Hello! Nigel, here. It’s been awhile and nobody sent any questions in for me to answer this month. That’s ok though…I’m not offended. I’m sure that you humans have some “important” things that you are doing, and can’t take the time to write to poor old Nigel. In order to punish you for your negligence, I have decided to just choose a topic at random. Ok…so, it’s not so random. I asked Dr. S, and she said that I needed to teach people about diabetes. So here goes….”Diabetes, explained by Nigel the cat.”
I am sure that many of you humans are well aware of diabetes, as so many people have this problem themselves. Did you know that it is fast becoming one of the more common endocrine (hormonal) diseases of cats. Studies show as many as 1 in 50 cats will be diagnosed with this condition. The rate of incidence of diabetes amongst pet cats has gone way up over the last decade, and this is unfortunately linked to the problem of house cat obesity. Obesity is a proven predisposing condition for developing diabetes. So, when Dr. S and Dr. J get on your case about your cat masters being “nutritionally over-managed” (read: fat), you best heed their advice on how to get your kitty to slim down. Believe me…dealing with putting a cat on a diet, is much easier than managing your kitty’s diabetes.
That being said, if your cat happens to be diagnosed with diabetes, it isn’t the end of the world. Diabetes is certainly no party…but it can become second nature to manage once you get the hang of it. Diabetes in cats responds very nicely to insulin and a high protein/low carbohydrate diet. In fact, some lucky kitties will even go into remission and come off their insulin altogether!
Now, at this point you may be wondering…”Nigel, how do I know if my cat has diabetes?”. Excellent question!! There are many signs that your kitty could be demonstrating, to show you that he may have diabetes. These include:
- Increased thirst and urination
- Increased appetite
- Weight loss, despite having an excellent appetite
- Increased vocalization
- Some cats can show increased aggressive behaviors
If any of these sound like one of your cat overlords, then you should really consider a trip in to the veterinarian to have them checked for this disease. The good news is, that it is very simple for the vet to determine if diabetes is your cat’s problem. They can do so with just a little bit of a blood sample and some urine.
So, this is the part where you say…”But Nigel, won’t that be expensive????” Fear not, my lovely little humans. For Cats Only has a special program this year where you can have your furry masters screened for diabetes (and also kidney disease and overactive thyroid) for a small fee. Just give a call over to the clinic and ask for the Feline Preventive Health Screen. And remember to tell them that you heard about it from Nigel!!
I know you may have a ton more questions about diabetes in cats. And you know where to get the best information about this problem is? No…it’s not “Google”. It’s your veterinarian. So, for more knowledge please contact your beloved kitty’s doctor. And if you are in need of a vet, just come on over to For Cats Only. Dr. S and Dr. J specialize in feline medicine, and would love to help your kitties lead the healthiest lives that they can!
I hope that this information has been informative and entertaining. This is Nigel, signing off. Meow!