The Dog Owners Guide To Canine Diabetes
For your canine diabetes treatment can come in a variety of forms whether it is through the owner changing their pooches diet to diabetic controlled diet or through daily injections of Insulin. Although some research has been undertaken on the use of hyperglycemic agents to treat this condition research is still on going and has yet to be proven effective.
Canine Diabetes Treatment
Canine Diabetes Treatment normally always starts with Insulin therapy. When Insulin is prescribed to treat the condition the Insulin dose will vary for each individual dog. Insulin requirements are not based on your dogs weight or height but on how badly damaged the pancreas is.
Normally a newly diagnosed dog will start the Insulin therapy at home and after a week the dog is be taken back to the vet where he will need to stay overnight. This is because blood sugar tests will need to be taken and tested over a period of twelve to twenty four hours (this is called a blood glucose curve). By establishing when your dog’s glucose levels are high or low this will help to establish when the Insulin should be given and how high the dose should be.
It is vital that the Insulin doses given to your diabetic dog are carefully established. The reason for this is because the vet will not only need to eliminate or reduce the sugar (glucose) from the urine but also stabilise how much your dog is eating and drinking (which will also help to bring some stability back to your dog’s weight).
Canine diabetes treatment – are there side effects
It is very important when treating a diabetic dog through Insulin therapy that a close eye is kept on your pet at all times. Although a dog can be given Insulin without problems for the rest of his or her natural life there is always the possibility of an overdose.
If your dog is accidentally given an overdose or your pooch refuses to eat (directly after an injection) your pooch may start to tremble, salivate and stagger around urinating on the floor (this is because your dog has become Hyperglycemic). Rapid treatment is vital (probably the quickest and easiest method will be through a sugar lump or glucose being fed to the unwell dog). If this is not done immediately your pooch can collapse, fall into a coma and even die.
After the sugar has been fed to the hyperglycemeic dog he or she should recover very quickly.
What is Hyperglycemia?
Hyperglycemia is caused by low blood sugar and is more common in toy breeds that are aged between six and twelve weeks. The most common symptoms are muscle weakness, listlessness, depression, tremors – your dog may even start staggering. If you have a really young puppy that has had a large drop in blood sugar he or she can have seizures and even die. Treatment for this condition will need to be fast and the aim is to return the blood sugar levels to normal. If your pooch is able to swallow and is awake rub some honey, glucose and/or sugar on the gums. Always ring the vet as soon as you notice any symptoms of Hyperglycemia as it is a very serious condition.
Best diet for dogs with diabetes
It is very important that you feed your dog a well balanced diet as an obese dog can result in your dog having a poor response to Insulin which will make the Diabetes more difficult to manage.
There are many different dog foods that are available for diabetic dogs but we recommend you check out these dog food reviews .
If your dog is obese and diabetic then consult your vet about whether a diet high in carbohydrates and high in fibre should be fed to your pooch until he reaches the ideal weight. Try and avoid wet or moist dog foods as they are very often high in sugar.
If you decide to make your own dog food try and use natural and healthy low fat ingredients such as fish, turkey and chicken. Vegetables are great for humans and dogs too as they have natural sugars as opposed to refined sugars.
It is also important to remember that the amount of calories your dog should have is determined by how much he weighs and how active he is. Of course a dog who was walked three times a day or a very active working dog will need more calories to sustain their active lifestyle.
Is there a cure for diabetes in dogs?
Although there is no cure for this condition it can be managed quite effectively though insulin injections and a good diet. The amount of insulin that your dog needs may take a little time to establish as some dogs are able to manage on one injection a day while others may need two.
Giving injections to your diabetic dog
When it comes to giving your dog his injection you should take advice from your vet. Most dogs are actually pretty ok about having an injection (the important thing to remember is that you give your dog a treat straight afterwards). By rewarding your dog this will make him much more likely to respond positively to the injection the next time.
When it comes to the best diet for treating this condition most experts agree that a diet that contains good quality protein and extra fiber to manage the blood sugar levels is the best option.
Additional info about canine diabetes
1. When it comes to treating this condition it’s important to keep your dog’s diet healthy. Some owners weigh how much they feed their dog to make sure that they don’t feed their pooch too much. Don’t forget that obesity can cause the condition so make sure that you walk your dog daily and stay on top of his weight.
2. A high fiber diet also helps to stabilize the rate at which fuels enter your dog’s cells which helps keep the blood sugar levels more constant.
3. Some experts recommend that owners feed their dog two small meals twice a day as opposed to one large meal. The reason for this is that several smaller meals a day helps to even out the rate that the sugar enters the bloodstream.
4. Experts also recommend that medication is given at the same time every day as this will help to stop the blood sugar levels from swinging wildy from high to low.
5. Learn to spot the symptoms early. If your dog is thirsty all the time and has a ravenous appetite (but continues to lose weight) then take him to the vet straight away. If a dog is left for too long with these symptoms it can lead to blindness.
The video below shows how a dog owner gives his pooch an insulin injection…
Homeopathic remedies for dogs with diabetes
You should always speak with your vet before you use any alternative treatments. However, if your dog is experiencing Diabetes Mellitus a homeopathic vet may prescribe Syzgium comp drops three times a day. This remedy has been proven to be very effective.
Bach flowers (under the guidance of your vet) can also be effective for treating Diabetes Insipidus (particularly Olive and Hornbeam).
Chromium is a great remedy for enabling the insulin to be more effective.
Bilberry is also a great natural remedy for treating non-insulin dependent (Type 2) Diabetes. Not only can Bilberry help stimulate the production of insulin it can also help to reduce your dog’s blood sugar levels. A great natural alternative that can be used effectively in conjunction with a healthy diet. It is also important to emphasise that you should never give your dog or puppy any homeopathic treatments without consulting your vet first.
Karela is a natural herb that is quite effective in stimulating a dog’s pancreas to produce more insulin. It is also a great natural treatment for improving your dog’s digestive system.