Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. Unfortunately, no. Oral medications are designed to stimulate the pancreas to produce more insulin. In almost all diabetic dogs, the pancreas can no longer function to do this, so the oral meds are useless. You don’t say whether your pet is a dog, cat, or other animal, but the likelihood is slim that she will be able to take oral meds. Look at the shots as a life-giving gift to her–that may make it easier to administer them.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

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Dogs and cats with diabetes usually require lifelong treatment with special diets, a good fitness regimen and, particularly in dogs, daily insulin injections. The key to managing diabetic pets is to keep your pet`s blood sugar near normal levels and avoid too-high or too-low levels that can be life-threatening.
Insulin injections are not only unpopular with people receiving them; they are also unpopular with people administering them to their pets. Dogs, like Type I human diabetics, are universally insulin-dependent, and oral products have been a crashing failure in this species, with the exception of acarbose (see below).
Fresh evidence now suggests that dogs could help people with type 1 diabetes manage their condition with extra confidence. Share on Pinterest Our canine friends can `sniff out` hypoglycemia, a new study shows.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that can affect dogs and cats and other animals (including apes, pigs, and horses) as well as humans. Although diabetes can`t be cured, it can be managed very successfully. Diabetes mellitus, or “sugar diabetes,” is the type of diabetes seen most often in dogs. It is a metabolism disorder.
Detemir (U-100 human recombinant; Levemir, Novo Nordisk) is a long-acting insulin that can be used in both dogs and cats. Detemir is a human analog insulin engineered with modifications that allow it to bind albumin with high affinity in the subcutaneous and intravascular spaces, prolonging the insulin`s absorption.
Some types of insulin for dogs have a starting dose as low as 0.1 units per kg, whereas others have a starting dose of 0.5 units per kg. Typically insulin is given between once and four times a day, depending on the formulation. Always follow your vet`s guidelines when administering insulin injections.
Human insulin is formulated at a concentration of 100 IU/mL. Using a U-100 insulin syringe, would result in a dog receiving two and a half times less insulin than required, resulting in inadequate dosing and likely recurrence of signs.
Risk Factors for Diabetes in Dogs and Cats

On average, diabetes mellitus occurs in roughly 0.2% – 1.0% of cats and dogs. Risk factors for dogs and cats in developing diabetes mellitus include: An indoor or sedentary lifestyle and/or high carbohydrate diet.

Diabetic service dogs, also called diabetic alert dogs or DADs, are trained to let you know when your blood sugar has spiked too high or dropped too low. This way, you can take action before the problem turns into a medical emergency.
Type II diabetes is associated with obesity, hormone abnormalities and steroids. Animals with type II diabetes can go into remission. Dogs usually get type I diabetes and rarely get type II diabetes, while cats can get either type I or type II.
Lifestyle risks. All pets can develop diabetes at any age in life, but obese dogs and cats are at the highest risk. Pet obesity may stem from a diet that is too high in sugar or too low in fiber. A lack of exercise can also increase the risk of diabetes in dogs and cats.
Yes. Some animals do get diabetes naturally or in the wild, including apes, pigs, sheep, horses, cats, and dogs. All mammals produce insulin, and will develop diabetes (defined as high blood glucose levels) if their pancreatic beta cells are removed.
The injections are given in the subcutaneous tissue (sub = under; cutaneous = skin), which is considerably looser in the dog than in the human. Pinch some loose skin from the back of the neck or “scruff” region (between the shoulder blades) between your thumb and forefinger.
You will normally be trained, by a member of the veterinary practice, to inject your own dog by the `subcutaneous` route, which means the drug is administered under the skin through the needle. The injection can be given in several areas on the body but the most common one is in the neck or scruff of the dog.
Insulin administered to diabetic pets is an injectable version of the hormone normally produced by your pet`s pancreas. It is used to help move glucose from the bloodstream and into the cells where it can be used to make energy. Insulin is generally synthesized using recombinant DNA or purified from animal sources.
In most instances the reuse of needles on multiple animals is not permitted. It can lead to dulling of the needle, increasing the discomfort associated with injections, and can lead to disease transmission and/or contamination of vials of material to be injected.
If an animal does not produce enough insulin (is diabetic) his or her blood glucose level will be very high, yet there will be no glucose in the cells. High blood glucose causes animals to drink a lot and urinate a lot, predisposes animals to cataracts and changes the way fat is broken down.
Vetsulin has the same amino acid sequence as natural canine insulin, whereas the commonly prescribed biosynthetic human insulin has a different amino acid sequence. The similar structure may provide more effective regulation of blood glucose and decreases the risk of anti-insulin antibody development.
Human insulin may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away: redness, swelling, and itching at the injection site. changes in the feel of your skin, skin thickening (fat build-up), or a little depression in the skin (fat breakdown)
It helps your body use glucose (sugar) for energy. In type 1 diabetes your pancreas no longer makes insulin, so you have to inject it to control your blood glucose levels.
Type 2. Most people with type 2 diabetes may need one injection per day without any diabetes pills. Some may need a single injection of insulin in the evening (at supper or bedtime) along with diabetes pills.
Typically, cats tolerate the injections very well and do not find them to be uncomfortable. This is due to the tiny width of the insulin needles and the fact that they have a large amount of loose skin which is not painful to inject under (unlike in humans).
Pets should receive core vaccines—those medically necessary for all pets—and may need others depending on their lifestyle. No medication is without risk, but the benefits of vaccinating pets outweigh the risks. Vaccinations in pets protect against devastating and life-threatening diseases, such as rabies and distemper.
Dogs can live perfectly well without shots and it is the personal decision of the dog owner as to whether to get the dog inoculated or not. However, if you do decide not to have your dog inoculated you may be putting it at increased risk of contracting certain conditions that could, in effect, pose a risk to its life.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. We were just told she has diabetes. And neither of us can give her a shot. Can we put the insulin in her food or orally.
ANSWER : A. Unfortunately, no. Oral medications are designed to stimulate the pancreas to produce more insulin. In almost all diabetic dogs, the pancreas can no longer function to do this, so the oral meds are useless. You don’t say whether your pet is a dog, cat, or other animal, but the likelihood is slim that she will be able to take oral meds. Look at the shots as a life-giving gift to her–that may make it easier to administer them.

Q. How much dry kitten food should my 16 week old kitten be eating?
ANSWER : A. It would actually be better to feed your kitten canned food, as dry food has a lot of carbohydrates. Cats are obligatory carnivores, and not carb-eaters. In order to give you an amount to feed for dry food I would need to know which food you are feeding as they are all different. I suggest you check on the cat food bag. If the bag does not give you an amount, I would not trust it to be a complete food. You should then get a food from a reputable company such as Hill’s Science diet, or similar. As for wet food feed three times daily around 2oz each time, best to feed the pate style food.

Q. My cat can only eat strained baby food consistency food. What do I add to strained meat to give her what she needs? She is a torti Persian 5 lbs
ANSWER : A. You should be offering her some wet cat food. Any brand is okay, but you could find a high quality food if you look hard. Cats prefer getting their water from their food, so it’s important to use wet food for a cat instead of just dry food. It’s okay to feed her white meat chicken, and things like that if you want, but you should definitely be feeding some sort of CAT FOOD.. and I bet wet food would be appealing to her considering it’s very moist, like baby food. You can even mash it up further, and look for a food that is really liquidy.

Q. My cats nose is stopped up on antibiotics. She has a loss of appetite, acting normal though. Is 3 ounces of can food enough in 24h? 9 pound cat
ANSWER : A. Cats with stopped up noses tend to eat much less, as you’ve noted, because they can’t smell their food as well. And the smell of food is pretty important to a cat’s appetite. You can start by warming up the food in a microwave – not too hot, test it yourself by putting your finger right in the center, as the temperature of microwave food can vary – as this will intensify the smell and hopefully make your cat more interested.

Saline nose drops, like those that are used on little kids, are safe to use on a cat to clean the discharge that is dried around and in the nose. There’s a brand called Little Noses that’s available in the U.S. That I like. You can put it on a q-tip and try to remove the debris. Humidifying the air with a humidifier can help as well, or you can put the cat in the bathroom and run the shower enough to generate steam. Don’t use “real” nose drops like Neo-synephrine or anything else like that – cats quickly build up resistance to them.

A 3 oz can of food is an OK amount in 24 hours, but do try the techniques above to help your cat get more interested in food. You might also try some baby food – no garlic or onions in the ingredients – as cats usually really like the taste of it.

Q. My dog won’t stop eating cat litter, old diapers and she even tried eating glass
ANSWER : A. Don’t let your dog have access to cat liter and old diapers. Have a trash with a lid for the diapers and put a hood on the cat box or put it in a room the dog can’t get to. If your dog is trying to eat other things maybe he’s looking for more nutrients in his diet that his food isn’t giving him. Look for a higher quality high protien food at the pet store. Have someone help you at the pet store pick out a food or ask your regular vet their food recommendation. One with the first ingredent as a meat like deboned chicken. If your dogs foods main ingredient (first one listed) is a corn or chicken by product that is bad. You will need to slowly transition the dogs food over by mixing the foods and slowly adding more new and less old to the food for at least a week.

Q. My cocker spaniel is 9 years old. He has involuntary bowel movements (little drops) very frequently, especially when he is asleep.
ANSWER : A. Is your dog on a senior dog food? I would get your dog on a high quality high protien dog food. Ask a pet store assosicate or your regular vet for a food recommendation. When you buy a better food the dog will have to eat less to get the same amount of energy from the food. The dog has to eat more of the cheaper foods to get the energy it needs from it. Meaning more poop and buying more food. So the cost really evens out. So the lessen your dogs bowel movements get on a better senior dog food. Next talk to your vet they may have a recommendation. If you switch dogs do it slowly by mixing the foods. Start with 10% new 90% old mixed for at least a week until you have switched to 100% new 0% old. Senior foods have more fiber to help with bowel movements. Take the dog outside to go potty more frequently, right before bed time.

Read Full Q/A … : Symptoms Questions & Answers

Q. My dog itchs all the time a codozon shot helps but don’t cure it after a bath she turns red and still itchs I changed dog food that didn’t help no fle
ANSWER : A. Do you live in a region where fleas are prevalent. Where I live the fleas are truly horrible, and I see many animals developing a flea allergy. This usually presents as relentless itching especially at the base of the tail, although it can be all over the body. Often on exam I won’t find a single flea, just red bumps, hair loss and itching. In response, I will start animals on an oral steroid such as prednisone (I think your doctor has administered an injectable steroid), while at the same time bathing the animal and starting on an oral flea preventative such as Comforts which I then re dose at 3 weeks instead of 4. Additionally, the environment needs to be decontaminated- flea bombing the house, vacuuming often and washing bedding on hot. The flea life cycle is short, however, so this needs to be one frequently as they will just continue to hatch in your home. Most importantly, I tell my clients, that any steroid (oral or injectable) does not fix the problem, but rather suppress your dogs reaction to it thereby making them more comfortable. Just the steroid alone changes nothing except giving them a brief break from their symptoms.

Now that I have spoken in depth about flea allergy, there is a potential that it is something else. Food allergies are slow to develop, and slow to change. If you wanted to eliminate a potential food allergy I would switch to a novel protein, limited ingredient diet. For example, lamb as the protein source if your previous food was always chicken or beef, and in a formula with very limited ingredients such as lamb, rice and veggies. A pet store should be able to help you with this. While on this diet they cannot have any additional treats for 1 month, to see if you have eliminated the allergy. From an Eastern Medical perspective, I also recommend novel proteins that are “cool”, such as fish, lamb, or duck while avoiding “warm” foods such as beef, chicken, pork.

Finally, all animals with allergies should be on an Omega 3 supplement. Given regularly, this can help reduce overall inflammation in the body both in the skin, joints, and other tissues. Good for allergies, arthritis and overall health. My dogs are on fish oils, but one of my dogs who is allergic to fish gets flax oil instead. I would be happy to consult with you further, but I hope this helps to some degree.

Q. My 20 month Cavalier doesn’t eat unless I let him eat from my finger, then he eats. Sometimes he will only eat once a day and leave his food.
ANSWER : A. It is possible that your dog is just not satisfied with his current food, or may be a picky eater. There are several things you can try to encourage your dog to eat.

The first step is to remove any additional treats or people food that may be more enticing to your dog than his own meal. If you feel you must give him some form of treat, be sure to place them directly in his food bowl and mixed with his regular diet. This allows him to get some snacks while also “forcing” him to try out his current meal to get the reward.

Enticing your dog to try his food by adding a pet-safe gravy or even a few treats of plain boiled chicken mixed in can help. Be sure to mix the foods thoroughly so he must explore his own food before getting the treat.

Some small breed dogs may also have a hard time with certain bowls and their collars. If there is a metal name tag on the collar and a metal bowl, the clinking sound can sometimes scare off dogs and make them not want to eat from their bowl. Using a bowl of a different material, or removing the collar prior to a meal may help with this issue.

Your dog may also just not be into his current food and may like another variety better. You can try a new variety by gradually switching over a period of 7-9 days, slowly adding in more new food and removing old until it is switched. This change may encourage him to try out meals again, and the slow changeover will allow his body to adjust to the new diet without digestive upset.