Pet Diabetes Awareness Month

Diabetes Awareness Month

Diabetes Mellitus is not only associated with humans but also pets, and the month of November reminds us of that. November is highly regarded as the pet diabetes awareness month throughout the world. Every year, the month of November comes and reminds us how important our pet’s health is and what measures we need to take to avoid deadly diseases like diabetes among pets. Every pet parent needs to understand how dangerous diabetes is for pets and what are the symptoms and treatments of this endocrine disease.

What is Diabetes Mellitus?

Diabetes mellitus, commonly known as diabetes, occurs when a pet’s body cannot produce glucose normally. The hormone produced by the pancreas, which is known as insulin, is unable to function properly.

Insulin is required for carrying glucose from the bloodstream to the cell — the improper functioning of insulin results in a higher level of glucose in the body. The abundance of glucose in a pet’s body results in hyperglycemia and ultimately diabetes.

Which Pets Suffer From Diabetes?

Both cats and dogs, including many other animals like horses, pigs, apes, etc., are affected by diabetes at some point in their life if everything doesn’t go according to plan.

Diabetes is usually observed in the middle to old age dogs ranging between 7-10 years, while it is more commonly diagnosed in cats that are older than six years.

Moreover, diabetes is also linked with obesity. For the past few years, it has been noted that pets suffering from obesity have a higher risk of falling prey to diabetes.  Now, with substantial growth in pet obesity, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that pets are at the most risk of contracting diabetes today than ever before.

Diabetes And Its Types

Diabetes is classified into two types:

Type I DM

Type I DM is more commonly seen among dogs than cats. In type I, the body is unable to produce enough insulin for the proper functioning of the body.

Thus, the dog must be dependent on life-long insulin syringes administered twice a day. Hence, if your dog has recently been diagnosed with type I DM, it is probably for life. Female dogs are said to be at a higher risk of having diabetes than male ones.

Type II DM

Type II Diabetes is associated with insufficient production of insulin by the pancreas. Although insulin is produced to some extent, it is still not enough for the normal functioning of organs.

Generally, cats are a victim of type II DM. However, the good thing is that it is not life-long. Male cats are said to be at a higher risk of catching diabetes than female ones.

So, if your cat has been recently diagnosed with type II diabetes, then chances are your furry friend will be back on track after a few months of insulin therapy course.

Common Symptoms of Diabetes in Pets

Although not for sure, it’s still likely you would be able to diagnose diabetes from these common symptoms observed among diabetic pets:

  • Lethargy and Weakness
  • Frequency urination and excessive thirst
  • Weight loss (observed in the back) despite being obese.
  • Eating more than usual.
  • Poor skin and coat condition
  • Blindness.

A timely visit to the vet would ultimately lead to an early diagnosis and hence a better life.

Caring for a Diabetic Pet


Of course, managing life with a diabetic pet is not a piece of cake still; many pet parents are doing it and even winning. What every pet parent ought to do is strongly follow the diet as recommended by your vet. It would be a high fiber diet that would make sure to keep the sugar level in-between the normal range.

Exercise is also highly recommended for diabetic pets. Some vets would even advise you to spay your diabetic female dogs. Keeping an eye on your pet’s health and appetite while maintaining contact with your vet also comes under caring for your diabetic pet.

Nevertheless, to prevent all of this, it’s wise if you follow a routine checkup with your vet now and then. At least, make sure to visit the veterinarian during the month of November — the diabetes awareness month.



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