Believed to effect 1 in 400 cats, feline diabetes often presents itself with symptoms that are very similar to those found in humans. The good news is that feline diabetes is treatable and does not necessarily mean a shorter life span or lesser quality of life for cats. In many cases, early and effective treatment of feline diabetes may even lead to a complete remission, which means that a cat will not continue to need insulin injections.
Early detection of feline diabetes is critical to a cat’s health. If left untreated, this illness can lead to weakness in the legs, malnutrition, dehydration and possibly even death. The symptoms of feline diabetes are gradual and may manifest themselves over a period of several weeks. Typically, feline diabetes if not found in cats that are under 7 years of age. The first signs are likely to be a sudden weight loss or gain. In addition, excessive drinking and urination may be accompanied by an sudden increase in, or loss of, appetite. The next symptom of feline diabetes may be the back legs growing increasingly weak.
Once any of the aforementioned signs begin to surface, it’s time to take your pet to the veterinarian for the appropriate tests. If feline diabetes is confirmed, one of the most important treatment methods will be that of a well-balanced diet. Based upon your cat’s needs, the veterinarian will recommend a diet and nutrition plan, which can be utilized in addition to regular insulin injections. Oral medications are also often prescribed in place of injections, but pills are often thought to cause liver damage or possibly even a remission reversal in cats. Therefore, most pet owners opt for insulin injections for the most effective treatment of feline diabetes.
While in treatment, it is important that cats be taken to the veterinarian for regular checkups and to monitor their health and dietary habits. If this illness is not treated properly or if their diet is not closely monitored, your pet may end up hospitalized. When dealing with feline diabetes, there is no room for error and pets must be closely supervised to make sure that they are eating right and gradually beginning to regain their strength.
The information in this article is intended for informational purposes only. It should not be considered as, or used in place of, medical advice or professional recommendations for the diagnosis or treatment of feline diabetes. If necessary, individuals should take their pet to a licensed veterinarian for further information regarding feline diabetes, including a proper diagnosis and treatment.