Did you know November is National Diabetes Awareness month? In 2015, a study showed 32% of the US canine population and 16% of the feline population was diagnosed with diabetes. What is diabetes? Diabetes mellitus, as referred to as “sugar diabetes” is a disorder in dogs and cats particularly those who are overweight. The pancrease is unable to produce enough insulin resulting in unregulated blood sugar. While diabetes is not always 100% preventable, our Tampa Bay veterinarian has a few helpful tips to reduce your pet’s chances of developing this disease.
Keeping Active: Exercise plays a huge role in diabetes prevention and management as it helps regulate blood sugar levels and reduces the risk of weight gain. Long walks or morning jogs are great ways to keep your animal active.
Regular Checkups: Annual and Bi-Annual physicals are important to discuss any changes you’ve notice in your pet over the past few months. Report any changes in appetite, thirst, urination, bowel movement, behavior, etc. with your veterinarian. Even the minor changes matter.
Yearly Bloodwork: Bloodwork is recommended for all pet’s each year. This keeps a running tab on your pet’s internal health. Catching a high blood sugar early, along with analyzing other organ functions could be the key to an early diagnosis.
Watch the Bowl: Over feeding leads to obesity which puts your pet in a high-risk category for developing diabetes. Maintaining a healthy and well-balanced diet, and watching those treats will help your pet stay fit and trim.
Although diabetes is treatable, preventing it is the healthier alternative. If you have questions regarding diabetes or have noticed any changes in your pet’s behavior, such as increased thirst, please do not hesitate to call our office today at (813) 501-4985. Our staff is standing by to help you with all your veterinary care needs.