Our furry four-legged friends are an integral part of our lives. they provide us with love and devotion that makes challenges much easier to cope with – and they make the good times even better.

Health issues in return, they need our attention and care – and this includes keeping an eye out for health issues that can affect the quality of their lives.  Unfortunately one of these conditions is canine or feline diabetes. 

Here are some of the signs that your pet might be suffering from diabetes – and just what causes the condition.

Causes Of Diabetes In Pets

In short, diabetes can affect both cats and dogs and is caused by a condition that affects the boy’s ability to properly use Glucose, which is the primary source of energy for cells. Although diabetes will usually affect older pets. Diabetic dogs are usually between the ages of 4-14 years and are usually diagnosed at 7-10 years of age. The majority of diabetic cats are older than 6. 

Dogs and cats will be a lot more susceptible to diabetes if they are obese. However, there are other conditions that will make them more susceptible to the disease. These conditions include overactivity of the adrenal gland in canines (hyperadrenocorticsm) also known as Cushing’s Disease

Cats will be more likely to develop feline diabetes if their thyroid gland is overactive (hyperthyroidism). Other conditions that can lead to diabetes include heart or kidney disease, urinary tract infections, pancreatitis, and even some skin conditions. 

Pets who are on long-term medication that contains corticosteroids should be closely monitored by their owners. The use of corticosteroid drugs has been closely and reliably linked to diabetes in cats and dogs.

Diabetes is treatable through prescription medication, changes in diet, and regular exercise. However, in order to treat the disease it must first be diagnosed. 

Symptoms & Signs of Diabetes in Pets

Taking the above potential causes of pet-related diabetes into account, owners should note if their pets exhibit any of the following symptoms or signs:

  • Excessive water consumption and urination
  • Marked weight loss, combined with increased appetite
  • Decreased appetite
  • Dogs may exhibit cloudy eyes
  • Repeatedly suffering from infections – including those affecting the urinary tract or skin

If you note any of these symptoms then consult your vet very immediately.

Diabetes is a serious illness in humans, and it is just as life-threatening in pets like dogs and cats.

Excessive Thirst & Urination

Diabetes symptoms in pets resemble typical symptoms in humans. A primary symptom is excessive thirst and urination. This starts with the abnormally high level of sugar in the bloodstream. As the kidneys process liquids, the excess sugar seeps into the urine and takes a higher amount of water away from the body. As the body eliminates more water, it becomes more thirsty. When a urine test comes back with a high glucose level, this is a sign of diabetes.

Weight Loss

Weight loss is another symptom of diabetes. The diabetic animal produces insufficient insulin. The body needs insulin to carry glucose from the blood to nourish tissues and muscles. When the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin, the body is forced to metabolize its reserve of fat and muscles in order to produce sugar and ketones in the liver. When the body does not respond properly to insulin, diabetes results.

Cloudy or Red Eyes

The appearance of excessive redness in the pet’s eyes is also a typical diabetic symptom. Hyperglycemia causes the eyes’ blood vessels to become inflamed and turn bright red, much like oxygenated blood in the arteries. So, the sclera, or the whites of the eyes, becomes red. 

When sugar levels get back to normal, the color of the sclera returns to normal. When there is hypoglycemia, or when blood sugar is low, it also results in the sclera turning red, but the redness is much darker in color, like non-oxygenated blood in the veins. This can be seen in dogs who are hypoglycemic, but not in cats.

Hyperglycemia leads to many serious problems if left untreated. Blindness can come on quickly. Other problems include permanent damage to tissues, neuropathy to limbs, and dehydration. Pets with hypoglycemia can start shivering even when the temperature is not cold. They can lose consciousness. 

A quick remedy for that is to rub the animal’s gums with honey or other sugary products. Food should be offered as soon as hypoglycemic symptoms are seen in order to prevent more severe symptoms from manifesting.

Potential Treatment

After the pet is diagnosed with diabetes, the usual course of treatment is a protocol with insulin. This will alleviate much of the suffering that the pet can experience. The veterinarian will provide detailed instructions on how to administer the insulin injection two times a day. Support can also be found on many authoritative websites devoted to pet diabetes.

Read more interesting articles at Pet Fact

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