In dogs, the commonest reason for diabetes is that the
pancreas has been destroyed so is no longer able to make
insulin. In cats, however, other factors such as obesity,
hormonal diseases and certain drug treatments can mean that
the insulin produced is ineffective. In such cases, weight
loss or withdrawing the "suspect" drug can allow
the diabetes to resolve.
In cases where the problem remains, and in most canine
cases, daily insulin injections must be given to make up
for the lack of insulin.
Animals with diabetes usually present with an increased
thirst, weight loss, lethargy and sometimes with a ravenous
"Holly" was first presented to us over the August
bank holiday period, with classic symptoms. If left untreated,
Holly would be prone to urinary and other infections, and
would eventually become very sick due to the build up of
certain toxins called "ketones", which are formed
when the body cannot utilise it's normal energy sources.
When deciding whether to treat for diabetes, an owner needs
to understand the high level of commitment required to manage
a diabetic animal. Not only is there considerable expense
involved, but an owner must be able to guarantee that they
will be able to inject and feed the dog at the same times
on a day-to-day basis, morning and evening.
Fortunately for Holly, her owner was williing to take on
this commitment. Under instruction from her vets, Holly's
owner has soon become adept at administering her daily insulin
injection. and Holly is gradually being stabilised.
Fortunately Holly is a co-operative patient - as sweet
as sugar, in fact!
Young BVSc CertSAM MRCVS.
to "Interesting Cases"
If you wish to print or save this page it
is available in PDF format here