I recently read online that November is National Pet Diabetes Month. Personally, I do not know a lot about pet diabetes, so I thought I’d do some research, and share what I learned with you! Perhaps we can all learn a thing or two and become more aware of pet diabetes.
What causes diabetes in pets?
There are several factors that can contribute to the development of diabetes in pets. Genetics plays a role, some diabetes may be immune-mediated. This means the dog’s immune system works against the pancreas as it tries to produce insulin.
How would I know if my pet had diabetes?
Increased thirst and urination are the primary signs, although sometimes appetite is increased, and there is often weight loss. Other dogs may become obese. In some instances, blindness due to cataracts may be a sign that there is a problem. Cataracts makes your pet’s eyes look cloudy with vision loss. Some cats may develop an altered gait. It is always important to see your veterinarian whenever something seems “off” with your pet.
How is diabetes in pets diagnosed?
When you suspect your pet may be diabetic, a trip to the veterinarian is in order ASAP. Your veterinarian will diagnose based on the signs described above, glucose in the urine, and lab testing of the blood that shows the blood glucose is persistently high. Because there are usually other diseases present, a complete blood count (CBC), chemistry panel, urinalysis and urine culture are recommended as well.
How is diabetes in pets treated?
Diabetes in pets is managed through a combination of regular and controlled exercise, diet, and insulin. Pet diabetes cannot be cured, but it can be managed.
Please read this in-depth article from our PetEducation.com website for more details.