Addison’s Disease: A Personal Story

Judge rules against prescription dog food companies

Rewards 12.5 Million judgement

Addison’s Disease is a serious, life threatening illness that is often misdiagnosed. I have had first hand experience dealing with this condition in one of my own dogs. With vigilant care your dog can go on to live a healthy, happy life.

I had grown up with miniature poodles and loved them to bits. I also always wanted a big dog, so for my 40th birthday my family and I picked up my beloved black standard poodle, Storm. She was a delightful, sweet puppy and probably the least appropriately named dog. Although there was nothing stormy about her personality, we did have a stormy road ahead with her health.

Murphy and Storm lying in front yard WhittierWhen Storm was a year old she got a new brother, George. He was also a standard poodle from the same breeder. George was the runt of the litter but sure had a huge personality. He fiercely protected his big sister against any and all outsiders! He was a tough little guy and my husband’s favorite dog of all time!

Our family was very active in baseball. The kids played and my husband coached. One summer when Storm had just turned two years old, we took the whole gang to an all day tournament. The weather was cold and rainy. Storm was listless all day. On the way home I felt her feet and they were stone cold.

I brought her to the vet, who was also her breeder. All her blood work came back normal but she continued to be quiet and lethargic. Over the next few weeks Storm went from a healthy 51 pounds down to 29 pounds. Unknown to us, she was about to have her first Addisonian crisis.

Janice adjusting StormStorm had all the typical symptoms that came and went:

  • weakness and lethargy
  • dehydration with shaking
  • low blood pressure and weak pulse
  • depression
  • loss of appetite

Further blood tests revealed that her potassium and sodium levels were out of balance and she was anemic. It was difficult to diagnose but we did a test that was definitive for Addison’s disease. This is an ACTH stimulation test. ACTH is produced by the pituitary gland, which in turn stimulates the adrenal glands to produce it’s various hormones. ACTH injection is used to test the response of the adrenal glands.  Dogs should have an increase in adrenal gland output following injection. Storm’s initial blood levels of cortisol were very low and they stayed low after the test.  The diagnosis was confirmed. We were devastated.

Over the years to follow she also experienced episodes of muscle weakness, diarrhea with bloody stools, and periods of vomiting. She even collapsed on one of our gentle walks and my husband had to carry her back home.

In my next blog I will go into more detail about the adrenals. We’ll talk about how Addison’s Disease can be treated and managed and I’ll share more of our experiences dealing with Storm’s illness over the course of her lifetime.

The use of Presciption dog food is one of my pet peeves and shows that the
phrase “Marketing over Mother Nature’ holds true.
If you are a dog owner, you may have heard about the class action suit
against prescription dog foods. Hills, Science Diet, Royal Canin and Purina
are some of the brands that are accused of misleading consumers and
veterinarians about the benefits and ingredients of their products. The
lawsuit claims that:

  • these companies charge premium prices for prescription dog foods that are not significantly different from regular dog foods. In fact, they are made in the same facilities, using the same suppliers as low-quality grocery store brands like Alpo and Beneful.
  • they do not have any scientific evidence to support their claims of treating or preventing various health conditions in dogs. They are not made in facilities that follow traditional drug manufacturing protocols.
  • that these companies have violated consumer protection laws and engaged in false advertising.

The class action suit was filed in 2019 by a group of dog owners who purchased prescription dog foods from these brands for their pets. They are seeking refunds, damages and an injunction to stop the companies from selling prescription dog foods without proper authorization and
. The suit is currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Prescription dog foods are supposed to be specially formulated to address specific health issues in dogs, such as kidney disease, diabetes, allergies, obesity and more. However, according to the lawsuit, these products are not
regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or any other agency,
 and they do not require a prescription from a veterinarian to be sold.

The lawsuit claims that these companies have exploited this loophole to market their products as prescription dog foods, even though they are not approved or tested by any authority.

This suit also accuses these companies of using low-quality ingredients and fillers in their prescription dog foods, such as corn, wheat, soy, by-products and artificial colors and flavors. These ingredients may not only be ineffective for treating or preventing health conditions in dogs, but they may also cause adverse reactions and allergies in some dogs. The lawsuit cites several examples of dogs that suffered from health problems after
consuming prescription dog foods from these brands, such as vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, skin infections, kidney failure and death.

The lawsuit seeks to hold these companies accountable for their deceptive and unlawful practices, and to provide compensation and relief to the dog owners who have been harmed by them. It also aims to protect the public interest and the welfare of dogs by ensuring that prescription dog foods are properly regulated and labeled, and that consumers and veterinarians are informed about their benefits and risks.

Please be aware that the FDA does not review or verify the health claims on any veterinary diet.

Take a close look at the ingredient list and ask your vet for evidence that the foods in the prescription diet are any better than most regular diets. Also please keep in mind that while your vet has the best intentions, they get little or no nutrition training and often what little training they do get comes from the very companies that are named in these lawsuits. 

Ultra processed foods made with poor quality ingredients are not what your dog needs if they are suffering from an illness. Give your dog a fighting chance with fresh, quality foods for a long and healthy life. 

This lawsuit was settled in July of 2021. Hills Pet Food paid $12.5 million to participants.

Is it any wonder that here at Lucky Dog Cuisine we believe wholeheartedly “Fresh is Better”
The food we send your dog is the exact same food we feed our own beloved pack. 


Our best special ever!



A savings of $100
14 Pound Variety Pack For ONLY $79 (future orders discounted to $159) FREE SHIPPING Our unique, Cancel Anytime subscription program. LIMIT 1 Intro Pack per client
Reasons To Subscribe:
  • Save $100 off your first purchase.
  • Subsequent orders are $159.
  • Fully customizable schedule and flavors.