Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Understanding Diabetes in Dogs

The diagnosis of diabetes is becoming a more frequent occurrence in society. Not only is the disease being commonly diagnosed in young adults and children but also in dogs. Pet owners are finding that their canines are suffering from symptoms due to the lack of insulin produced by their bodies. Puppies may suffer from diabetes contributed to disorders of their immune system or as a result from the damage that parvovirus caused to the pancreas. Some breeds, such as Golden Retrievers, actually develop diabetes through inherited traits. As with people, obese dogs are also at a higher risk for developing the disease. More and more young dogs and pups are being diagnosed with diabetes by vets. For this reason, it is essential to take note of any abnormal behaviors that your dog displays regardless of its age.

Dogs can have two different types of diabetes. Diabetes mellitus is divided into two groups, Type I and Type II. These forms of the disease are caused from the body's lack of producing insulin. When the body does not produce a hormone needed to help the kidneys carry out water absorption, Diabetes insipidus forms. The most common form of diabetes diagnosed in dogs is Diabetes mellitus.
There are a few different symptoms that can lead pet owners to believe that their dog may have diabetes. Puppies with the disease are most often characterized by the lack of growth. When a puppy does not gain weight despite normal eating habits, a problem such as diabetes may exist. The canine may also have an unusual need to drink and urinate frequently. The dog often begins to lose weight without explanation and can even loose the use of its hind legs. Any of these occurrences are signs that typically lead to the diagnosis of diabetes.

If it is suspected that a dog may have diabetes, it is best to contact a vet as soon as possible for proper diagnosis. If the condition is left untreated, serious side effects and even death can occur. The dog's organs may begin to shut down completely due to the high levels of sugar in the blood. Ignoring the signs is often fatal for the pet.

Typically, giving the animal insulin injections is the only effective treatments for canines. Controlling the condition solely through diet is often not a successful option. The level of sugar in the body should be checked by taking urine and blood samples on a regular basis. In addition, the dog should be placed on a feeding schedule that can be monitored by the owner.

Dogs diagnosed with diabetes can live normal and healthy lives just as any other dog. However, the condition needs attention from the master. For successful treatment and control, it is very important for dog owners to recognize the symptoms, contact a doctor, and then work with their vet by taking the animal for periodic check-ups. With all of these actions in place, a diabetic dog can live a full and happy life.