Like people, animals can also get chronic health conditions such as diabetes. The risk of developing diabetes is greater if the dog or cat is obese or overweight. Dogs develop a type of diabetes that is like type 1 diabetes in humans while cats develop a type like type 2 diabetes in people. Pet owners should take note of these warning signs of diabetes.
Urinating More Often
Increased urination is a common sign of diabetes in dogs and cats. More frequent urination is caused by raised sugar levels which begins to flow over into the urine.
Drinking More Water Than Normal
Increased thirst is also a sign of diabetes in pets. Pets with diabetes urinate more frequently and therefor drink more water to compensate for the fluids lost.
Eating More But Losing Weight
Increased appetite and weight loss are common signs of diabetes in pets. Pets with diabetes, lack the insulin hormone, resulting in the unfulfilled feeling of hunger and causes weight loss.
Showing Less Energy and Activity
Animals with diabetes will show less energy and activity. If your pet is lethargic, it could have a life-threatening condition. This is caused when the body uses fat instead of sugar for energy. This causes the production and build-up of toxic acids in the blood.
If you notice any of these signs in your pet, it is advised to take it to the veterinarian as soon as possible for a diabetes screening and evaluation. Prevention is crucial for pet healthcare. It is important that pet owners recognise a minor medical issue and help to prevent it from growing into a major medical issue. A health issue identified early is easier to treat and financially easier to manage.
Diabetes differs between dogs and cats and the treatment also differs. Dogs will need lifelong insulin treatment, a special diet and regular exercise. Cats will initially need insulin, but with early management, it may be able to achieve normal blood sugar levels with diet and no insulin.