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Opal’s Story….

by admin on November 14th, 2013

Category: Pet of the Month, Tags:

Little Opal is one of our long-term patients who was diagnosed with diabetes mellitus back in April this year. She was started on a treatment programme of injectable insulin but being a rather feisty dog, managing her condition hasn’t always been easy….

 Poor Opal has also had a few bouts of vomiting and diarrhoea whilst being treated for her diabetes, but has always made a good recovery with treatment. She has also had cystitis, which isn’t uncommon with diabetic patients as bacteria thrive on high sugar levels and this tends to manifest itself as cystitis.

Just lately, Opal’s blood glucose levels have started to become more stable and her readings more in the normal range, which has been encouraging for everyone, especially her owner! She still has her off days, which is not totally unexpected, but always appears lively and full of spirit when she comes into the surgery.

At the start of Opal’s treatment, her blood glucose levels were very high and the aim was to try and find a regime that would bring her blood glucose down to a normal level. She was hospitalised for a blood glucose curve – this is when several blood samples are taken throughout the day to monitor the animal’s glucose levels and identify at what point they are at their highest. Taking blood from Opal has never been the easiest task as she does tend to resent it, but she is always a very happy dog when she’s not being examined! 

Trying to stabilise Opal has been difficult as her blood glucose levels have seemed to remain consistently high despite gradually increasing her insulin dosage. Sometimes animals can be insulin resistant, which means that no matter what dose is administered, their bodies don’t respond in the way they should. However, Opal appears to have times when she does respond favourably to her insulin injections so this means she can’t be totally insulin resistant.

While we are able to help keep Opal’s condition stable, we always encourage you to contact the surgery and arrange a physical examination of your pets if you are at all concerned about changes in your pets behaviour and habits, which may indicate Diabetes. Initial investigations can start with a harmless urine sample.  In any case it is always better to diagnose a condition and start treatment at the earliest opportunity, in order to manage and understand a condition and give the best possible outcome for you and your much loved pets.

 

Diabetes can become a very expensive condition to treat, with regular blood samples needing to monitor stability and ongoing insulin medication, so we would highly recommend you insure your pets for peace of mind; knowing you don’t need to worry about paying for all their veterinary fees.

 

ABOUT DIABETES MELLITUS

Otherwise known as ‘sugar’ diabetes, this is a condition that occurs when the body either doesn’t produce insulin or doesn’t utilise it efficiently. Insulin helps to move glucose from the blood into the cells of the body where it is needed.

 

SYMPTOMS INCLUDE:

  • Increased thirst and urination.
  • Weight loss.
  • Increased appetite.
  • Vomiting.
  • Weakness or lethargy,

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