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Posted on 11-10-2014

1.  What is diabetes mellitus?  Diabetes mellitus is a condition caused by a lack of insulin action, which makes a pet unable to use glucose for energy.  This increases weakness, hunger, thirst and urination.

2.  How do pets get this disease?  Diabetes in pets is similar to type 2 diabetes in humans.  It is associated with excess body weight, genetics and a sedentary lifestyle.

3.  How do you treat diabetes mellitus?  Most pets are treated with 2 insulin injections per day.   The syringe and needle used is tiny and pets accept the injections readily.  Cats typically change to a low carb, high protein canned diet, while dogs change to  a higher fiber dry food.

4.  How do I monitor my diabetic pet's health?  Initially, diabetic pets need regular veterinary monitoring.  Your observations of your pet's health in conjunction with blood testing help ensure the most effective treatment.   Weekly monitoring is frequently needed initially but once the proper dose of insulin is achieved, monitoring only every 6 months is needed.

5.  Will my pet have other health problems?  Diabetic pets can lead a great life with insulin.  They are prone to urinary tract infections and they also have a higher occurrence of pancreatitis.  Routine veterinary monitoring helps catch problems early to minimize their impact.

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