It isn’t only people who can develop diabetes, but our beloved pets as well, regardless of how well we care for them. Diabetes can be pretty scary for the pet owner and the first question often asked of the vet is “Will I have to put her to sleep?” This is a difficult question to answer and that answer may greatly depend on the overall health and age of your pet.
The good news is that many older pets which are diagnosed with diabetes do go on to live many more happy years, but this does take the time, effort and proper care of the animal by the pet owner. Dogs and cats with diabetes can live a normal lifespan if the diabetes is diagnosed and treated properly by both the veterinarian and the owner.
What are the symptoms of pet diabetes?
Diabetes symptoms frequently appear gradually over a span of a few weeks or months, so it is pretty common for them to go unnoticed for a while. Symptoms of diabetes to be on the lookout for in your pet include:
- Excessive thirst and increased water consumption
- Increased urination
- Sudden or rapid weight gain or loss
- Significant increase or decrease in appetite
- Weakness of the rear legs
- General lethargy
- Poor condition of the skin and coat
- Compromised immunity and/or increased susceptibility to bacterial infection
- Liver disease
- Kidney failure
Causes of pet diabetes
The precise causes of pet diabetes are not clearly understood. However, there do seem to be several factors which play a part in the onset of this condition such as genetics, diet, obesity, age, as well as a history of injury or illness. Illnesses including pancreatitis or immune-related conditions are known to cause diabetes in pets, as can any injury or illness which damages the cells of the pancreas.
Caring for a diabetic pet
Diabetes is a life-threatening condition which can be fatal if left untreated; however, with proper treatment it is possible for your pet to live a completely normal life, and in cats, treatment of diabetes can actually lead to a full remission. Regardless of whether you choose natural or conventional treatment methods, or even choose a combination of both, all diabetes treatment regimens should include a healthy diet.
Proper care of a diabetic pet does take great commitment as a pet with diabetes must be constantly monitored and cared for. There can be no setting out the pet food in the morning and and then forgetting until the next day. Vacations become a challenge because the pet must either accompany you, which requires forethought and preparation, or they must be placed in the care of someone who can properly monitor and deal with their condition. A pet with diabetes will need medication, fed a proper diet and his behavior will need to be monitored closely.
Of course this doesn’t mean you will have to give up your job and be a stay-at-home pet parent, but it does mean that you will have to pay more attention to your pet’s behavior and know what to do if you see changes in his health situation. It is also more of a financial obligation to have a pet with an ongoing illness or condition.
Prevention is better than a cure!
Modern diets with high sugar and fat contents have affected the health of people all over the world — and your furry friends are no exception. Find the best diet for your pet. A diet that is high in fiber and complex carbohydrates slows the digestive process and helps to stabilize blood sugar levels.
In obese animals, losing weight is also advised, and your vet may advise a prescription diet. However, if you find your pet dislikes pet food, you can prepare home-cooked food (do this in consultation with a veterinary nutritionist). Avoid commercially-prepared pet foods, which may contain high amounts of sugar and preservatives.
Exercise is another important part of keeping your pet’s blood sugar levels under control. However, be sure to keep the activity level the same from day to day.
There is also a great deal of evidence to suggest that the use of carefully chosen herbal remedies and dietary supplements can help to support pancreatic health and maintain a healthy supply of insulin – thus helping to naturally keep pet blood sugar levels within the normal range. Along with the correct lifestyle choices, herbal remedies and dietary supplements can make all the difference to your pet’s health.
GlucoEnsure contains a specially selected combination of herbs known for their ability to maintain pancreatic health and support the pancreas in its function of the normal production of insulin. Research has demonstrated that the ingredients in GlucoEnsure help to keep blood sugar levels within the normal range.
In addition, GlucoEnsure is an excellent all-round tonic supplement and will also help to maintain healthy circulation, digestion and cardiovascular health, while supporting immune functioning and feelings of health and vitality.
GlucoEnsure is very effective used alone, or as part of a total veterinarian program.
Learn more about GlucoEnsure now.
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Recognizing and Treating Diabetes in Pets by Dee Braun