While diabetes is typically thought to be a chronic disease impacting humans, cats and dogs can also develop this condition. As a result of this disease, blood sugar levels can skyrocket, causing a variety of serious and uncomfortable symptoms that may put your pet’s life in danger. Fortunately, if caught early, this condition can be managed with medication and help from a trusted veterinarian. In honor of National Pet Diabetes Month this November, here are a few key details every animal lover should know about this illness.
A Simple Guide to Pet Diabetes
What Increases the Risk of Pet Diabetes?
Any cat or dog can develop diabetes, particularly older, physically inactive, and overweight animals. Certain breeds may also be genetically predisposed to the condition.
How Can You Tell If Your Pet Has Diabetes?
By keeping track of your pet’s health, you can often detect signs of diabetes early on, allowing you to seek out beneficial care from a veterinarian. Common symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, changes in appetite, increased thirst and urination, wounds that won’t heal, and cloudy eyes.
What Complications Are Associated With Diabetes in Animals?
Prolonged high blood sugar levels can cause a variety of long-term complications in cats and dogs. For example, when sugar is not processed correctly because of a lack of insulin, cells can starve and end up using fat and muscle tissue as an energy resource. This process leads to an increase in ketones, a toxic byproduct that can eventually cause coma and even death. Other possible complications related to pet diabetes include chronic infections, skin problems, nerve damage, and pancreatitis.
How Is Pet Diabetes Treated?
If your pet has diabetes, your veterinarian will develop a custom treatment plan to help keep their blood sugar levels under control. Treatment usually involves regular exercise, weight control, and a strict low-carb, high-protein diet. Insulin injections may also be required.
If you’re concerned about your four-legged friend’s risk of diabetes, turn to the specialists at Wahiawa Pet Hospital on Oahu, HI. Their veterinarians are known for providing every animal with personalized, gentle care to address a variety of health problems, including diabetes. To learn more about their services, current specials, and active duty military discounts, visit this veterinary hospital online. To set up an appointment, call a friendly staff member at (808) 621-7000.