Diabetes is a treatable disease that is caused by a lack of insulin or the inability of your pet’s body to use insulin. Insulin is secreted into the blood stream and helps cell membranes take in glucose and turn it into energy.
When your pet cannot metabolize glucose, the cells can’t get the energy they need and this in turn causes problems for your pet. If glucose isn’t used, your pet’s body may begin to use fat and that can cause ketones. Ketones are toxic to the body can make your pet sick.
Diabetes affects approximately 1 in 400 cats and if left untreated can lead to weakness, malnutrition, ketoacidosis, dehydration, and even worse. 1 in 200 dogs may develop diabetes and any breed is susceptible although some breeds may be more prone to developing the disease than others.
What are some of the symptoms of diabetes?
1: Increased thirst
2: Increase urination
3: Weight loss but always acts hungry
6: Cloudy eyes
7: Dry or thinning fur
If you find your pet showing any of these symptoms, a trip to the vet is in order to test and diagnose if
your pet has diabetes.
You will need to monitor your pet’s glucose levels, may need to administer insulin shots, and will have to switch to a prescription diet for your pet. A routine of feeding times will need to be set, to keep your pet’s body stable. This means meal times need to be given at the same time everyday. The food needs to have good sources of protein, complex carbs, and fiber to help slow the absorption of glucose into the system. It also usually has low fat content.
Exercise will also need to be altered to make sure your pet is healthy, fit, and regulate glucose levels. A consistent exercise routine will help avoid sudden changes in glucose requirements.
Also, regular vet visits may need to be more often than once a year to monitor your pet’s health and diabetes. Some animals go into what is termed “clinical remission” where insulin injections are no longer needed, but only your vet can properly diagnose this.
All breeds and types of dogs and cats can develop diabetes usually pets who are five or older are at higher risk. Experts believe that felines develop diabetes develop from several factors such as genetics, other disorders, obesity, and lack of exercise.