10 Warning Signs of Diabetes in Dogs & Cats


A growing epidemic amongst our pets, recognizing and spreading awareness about diabetes in dogs and cats is vital to helping pet owners spot and treat the disorder early.

10. Weakness or Fatigue

Diabetes can cause wasting of back muscles or weakness in the back legs of cats. With dogs there may just be a general sense of lethargy, being less active, or sleeping more.

See Also: Top 10 Signs of Cancer in Dogs and Cats


9. Increased Thirst

Drinking more water than usual, known as†polydipsia, is an early warning sign of diabetes.

Related: 8 Common Myths About Dehydration

8. Increased Urination

Urinating more frequently, producing more urine throughout the day, or having ďaccidentsĒ in the house may mean your cat or dog has developed†polyuria, another early warning sign of diabetes that goes hand in hand with polydipsia.

See Also: Neutralize Pet Odors

7. Increased Hunger

If your cat or dog suddenly acts as if it is always starving, despite eating the usual amount (known as†polyphagia), and maintains or loses weight despite increased food intake, this can be a sign of diabetes as well.

Related: Is Your Pet Hungry or Does She Just Want More Food?

6. Sudden Weight Loss

Though a diabetic pet may show signs of being hungrier than ever, sudden weight loss is a common occurrence because diabetes can cause an increased metabolism.

Also Check Out:†Dog Food Allergy Myths

5. Obesity

Obesity can actually cause diabetes to develop; therefore, if your pet is obese you should keep an eye on it to determine if it is developing any symptoms of diabetes.

See Also: Dangers of Pet Obesity


4. Thinning or Dull Hair

Thinning, dry, or dull hair, particularly along the back. Thinning hair is generally a symptom of some illness, diabetes included, so it is best to visit your veterinarian to determine the cause.

Image Credit:†Debi/via Flickr

Related: Why Do Cats Lose Their Hair?

3. Cloudy Eyes

A common complication of†diabetes in dogs is cataracts, or cloudy eyes. Cataracts can lead to blindness if not monitored.

Related: Blind Dog’s Remarkable Spirit (video)

2. Depression

A later sign of diabetes in dogs and cats is†ketoacidosis, metabolic acidosis caused by the breakdown of fat and proteins in the liver in response to insulin deficiency. Ketones in the body in high amounts are toxic, and this imbalance in the body of your pet can cause depression.

See Also: Senior Cat Care

1. Vomiting

Another side effect of ketoacidosis, if your petís diabetes has escalated to this point before itís been recognized, is vomiting. Ketoacidosis is more commonly found in older pets and in females.†Dachshunds and†Miniature Poodles are also predisposed to it.

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Top 10 Signs Your Pet Has Diabetes originally appeared on petMD.com


William C
William C4 months ago

Thank you for caring.

Kelly S
Past Member 4 months ago

soooooo sad

Past Member
Past Member 5 months ago


Glennis W
Glennis W5 months ago

Great article Thank you for caring and sharing

Glennis W
Glennis W5 months ago

Great information and advice Thank you for caring and sharing

Glennis W
Glennis W5 months ago

Very informative Thank you for caring and sharing

Glennis W
Glennis W5 months ago

Very interesting article Thank you for caring and sharing

Lynn Lyster
Lynn Lyster1 years ago

I am diabetic and I worry about my dog and cats. Recently Ponyo has been drinking more so I will take her to the vet. Diabetes can be managed by diet for humans and pets. (Note to Matthew Joel V.: No dog should be trained by "putting his nose in pee." Praise for going outside is kinder and makes more sense.)

Fi T.
Past Member 3 years ago

The same to watch out in human beings

Thomas V.
Thomas V.3 years ago

my dog is 4 years old he has diabetes and it may be worst then that he going blind he has seamen in his urine and it just drips out. my vet doesn't seem to know what to do nor care to be honest. he is on the food and insulin but it isn't working. I have done research and I have found some other treatments natural ones. Bejak and some others but the problem is finding were to get it but its suppose to help right now I have my dog on cinnamon witch suppose to help with his blood levels. I feel I am running out of options the vet doesn't seem to know what to do other then keep upping his insulin and he is in pain and suffering...