Many of us know a friend or family member who is diabetic, but do you know a dog with diabetes? If you don’t already, you may soon enough.
The recent rise in pet obesity in the country has been linked to an alarming increase in diabetic pets. Between 2006 and 2016, diabetes in dogs has risen by almost 80 percent according to Banfield Pet Hospital’s State of Pet Health report.
Diabetes is a serious disease. It can severely damage your pet’s organs. It can cause urinary infections and hormone imbalances. If your dog is diagnosed with diabetes you’re in for financial shocker as well. Diabetes is very expensive and can cost more than $10,000 over the life of your pet.
You can, however save your furry friend from a difficult life by preventing diabetes and diagnosing it quickly.
Preventing diabetes in dogs
It’s always better to work on preventing your dog from getting diabetes with a healthy lifestyle and regular checkups with the vet. Not only will they keep diabetes at bay, it will also save your pet from other harmful diseases and health complications.
Avoid overfeeding. To maintain their current weight, dogs on average need around 30 calories per pound of body weight every day. You can use a calorie requirement chart to get a more accurate estimation of how many calories your dog needs according to their size and breed. Keep their diet clean by feeding them only high-quality, low carbs food approved by AAFCO, and take them out for a walk every day.
Symptoms of diabetes in dogs
Some common symptoms exhibited by diabetic dogs are:
- Change in appetite – diabetes in dogs can cause a fluctuation in your pet’s appetite. You might notice that they are hungrier than usual. Diabetes stops amino acids from reaching their cells and invoking hunger pains.
- Increased urination – one of the first symptoms in diabetic dogs is more urinating accidents. Because of high blood sugar levels spilling into the urine, their production increases.
- Thirstier – to replace water loss, your pet dog will be thirstier than usual.
- Urinary tract infections – secondary urinary tract infections can develop in dogs because of high sugar levels in their urine.
- Blindness – dogs with diabetes are vulnerable to cataract formation causing blindness.