Recognising symptoms if your dog may have diabetes

3 Signs that your Dog May Have Diabetes:

1. Increased water consumption and urinating 2. Weight Loss 3. Lethargic

Increased water consumption is the major sign that I picked up that there was something wrong with my dog. He just couldn’t drink enough water and as soon as he had consumed water, he would be urinating almost straight away. If your dog sleeps inside at night, they may start wanting to stay out as they would be unable to control bladder and may have even had a bit of a leak during the night. My dog had a few leaks over a couple of nights, then started wanting to stay out at night. You need to be careful here as well as I initially thought that because it was summer and warm in the house, he wanted to get into the fresh air at night and some times he just went out about 11pm and didn’t bark to come back in until about 4.00am. So look out for the combination of symptoms and not just focus on the obvious.

Does your dog all of a sudden always seemed to hungry and became very insistent with food and almost to the point of being ‘rude’ about it. Lots of nudging with the nose when you are in the kitchen and looking for their meal a couple of hours before their normal meal time.

No energy, just wants to sleep a lot of the time and does not seem interested in walking and getting about doing all the doggy things like sniffing and wandering.

Diabetes is caused by a deficiency of insulin which is the hormone that regulates the absorption of sugar into the cells and tissues of the body. There is no cure. If your dog is between 5-7, on the overweight side and is displaying some of the above symptoms, a trip to the Vet for a simple blood glucose test will determine your dog’s blood sugar levels. It’s pretty much the same process for diagnosis for dogs as it is for humans.

If your dog is a diabetic it will mean a change in feeding routines for you and your dog and could even entail a complete dietary change which will include nutrition high in fibre and protein. Our Vet worked closely with us to stabilise the diabetes which included showing us how to inject the insulin, education on nutrition for the dog and most of all the importance of keeping a strict routine once stabilised – this includes daily exercise routine. Humans with diabetes can test themselves five or six times a day to monitor their level – with dogs, once the routine for meals and exercise are set, stick to this otherwise the resulting effect is that your dog will suffer.

Once you get your dog home you can monitor the blood glucose levels with the same glucose testing meter that humans use, so anytime your dog looks a bit flat, you can test them straight away. Keeping a chart and monitoring the date, time of day and blood sugar level is important. As Samson has Sebaceous Adenitis, we also make comments if there is any other change in his habits (as a result of this disease) so you can see if there is a correlation between the blood sugar results and anything else that may be going on for eg. you may have tried a slight change in diet.

The best advice that I can give you to work closely with your Vet and continue to provide love and attention and special care to your dog at this time.