Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Protecting Your Pet: Diabetes
Diabetes isn't just an epidemic among humans. The disease is actually quite common among our furry friends too. But there are warning signs you should be aware of. Health Specialist Marilyn Mitzel tells us what they are in tonight's Protect Your Pet.
(WSVN) -- Some pets look - act - and even dress like their owners.
But unfortunately - like us - they can also get the same diseases - including diabetes.
In fact - it afflicts one out of every 400 cats and dogs.
Dr. Gary Pait, Bayshore Veterinary Clinic: "There are a variety of causes of diabetes. Family history plays a big role, dietary habits are part of it, particularly in cats."
As does age - Marco got it at 13.
Maggie Morton, Marco's mom: "He was drinking a lot of water. It got to the point where he would drink a whole bowl at once. That was very unusual, of course."
Increased thirst - urination weight loss and cataracts - are all signs your pet may have diabetes - and should see a vet ASAP.
Dr. Pait: "It makes basically makes a difference in life and death."
Once diagnosed - it's usually easily controlled with a low carb - high protein diet.
And or medication to regulate blood sugar.
Dr. Pait: "Hey, how's Sweetie Pie?"
Like most - Sweetie Pie needs insulin shots.
Dr. Pait: "It's been touch and go several times with him."
So does Marco.
Dr. Pait: "He's doing really good."
Unfortunately - like humans - more pets are getting diabetes - for the same reason.
Dr. Pait: "The biggest thing we can do as far as prevention -- is mindful prevention of obesity -- it plays a big role."
But with the proper medical care and TLC - most diabetic pets can live happily for many years to come.
If your pet is diagnosed with diabetes they should wear a medical alert tag in case of an emergency.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Gary Pait
Bayshore Veterinary Clinic