I am diabetic and I live a happy life!

We missed Diabetes Awareness Month in November but it is an important subject so we will address it now.

You might be wondering “What is diabetes, exactly?” and “What are the symptoms?” Those are two very common questions. Keep reading to learn more!

First, let’s begin with the symptoms! After all, the best prognosis begins with early detection.
If your pet displays any of the following symptoms, it may be a clear sign of diabetes or another more serious disease.

• Excessive eating
• Increased thirst
• Increased urination
• Weight gain
• Weight loss
• Unkempt or rough/shabby coat
• Sleeping more than usual
• Low energy/stops socializing

What is diabetes?

Simply put, diabetes is a disease in which your pet is unable to produce enough insulin. Your pet, just as you, needs insulin to regulate high glucose levels. Diabetes can also result if the body becomes less sensitive to insulin. Without insulin to regulate sugar levels, your pet’s body will eliminate excess sugar through urine. This is why excessive urination can be a strong indication that your pet has diabetes.

How is Diabetes diagnosed?

Diabetes is diagnosed by a physical examination and a variety or laboratory tests. Prompt treatment will follow. Diabetes can be managed in a few ways. Insulin injections, oral medicines, and/or a prescribed diet are all options your veterinary doctor will discuss with you. His recommendation will result in how far along the disease has progressed. As stated earlier, the best prognosis is led by an early diagnosis. A diagnosis of diabetes is not a death sentence. Your pet can live a long and happy life when the right treatment plan is put in place. Any delay in treatment may lead to more suffering and other illnesses may result.

No matter what treatment plan you decide on, you should closely monitor your pet’s appetite, food and water consumption and urine output. These will be key details to keep your pet on a regimented treatment plan. It is also necessary to know the signs of low glucose while your pet is undergoing treatment! Lethargy, not wanting to eat, not socializing, or even collapse are all signs of low glucose. Please seek prompt medical attention if any of those symptoms are present. It is recommended that you feed your pet right away or rub corn syrup on his gums if sings of low blood sugar levels persist.
For more information about Diabetes and your pets, please visit www.petdiabetesmonth.com