Many diseases common in dogs, like diabetes, are often only thought of as human health issues. This unfortunately means that pet owners miss out on the symptoms and signs of diseases like diabetes in their pups. So how common is diabetes in dogs, and how can you ensure you take the right precautions to protect your pet from diabetes? Here is everything you need to know about diabetes in dogs.
What is Canine Diabetes?
Canine diabetes, much like diabetes in humans, is a condition that affects the amount of sugar, or glucose, in a dog’s blood. When your dog’s body
- makes too little insulin, or
- stops producing it completely
we call that diabetes. As you can see this is pretty similar to diabetes in human beings as well. Dogs are, after all, super sweet, aren’t they?
The carbohydrates in the food your dog eats are converted by her body into glucose, which is absorbed during digestion. From here, blood carries glucose to the cells that need it as power, and the body can continue working normally. If there isn’t enough insulin (the hormone that pulls sugar into the cells), glucose will build up in the bloodstream and cause damage.
How Common is Pet Diabetes?
This is tricky to calculate as canine diabetes is vastly under-diagnosed. Current numbers suggest that approx. 23 to 130 dogs in every 10000 dogs will suffer from canine diabetes, and that the condition is common in middle age and older dogs. That doesn’t mean that young dogs can’t be affected, but it is a lot less common.
Now that you know that diabetes can affect dogs too, you’d like to know how to prevent your dog from falling into the arms of this dangerous disease, right? Good! The first thing to be aware of, are the symptoms that your dog may exhibit if she is diabetic.
What Are the Symptoms of Diabetes in Dogs?