Did you know that pets such as cats and dogs can develop diabetes? Just like in humans, pets with diabetes may not be able to produce enough insulin, or possibly their bodies do not allow them to use insulin properly.
Insulin is produced by the pancreas, and allows glucose in the blood to enter cells, allowing the body to properly function. Just like people, pets can suffer from both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes symptoms and the complications of the disease are also similar to humans. The following symptoms could indicate that your animal has diabetes:
- Change in appetite
- Excessive thirst/increase in water consumption
- Weight loss
- Increased urination
- Pungent breath
- Urinary tract infections
- Cataract formation, blindness
- Chronic skin infections
Insulin is generally regarded as the benchmark treatment for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Your veterinarian can prescribe special insulin. Owners of diabetic pets should discuss with their vet how to best prepare the insulin, and how much insulin is needed for pets.
Like diabetes in humans, diabetes amongst animals needs to be closely managed in order for your pet to live a longer, healthier life. When a pet’s diabetes is under control, they have normal thirst and urination times, a normal appetite, a stable weight, good vision and alertness, and a good level of activity. Blood sugar amongst animals can be controlled through diet, blood glucose monitoring, and exercise.