Connection Between Itchy Skin and Addison Disease In Dogs

by Claudia

Reader Question: Dog Canine Addison's Disease Cause Itching?

I am wondering what the connection is between Addison's disease and itchy skin. From that perspective I am wondering if Belladona would help with treating the constitution instead of acute symptoms of a golden Labrador?



Thoughts from our Veterinarian on Addison's Disease and Itchy Dog Skin

Hello Claudia,

I am not aware of an association between itching and Addison’s disease or seen reference to it in the scientific literature. The typical symptoms of chronic Addison’s disease are vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, weakness, increased thirst, poor appetite, and weight loss. In an acute Addisonian crisis, dogs can collapse, develop slow and irregular heart rates, and die.

Treatment options for Addison’s disease include fludrocortisone acetate and desoxycorticosterone pivalate (Percorten-V). Some dogs also require treatment with prednisone. Any other form of treatment is not recommended due to the serious and potentially fatal nature of the disease.


Jennifer Coates, DVM

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Oct 02, 2017
Itchy skin and Addison disease
by: Maureen

I have a mixed breed,Yorkie/westie, that was diagnosed with Addison disease when he was eight months old, he is now eight years old, and has suffered with itchy skin all this time. I have read Addison disease affects the skin, but didn't elaborate. Can you please comment.

Editor Comment: Yorkie/Westie and Addisons Related Skin Issues

Hi Maureen,

Addison's disease, also known as hypoadrenocorticism, is a condition that affects a dog's adrenal glands, reducing their ability to produce vital hormones such as cortisol and aldosterone. While it can cause various symptoms, it doesn't typically cause skin issues directly. However, chronic conditions and hormonal imbalances can generally weaken a dog's immune system, making it more susceptible to other issues, including skin conditions.

Some academic sources sources suggest that there may be a connection between Addison's disease and skin problems in dogs, particularly itchiness and lesions, which may be related to the hormonal imbalances caused by the disease. However, it's important to note that skin issues are not a universal symptom of Addison's disease and may not occur in all affected dogs.

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