Pet Diabetes On The Rise - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Pet Diabetes On The Rise

Barry Smith, pet diagnosed with diabetes Barry Smith, pet diagnosed with diabetes

Just like with humans, cases of diabetes is soaring in dogs and cats. So much so, veterinarians are calling it an epidemic. 
   
Hans was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago, when his owner Barry Smith noticed some strange behavior changes.

"When a pet starts contracting this they start drinking copious amounts of water, just sopping it up and we picked up on that pretty quick, brought him over here and Dr. Bryan tested him for blood sugar and just a full blown case of diabetes."
   
Treatment has been up and down for Hans. The amount of insulin he takes changes frequently and has yet to stabilize and he is on a strict diet to keep his weight at twenty pounds. Smith also says the costs to keep up with the disease can also hurt the pocket book. 

"It runs about $2000 dollars a year so it can be expensive."

A new study says 1 in 50 animals has diabetes, especially if the pet is overweight. Dr. Bryan a local veterinarian says she says a strict diet and exercise can help prevent the onset of the disease. 

"It's much better to develop diabetes at ten years old as opposed to five years old because the longer you have a normal body the better. Those pets are the ones that really do better keeping in good physical condition keeping their weight down, avoiding snack and food that they shouldn't get but do." Bryan says diabetes can be genetic or caused by sedentary lifestyles.

In addition to cost Smith says living with a pet who has the condition is a complete lifestyle change. "The shots have to be given at a certain time and the food has to be at a certain time and really restricted amounts it kinda changes your life style going out to dinner I tell you that. 

Take your cat to the veterinarian if they are drinking lots of water and urinating frequently. Also if you notice an increase or decrease in weight could be a sign.

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