Diabetes in dogs is not as uncommon as some may think! Unlike humans, our pets aren’t able to tell us when they’re feeling ill, so it’s our job to know the signs to look out for. If you don’t know the signs to look for you could miss the opportunity to detect the problem before it becomes more serious.
Diabetes happens when our pets’ bodies produce small amounts of (or no) insulin, which causes them to have chronically increased blood sugar levels. With diabetes, the glucose-insulin connection isn’t working as it should. Diabetes occurs in dogs in two forms:
• Insulin-deficiency diabetes—This is when your dog’s body isn’t producing enough insulin. This usually happens when the pancreas is damaged or not functioning properly. Dogs with this type of diabetes need daily shots to replace the missing insulin. Insulin-deficiency diabetes is the most common type of diabetes in dogs.
• Insulin-resistance diabetes—This is when the pancreas is producing some insulin, but your dog’s body isn’t utilising the insulin as it should be. This happens because the cells aren’t responding to the insulin’s “message”, so glucose isn’t being pulled out of the blood and into the cells. This type of diabetes can especially occur in older, obese dogs.
Should your dog have pet diabetes, these are the signs to look for:
Increased urination – Your dog may ask to go outside frequently and may start having “accidents” in the house. Increased urination (and increased thirst) happens because the excess sugar that remains in the bloodstream draws out water with it to the kidneys.
Increased thirst – Your dog may drink frequently and empty the water bowl more often.
Weight loss – Your dog can lose weight despite eating normal portions. This is because the dog isn’t efficiently converting nutrients from its food.
Increased appetite – Your dog could seem very hungry all the time because his body’s cells aren’t getting all the glucose they need, even though the dog is eating a normal amount.
If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, take your dog to the vet for a full checkup. The vet will be able to advise you on the best practices for the future,
For more information on diabetes please visit Canine and feline diabetes