One of the most common lifestyle disorders affecting the global population during recent times is type 2 diabetes. Similarly, certain dog breeds including Dachshunds, the Australian Terriers, Bichon Frises, Cairn Terriers, Fox Terriers, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, Keeshonden, Poodles (toy, miniature and standard), Pugs, Samoyeds and Schnauzers (both miniature and standard) are more susceptible to the onset of type 1 diabetes commonly referred to as juvenile diabetes.
Nonetheless, on numerous occasions, these symptoms go unnoticed by their owners leaving them to suffer in silence. Therefore, it is imperative to recognize the early diabetes symptoms in dogs and help your dog’s healthy existence.
1) Frequent Urination
One of the major symptoms of diabetes in dogs you have to look out for is frequent urination also known as polyuria. This occurs due to shooting blood glucose levels owing to insufficient secretion of insulin by the pancreas, which makes it rather difficult to take in glucose to the cells. Besides, owing to a process called osmosis the huge glucose molecules in the body absorb more water, which in turn increases the urine output.
2) Excessive Thirst
Another warning sign of diabetes in dogs is excessive or unusual thirst otherwise known as polydipsia. High blood glucose levels in your pet making them urinate more frequently, lead to excessive thirst with a need for more water, only to replenish the body with lost fluids.
3) Increased Hunger
Suddenly if you notice increased hunger in your pet and despite taking the usual quantity they lose weight, then that could indicate that your pet is suffering from diabetes. This is because due to shortage of insulin, your dog is unable to make use of the energy from food.
The onset of diabetes is always correlated with obesity in humans. Likewise, in pets too this could indicate the same. Therefore, if you notice weight changes gradually leading to obesity in your dog, it is wise to work out a diet plan and exercise regimen in consultation with a vet. For more on How to deal with dog obesity see here.
Lethargy, inactivity and sleepiness are some of the other early symptoms of diabetes. This occurs due to the metabolic changes that take place in the body making the blood acidic. This condition is known as diabetic ketoacidosis that can make your pet feel sapped of their energy.
One of the most known complications that occur in dogs with prolonged diabetes is vision changes such as cataracts (thickening of the eye lens) or cloudy eye. This once again is attributed to elevated blood glucose levels in the body that extracts water into the eye lens.
One of the symptoms of cataract development is the whitening of your pet’s eye and due to the blurry vision, they might bump into walls or furniture in the house. However, occasionally lenticular sclerosis, a benign condition is often misunderstood for cataract. However, seeking the help of a veterinarian may prove beneficial in identifying the actual cause.
7) Thinning Hair
Dull, lifeless, dry and thinning hair, especially on the rear is another early diabetes symptoms in dogs. Hence, consulting a veterinarian to determine the cause would prove worthwhile.