Humans, Horses, Dogs, Cats, Reptiles, and Wild animals suffer from diabetes mellitus (DM), or more commonly known as diabetes. DM is a group of metabolic diseases in which there are high blood sugar levels over a prolonged period. Diabetes is either due to the failure of the pancreas not producing insulin or the cells of the body not responding properly to the insulin produced. In animals, the difference between Type I or Type II is not very clear as it is in humans.
DM in Dogs and Cats can occur at any age most of the time diabetic dogs are usually 4-14 years of age and mostly diagnosed at 7-10 years of age, while diabetic cats are older than the age of 6. Diabetes is more frequent in female dogs than in male dogs. On the other hand in ruminants, diabetes is a very unusual condition as compared to small animals. It is more common in old Cattles. It is caused due to pancreatic destruction associated adenocarcinoma, pancreatitis, and islet degeneration.
Obesity is a significant risk factor for the development of diabetes. As dogs and cats age, they may also develop other diseases resulting from diabetes or could affect their response to the treatment for diabetes, including hyperadrenocorticism in dogs and hyperthyroidism in cats, pancreatitis, heart disease, kidney, and urinary tract infection. Prolonged use of medication containing corticosteroids is also a risk factor for diabetes.
Signs of Diabetes in Pets
Earlier the diagnosis, the better chance your pet may have for a longer and healthier life.
- Excessive water drinking and increased urination
- Weight loss, even though there may be an increased appetite
- Decreased appetite
- Cloudy Eyes (especially in dogs)
- Chronic or recurring infection
Blood Test– hyperglycemia, Urine Culture– glucosuria. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, you will be prescribed an initial dose and type of Insulin for your pet by a practicing veterinarian. Dietary Alterations must be made.
Successful treatment of diabetes requires regular examination, blood and urine tests, and monitoring of your pet’s weight, appetite, drinking, and urination, and most importantly client education.
Concerns for a diabetic pet
Lifelong treatment is required for diabetes, with special diets, a good fitness regimen, and, particularly in dogs, daily injection. The key to managing diabetic patients is to keep your pet’s blood sugar near normal levels (80 to 120 mg/dL) neither too low nor too high.
|High Fiber Diet||High Protein, Low Carbohydrate Diet|
|Daily Exercise||Daily Fitness Regimen|
|Spaying diabetes diagnosed dog||Daily Excercise|
Diabetic dogs and cat can live long and healthy lives with proper management and veterinary care.
Trying to manage diabetes is hard because if you don’t, you’ll have to deal with consequences later in life.
The Geek Veterinarian