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Could your pet have diabetes?

Could your pet have diabetes?
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: cat dog diabetes

November is Pet Diabetes Month, so it's an ideal time to check for the warning signs of the disease in your pet.

Cats and dogs suffer from diabetes mellitus, or sugar diabetes. This is the result of a shortage of the hormone insulin, which affects the concentration of glucose (a type of sugar) in the bloodstream: a lack of insulin means that the body cannot absorb glucose properly. It affects an estimated one in 200 pets, and those over six years old are most at risk. And with dogs, there are several breeds - such as German Shepherds, Labradors and Terriers - that are more susceptible than others.

Five symptoms that could mean your pet has diabetes

1. It is always thirsty or is drinking a lot of water
2. It is tired, lethargic or less active than normal
3. It has lost weight
4. Its coat is thin, dry and dull
5. It is urinating more than usual or having 'accidents' in the home

If your pet shows any of these symptoms, you should have it checked by a vet as soon as possible. Early diagnosis is vital, as untreated diabetes can result in serious illness or even death.

However, if your pet is diagnosed with diabetes, you needn't worry. While it will need twice-daily insulin injections and will need to eat a low-fat, high-fibre, high-carb diet, there's no reason why it can't continue to enjoy a full and active life.

Do you have anything to add? Just let us know by commenting below.

Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 2

Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 2
Posted on by Petplan
Last week, Dr Ian Billinghurst told us about his view that dogs should only eat a Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) diet. Now here's the other side of the argument, from vet Brian Faulkner"The BARF diet is based on the assumption that dogs are the same as their ancestors: wolves. But they are a domesticated species with different DNA to wolves; a distinction going back many thousands of years.Furthermore, all dogs are not the same. A Great Dane or a St Bernard may grow more in one week than a Yorkshire Terrier will grow in its whole life. The nutritional requirement of these dogs is significantly different.

Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 1

Debate: should dogs only eat raw meat? Part 1
Posted on by Petplan
The use of Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) - a simple diet of raw meat and bones - is dividing vets worldwide: some swear by it, while others advocate caution. In this first of two posts, BARF-devotee Dr Ian Billinghurst tells us why it works for him. "I believe that the healthiest diet for dogs and cats is a natural one. Raw meat, bones, vegetables and organ meats – anything that mimics the diet of a wild or feral animal is ideal. I call this the Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) diet and it's what our cats and dogs have evolved to eat.My views come from almost 35 years as a practice vet, witnessing the harm that commercially produced food can do to pets. It also comes from seeing at first han

Could compulsory DNA 'poo-profiling' banish dog mess from our parks and streets? And should it?

Could compulsory DNA 'poo-profiling' banish dog mess from our parks and streets? And should it?
Posted on by Petplan
This article contains: poo toileting DNA Dog poo
There's no doubt about it, dog mess is an everyday feature of urban life, with a small minority of dog owners making a health hazard of our streets, gutters and children's playgrounds. But how do you solve a problem like this? Over in the USA, one company is pioneering a hi-tech but politically charged solution: compulsory DNA poo-profiling.

How to prepare your pet for Guy Fawkes Night

How to prepare your pet for Guy Fawkes Night
Posted on by Petplan
While the rest of the family is looking forward to fireworks night, your pet is probably dreading it. Follow our advice to keep your pet calm and relaxed on the big night. From the PetPeople magazine features archiveAround this time of year, anxiety descends on my home and lingers there for several weeks. There are jitters, sudden starts and attempts to hide under the bed - and that's just me! The cause of this seasonal nervousness is, of course, the annual festival of noise: Guy Fawkes Night.
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