Mar 1, 2024 3:26:30 PM
There are two types of diabetes which can occur in dogs:
This is the most common type of diabetes, is a metabolism disorder and can occur in two ways:
What are the common causes of Diabetes Mellitus?
This is a very rare type of diabetes. Unrelated to diabetes mellitus, pets who have this type of diabetes cannot regulate their body water and urinate frequently. They can become dehydrated in as little as 4-6 hours so need constant access to fresh drinking water.
Diabetes insipidus can be caused by the following:
How to spot the signs of diabetes in dogs
The main signs of diabetes include:
Always consult your vet if you spot these signs, as they can be indicators of various diseases. Diabetic dogs are prone to urinary tract infections and can also suffer from fits and collapses and go on to develop cataracts in their eyes.
What happens next?
Your vet will have to do a number of tests in order to diagnose diabetes. Each type involves different testing.
How do I help my dog manage their diabetes?
As Diabetes Insipidus has varying causes, treatment will depend on diagnosis.
How to manage Diabetes Mellitus
Routine is the key when it comes to managing diabetes. Working with your vet closely to ensure you’re confident in administering insulin, as well as keeping to feeding schedules will help your dog stay on the right track.
As your dog cannot product their own insulin, insulin injections are usually given every 12 hours, immediately after a meal. Their insulin doses are based on their weight (initially) and also their response to the medication.
Don’t panic! Insulin adjustment takes time and regular vet check-ups will be the norm during this process. Your vet will help advise you on administering insulin confidently. Whilst needles can be a little scary in most cases dogs don’t even react.
When feeding a dog with diabetes, it’s important to stick to the same recipes, schedule and amounts to ensure their intake matches their insulin dosage. Insulin should be given straight after they finish their meal.
Diabetic dogs shouldn’t eat between meals as this can affect their blood sugar levels, so it’s wise to avoid snacks and treats throughout the day. If your dog accidentally eats something significant, we will always advise that to speak to your vet about what to do next. To help them feel full throughout the day, diabetic dogs benefit from a diet which is high in fibre, and low in sugar, as this also helps them absorb glucose at a slower rate. Your vet will advise you on how many calories your dog will need per day.
Exercise is really important for diabetic dogs, as it helps with insulin absorption and can help avoid high blood sugar levels. We would recommend steady, moderate-intensity activity daily for your dog, ideally after their first meal and insulin dose.
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