Diabetes in dogsThe metabolic disease, also known as diabetes, requires special treatment in dogs as well. Here you can find the characteristics and all important information for dog owners about diabetes in dogs.
Insulin and its functions
Insulin is a hormone that the body needs to transport sugar from the blood into the cells of the body. This is important for the body functions to work properly. Every organ and every single body cell must be supplied with energy. For this purpose, the pancreas produces insulin, which is released into the bloodstream. From there it acts and transports the sugar to the individual cells in the body. If not enough sugar is broken down from the blood, the Blood sugar level. At the same time, the organs and muscles receive too little sugar to maintain the body's functions appropriately: Diabetes develops.
How diabetes develops in dogs
The pancreas a small organ in the dog's body is. However, it is responsible for the production of enzymes and hormones without which the dog could not survive. One part of the gland produces substances that help to break down the food so that the animal can use it – the other part is responsible for the Insulin production.
Insulin is produced in the pancreas and is necessary to break down sugar.
The forms of diabetes in dogs
If one speaks of diabetes, the disease diabetes mellitus meant. diabetes always means that the blood sugar level rises. The reason can be an absolute or a relative insulin deficiency. Depending on this, diabetes can be divided into two types in dogs, just as it is in humans two different types be subdivided.
Type 1 – Insulin deficiency
If the dog suffers from type 1 diabetes mellitus, the pancreas produces no longer enough insulin. In humans this type is rather rare. With the dog it is however the most most frequently present variant. The reasons for the development of this type are probably genetic. This means that the dog is already born with the predisposition for diabetes. However, a disease of the pancreas such as an inflammation or pancreatic cancer can also lead to this type.
Almost every 100th dog affected by diabetes type 1.
In the case of an inflammation of the pancreas, there is important functions are disturbed. The digestive enzymes should only start to work in the small intestine. In this case, however, they start too early. This is how the pancreas digests itself. This can lead to severe damage and just lead to a so-called insufficiency. Insulin is no longer produced in sufficient quantities.
Type 2 diabetes
In type 2 diabetes, insulin is produced, but the amount is not enough to supply the entire body or the insulin simply does not work as it should. In these cases, one speaks of a relative insulin deficiency. The substance is not absolutely lacking, but only in comparison to the demand. Humans are very often affected by this type of diabetes. Dogs, on the other hand, are only very rare affected by it.
Diabetes in dogs: symptoms and diagnosis
The sooner diabetes can be diagnosed and treated, the better it is. Each change of the animal can be important therefore, in order to recognize the illness in time.
The symptoms at a glance
– strong thirst and increased eating – weight loss – vomiting and pain in the abdomen – visual disturbances
Detect diabetes in dogs
The classic symptoms of diabetes are Strong thirst and with it strong urge to urinate. If the blood sugar level rises sharply, the sugar passes into the urine. Sugar is never found in the urine of healthy animals. In the urine of diabetic dogs, however, it does. Sugar in the urine in turn draws water, causing more urine to be produced. So more urine is also excreted. In order to supply the missing water to the body now again, the dog begins to drink much. A cycle begins.
Beside that begins the, animal clearly more to eat. You feel that the dog is hungry all the time. This is simply due to the fact that the sugar from the blood is not brought into the cells. The feeling of hunger increases. The animals eat more, decrease at the same time. The dog becomes listless and listless. lacks the energy it gets from carbohydrates in a healthy state.
If the blood glucose level remains elevated or varies greatly, it can increase Visual disturbances come: Elevated levels can damage the retina. In addition, pain can occur in the abdomen and the dog can be vomiting. Some animals are also quite listless. This can extend to apathy or depression. To the symptoms come a bad wound healing. A weakness of the hind legs.
Dangers of confusion with other diseases
If the dog suddenly drinks a lot, has to urinate more frequently and loses weight, the diagnosis of diabetes is obvious. Nevertheless the animal must necessarily examined by a veterinarian be, because it may still be other diseases. Also the Cushing's syndrome and the renal insufficiency show the same symptoms. To be sure, the veterinarian will draw blood from the animal and confirm diabetes based on the blood count. A urine examination offers additional security.
Causes of diabetes in dogs
Why exactly diabetes occurs in dogs is still unclear. However, there are some Risk factors, that can promote this disease. For example, hypothyroidism or hormonal disorders – such as Cushing's syndrome – are factors in which diabetes may be observed. One of the most important risk factors is, as in humans, the Overweight.
Even if the dog likes it, dog owners should always make sure that the dog only eats as much as it needs. Overweight should be avoided in any case.
Tip: With a balanced and species-appropriate diet and the appropriate exercise you give overweight no chance. By choosing the right dog food, dog owners can avoid important feeding mistakes.
Grains in the feed causes Oversupply of carbohydrates. It is therefore highly advisable to feed dogs food without cereals. The dog needs only small amounts of carbohydrates to perform its daily activities. It gets its energy from proteins and fats, which must be sufficiently present in the feed. In addition to high quality and easily digestible meat must be species-appropriate dog food contain oils with essential fatty acids. For this purpose fruit. Vegetables are suitable. Here however a small quantity is completely sufficient, because the dog's body can manufacture carbohydrates if necessary itself.
Risk factors for diabetes in dogs
Studies have shown that dogs under 22.7 kilograms suffer more frequently from diabetes than large dogs. Likewise meets the disease rather older dogs and significantly more bitches. Most new cases can be diagnosed between five and twelve years of age. In addition, apparently also the breed plays a role: For example, Cairn Terriers, Samoyeds, Border Terriers, English Setters, Poodles, Dachshunds, Collies, Schnauzers and Yorkshire Terriers have a greater risk of developing diabetes than other dog breeds.
Therapies and treatment for dogs with diabetes
Diabetes is not curable. To what extent a therapy has prospects of success depends on various factors. Important is the reason for the insulin deficiency. The earlier the treatment starts, the better it is for the dog. Especially important is the consistent implementation of the individual therapy points. However, diabetes is not a disease that can be treated quickly with a few tablets. The treatment is long and must be carried out consistently until the end of the animal's life. This not only costs money, but sometimes also a lot of patience and nerves. However, the dog then has a good chance of a completely normal life. To lead a happy dog life.
Although diabetes is not curable, the dog can live a full life.
Diagnosis of diabetes: overweight dogs must lose weight
At the beginning of the treatment, the weight of the four-legged patient is relevant. If the dog is overweight, the veterinarian will Weight reduction advise. Female dogs not infrequently show high blood glucose levels after estrus. In order to avoid hormonal fluctuations in the future, it makes sense to spay the bitch. To treat diabetes, the dog's body must be supplied with the missing insulin. This happens with the help of Injections. This gives the dog owner. In most cases this is not so easy at the beginning. Here, however, the veterinarian will surely be happy to help with advice and action. After a few weeks you have enough practice. The daily injection becomes a routine. Dogs react individually to insulin. That is why it is necessary to find out first what quantities the dog needs.
Injecting insulin is not complicated
The vials with the insulin are standing in the refrigerator to keep. Shortly before the administration, one takes it out and warms it up briefly in the hand. To administer the drug to the animal, it is best to choose a small fold of skin on the neck or flank between the thumb and forefinger. Then the needle at a 45° angle to be applied under the fingertips. Then push the needle through the skin. Now the content can be administered. Afterwards you pull out the needle again. If the animal does not keep still, it should be distracted as much as possible. Scolding or punishing would be extremely counterproductive in this case. If the animal lets the procedure pass obediently, one should not hesitate to reward it.
The dog has diabetes: This is what matters now
The daily necessary Insulin amount calculates according to energy needs per day. The ideal now is to feed on time with the same amount of meat. It can also be helpful to schedule walks and playtime during the same period each day.
For the dog is now Consistency especially important. The right diet is also relevant. The composition and the daily amount of food must be kept constant. Fat should cover less than 25 percent of the required energy. The food should be rich in crude fiber but low in carbohydrates. Highly digestible protein from good meat is important. Fresh water must be available for the dog now continuously.