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Did You Know That Dogs and Cats Can Get Diabetes, Too?

Overweight Cat - Pet DiabetesAbout 1 dog in 500 and 1 cat in 200 will develop diabetes in its lifetime.

What Is Diabetes?

Diabetes is defined as an excess of glucose (an important sugar) in the blood stream. This is caused by a lack of a hormone called insulin. Without insulin, the cells in the body are unable to absorb and use glucose.

How Is Diabetes Diagnosed in Pets?

Diabetes is diagnosed when excessive amounts of glucose are detected in an animal's blood and urine.

What Are Signs of Diabetes in Dogs and Cats?

  • Excessive drinking of water
  • Excessive urination (sometimes urinary accidents or urinating outside of the litter box)
  • Weight loss (in spite of a good appetite)

How Can I Prevent My Dog or Cat from Developing Diabetes?

Some risk factors like breed, genetics and age cannot be prevented. However, one important risk factor that is preventable is obesity. Preventing obesity is the most important thing you can do to reduce your pet's risk of developing diabetes.

What Else Can I Do?

Schedule a Veterinary Preventive Care Exam for your dog or cat at least every 12 months. The veterinarian will ask you some questions, perform a thorough physical exam, and may suggest performing screenings. With early diagnosis, proper management and monitoring, a dog or cat with diabetes can lead a happy and active life!

If you have any questions or would like to schedule an exam, please call us at (262) 241-4884. Learn more about diabetes in pets.

Dr. Judy Gilbertson is an associate veterinarian at East Towne Veterinary Clinic. She has a background in education and enjoys giving presentations and teaching classes about pet care.