March 29, 2010

Diabetes in Dogs

diabetic dogJust like for humans, when left untreated diabetes can be a very serious illness for your dog. There are two types of diabetes in dogs: Type 1 and Type 2. The difference between these two types has little to do with the symptoms or treatment for the disease except that dogs with type 1 diabetes are insulin dependent while dogs with type 2 diabetes are not. Generally speaking however, the symptoms of type 1 and type 2 dog diabetes are the same. High blood sugar, extreme thirst, excessive urination, weight loss, poor skin and coat, and dehydration are all common symptoms of dog diabetes.

If you know or suspect your dog has diabetes, it’s important to discuss treatment options with your veterinarian. The main treatments for diabetes usually involve lifestyle changes. Your diabetic dog should be put on a low fat diet that is rich in whole foods, vegetables, and nutrients. A dog with diabetes should eat a diet that is also full of fiber and complex carbohydrates as this can help to lower blood sugar levels. Moreover, you should also start your dog on a regular exercise program. A healthy diet and routine exercise are two of the best ways to control type 1 and type 2 diabetes, but as already mentioned dogs with type 1 diabetes will also require insulin treatments.

Most importantly, proper care and monitoring of your dog will be important and you should build a comfortable relationship with your veterinarian. It will be important to communicate openly with your vet about your dog’s health and the future treatment outcomes for your diabetic dog. Remember that dogs with diabetes can continue to live a relatively normal life but as the pet owner it will be your responsibility to ensure that your dog adheres to a healthy diet and exercise plan.

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.