There are two different types of diabetes in dogs; diabetes mellitus, which means the dog’s endocrine glands are malfunctioning (also known as insulin deficient) and diabetes inspidus which means there is not enough vasopressin (vasopressin is an important hormone that controls the kidney’s ability to absorb water properly).
Dog diabetes is more common than you might think, on average; one in every 500 dogs will suffer with symptoms of diabetes. For the most part, canine diabetes is hereditary; but older and/or obese dogs are also prone to contract this disease. There are specific breeds of dogs that will be more susceptible to developing diabetes. They would include the Dachshunds, Poodles, Cocker Spaniels and Beagles.
Diabetic symptoms in dogs are very similar to how they manifest in humans: increased thirst, excessive urination and unexplained weight loss or gain. The strange thing about diabetes in dogs is that in some cases, no symptoms will be exhibited at all. This is why it is very important to take your dog for regular blood work and full exams with your veterinarian, so that any potential disease can be diagnosed and treated during the early stages of development.
A change in diet is the first step toward treating diabetes in dogs. Under a veterinarians’ supervision, a low carbohydrate and high protein diet will most likely be recommended. A diet high in fiber rich foods is also recommended, because fiber helps the digestive system and also absorbs carbohydrates more efficiently. Since most commercial dog foods are usually high in fat and carbohydrates, you will have better control on your dog’s meals if you prepare them yourself.
A prescription drug that is the only one currently approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration of the United States) is Vetsulin to treat either mellitus diabetes or type II diabetes in canines.
In addition to a closely monitored change in diet and any prescriptions that your vet might prescribe; adding some natural herbs and therapies may go a long way in relieving some your pup’s diabetic symptoms.
Some natural remedies include:
BEJAK: an herb proven to be effective in addressing issues of abnormal urination (a common symptom of diabetes).
APPLE CIDAR VINEGAR: just a drop or two added to your dog’s water bowl will give prescription medications an extra boost.
KARELA: this herb has the ability to improve how food is absorbed in the stomach.
GURMAR or GYMNEMA SYLVESTRE: stimulates the pancreas to assist in the production of insulin.
GRAPEFRUIT: is very helpful in maintaining a healthy weight. If your dog is gaining weight, due to diabetic symptoms, add a bit of grapefruit juice to their daily water bowl.
With attention to your dog’s needs and proper care, diabetes in dogs can be controlled.