Diabetes Management

Diabetes management help in Anchorage

Diabetes Management
 Let the team at Chester Valley Veterinary Hospital help you with diabetes management. To simplify the understanding of diabetes, imagine insulin as a key to a door found on all of our cells. Insulin is able to unlock the door, the sugars then go into the cells and are used for energy. There are two types of diabetes - Type I is a basic form of diabetes in which insulin is not produced in the body. Type II is a form of diabetes in which insulin is produced but the cells are resistant to its presence -think of the locks on the cell doors being blocked. Due to the advances of modern medicine, diabetics are able to be treated with daily doses of insulin, but as with many things in medicine, prognosis can be challenging to predict. Time is the only way to know how things will turn out for you and your pet. Many very happy diabetics live for years with no problems.


For a pet with non-complicated diabetes regular check-ups every 3-6 months are needed regardless of symptoms, to ensure proper management of your pet’s condition. Some problems, such as urinary tract infections, may not show symptoms until they have advanced and caused permanent damage.

The frequency of visits will be dependent upon the problems. Your veterinarian will guide you through what will be needed as the problems are noted.
Diabetes management for pet at the veterinary  clinic in Anchorage, AK

Dogs and cats

There are many causes of Diabetes Mellitus in canines. Pancreatitis is the most common cause of Type 1 diabetes. Pancreatitis is a painful inflammatory process that can destroy the portion of the pancreas that secretes insulin. Pancreatitis is often caused or worsened by feeding high fat content food and treats. A high amount of fat in the bloodstream will cause the pancreas to become overstimulated. When the pancreas becomes overstimulated it produces excessive digestive enzymes that are meant to be carefully transported to the intestines to aid in digestion. This excess material is misplaced back into the pancreas and surrounding organs, such as the liver. The intestines have a specialized defense systems that protects the animal’s intestinal tract from being harmed. Other organs in the body do not have these specific safety factors. When exposed to digestive enzymes, they can become permanently damaged. Therefore, diabetes is an incurable condition.

Low fat, low sugar treats are fine for dogs. Please ensure that these treats are the same time every day just as with his/her feeding times. Canned green beans or other pre-made diabetic dog treats can be a very enjoyable part of a good diabetic management plan.
There are also many causes of Diabetes Mellitus in the feline. The most common cause of Diabetes Mellitus is Type 2, secondary to obesity. The steroid hormones that are naturally released from fat cells cause the insulin to become ineffective. Many cats can “self cure” with proper diet and weight loss.

Cats, like dogs, can have low fat, low sugar treats. Surprisingly, some cats really enjoy canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling, just plain pumpkin) for a treat. Please ensure that any treats are the same every day just as with feeding times. Most cats are diabetic due to obesity, but cats can become, “cured” of diabetes if they loose weight. The secret to weight loss in cats is actually water intake. More cats will loose weight on canned diets than dry due to their increased water intake. The increased water intake will also help their overall health in many other ways.

Diagnosis and treatment

Blood work
Blood work will help your veterinarian decide if the insulin dose is correct or needs adjustments. It will also assess overall health and any other disease processes that may occur.

Urinalysis will evaluate if your pet has a concurrent urinary tract infection. Urinalysis will also help your veterinarian evaluate the current severity of the diabetes.
We will work with you to make sure you understand how to give your pet the medication. One easy prediction is that you and your pet will adjust well to the insulin shots. In the beginning, many people are scared of the injections. They quickly realize that the needles are small and virtually painless. This is especially true if the injections are given with a treat or while they are eating their meal. Many people feel very awkward when they first learn to give injections. This quickly resolves with practice.

Call us for help! 907-333-6591

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