as hyperadrenocorticism, this condition can lead to obesity, hair loss, increased urination, excessive thirst, and skin bruising. In addition, Cushing's disease can cause extreme fatigue, muscle weakness, insomnia, and an increase in panting.

While a benign pituitary tumor is the most common cause of this disorder, certain medications such as glucocorticoids can also raise the risk for hyperadrenocorticism. Although surgical removal of the tumor and medications can help treat this disorder, both may cause unpleasant adverse reactions.

Conversely, acupuncture can help treat the symptoms of Cushing's disease without any side effects or adverse reactions. Acupuncture may help facilitate blood flow and energy through your dog's body, helping to minimize fatigue and insomnia. It may also help enhance your dog's immune function, which may be compromised as a result of the pituitary tumor. 

If your dog has any of the above symptoms, see your veterinarian as soon as possible to rule out canine diabetes, Cushing's disease, or hypothyroidism. The sooner these disorders are diagnosed, the sooner an effective treatment plan can be implemented. When prompt treatment, both traditional and complementary is initiated, your pet is less likely to experience complications from these diseases. This may help ensure that your dog lives more comfortably and symptom-free.