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Cat Diabetes Symptoms

Veterinarians and Pet Care
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Symptoms of diabetes in cats may either occur slowly or seem to suddenly appear in a short period of time. Fortunately feline diabetes can be controlled with insulin and diet, but a timely diagnosis will help to prevent damage to the kidneys and added stress on the cat’s body. If you notice any of these cat diabetes symptoms, have your cat examined by a veterinarian right away.

Diabetes is one of the most common glandular disorders in cats; while the cause of diabetes in cats is not completely understood, risks for diabetes is increased in cats that are obese and on certain types of medications such as long term steroid therapies. Although diabetes can occur in cats of any sex and at any age, diabetes has a tendency to strike middle aged neutered males more frequently.

In the diabetic cat, glucose is unable to enter the body’s cells. As a result, the body thinks that it is starving and in time protein, fat and even muscle are broken down to supply energy to the body. Most cat diabetes symptoms are related to this starving effect, and these effects are usually the ones which a pet owner notices first: increased appetite, continual eating and weight loss. Uncontrolled diabetes will continue to cause weight loss even if a pet owner increases the cat’s diet.

Diabetic cats will also experience increased thirst due to dehydration which occurs as sugar levels increase in the blood. Cats with uncontrolled diabetes will drink water constantly and as a result they will urinate frequently and in large amounts. As sugar is excreted through the bladder, the sugar creates an atmosphere friendly to bacteria; repeated bladder infections will occur if the diabetes is not controlled with medication and diet.

Those are the main symptoms of cat diabetes symptoms:

  • increased appetite
  • continual eating
  • weight loss
  • increased thirst
  • increased drinking
  • increased urination and frequent bladder infections

Diabetic cats which become dehydrated may appear lethargic, and the skin around their neck may seem loose and malleable. Unlike dogs, cats do not experience cataracts or vision disturbances as an effect of diabetes.

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