Diabetes Mellitus is a medical condition where the cat has too much sugar in their blood, this excessive sugar level is caused by a deficiency of the hormone insulin which is secreted by the pancreas. Without insulin, the body can’t process and breakdown glucose in the blood resulting in high blood sugar levels. Diabetes is very common in cats, especially in old age.
Signs of diabetes:
- Polyuria – urinating too much
- Polydipsia – drinking too much
- Weight loss despite polyphagia – increased appetite
How is diabetes mellitus diagnosed?
Diabetes mellitus is diagnosed by identifying clinical signs as well as monitoring the concentration of blood sugar levels and the presence of glucose in the cat’s urine. A single test is not always accurate therefore secondary testing is often performed to ensure correct diagnoses.
How is diabetes mellitus treated?
A long term commitment is required when treating diabetes, but it can be successfully managed.
After diabetes is diagnosed, initial steps are taken in an attempt to remove any obvious causes of the disease, these can include tackling obesity or stopping prescription drugs. However, in cases where there are no pre-disposing causes then most cats will require insulin injections administered by their owner.
It is important that you consult regularly with your vet to ensure the diabetes is being managed successfully or whether any adjustments are needed in the insulin dosage.