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Thinning Hair On Senior Hairy Hairless?

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7 replies to this topic

#1
Avilee

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Hi Crested lovers! I had a question I hope someone here might be able to answer...
After 10 years we finally figured out that our little girl, rescued from the streets of Fresno, is probably (at least mostly) a hairy hairless Crested. She was pretty hairy when we adopted her as a youngster, but over the past years she has been noticeably thinning. Since she was also drinking excessively we had her thoroughly tested for Cushing's; those tests proved inconclusive, but she eventually turned out to be diabetic (diagnosed 4 years ago). Since then, her hair loss has increased, to the point that she is completely naked on her belly and nearly so on her chest, neck, and tail, very thin on her shoulders and sides -- you can see right through it to her skin (she still has a fair amount of hair on her head and legs).

We did read a Crested breeder's blog who mentioned that hairy hairless generally thin out as they get older, so our running joke is that she is experiencing "Crested pattern baldness"... but I still worry in case this breeder is not very authoritative, perhaps just happens to breed a line that is prone to Cushing's? Our doctor thinks we ought to test again for Cushing's and we are considering it...  But I would be interested to know if this is actually something common among hairy hairless -- do they tend toward more hairlessness as they got older? (she is about 12 or 13 now).

Thanks very much for any insights!



#2
jakksmum

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I don't know about hairy hairless...but my hairless boy , Jakks ,  has thinner hair than when he came to us at 3.5 years old. I don't know if this is normal or not ....he is 8.5 years old , now....anyone have answers for us both ??



#3
Lady & The Tramp

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Although I'm not a breeder, my girl is a hairy hairless who's now 12+ years old and I haven't noticed any thinning.
"In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."

-Edward Hoagland


#4
ann

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It's not uncommon for elderly dogs, like elderly people, to have thinning hair. Mischief is 13 next week and her hair is thinner than when she was young. Mortisha is 10, and hers is also thinner. They are both true hairless but have a lot of crest and tail hair and when combing them, I do notice it's more  sparse these days. An under active thyroid can cause thinning hair but your vet: is the best person to ask as there other symptoms with that.  


 When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace, Jimi Hendrix. All dogs go to Heaven, but some dogs live in Hell. Please don't support puppy farmers.


#5
jakksmum

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thanks , Ann



#6
Avilee

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Well, I'm afraid this is considerably more than ordinary aging-dog thinning hair... Our previous elderly dogs (they've lived to 14, 15, and 18) have not had anything like this -- this is going completely bald on her stomach, sides and neck. Yes, of course we have gone over this with our doctor (as an aging diabetic, she does get a checkup twice a year), who thinks we may need to re-test for Cushing's... I just wanted to see if this might be a Crested thing, since she is my first (presumed) Crestie and therefore I don't have the experience with them that I do with other dogs.

 

Thanks, Lady & The Tramp and jakksmum!



#7
ann

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It's not a specifically Crestie thing. Cushings is more common in toys breeds than the larger breeds though. It's caused by the body over producing cortisol, which affects the major organs. It tends to affect older dogs, (and cats, and humans). It isn't curable but can be effectively controlled with meds: usually a drug called Vetoryl. (You mustn't handle this drug  without gloves if you are pregnant or trying to get pregnant, and don't split the capsule.)  The dog does need regular checkups every few months but symptoms improve fairly quickly and  the dog can live a reasonably normal life. 


 When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace, Jimi Hendrix. All dogs go to Heaven, but some dogs live in Hell. Please don't support puppy farmers.


#8
Avilee

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Sorry if I have not been clear enough -- I was not at all thinking that Cushing's per se is specific to Cresteds... more like wanting to find out if thinning hair might actually be "normal" on a hairy hairless and therefore perhaps not a symptom of Cushing's (again, I had read on a Crested breeder's blog that hairy hairless "tend to thin out" as they get older -- but I have no idea how trustworthy that particular breeder might be). I thought this might be a good place to find out -- so far not seeing much confirmation for the "normal thinning" theory, so I guess I may have to assume it's Cushing's, oh well...

 

I am pretty well aware of the signs and symptoms, disease profile, progression, testing, and treatments (including Vetoryl or perhaps Anipryl) for Cushing's -- but thanks for the information for those who might not know about it!






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