Diabetes in Pets
Diabetes is a condition that occurs when the body cannot process glucose correctly. Glucose gives us energy through our blood cells. Insulin, which is made in the pancreas, controls the levels of glucose in the bloodstream. For those with diabetes, regardless of the source of sugar or the amount of sugar, there is not enough glucose transported into the body’s cells.
Just as humans can get diabetes, so can pets. Diabetes is more common in older pets, but it can also rear its ugly head in younger or pregnant pets. However, no matter what age, your pet’s diabetes is manageable with proper monitoring, treatment, diets, and exercise.
Signs of Diabetes in Pets
Knowing the warning signs and what to look for is the first step in protecting your furry loved one from diabetes. If you see any of the below signs, please contact us immediately.
- Excessive water drinking and urinating
- Decreased appetite
- Cloudy eyes
- Chronic or reoccurring infections
How is Diabetes Treated?
Diabetes can be diagnosed by running tests to find signs of hyperglycemia and glucosuria. A blood and urine may also be ordered to rule out other medical conditions. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, a dose of insulin may be administered to the pet. A shot administers the insulin with a very small needle under the pet’s skin and is very well tolerated. A regular treatment plan includes regular examinations, blood and urine tests, and monitoring your pet’s weight, appetite, drinking, and urination. You may also be asked to administer regular insulin shots.
Caring for a Diabetic Pet
The key to managing a cat or dog with diabetes is keeping their blood sugar near normal levels with special diets, regular exercise, and insulin injections. For example, management may look like the following, depending on your pet:
- A high-fiber diet is often recommended
- A consistent daily exercise routine
- Spay female dogs diagnosed with diabetes
- A high-protein, low carb diet is recommended
- Daily exercise. This can be slightly more challenging than with dogs, but we can help develop a plan for your specific feline.