Thursday, November 20, 2014

Has your dog been diagnosed with diabetes?

By Jane Bishop

 If so, take a deep breath. With good care and monitoring, your dog can live a normal healthy lifespan. Although diabetes can’t be cured, the condition can be successfully managed with daily insulin injections, and changes in diet and lifestyle.

      Controlling diabetes often requires insulin injections every day to restore your diabetic dog’s insulin level, and manage blood glucose concentrations. Each diabetic dog’s requirements are different, so you will need to work with your veterinarian to find the correct dose and treatment regimen for your pet. It may be necessary for your dog to stay at the veterinary clinic for a few days so your Doctor can closely monitor your dog’s response to treatment.

        If your dog does need daily insulin injections, you’ll need to learn how to administer them. At first you may be nervous or even afraid of giving your dog an injection. You’re not alone! Many pet owners are anxious about giving injections. It is easier than you think, and you will quickly learn how to handle daily injections with little stress for your pet or for you.

       Monitoring your dog’s blood glucose concentration is a very important part of diabetes management. Because each diabetic pet is different, your veterinarian will need to help you determine which method of monitoring will work best for you and your dog.

         Diet plays a vital role in helping to keep your dog’s diabetes regulated. Suggested foods include W/D or G/D. These foods include a source of quality protein, in addition to complex carbohydrates and dietary fiber to help slow absorption of glucose from the digestive system. It also usually has a low fat content. Overall, a palatable and nutritious diet that minimizes fluctuations in blood glucose and helps your dog maintain a healthy weight is important for managing diabetes.

          Exercise helps keep pets active, healthy, and happy. For diabetic dogs however, exercise needs to be regulated because activity affects your dog’s blood glucose concentrations. It is best to create a consistent exercise routine for your diabetic dog to avoid sudden changes in glucose requirements. If you are concerned about the amount of exercise your diabetic pet needs, please contact the staff at Central Kentucky Veterinary Center.

           Diabetes can affect a dog differently over time. While you may feel confident in your ability to care for your diabetic dog, visiting your veterinarian regularly will help you to successfully manage the condition. With a chronic condition like diabetes, it is important to stay in close touch your veterinarian and clinic staff.

            You can rely on the staff at Central Kentucky Veterinary Center to answer all your questions and help you as you learn to manage your dog’s diabetes successfully.  You can reach us at 502-863-0868.

** Not all insulin and syringes are equal,  always use what your veterinarian recommends.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Feline Diabetes Management

By Tammy Washburn, LVT 

            Feline Diabetes affects ¼ million cats each year and treating them can be challenging.  Most cats will need to be on insulin twice a day and a specific food for the rest of their life. Routine  
veterinary checks are recommended.

            Diabetic cats will need to be on a low carbohydrate, high protein or high fiber diet.  This type of diet is digested slowly and helps to maintain lower blood glucose levels.  Because diabetics are prone to obesity it is important to control the portions of food given. Some of the diabetic diets available are Hills M/D, W/D or Purina DM.  In rare cases some cats can be maintained on diet alone.  

             Along with a controlled diets most cats will need to be on insulin twice a day for the rest of their life.  Insulin helps to lower blood glucose concentrations.  It is important that cats eat before giving insulin to prevent the glucose levels from dropping too low.   Feeding and insulin injections should be given at about the same time each day.  We recommend keeping Karo Syrup on hand in case their glucose level drops too low.  If this occurs you may notice you cat acting sleepy or stumbling when it walks.  Whenever there is a question as to if insulin should be given or how much never hesitate to Central Kentucky Veterinary Center 502-863-0868. 

            Glucose checks need to be done periodically throughout the year to make sure the appropriate dose of insulin is being given.  If you notice your cat is losing weight, drinking more water, or acting lethargic give us a call.  The glucose level may be too high or too low. 
Not all insulin or syringes are equal.  Always check with your veterinarian.


            For more information you can go to,,



Tuesday, November 4, 2014

What is Diabetes Mellitus

By Kristi Skelton, LVT

Diabetes mellitus is a disease that can affect both cats and dogs.  The disease can cause
similar symptoms in both species including increased appetite, weight loss, increased thirst, and increased urination.  These symptoms all correspond to a lack of glucose in the body tissues. 
When an animal ingests glucose it travels from the bloodstream to the tissues and eventually to the cells of the body via a transport hormone called insulin.  If the pancreas is producing too little insulin or no insulin at all the glucose remains trapped in the bloodstream where it is filtered by the kidneys.  In a non-diabetic animal the kidneys will reabsorb the glucose found in the bloodstream.  However, in the diabetic animal there is too much glucose to reabsorb and the extra is lost in the urine along with excess water.  This causes the animal to urinate more and thus drink more. 

If the tissues of the body are not supplied with glucose the body goes into starvation mode.  It begins to breakdown proteins, starches, and fats as a source of energy.  Fats are broken down into ketones which can be used as an energy source in desperate situations.  Ketones are eventually excreted in the urine.  Even though the animal is eating more than usual the body is not getting the required glucose it needs so the breakdown of other energy sources, such as fat, cause significant weight loss.   

Along with clinical symptoms the diabetic animal is diagnosed with blood tests and urine tests which can show increased glucose levels and the presence of ketones.  After a pet is diagnosed with diabetes it must be carefully regulated and maintained for the lifetime of the animal.   
If you have any question please contact Central Kentucky Veterinary Center 502-863-0868.