A dog or cat that is infected by diabetes will require a long time of treatment that depend mainly on insulin injections. But this treatment will not work properly if you don’t consider the right diet for your pet. A healthy pet without diabetes is flexible to changeable diets, but a pet with diabetes should stick to a specific diet from the first time that you observed symptoms on diabetes until being treated. In this topic, we will explain how to make sure that your pet is suffering from diabetes and we will determine what to feed your pet in this situation.
Signs of diabetes
The reason why a pet that is suffering from diabetes is treated by insulin injections is the fact that this condition is marked by a lack of the production of insulin. This insulin is an essential hormone that regulates levels of blood sugar. There are some obvious signs by which you can deduct that your pet is suffering from diabetes including the following:
- Loss of weight
- Drinking a lot of water continuously
- Increase of urination
- Increased appetite
If you made sure that your pet has the previous symptoms, you should focus on some areas while your dog is having a treatment. At first, notice the amount of water your pet takes to measure the recovery process. While you are assessing measures, make sure to feed it according to the vet recommendations and to have regular exercise that will help your pet to maintain the weight. Not only the water intake that should be measured, eating the recommended diet should be measured also to maintain the blood sugar levels of your dog. Without eating properly, don’t inject your pet with insulin without contacting your vet. By sticking on specific meals and measured doses of insulin, keep tracking your pet recovery signs.
Food for diabetic pets
Unlike humans, pets who are suffering from diabetes don’t have to eat only one specified diet. All what you should consider is the willingness of your pet to eat this diet regularly, but if your pet has another illness besides diabetes, you should provide a specific diet that matches this illness. To make sure that your pet is eating properly, make it eat the same amount of the same type of food in two meals on a daily basis. The following elements should be considered when you prepare a diet for your pet:
- Levels of glucose: You are planning the diet of your pet to lower the intake of glucose, but you should introduce a snack between each meal not to cause a bad drop of the levels of glucose.
- Fiber and carbohydrates levels: The levels of fiber and carbohydrates in your pet food should also be considered to help with the treatment process. There is no specific criteria by which you can determine the reasonable amounts of fiber and carbohydrates for your pet because pets responds differently to different amounts. So, it is recommended to discuss this situation with your vet who will be able to recommend the reasonable amounts of fiber and carbohydrates based on the weight of the pet either being overweight or underweight.
- Fat intake: Regarding fat, you should lower your pet intake of fat. Low-fat diets may be the best choice if your diabetic pet has a Cushing’s disease, elevated triglycerides or cholesterol or concurrent pancreatitis. These diseases are usually linked to pets who are suffering from diabetes.
- Protein intake: regardless being overweight or underweight, your pet should eat food with moderate amounts or increased amounts of protein. Protein plays a vital role as a substitute source of energy after reducing the intake of fat.
An important thing to consider after discovering that your pet is suffering from diabetes is the way you should change the diet. An overall change is not recommended. You may start to mix only 25% of the new diet to 75% of the old diet. Then start to increase the percentage of the new diet a day after a day until reaching an overall change of the pet diet according to your vet recommendation.
Diabetes supplements for your pet
There are also other supplements that works side by side with insulin injections to lower levels of your pet blood glucose. Just be cautious about these supplements and introduce them to your pet according to your vet recommendations because these supplements may reduce the need of insulin. These supplements are used also for humans suffering from diabetes but the dose should be less for your pet depending on its size, medium sized pets should take half the dose taken by a human while small sized pets should take only quarter the dose.
- Zink: this supplement is highly recommended for humans with diabetes but it should be given to your pet with limitations because it could be toxic. So, you should at first take the permission from your vet before giving it to your pet.
- Omega 3 fatty acids: the EPA and DHA fatty acids are good supplements that will help your pet with many benefits such as reducing levels of hyperlipidemia in your pet blood. They also regulate the immune system and reduce the risk of inflammation. Foods like fish and fish oils are rich with omega 3 fatty acids and they provide your pet with both the EPA and the DHA fatty acids.
- L-Carnitine: this is an important amino acid that enhances the fat metabolism process, control diabetes for your pet and protect his or her muscles during weight loss against catabolism. To offer the highest benefits for your pet from this supplement, the dose shouldn’t be less than 50 Mg. beef is considered the best food to offer for your pet because it provides 80 Mg per 3 ounce portion.
Finally, make sure that the way you will have to feed your diabetic pet should be based on both the size of your pet and the recommendations of your vet. Assessing its recovery should also be made under the supervision of your vet.