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This week I'd like to deviate from the human nature of diabetes and chat, instead, about our animal friends (pets) with diabetes. For the first time in my life, I have the opportunity to have a dog in my life, so I started looking at local websites for adoptable dogs. I'm looking for a medium to large adult female dog that's trained, laid back and likes children. A particular dog caught my eye. Her name is Carlie, and she's a golden retriever and Labrador mix. Carlie has diabetes and is in a foster home that's taking great care of her. Carlie was extremely overweight and has gone from 118 pounds to 75 pounds. Her foster parents have her on a special diet and exercise regimen, and she's given insulin injections twice a day. I started asking my patients about their pets. The first patient I saw today told me her dog has diabetes.
I recently did some research on pets with diabetes and found that:
Right now, I have a choice whether or not to take on the management of owning a pet with diabetes, unlike those of you who have diabetes and have no choice but to cope with the daily self-management of this chronic disease. As a first time dog owner, Carlie would be quite a commitment, and I don't know if I have the time or resources to manage her properly. I want to make the right decision for me and her. I'll keep you posted on my decision.
Please share stories about your pets with diabetes, including pros and cons.
Update: You may be wondering what I decided about adopting Carlie — the dog with diabetes. After some serious thought, I decided not to adopt her. Bringing any dog into your life is a big commitment. When you adopt a dog, you sign up for their lifetime of their care, which includes time and money. I work full time and am also in graduate school. Ultimately, I didn't feel like it would be fair to Carlie. Thanks to all of you for your insights and advice. I've appreciated learning from your experiences.
Have a great week.
Nancy Klobassa Davidson, R.N.
Peggy Moreland, R.N.
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I am sorry to hear u didn't adopt Carlie, in my opinion it would of been a blessing. I manage my Buster who takes insulin twice a day (70/30)for 3 years now. He is a blessing to us as he has taught us about diabetes as I caught my husband diabetes early on to make the health eating changes in our lives. I am sure Carlie found a good home. Thank u for sharing your story!
Our six year old lab got diabetes two years ago, six months later she went blind. She's happy and has adapted well with one of my other outdoor dogs. Meds run around $65.00 a month, and she's on special food that runs $70.00 a month. I'm lucky I can afford to do this. I thought long and hard about putting her down, and would not rule it out even now if I thought she was unhappy. These choices are hard with many factors to consider. Best wishes.
This October it will be two years since our little Westie, Cricket, was diagnosed with diabetes. She will be 10 years old next week. We caught it very early on, so she still has most of her eyesight. We figured out something was very wrong when her weight dropped and she started having accidents in the house. She's 20lbs again and gets 7 units injected of Novolin N, am & pm. We started with 3 back in 2011 and have gradually moved up according to her needs. We only increase by 1/2 units after observing her symptoms. Our vet is great and assures us that we are the best "test" to regulate her BG simply by observation. We take her in for glucose curves or a blood pull only if we're completely miffed on her symptoms. We only recently had to increase again to the 7 units. We strictly regulate her diet with Rx Science Diet high fiber food from the vet - breakfast, noon snack, dinner, evening snack. She is an amazing little dog and so much love packed into such a small package. It was hard to start the injections, but I wouldn't change it for a second because I know it is saving her life and helping her feel well. Looking forward to many more years with her.
My dear Australian Shepherd, Sammy, developed diabetes at age 11. The first symptom I noted was blindness. She was normal weight and moderately active. She required insulin injections every day and maintained quite well for a year. During her last month, she declined rapidly, dying in my arms on the way to the vet. Both the Vet and I believed she had an underlying disease of which the diabetes was a symptom, probably a cancer.
As a Registered Nurse, the shots were not a problem. The emotions involved with seeing your pet not at her best and requiring almost weekly trips to the vet took a toll.
If you are deciding what to do about a pet who has developed diabetes, be aware of the cost of the insulin, blood testing, finding the cause of the diabetes, visits to the Vet, and the stress the disease will cause both you and your pet.
my husband and I rescued the unwanted, it's a shame that his type 1 got the best of him and then we needed to be rescued ourselves. At least you are being honest. Thank you for that. Even in the medical field, not everyone is meant to love and loose. good day.
A successful diet in many cats is one where they don't gain any MORE weight. There are diets available from your veterinarian specifically for diabetic cats. Other cats could eat them as well. (Purina DM, canned, is one of the best and most palatable). Don't worry so much about the two cats of normal weight. They will usually continue to self regualte. You can separate all of the cats' activities so that they have to at least walk around. Put the litter box, food, bed, water, etc. in different places all over the house, upstairs, downstairs, so the cat has to travel more. Otherwise, it is really hard to exercise an indoor cat.
I gave up sugar for raw honey two years ago, and I feel young again, and I am in my 60 s. (grin) My whole family just got over the swine flu and the raw honey and cnonamin worked like a charm; 1-tablespoon raw honey and 1/2 teaspoon cnonamin in a cup of hot water, and the flu was gone in 4 days! LOLI wish everyone would take charge of their health the natural way as Big Pharma is destroying the health of people all over the world!
To Jennifer in NY
"Savannah is extremely overweight due to her sedentary lifestyle and I worry about her getting diabetes. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to keep one cat on a diet when there are two others in the residence? Also, how can I get them exercise besides the ole 'bird on a wire' game (that can become a bit boring for them)? I would greatly appreciate some feedback"
I'm so sorry to hear about Shadow. As for Savannah, I use the little plastic balls that have a bell inside and one of those expandable tunnels for my cat. I make him run around and inside of the tunnel to catch the ball or just roll the ball across the floor. I also hide a toy mouse in different places around the house. I also tied one of the toys to a long string and attached it to a dowel about 2 1/2 ft. long, he loves to play with that also. He keeps his legs strong by jumping up to the cat perches my husband made for him as well. I think variety of play might be very helpful. If you change things every now and then, your cat will not get bored too easily. Cats like to look down on things and be able to see what is going on around them. You might want to put one of those cat stairs along a wall that leads to a landing then stairs to get back down. They do wonders for cats in many ways. If you have a hard time getting her interest, hide one treat in one spot then another treat some place else, this might spark curiosity, she will go looking for treats but find toys.
Nancy, Don't ever regret your decision. It was the best decision for you and for Carlie. I recently lost my dog of 15 years. My life evolved around Shadow. I made the choice not to get another dog unless I could afford to take care of it properly with shots, food, medication, etc. So for now, I visit with my neighbors dog. My neighbor is handi-cap and cannot get outside to walk her dog. It is good therapy for me and for Paris. Dogs need fresh air and to do doggy things. I'm content knowing that I still have a dog friend who I can see at any time and I'm sure Paris loves the extra attention. It would not be fair to another dog if I cannot take him/her to the vet when they are sick, when we are sick or in pain, we take ourself to the doctors, but we hopefully have insurance to help pay for the medical attention and medication. It is not so easy with animals because they cannot tell us what is wrong, we only find out that something is wrong when the problem has manifested into something bigger and more costly. So don't feel bad about not adopting a dog that you cannot or do not feel that you have the time nor the resources to properly care for them. Volunteer to take care of a dog or at your local shelter, they would love to have you. I hope this has helped you.
Our 12 year old cat Brandy seemed fit one day and suddenly very ill the next ,so bad with vomiting and dehydration from diabetes that the Vet himself advised euthanasia.It was a terrible shock and we were consoled only by not having to make the decision.
Our 10 year old Bichon was dx'd w/diabetes a few months ago (she also has Cushing's). She recently had a couple of incidents of just losing control of her body....plopping down and then walking around disoriented. Does this mean sugar is low...I assume...or, high?
I have a 7 year old yellow lab. I noticed the symptoms of diabetes following multi wasp stings. He quickly went from 100 lbs to 75 (in less than 3 weeks). He was officially diagnosed at the U of I and started on 10 units NPH bid. After close monitoring I eventally increaesed him to 30 units NPH bid. His weight was back to his normal health 100 lbs within 6 weeks. He deveolped cataracts in both eyes within 8 months. He had cataract surgery at U of I ($2800 total). His sight is back to normal. He is healthy and happy now. He eats 1 cup of old roy dog food am and pm + a few table scraps gets 30 units NPH (walmart Reli on is the cheapest) twice/day. He is completely without symptoms and happy. He has had 2 hypoglycemic reactions (in 2 yrs) following too much exercise with 30 units NPH in the am which were quickly resolved with 6 oreos. Will just decrease amt of insulin on high activity days. I have his frutosamine level checked about every 6 months and it has been within normal limits. I don't check his blood sugar - only adjust his insulin per his symptoms (I'm a nurse so well in tune of these).
HAPPY DOG and well worth the time and money!!!!
I have three cats, all of who were rescued from a more-than-likely early demise. I am so grateful I have been given the opportunity to parent Raven, Savannah and Pepper (the baby). They have brought me so much love, happiness, laughter and joy to my life. I don't know how my life would possibly be without them.
Savannah, the 'middle child,' is my baby girl. She was full grown at the time of her adoption, and she was brought to my neighborhood Petsmart from 41st St in Manhattan. I can only imagine what a struggle her life must have been before she came into mine. I live in an apartment on a somewhat busy street, so my 'children' stay indoors. I made the mistake of letting Raven and then Shadow out and unfortunately Shadow was hit by a car. It broke my heart, to say the least. Savannah is extremely overweight due to her sedentary lifestyle and I worry about her getting diabetes. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to keep one cat on a diet when there are two others in the residence? Also, how can I get them exercise besides the ole 'bird on a wire' game (that can become a bit boring for them)? I would greatly appreciate some feedback.
We rescued our darling LuLu 11 years ago; we almost lost her a year ago, as we thought she had pacreatitis and were treating for that.
She has diabetes, we cook all of her food, no table scraps ever--two shots of insulin per day, a healthy snack at noon. Her eyesight has been compromised, but she has figured out how to navigate the house and garden. Yes, it is a lot of work, accompanied with worry, but we could never begin to give back the love she has given to us. She is our sweetest girl.
Itoo have a diabetic dog, she was also a rescue and about 8. She was diaginosed 1 year after I got her and is no trouble. I grew up with a diabetic mother, brother then married a man that was a type two diabetic so a dog was no problem as long as she gets her treat after her shot. Cinder had a hard life before I got her and she is so happy now however not as happy as I am having her. I don't feel one should take on an animal or person if they have doubts about doing so.
I have a ten year old cat who was diagnosed with diabetes. He has the symptoms of excessive thirst with excessive urination,a better than usual appetite,but of course with increased weight loss.I am disabled and financially unable to start him on the insulin injections twice a day. I took him on at birth for the duration of his life. I love him SO-SO MUCH ! He brings me great happiness and joy. I despartely need this insulin at a discounted cost.Does anyone have any recommendations?
My husband and I have two beautiful labs, "Molly" a 9 yr.old yellow female and "Bo" a 6 1/2 yr black male. Recently our black male has been diagnosed with diabetes. We have started him on Himulin N insulin and he is doing better but still working on getting the right dosage. He does have the start of cataracts and getting eye drops. Oh how I hate to think that he might not see from his beautiful brown eyes. Our beautiful "Bo" has given us so much love and happiness and we will spend whatever it takes to make sure he has a wonderful long life. God Bless all of you and your beautiful pets.
My 5 year old YorkiePoo was diagnosed with diabetes several months ago. The most difficult part was getting him to eat in the morning so he can get his insulin before I leave. He needs a low-fat, high fiber diet and he doesn't like that any more than I do.
He is doing really well now. He doesn't mind getting his insulin. And, somehow it seems like he knows we are taking care of him. He's always been a sweet dog, but even more so now.
If you like the dog go for it!!!
I have fostered rescue cats for many years and at one point adopted a kitten with brain damage after it had been dumped in a plastic sack. He lived a normal life apart from not having much co-ordination. When he was 10 years old he developed diabetes, from my experiance of looking after sick cats etc. this was of no bother to me to inject my cat twice daily, however, he was having blood tests every month, costing £40 plus, not to mention the cost of the insulin,needles etc. I perhaps would not have minded too much except he did not appear to be any better. This went on for about a year with "Ringo" just eating drinking and laying around listless, I felt it was unfair on him as he clearly was not enjoying his life anymore,so, I made the difficult decision to have him put to sleep, I felt arwful about it but my vet assured me I was not the first to have this done with a cat with diabetes. They thought because of his brain problem it was not accepting the insulin?!
Thinking about it now, there is no-way I would ever go down this route again, not only because of the expense but more because the animals cannot tell you how they are feeling so is it really fair that we inject them with insulin everyday regardless? Perhaps you think I sound heartless, but, think we put our pets through agony sometimes just to keep them alive for our sake! Surely it is about THEIR quality of life?
I had a beautiful tuxedo cat named Timothy who was diagnosed with diabetes in 2000. He was on a special diet and received insulin shots twice a day. Sadly, Timothy passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2007 at the age of 16. He was a great pet with a noble spirit and I miss him very much.
I have an 11 yr. old doxie who is diabetic and my vet told me that dogs always have type 1. I will do anything to keep my cody healthy and alive for as long as I can. I don't think it is a "great commitment" - when you feed your dog twice a day you administer his insulin.
I am sorry you did not adopt Carlie - she would have been wonderful for you.
why did you commit about Carlie. It made my heart hurt. I had my beautiful Ret.. put to sleep 2 yrs ago .she had dibetes.there must be something better to post before I read all your comment, I just new you would take the dog. How sad
I have a dog Charlie with Diabetis, I found out in November last year. What a commitment it is.You have to write down everything he does, poop, urinate, eat, vomit, eat, and then twice a day his insulin shots. He is always hungry and begs for my food. He is supposed to eat twice a day, his glucose in No. was about 600..... I took him yesterday and was over 300. It is not going down as fast because I feed him some of my food. Sometimes I feel I cannot take anymore, he is going blind slowly, I got him from the pound, someone never even took him out to pee in the grass, he lived inside a house or apt all his live before I got him. I think he deserves a little better treatment that he had before I got him. Right now he is no spoiled, I am the one exhausted, You have to dedicate yourself to the animal. Maybe after he gets his glucose in the right numbers between 80-120, might be better for me.He is able to eat treats from the vets office and lunch also. AND NO TABLE SCRAPS....He is a beautiful Maltese mix, he was 15 lbs, now he is 9 lbs.I do not know how old he is, maybe 8 to 10 years of age....
I had a female miniature schnauzer that was diagnosed with diabetes at age 8. We were able to manage with twice daily insulin injections and monthly blood sugar checks. I would advise that pet owners learn to check glucose levels and check more frequently. Our little mini went into renal failure at age 10 and we were not able to reverse it. I still feel if we had kept a better eye on her glucose levels we might have been able to avoid this outcome. Also if you are considering a pet with diabetes, it is a huge commitment. Meals and injections must be on time and very little deviation from schedule is allowed. Learning everything possible about diabetes and pets is a must.
I have a wonderful 14 year old cat, named Minou (French for Kitty). He is a sweet pet and became diabetic when I went away for Europe for 6 weeks. It took us two strenuous months and about $900 to find the right medication and dosage. He was given pills first that got him much worse: he got jaundice, stopped eating and almost died. But the caretakers at our vet did not give up and Minou started eating again. Eventually we got him the right dosage of insulin (two shots a day) and he was so well to the point of getting off the insulin for a while. He is back on insulin now and when I travel I have two dedicated friends who come and give him shots. It takes dedication and a lot of love. But our pets love us so much in return and that love has no price. Now, when I have to go away, I have to plan carefully and I also enjoy every moment I have with my cat. He is not overweight, he is loving and happy, his old self. Do not give up! Walmart/Sams club carries the cheapest insulin and syringes:-)
Vizsla had litter of pups,etc. She wasn't on her feed, had blood tests run, diabetic. He kept her a week, she looked terrible, down to 39 lbs. I brought my Orijen dog food in for feeding, she perked up. Vet taught me to use meter, take blood from above teeth, read it, record, the shots. Give a small treat before the test, feed Orijen AM PM, 3pm daily hard boiled egg. I keep Karo syrup in car, kitchen, bedroom, 3 seizures, you learn fast to get into mouth, beware of teeth.
So do her in obedience, etc. 9 years old, watch the eyes for blindness. i have 8 dogs, learned getting an excellent vet is the key. Treats? yes, protein.
We rescued a senior English Springer SPaniel several years ago who had skin problems. We dealt with those issues for about a year before we learned he was diabetic. After starting him on Science Diet WD and insulin twice a day, his skin problems disappeared. We had him for 6 or 7 years before his blindness, bladder control problems and other issues forced us to put him down. He was the BEST dog we have ever had and we never regretted the time and extra effort it took to care for him.
My dog, Sparky; 7YO, was diagnosed last year. I love my Spark, but I wouldn't knowingly take on a pet with these issues. We're doing what's necessary and he seems to be reasonably healthy, but he is going blind, and injuries sometimes don't heal as quickly as they normally would.
Just make sure that you know what you are getting into, because there is more to caring for a diabetic pet than shots and food.
I am determined to take the best care I can of Spark but I would not recommend taking a pet already aged and sick unless you are prepare for that kind of commitment.
Ally (Siberian Husky )is now 13 years old. She was diagnosed 2 years ago. She was very sick (DKA / diabetic ketoacidosis) and spent days in the animal hospital. She went blind from cataracts induced by the high blood sugars. We found a new Vet that helped us through the process after she came home from hospital. I an a Nurse so they let us keep her at home check sugars and adjust insulin so not hospitalized so long. We also found an awesome eye vet in Houston from Texas A&M. Ally had bilateral cataract surgery. She did well initially and then one eye developed infections and glaucoma. That eye eventually had to be removed and she now has a glass eye. It was a very long haul with eye infections, ear infections and glucose problems when she was in pain etc.. She is well regulated now. She sees great with the one eye. We feed her Science Diet W/D dry and moist.She gets snacks of protein and vegetables. NPH Insulin am/pm Walmart has the cheapest NPH insulin. Check glucose at home periodically when she seems sick. It was alot of work / money to get her to this point but now just a part of our life. We also have 2 Australian Shepherds. Hardest part was mealtime, making sure every dog ate only their food! We taught kids, friends and neighbors to give the insulin in case something comes up to help us out. She is a wonderful dog and we did not want to put her to sleep. Our Vet says with the regulation she has should live to old age
Our lovely Border Collie/Australian Shepherd mix was diagnosed 3-4 months ago. We were devastated. She is on insulin shots 2xper day and we are still attempting to regulate her insulin. She went blind very quickly after diagnosis. She has adjusted to her blindness much better then we have. She is happy and healthy otherwise. It is a HUGE commitment of time as we jave to adjust our schedules to meet hers. Insulin must be given at specific times - 12 hours apart. Our adult daughter has been trained in her care as well. Bella is 8-1/2 and is doing very well. We are now thinking of getting our own glucometer to save the cost of glucose tests at the Vet's every week. The time commitment is the biggest challenge - but certainly manageable, and she is worth every bit of time we have with her. Good luck to you in your decision.
We had a cat, NOT overweight, that after 7 years started pooping outside the litter box. She was always hungry and crying and peed ALOT. She was listless and clearly miserable.
The vet suggested stop dry food and gave her prescription pills. After 6 months, she was still miserable and it is heartbreaking to watch a beloved pet suffer so we put her out of her misery. So we did not have a happy ending despite trying many things. To have to choose between allowing a pet to suffer because we find it difficult to let go or stop the sufferring is a life's lesson on your own values and we agonized over this decision but ultimately we did what was best for her, not what was best for us.
I run a lameness rehabilitation centre for horses. The most common problem presented is laminitis, inflammation of the tissues inside the hoof capsule. This is VERY painful.
it is mostly diagnoses in horses who are easy keepers, get fat on very little, and it is often triggered in the spring when the sugars in the new grass are very high.
We put them on a low carb fully balanced feed regime and supplement them with magnesium.
I have good results but find it very difficult to get accurate blood tests done here in Ireland.
Does anyone have any information about using Glucometers ets at home on horses?
We have a diabetic dog, and it is definatly a commitment. He has to have his shots at the same time every day. Sometimes it makes life difficult. We have to plan everything around the dog. I never get to sleep in anymore. Feeding and shot at 6:00 AM, then at 6:00 PM. Baby carrots are his treat. We've had this dog since he was just a pup, and love him too much to not take good care of him.
Is there any free information out there about my dogs eye removal up coming operation.
I have a diabetic cat, 14 yo. He was on insulin for approx. a year. I immediately changed his diet and now he is off insulin and has gained his weight back. He is a happy, healthy little boy.
Hope you chose to take it on. I had a sweetie in my life (corgi) with diabetes. No big deal. Live with it! And that's the lesson pups teach - bring it on! He lived till 12 and his death had nothing to do with diabetes.
I wish I had a nice story like the rest of them. We had a Chocolate Lab. He was a wonderful dog. He was 8 years old when he was diagnosed with Diabetes. I had to give him 2 shots of insulin a day. I did this for two weeks until one day he just wouldn't get up and was very wobbely when we did get him up. We rushed him to the vet only to find out that he had Ketones in his blood stream and there was nothing more they could do. We had to put him down that day. It was the hardest thing I ever dealt with. But the 8 years he was with us was very rewarding. I wouldn't trade that for the world. After all it is better to have loved and lost then to have never loved at all.
If your pet had diabetes, reconsider their food! Cats who eat dry food are very susceptible to diabetes because the carbohydrate content of dry food is WAY TOO HIGH. Cats cannot tolerate carbs and should be switched to a low carb, grain free canned food such as Wellness, Merrick BG, Fancy Feast Classics (NO GRAVY). A diet change with a glargine insulin, such as Lantus, gives your kitty the best chance to get off of insulin. My cat is now diet controlled and has been so for 11 months now!
Does metformin use increase the risk of heart attack?
I, too, have a lab/golden mix. She has just been diagnosed with diabetes. She is my buddy, the only other female in my home, and my constant companion when I am within her reach. She is found sleeping next to my bed until I wake in the morning and is the first to greet me when I come home late at night as she waits by the door. When I cannot give her attention when I am at home, she lies down as close as she can get and takes a nap. You could not have a more loving and faithful companion and the way she endures her diabetic treatment only endears her to me all the more. I would highly encourage you to adopt the dog and not miss the blessing of being able to call her yours for as long as she has left.
I had a poodle dog that was a cushing dog and a diabetic . I gave him two shots a day and he had treatments for the cushing diease. he live 5 years and 3 months. The doctor said that he would live about two years. My son's dog which I call her my grandog is a diabetic dog. We give him two shots a day.
I have had two wonderful dogs that were diabetic. Let me assure you the love and devotion they gave to me made giving them the twice a day injections more than worth taking the time to do so. Please don't let this stop you from thaking this beautiful dog into your life.
I have a wonderful Jack Russel Terrior that is diabetic. She is alot of work, but is so worth it. She is my life. She is a special dog because of her diabetes, and I would not trade her in for the world.
I have a dog that after 6 years developed type 1 diabetes. It is a large responsibility to take on but I can actually say that somehow she understands that the injection that I give her once a day makes her feel better. She takes long lasting insuline so I dont have to worry about multiple shots and even now, after 5 months you can tell she just knows that she feels ok after getting it. You should talk with a vet and find out if long lasting would work for Carlie. It makes life much easier. You just have to test the urine (with a strtip) every morning and give her a shot once you get the result (30 seconds). The shot will vary with the result of the test strip but I have caught on and managed to keep her sugar under control. Insuline though is a large cost that I can tell you and it is something that you need to think about
I LOVE dogs but they are a huge committment in and of themselves. Being a first time dog owner will be a learning experience, esp where canine behavior is concerned. With your background, it would be a wonderful and generous thing for you to help this particular animal, but if for some reason you decide it is more than you can handle right now, please give yourself some grace and don't feel guilty. Any dog you take into your home, you will have saved.
I have an older dog with diabetes. He was dignosed 3 years ago. He is on insulin twice a day. He is blind and manages to get around the house without any trouble. He is healthy otherwise and is doing well on his treatment. I am diabetic also so it is easy for me to give him his medication when I take mine. I would encourage anyone to go ahead and take/keep a pet with the disease. He is so happy and loves to just sit and be rubbed!!
I have had several cats with diabetes over the years. I presently have one, Simba. He was around 9 years old when I adopted him from my vet. His owner and left him at the vets along with his housemate who was 19 years old because her boyfriend did not like cats. I already had several cats and the vet asked me if I would adopt him so he wouldn't spend Easter (ha-ha) in the kennels. That was around 6 years ago. Simba does very well with his glucose checks. I just prick the veins in his ears and I alternate ears. I check him twice a day. He goes into remission every now and then. The insulin shots are nothing. He eats well, has neither gained or lost weight. No vomiting, no excess drinking. Thankfully he is fine in every way other than the diabetes. I say "Go for it". Every animal deserves a chance to be happy and it sounds like this dog will also make you happy. Good Luck!
I have an 8 year old spayed bitch Schipperke. She was diagnosed with Diabetes mellitus last October,. She has lost over 1kg in weight, and her insulin tolerance has dropped to the point that even 1 unit can cause her to go hypo but with no symptoms other than a low blood sugar. Appetite is good, no vomiting, goes hyper daily then hypo, has become weary and disinterested and seems very depressed. At the moment she is in dog hospital for tests. They are querying an insulinoma. I can't understand why she has massive hypers though. As I say, she doesn't have any blackouts or seizures. Just hypos and hypers. Her fructosamine levels have always been high, so that she started on 5 units of Caninsulin twice a day, then finally got up to 10 units twice a day before her first hypo, only detected by a blood test, and no other symptoms. Insulin has been reduced to 1 unit but has been given only when she has high sugar levels, not even twice a day.
I'm very worried and obviously, upset. Has anyone any ideas. I know her consultant will tell me everything, but I'd like to be orepared.
I had a schnauzer, I say had because she passed away several years ago. Not from her diabetes, but from bad bones. She was a treasure and I hope you go for it. She would follow me around if I forgot to give her, her injection of insulin. She received two a day. My only advice would be to make sure you have someone who would be willing to give her medications if you were not available.
I highly recommend two books on holistic pet care, my precious kitty cat was diagnosed as hyperthyroid five yrs ago. I took her to several conventional vets who almost killed her. On my own, I started looking at holistic ways to treat Payton. I read, "The Nature of Animal Healing" and "Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats". And, I switched to a holistic vet. I firmly believe that shoddy pet food, vaccines, and vets educated on books published by pet food company dollars are why we are seeing such a high incidence of diabetes, autoimmune disorders, and the like. People need to wake up and question things. Dogs and cats digestive systems are not made to eat pellets of tasty tidbits. Dogs used to hunt in packs, eat off the kill, bury it and come back a day or two later with all sorts of creepy things crawling in the meat - they ate again. Their systems can handle it and thrive on such. Almost the same for cats. You will be disgusted to learn what is in pet food, if you read about it.
If I had a farm, I would have a ton of cats and dogs to hunt on their own. I'm afraid, this will be my last pet ... that is, unless the pet food industry gets real. I have Payton on a grain-free diet and she is doing well. But, I am beginning to see signs of kidney failure. It breaks my heart - she's only 16. I hope you help this sweet dog out, they are a treasure. But, if I were you, I'd look at a holistic way to deal w/her dia
Just read about Carlie. I had a Doberman, Sparky, who was exactly as her name describes her - a lively female who lved to be 14 hrs. old. She developed diabetes when she was about 11. I gave her a shot twice a day and she lived a good life for 3 more years. Yes, it was a big commitment, but I wouldnt have done anything differently. She had lost weight and drank alot of water. After receiving her first shots, she immediately starting eating and gained weight again. These wonderful pets are such a part of our family life!
My dog buddy a terrier mix was diagnosed with diabetes when he was 4 year old. What made us realize he could be was he started drinking water like crazy and as a result would start having accidents in the house. My husband noticed that his urine smelled sweet and thought he had diabetes. After the vet performed a series of blood tests (glucose curve)he was Type 1 so the whole family was taught how to test his sugar and give him his injections 2x a day. We had him on special food from the vet for the longest time but then found feeding him pedigrees weight control actually reduced his sugar. He was never overweight so monitoring any weight loss was important. He passed away at the age of 15 years old. He lived a very happy and active life with his diabetes and actually like getting his injections that he knew it made him feel better. I was able to always monitor him for any sudden changes or eating patterns. When, how much and what he ate played a big part in his sugar levels and over the years I was able to adjust his insulin based on his needs. Then at the age of 15 he had a seizure & was rushed to the vet. He snapped out of it but the test results showed that his vital organs were failing and to prepare that he could pass away soon. 6mos later we woke up to find him unconscious, labored breathing and loss of body fluids. He never woked up. I believe he died of old age and not because he had diabetes. It is manageble & buddy was proof of that. He was a great do
I had a VERY sweet Dalmation (Ladybug) that became diabetic at the age of 7. I found out because she lost a ton of weight and at one point did not have the strength to stand on her own and would not eat. I took her to the vet hospital, and $4000.00 later I found out that she was diabetic. OMG!! I went into shock!! I was a single Mom which made the expense very difficult but we loved our Ladybug! For the next 5 years she ate at 7 AM/PM and she got her insulin shot at 7:30 AM/PM. My son, who was 3 yrs older than Ladybug, was able to give her the shots after a little bit of practice and it all just became a way of life for all of us. After a while I could also tell in her face when she was high or low, which was interesting. We lost her when she was 12 and miss her greatly. I would not do anything differently and thank God that I was some how able to financially and physically manage the situation. I am not sure that I would choose to do that again, but when you are faced with it, it is doable and well worth it! Ladybug got to where not only did she know the routine, but I think she knew we were helping her so the shots were not a problem. It is expensive though. Not only on a monthly basis, but you will never have a "normal" vet bill again. As they age, the bills increase and become more frequent. You have to make sure that you have the $, time and commitment and then it is all about the love. Good luck!
I'm on my second diabetic cat. As long as the cat is docile enough for you to give the shot of insulin and allow you to prick the ear for a blood sample, it is not a problem. Just a little more work. When it is feeding time I put her into a cat townhouse where she has her high protein,low carb food and can't eat the regular cat food.
My toy poodle, "Little," was dx'd w/diabetes several months ago. She was quite ill and not expected to live, but she is "fine" now, with special attention to her diet and insulin 2x/day. She will be 11 yrs old on July 4th. Some days she doesn't want to eat, and it is stressful trying to keep her blood sugar in check. I take her to her vet at least once a month so he can check it, and she has been stable on 7u 2x/day. I must be here to give her her shots, which can be worrisome if I need to be out of town for anything. I don't really have anyone to reliably fill in for me.
I am retired, on a fixed income, and the insulin, syringes, etc., are an unexpected expense. Also, she is now eating home-cooked chicken and other special foods -- also an added expense. Bottom line: I love her and will continue her treatment as long as she has a good quality of life. She is a loving and deserving little girl!
I too have a golden and lab mix (looks like a yellow lab) who is 11 years old. She has had diabetes for 4 years now. At first it was very expensive because of the constant (day long stay) vet visits to get insulin levels checked. Insulin was expensive, but now using the human insulin is not as bad - about 60.00 a month. Food was also expensive (Science Diet WD)and she was loosing a lot of weight. I was also supplementing with canned meat, vegetables, and vitamins. I got some dog food at Wag-n-wash that was better. Now she is actually eating the Rachael Ray food from the grocery store - she does well with this. One other thing is that within the first couple months of her diagnosis, she developed cataracts. She is only seeing shadows, but gets around really w ell. Even with all the health problems I wouldn't trade her in or give her up. She still is her dopey self and runs around like a maniac - has a tendancy to run into a tree now and then. One thing she can do is go to the dog park and I do have to keep her on leash is unfamiliar dogs are around (gets sometimes agressive). I know some of these sound bad, take the good with the bad. Giving shots is not a big deal - I give her the shot while she eats - doesn't even look up.
Nancy, One of my cats was diagnosed with diabetes in 2008 at the age of 11 years. Since then I have been administering two injections per day. It is not difficult to do (subcutaneous) and he is doing very well. The only difficulty for us was finding a pet-sitter who was not only willing and able to give the shots, but whom Big B would allow to stick him with a needle. It took over a year, but now we have the best sitter in the world and both cats really like her!
Our Bichon has had diabetes for three years, managed by diet and insulin. He had double cataract surgery in December and his sight is excellent. We remain committed to him having the best life possible, and feeding and giving insulin twice a day is no hardship, compared to having him in our lives.
We had a Lhasso for 17 yrs even though he had diabetes for at least 10 of those yrs!! Having a young child also with type 1, and being an RN, I just gave both their injections at the same time. This was 35 yrs ago;I developed my own "sliding scale" for both of them using observations/asswessments only. She is now 38 with NO complications!!
Our cat Peeper was just diagnosed with diabetes and is now on insulin 2 times a day. He is happy, alert and loving life! He is a part of the family and his diabetes is VERY managable. I thought giving the shots was going to be hard - but it isn't and is second nature now. We are still in the early stages but his levels have gone down, he is on an all wet diet (no dry food AT ALL). His coat is now shiny and healthy looking. He is living life to the fullest and catching the occasional mouse -- which are mostly to not all protein so they have been vet approved!
Carlie sounds like a fantastic dog. But, you will need to put more effort into her care. Something for you to think about...
My Aussie developed diabetes at age 10. She went totally blind within weeks of diagnosis, but her sight was restored by cataract surgery. Almost 3 years later, she is fine. Her care is somewhat limiting on my time, since she has to eat on schedule or get hypoglycemic. Friends and family even know her schedule, they say "We'll get back home by 3:30 so you can feed Billie." I did try to do blood testing at home with an Alphatrak, but had no success getting enough blood to test. Go for it, adopt the dog!
One of my cats had developed diabetes and we did not know. He was older and quite overweight. One day was just very ill and almost in coma. We had to have him euthanized. Please, have your overweight cats checked routinely by their vet to make sure this sad situation does not happen to them.
Our dog April is an 8 yr old extremely spoiled and loved yellow lab. She was diagnosed with diabetes last August she was taking 65 units of insulin daily and was still having a measurement in the 500's. In about 1 1/2 months she lost all her sight . In December they discovered she had low thyroid so was started on medication for that. Immediately her glucose level came down. She now takes 30 units of insulin 2x a day and is doing well. Her lack of sight is only a problem for her when she is in unfamiliar territory she also has problems in snow it messes up her smell. She has returned to her normal frisky loveable smartest dog in the world.
Our 13 year-old terrier-mix, Izzy, has had diabetes now for just over one year. She does very well on one shot in the morning and one in the evening, right at 12 hours apart.I would tell others faced with an animal being diagnosed with diabetes that it is scary in the beginning, but quickly becomes routine and easy. She is worth everything it takes to keep her happy and healthy. I wouldn't hesitate to adopt an animal with diabetes in the future.
I was disappointed in your comment that "dogs" properly treated for diabetes typically live a long, full life. So do cats! I recently lost a cat that lived with diabetes for over six years. I'm not sure how old she was but she lived at least 15 years. She came to my door as an adult looking for a home and lived happily ever after. I hope no one hesitates to keep a cat with diabetes. She was a joy to live with, and easy to care for. The only extra commitment required of me was to arrange my schedule so she got her shots approximately 12 hours apart. That was not a problem and well worth the effort. I hope Carlie finds a loving forever home.
When I was a teenager, many years ago, my Schnauzer became a diabetic, my folks wanted to put him down, I disagreed, I thought, 'would they put me down if I got diabeties?' Well, my dog did pass, but was not from his sugar. It was difficult for him, but he adjusted to his routine quite well, in fact better than my dad who developed it later on. With patience and love, your pets will do fine.
our dog Daisy has diabetes and it does take work as she needs a shot in the am and pm but she does well and we would not give up the love she shares with us for anything.You must be willing to commit to what every it takes to make their lives happy.
We sometimes have to change plans for her but we manage to work that out.Good luck. Clara
I have a nine year old Australian Terrier who has had diabetes for two years now. This is a typical disease among terriers--we once lost two Silkies to it as well. He needs injections of human insulin twice daily. Because he is resistant to any testing and it is a very costly proposition at the vet's, we make due without that monitoring. Urination is a problem, but we have resolved to give him the best life possible and keep his sleep area covered with washable towels. He is full of fun and energy and enjoys his walks and treats, despite the cataracts that have diminished his sight. We too go to Walmart for his insulin and needles--half the price of going to our drugstore. It's an added responsibility to treat this disease, but we love him and so long as he enjoys his life we will muddle on.
My 14-yr old cat was diagnosed with diabetes (blood sugar 604!). He weighed 15 lbs. Started insulin injections twice daily plus only "wet" cat food with no gluten-type ingredients. After 30 days, blood sugar was down to 75. After 6 months, blood sugar normal and he's lost 4 lbs. He's healthy and "bushy-tailed" again!
I had a cat that was diagnosed with diabetes. He was a neutered male who weighed about 22 lbs prior to diagnosis. He began losing weight and they finally found the diabetes. He needed 2 shots of insulin daily. There were bumps in the road along the way until it evened out. I had the choice of going with daily injections or putting him down knowing that some day, he would not respond to insulin. He lived for about 2.5 years after diagnosis and had basically the same life he'd always had. Do I miss him? Yes, everyday as the hole in my heart is as big as he was. Would I change anything knowing how this would end? Absolutely not! He was a lapful of cat, but had the most expressive eyes and meows and was as close to human as he could be. So, I remember all the little things about him that made him special --- he was polydactyl, with front feet the size of catchers mitts and learned how to catch ice cubes with his feet; he was an orange-striped tiger cat (just like Morris for those of you who remember him) and had the same look on his face when given substandard cat food. So, let the dog into your life and discover the joys a furry companion can bring you. Your life will never, ever be the same.
Oscar our PBGV has had diabetes requiring two shots a day since 2/09. He went blind from cataracts caused by the diabetes in 6/09. He enjoys life -- is as funny as ever. Go ahead and adopt the dog -- you both will be happy. Also, I searched for the cheapest insulin -- it was Novalin-N from Walmart -- about $25 a vial with needles at $13 for 100. Prices do vary by double -- so check around.
Great question, I have included some information below. Please check out the link:
Here you can view articles on pet diabetes, but also other topics, like Cushing's disease, arthritis and others.
Cushing’s syndrome, also called hyperadrenocorticism, refers to a disease when the adrenal glands produce an excessive amount of a hormone, cortisol (also referred to as cortisone). Cortisol, is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands that are located near the top of each kidney and is released in times of stress to prepare for a “fight or flight” situation. The effect of cortisol alters the metabolism by mobilizing fat and sugar stores in the body, in addition to retaining sodium and water for physical exertion. When the pet’s body is exposed to excessive cortisol concentrations for extended periods of time, systemic illness results.
Diabetes and Cushing’s syndrome share similar clinical signs (increased drinking, urination, appetite, lethargy) and uncontrolled diabetes can lead to complications that can cause increased cortisol levels and signs that are identical to Cushing’s syndrome. Testing and diagnosis of Cushing’s syndrome in a patient without diabetes can be complicated and even more complicated in a diabetic patient.
My understanding is that Cushing's Disease can also cause Diabetes.
(My dog has Cushing's Disease, but not Diabetes. He is on the drug Vetoryl for the former.)
I am a veterinarian in South Florida, in addition to a product development veterinarian at American Diabetes Wholesale. I want to let you know that American Diabetes Wholesale are here to help you in anyway with your difficult decision with Carlie and her diabetes.
Pet diabetes monitoring has come a long way over the years and monitoring is much simpler and more affordable than ever. In the pet world there are two veterinary diabetes monitors used.
The Abbott Alphatrak meter is the most commonly used veterinary meter, and is often recommended by veterinarians. The Ulticare iPet Meter is the second meter and is much more affordable to pet owners. Most glucose meters come in a kit that includes an instruction CD/DVD, the meter, a control solution for calibration, lancets to take your pet's blood, and glucose strips for the meter to read.
Most of all, remember that diabetes in dogs is a manageable condition that can preserve and potential improve Carlie’s quality of life on a reasonable budget. We at American Diabetes Wholesale are here to help with your difficult decision.
Our 10 year old miniature schnauzer has Type I diabetes and has had it for about 3 years. He has a shot of human insulin in the morning and one at night. We have to test his urine in the am and pm before the shot and he has gotten used to his daddy going behind him with a little container catching a few drops. We then test his urine with glucose urine strips to see what the dose his insulin should be. He is so good at getting his shots and we give him a dog treat after the injection. He is still the same playful, loving baby that he has always been and we are thankful that his diabetes is under control. It took a few months to get it at an even level but with our vets help and patience it can be done. It also helps that I also have Type II diabetes and am familiar with what to look for when buying his dog food and treats. He no longer gets ANY human food and we pray that he will be with us for many more years. He is our baby and the vet says that we are doing an excellent job taking care of him. The PROS are, he is still the loving, wonderful, loyal and funny boy he has always been. And we couldn't imagine our life without him. The CONS are that he will always have to be on insulin, either one or two shots daily. Your vet can tell you how many shots your pet should have. If two shots a day they should be scheduled 12 hours apart. His diabetes is just like any other bump in the road you might run across with any furry child. Good luck
i had a miniture schnauzer and as she got older the diabetes were taking her away faster then we could save her she drank water but couldn't hold her urine like she use to and never could get her weight up and later just boney , but full of heart mean and fiesty, she help trained my apbt before she died that was a year old at the time . her feistiness was because she was lady of the house, find one thats partly trained and then u will enjoy the good times with your pet instead of sickness all the pets life and care
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