Grooming a Dog with Cushing's Disease

Certain canine medical conditions can be treated with surgery, although surgery is not necessarily going to be recommended. This is the case with Cushing's disease, which also exists in humans. The disease means that your dog's body produces excessive cortisol, which is a steroid hormone. Most instances of Cushing's disease are triggered by a small growth on your dog's pituitary gland (located at the base of their brain). Given the location of the growth, surgery is risky, which is why your dog's condition will generally be managed with medication, along with certain dietary and lifestyle recommendations. But how does Cushing's disease affect your dog's grooming needs?

A Sensitive Touch

If you've been bathing and grooming your dog at home, you should consider outsourcing the process to a professional dog grooming salon. The physical symptoms of Cushing's disease means that your dog will benefit from a sensitive touch, using specialist products, and it can be difficult to replicate this at home.

Skin and Coat

Your dog's grooming needs require this special care because of the way in which the disease can affect their skin and coat. Their skin can become thin, sensitive and easily prone to irritation and infections. Additionally, their coat might thin, meaning that their shedding will accelerate. It's not as though they will go bald, but the volume of their coat can diminish.

Special Needs

You'll need to find a groomer with experience in handling an animal with special needs, although the sensitive touch required can apply to dogs with a range of ailments, and it's not as though you need to find a salon with specific experience in Cushing's disease. 

Specialist Products

A professional groomer will have a greater range of the products your dog needs. This includes shampoo designed for dogs with these specific needs, which should (ideally) be completely fragrance free. It's all about avoiding potential irritants. Your dog can also receive a  moisturiser in the form of a balm, salve, or ointment to offset the effects that Cushing's disease can have on their skin.

The Appointment

A professional groomer will know the best approach for an animal with needs like yours. The appointment might run a little longer than you were expecting, but this is because your dog requires slow, gentle massaging as their grooming products are applied. Rinsing can take longer too, as this will need to happen with reduced water pressure. 

The physical effects of Cushing's disease means that your dog's grooming needs require an approach that accommodates these physical effects, without causing undue irritation and stress.