Urgent Diabetes Advice Needed

Posted by taniajennifer
May 7, 2008
my sister adopted an australian cattle dog 2 weeks ago and has just gotten her all settled in and has been working diligently on a piddling problem. she is an experienced dog owner and quickly clued in to something not being right with her housetraining. sure enough, after a trip to the vets, the dog has been diagnosed with diabetes. the dog (seth) was quite overweight when she got her and has since lost some weight with proper exercise and diet. however, the vet has said that a strict regiment of injections every 12 hours is required. my sister is not able to do this according to her work schedule as she works 2 jobs and has to do alot of juggling of shifts and whatnot. we are very very very sad to think that she might have to give poor Seth back to the shelter organization after giving her a taste of wonderful country life running free in the woods and playing with her new doggie buddies, boaz and my libby.

does anyone out there have any experience with doggie diabetes? any alternative therapies that have worked for you? or good luck controlling it via exercise and diet? we are wondering if, with time and good care, that the diabetes might correct itself? should we wait and see or just accept the fact that she cannot provide the medical care this dog needs.

help us please!

Posted by Claudia65
May 7, 2008
Hi Tania,

I don't have personal experience with doggy diabetes but as a nurse I have plenty experience with diabetes with humans. I looked at a couple articles on canine diabetes and it is pretty much treated like it is in humans. There are different types of insulin: some are short acting and some are long acting. It says that canine diabetes is not treated with oral medication like they sometimes use in humans.

Initially, your sister's dog may need to have the inulin injections twice a day while they are getting the diabetes under control. Your sister should still continue the management with diet and exercise. As the diabetes becomes better managed, usually the insulin can be cut back and/or replaced with diet and exercise management.

Things like stress and infection can cause the glucose levels to rise in the dog's bloodstream. I am sure the dog's recent move has been stressful on the dog and as things settle down that may also help the situation.

Can your sister possibly hire a professional dog sitter or does she have a neighbor that can come and give the shot? Maybe the shelter will be willing to take the dog back for a month or to see how the dog responds to the insulin injections?

Has the dog already been started on insulin and how well is the dog responding to the treatment? Has your sister asked the vet his opinion about the dog's prognosis? Ultimately, she needs to do what's best for her and the dog.

I may have told you everything that you already know!

Good luck and I hope everything works out!

Posted by Todd
May 8, 2008
Hi there and thanks for the post.

I love topics where it is more of a science than an art. I can give you some general advice but in the end it will be her vet that knows best as they have seen the dog.

Canine diabetes unlike cat diabetes often doesn't cure. Medication is vital and as tanja pointed out there are different types of insulin. In general twice a day injections are far better as they maintain glucose at a safe level much better.

That said if she can't inject the dog it is better it gets some rather than none. Once a day treatment is possible but talk to your vet about it.

As for other things - a constant envirnoment is really important. The amount of food and exercise should be a constant. Sudden changes and variation can do a lot of harm so keep things constant.

There are some foods that can reduce the amount of insulin that is required. Fibre as well as foods reduced in carbohydrate are brilliant. I love Hills Prescription Diet W/D but talk to your vet about what they think is great.

Good luck and hope things go well

Posted by taniajennifer
May 13, 2008
Thanks!! we have taken a deep breath are going to try some of the suggestions.



PS -- since my last post, bloodwork came back as "not diabetic" but urine test says "diabetic"? so we are optimistic that this can be controlled without much fuss.