Diabetes in Dogs and Cats Treated by Our Veterinary Clinic in Ferndale
It often comes as a surprise, but pets like dogs and cats can get diabetes. This disease requires careful management to ensure a long life for the animal and to preserve his or her health. Here is an overview of the diagnosis and treatment of pet diabetes:
Discovering the Diabetes
A diagnosis of diabetes usually doesn't start with a blood test. Though an overall wellness checkup may include such a test, it is more common for owners to notice the symptoms and then bring the pet in for a special appointment. As with many other conditions, treatment will be more successful when the owner is quick to do this. That means that it's not a good idea to wait for a regularly-scheduled checkup even if your pet typically has an annual exam.
The symptoms to look for start with noticeably-increased water drinking and urination. This is a hallmark sign in humans as well. Other things to be on the lookout for include increased incidences of infection, unexplained weight loss (sometimes even with increased appetite), and cloudy eyes.
If you see these symptoms in your pet, it's time to bring the animal to Animal Hospital of Sullivan County to have the diagnosis confirmed. Confirmation typically requires a simple blood test. You may be asked to withhold food (including treats) from your pet for a set time before the appointment. This is to allow a "fasting blood glucose" test to be done. Fasting tests help eliminate the influence of recent meals on blood glucose levels.
Since diabetes typically affects older pets, other tests may be done to rule out other conditions that affect dogs and cats in this age range. Urine tests and other types of blood tests are some of these.
Testing and Treatment
Our veterinarian in Ferndale will prescribe a variety of treatments after tests confirm the levels of blood glucose involved. Typically, these include starting and maintaining an exercise program and special diet. Insulin is likely to be prescribed as well, especially for dogs.
Since the dog's owner controls what food the animal gets – making it so that the pet needs no willpower in order to stick to them - diets work far better for pets than they do for humans. Exercise, however, will require the human to be a bit motivated, especially if the pet is a dog. On the plus side, you'll both get healthy walks and feel better!
As in humans, insulin must be given to pets as an injection. This is because digestion destroys it. Our animal hospital in Ferndale, NY will teach pet owners and caregivers how to give the shots. Insulin needles are very short and thin, so they'll be tolerated better than the ones typically used for other treatments.
Contact Our Local Veterinarian in Ferndale for More Information Today!
If your dog or cat has been showing any of the signs of diabetes, give us a call at 845-292-6711. We'll schedule an appointment to test for these conditions and any others that may present the symptoms you're seeing. Soon, we'll have an effective treatment plan for your pet.