General Pet Guides
Diabetes is a chronic condition in which a deficiency of the hormone insulin impairs the body’s ability to use glucose (sugar) needed to supply the energy to the cells. Signs include, but are not limited to:
- Increased thirst and urination
- Weight loss despite a good appetite
- Sudden blindness
In diagnosing diabetes, your veterinarian may perform some or all of the following:
- Complete history and physical exam
- Blood work
- Abdominal X-rays
- Abdominal ultrasound
Treatment can vary from patient to patient, but typically your pet will be placed on once or twice daily insulin injections. Learning to give insulin injections may seem daunting, but with a lesson from your veterinarian and a little practice, it is very easy to do. Early in the course of insulin administration, your veterinarian will need to check glucose (blood sugar) levels often. Many times these are glucose curves that require a day of hospitalization to obtain blood levels throughout the day. Adjustments to the insulin dosage and frequency of administration can be made based on these levels. It can be frustrating early on getting the correct insulin dose determined, but please be sure to discuss any concerns you have with your veterinarian.
Along with insulin administration, animals with diabetes require weight management and proper diet to optimally control their disease. Animals may require lower insulin dosages if they are on foods that allow for better release of nutrients into their intestines. It helps to keep their glucose levels more balanced throughout the day. Your veterinarian will help you choose a proper diet for your pet.
Always remember, the symptoms for diabetes are not exclusive to this disease. There are other conditions that can cause similar signs. Please consult with your vet if you are concerned your pet may have diabetes. Though it seems like an overwhelming disease, diabetes can be very successfully managed in pets.
Click Here for Download