diabetestalk.net

What Causes A Dog's Blood Sugar To Drop?

Hypoglycemia In Dogs

Hypoglycemia In Dogs

Overview Hypoglycemia is often referred to as “low blood sugar.” When your dog’s body is deprived of sugar, its main source of energy, his ability to function declines and, in severe situations, loss of consciousness or even death can result. Low blood sugar is not a disease itself; rather, it is a symptom of an underlying disease or problem. There are many causes of hypoglycemia. Puppies, especially those under 3 months of age, have not fully developed their ability to regulate their blood glucose (sugar) levels. Hypoglycemia can be brought on when puppies are introduced to other stress factors such as poor nutrition, cold environments, and intestinal parasites. Toy breeds are especially susceptible to this problem. Hypoglycemia can also be brought on by fasting combined with rigorous exercise, or by Addison’s disease. Dogs treated for diabetes mellitus are at risk, as well as dogs with severe liver disease, tumors of the pancreas, or portosystemic shunts. Symptoms If your pet is hypoglycemic, you may notice the following symptoms: Muscle twitches Trembling Incoordination Unusual behavior Blindness Unconsciousness If your dog is suspected of being hypoglycemic, your veterinarian will perform a thorough physical exam, take a complete history, and may recommend diagnostic tests that could include: Measurement of blood glucose levels (sugar levels in the blood) Chemistry tests to evaluate kidney, liver, and pancreatic function A complete blood count (CBC) to rule out blood related conditions Electrolyte tests to ensure your pet isn’t dehydrated or suffering from an electrolyte imbalance Urine tests to screen for urinary tract infection and other disease, and to evaluate the ability of the kidneys to concentrate urine A thyroid test to determine if the thyroid gl Continue reading >>

Symptoms Of Hypoglycemia (low Glucose) In Dogs

Symptoms Of Hypoglycemia (low Glucose) In Dogs

How Hypoglycemia Affects Dogs Hypoglycemic dogs typically exhibit symptoms of weakness, tiredness, exercise intolerance and lack of coordination. From reports made by people with this condition, it is safe to say that hypoglycemia at a minimum causes dogs to feel poorly and to be distressed and uncomfortable. Severe cases can cause the dog to suffer much more physical pain and no doubt emotional distress, as well. Seizures are one of the most common symptoms of hypoglycemia. Symptoms of Hypoglycemia Hypoglycemic dogs can display a range of symptoms. Sometimes, these are episodic, meaning that they come and go - or wax and wane - over time. Other times, the symptoms are persistent rather than intermittent. Owners of dogs with hypoglycemia may notice one or more of the following clinical signs in their pets: Lethargy; listlessness Depression Weakness Lack of coordination (ataxia) Hind-end paresis (mild or incomplete paralysis of the rear legs; posterior paresis) Staggering; wobbly gait Muscle twitching; tremors (muscle fasciculations, especially of the facial muscles) Nervousness; restlessness; anxiety Exercise intolerance Abnormal, bizarre behavior Hunger; increased appetite Poylphagia (excessive ingestion of food) Weight gain Formation and excretion of an abnormally large amount of urine (polyuria) Excessive thirst and excessive water intake (polydipsia) Vision abnormalities; blindness Collapse; recumbency Convulsions Seizures (seizures are one of the hallmark signs of hypoglycemia in dogs; they tend to be episodic) Coma; loss of consciousness Persistent crying Reduced activity level Decreased nursing Respiratory distress Weight loss Low heart rate (bradycardia) Dogs at Increased Risk Hunting dogs are predisposed to developing low blood sugar as a result of the extreme Continue reading >>

Low Blood Sugar In Dogs & Cats – Figuring Out Hypoglycemia

Low Blood Sugar In Dogs & Cats – Figuring Out Hypoglycemia

Low blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia, is a relatively common biochemical abnormality documented in sick dogs and cats presented to the emergency room, as well as those hospitalized in Intensive Care Units for various illnesses. This week I spend some time discussing hypoglycemia so pet parents can be aware of this potential health issue. Happy reading! Blood Sugar Regulation in the Body Blood sugar comes from three major sources: From absorption of nutrients, particularly carbohydrates, from the gastrointestinal tract Breakdown of stored glucose in the body (a process called glycogenolysis) Production of glucose in the body from other chemicals in the body (a process called gluconeogenesis) Maintaining a normal blood glucose level requires an intricate balance of several hormones, including insulin, glucagon, epinephrine, cortisol, and growth hormone. Of particular interest in a discussion of low blood sugar is insulin, a hormone produced by special cells called beta cells in the pancreas. Beta cells secrete insulin in response to chemicals and nutrients present in the bloodstream after a meal. Insulin also inhibits the processes of glycogenolysis and gluconeogenesis mentioned earlier in this post. Low Blood Sugar – What causes it? Hypoglycemia results when the use of blood glucose by the body exceeds the supply to circulation. General mechanisms of hypoglycemia are: Decreased nutritional intake Excess insulin (e.g.: insulinoma, secondary cancer, certain intoxications, certain medications) Increased use of glucose by the body (e.g.: infection & sepsis, pregnancy, secondary to cancer, secondary exercise, elevated red blood cell count) Decreased production of glucose by the body (e.g.: liver dysfunction, neonates, Addison’s disease, thyroid disease, pituitary g Continue reading >>

Hazards Of Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar)

Hazards Of Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar)

Hypoglycemia is a serious risk factor in diabetes management. Recent studies suggest that approximately 10 percent of diabetic dogs experienced hypoglycemic episodes that required hospitalization. One large survey found that the majority of diabetic dogs presented for hypoglycemia were receiving high doses of insulin (0.7 units or more per pound of body weight). Overdosing, double-dosing, and persistent dosing despite weight loss or reduced food intake are common iatrogenic causes of hypoglycemia. (Iatrogenic diseases are caused by medical treatment.) Strenuous exercise or maldigestion caused by EPI, bacterial overgrowth, inflammatory bowel disease, or other digestive disorders can also lead to hypoglycemia in diabetic dogs. If you’re ever uncertain about whether insulin was administered, the safest option is to withhold the injection. The consequences of missing a single insulin dose are negligible, while overdosing can be fatal. Never add more if you are unsure, including if some insulin spills while you give the injection. Changes in body weight may require insulin dosage modifications. Dietary changes, particularly reduced carbohydrates, may require a reduced insulin dosage to prevent hypoglycemia. Severe hypoglycemia resulting from too much insulin can cause seizures, irreversible brain damage, and death. Warning signs include nervousness, hyperexcitability, anxiety, vocalization, muscle tremors, lack of coordination, wobbliness (the dog may appear drunk), and pupil dilation. If these signs are seen, the dog should be fed immediately. If the dog can’t or won’t eat, rub Karo syrup, pancake syrup, honey, or even sugar water on her gums before calling your veterinarian. If immediate improvement is not seen, transport your dog to the vet after feeding for further Continue reading >>

Alert Dog For Diabetes Senses Blood Sugar Drop Miles Away, Warns Family

Alert Dog For Diabetes Senses Blood Sugar Drop Miles Away, Warns Family

(KUTV) Sadie, 4-years-old, has Type one diabetes and Down syndrome, which makes it difficult for her parents to keep her blood sugars stable. That's until a special Labrador joined the family. Sadie's Hero has quite the nose. He is a trained diabetic alert dog, so he can tell when her blood sugars are going too high or too low. When her blood sugars start drop below 100, Hero will whine or nose or paw Sadie's parents in the left hand to let them know there's a problem. When her blood sugars get above 200, Hero lets her parents know using the same tricks, but this time in the right hand. "I'll hold out my hands and say, what is it? and he'll paw for, paw my left hand for a low, and he'll nose my right hand for a high," explained Sadie's mom Michelle. But back in December 2015, Hero truly lived up to his name. Sadie was in her special needs class at Deerfield Elementary School in Cedar Hills while Hero was at home in Pleasant Grove -- more than five miles away. That's when he started to act out, trying to warn Sadie's mom that the girl's blood sugar levels were dropping. "He's normally a very quiet dog. Whining is not in his protocol. But he just started whining and he would not stop," Michelle said. He was alerting to Michelle that Sadie's blood sugars were dropping -- but he was nowhere near Sadie. Sadie's mom decided to contact the school just in case. Kimberly Stoneman was teaching Sadie's class when she got the call. "(Sadie's mom) called me and asked if I could check her numbers and they were fine," Ms.Stoneman explained. "I tested her and it was fine. Then within half an hour she went down." Her numbers dropped from 122 to 82 within that short period of time, nearing a danger zone for Sadie. "The lows are more dangerous immediately," Michelle explained. "(With) low Continue reading >>

Diabetes Mellitus In Dogs

Diabetes Mellitus In Dogs

What is diabetes mellitus? There are two forms of diabetes in dogs: diabetes insipidus and diabetes mellitus. Diabetes insipidus is a very rare disorder that results in failure to regulate body water content. Diabetes mellitus is a fairly common disorder and is most often seen in dogs five years of age or older. A congenital (existing at birth) form of this disease can occur in puppies, but this is not common. Diabetes mellitus is a disease of the pancreas. This is a small but vital organ that is located near the stomach. It has two significant populations of cells. One group of cells produces the enzymes necessary for proper digestion. The other group, called beta-cells, produces the hormone insulin. Simply put, diabetes mellitus is a failure of the pancreas to produce adequate amounts of insulin. Why is insulin so important? The role of insulin is much like that of a gatekeeper: It stands at the surface of body cells and opens the door, allowing glucose to leave the blood stream and pass inside the cells. Glucose, or blood sugar, is a vital substance that provides much of the energy needed for life and it must work inside the cells. Without an adequate amount of insulin, glucose is unable to get into the cells. It accumulates in the blood, setting in motion a series of events which can ultimately prove fatal. When insulin is deficient, the cells become starved for a source of energy. In response to this, the body starts breaking down stores of fat and protein to use as alternative energy sources. This causes the dog to eat more, but ultimately results in weight loss. The body tries to eliminate the excess glucose by excreting it in the urine. However, glucose attracts water, so the urine glucose that is excreted also contains large quantities of the body's fluids. Thi Continue reading >>

Dogs Can Smell Low Blood Sugar In People With Diabetes

Dogs Can Smell Low Blood Sugar In People With Diabetes

Researchers at the University of Cambridge have discovered one more reason why dogs are great: their superior sense of smell is inspiring advancements in the medical field. In a study published today in Diabetes Care, the researchers determined that during a hypoglycemic attack in people with Type I diabetes, the amount of the naturally occurring chemical isoprene in a person's breath increases. And dogs can smell this chemical. In a preliminary study, the researchers gradually lowered the blood sugar levels of eight women with Type I diabetes, and analyzed the chemical makeup of the women's breath. They found that "exhaled breath isoprene rose significantly at hypoglycemia compared with nonhypoglycemia." (A hypoglycemic attack occurs when blood sugar decreases to dangerous levels). Some people with diabetes already used trained service dogs to alert them when their blood sugar is low. In a press release, the University of Cambridge mentions how one woman's golden retriever (named Magic) will jump up and put his paws on her shoulders if her blood sugar is low. That's his signal that she's at risk for a hypoglycemic attack. Now that scientists are a little more clear why dogs can recognize low blood sugar in humans, they're hoping the discovery can open up the possibility for new detection tools for diabetics. A breathalyzer or something similar that monitors isoprene levels could hypothetically mimic the function of a dog's nose. Of course, it wouldn't be nearly as cute. DO ANIMALS HAVE EMPATHY? Next Up In TL;DR Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia Requires Quick Intervention In Toy Breeds

Hypoglycemia Requires Quick Intervention In Toy Breeds

Toy-breed dogs are not only at risk for hypoglycemia, they can die from the low blood sugar disorder if they do not receive prompt treatment. When a dog’s blood sugar, or glucose, level drops, it can affect neurological function. Disorientation, tremors and coma may occur. Normally, hormones stimulate the breakdown of stored glycogen to supply the brain and other tissues with fuel. In toy breeds, this process may not happen fast enough, and hypoglycemia results. Juvenile hypoglycemia occurs in puppies less than 3 months of age. Because puppies have not fully developed the ability to regulate blood glucose concentration and have a high requirement for glucose, they are vulnerable. Stress, cold, malnutrition and intestinal parasites also may trigger juvenile hypoglycemia. Signs of hypoglycemia are loss of appetite, extreme lethargy, lack of coordination, trembling, muscle twitching, weakness, seizures, and discoloration of skin and gums. Most dogs will not eat or drink when they are in low sugar shock. Simple cases of hypoglycemia can occur when a dog is overly active with too much time between meals or fasts before vigourous exercise. Hypoglycemia also may occur secondary to another condition. Other causes include Addison’s disease, insulin-producing tumors of the pancreas, severe liver disease, and glycogen storage diseases. If an underlying illness causes hypoglycemia, veterinarians first treat this condition. Veterinarians are likely to conduct a complete medical history and physical examination to determine the cause in dogs that develop chronic hypoglycemia. Other tests include a complete blood count, blood glucose concentration, urinalysis, routine biochemistry, and blood insulin concentration. An ultrasound may be taken of the abdomen to try and identify a pan Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar) In Dogs

Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar) In Dogs

What is hypoglycemia Hypoglycemia is a health condition characterized by a critically low blood sugar levels. Since glucose or blood sugar is the main source of energy, its deprivation causes a decline in organ functions, which may lead to loss of consciousness and even death. Hypoglycemia is not considered a disease, but an indicator of an underlying health problem [1, 2]. What causes hypoglycemia in dogs Though the exact causes are not known, according to scientific studies, hypoglycemia may be associated with: Sudden over-metabolization of glucose Liver or hormonal disorders Overdosing on insulin in dogs with diabetes [4] Intake of harmful substances such as xylitol found in artificial sweeteners Ingestion of beta-blocker medication used for treating irregular heartbeat Decreased glucose production due to starvation, malnutrition, or long interval between meals [3, 4] Risk factors Gastrointestinal or liver cancer Glycogen-storage disease Liver inflammation Liver shunt Tumor in pancreas (insulinomas) [3] Which dog breeds are more likely to get it Hunting or working dogs, because they burn a lot of energy during strenuous works and exercise [1]. Small breeds, since they require more blood glucose owing to their high energy requirement per unit of body weight. It occurs because they have a high ratio of body surface area to weight [1, 7]. Puppies under the age of 3 months, as they are not able to keep their blood sugar levels within the acceptable range, possibly due to cold weather, improper feeding, parasite infections, over exercise, etc [1]. Signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia in dogs Hypoglycemia symptoms are not always persistent, often occurring suddenly. Take your dog to the vet as soon as possible if you see any of the following symptoms: Lethargy [4] Vision imp Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia In Dogs

Hypoglycemia In Dogs

Click on the appropriate tab to view more information: Possible Causes of Hypoglycemia in Dogs Blood sugar levels are regulated by a complex interaction of hormones and other bodily processes. Canine hypoglycemia can be caused by abnormal hormonal functions or by the inability of the dog's body to store sufficient amount of blood glucose. These abnormalities in turn can be the result of any of the following: Insulinoma The pancreas produces insulin which causes blood sugar levels to decrease. Insulinomas are tumors formed by cells that produce insulin in the pancreas. Insulinomas can cause an increase in insulin production, resulting in low blood sugar levels. Insulin overdose If an excessive amount of insulin is administered to a dog with diabetes, the dog will suffer from hypoglycemia. Toy Breed Hypoglycemia Some toy breeds (such as Chihuahuas, Yorkshire Terriers, Maltese, Toy Poodles and Pomeranian) are prone to hypoglycemia due to a metabolic disorder. If you have a toy breed dog, it is better to feed her 3 small meals a day to avoid hypoglycemia. Puppy Hypoglycemia Puppies, especially toy breed puppies less than 5 months of age, are predisposed to developing hypoglycemia because they are less able to store and mobilize glucose the way that adult dogs do. Also, toy breed puppies have more brain mass per body weight compared to other breeds and therefore need more glucose for brain function. In puppies, certain situations can bring on a hypoglycemic attack. For example, when the puppy misses a meal, becomes chilled, or is suffering from exhaustion, or anxiety. Sometimes when a puppy gets older, she will outgrow this condition since canine hypoglycemia mostly affects puppies 5 to 16 weeks of age. However, if the dog is high strung, or has a lot of nervous energy, she Continue reading >>

Dealing With Unexplained Blood Sugar Spikes

Dealing With Unexplained Blood Sugar Spikes

You can do everything right to keep your diabetes under control — eat a smart diet, exercise, take medications as prescribed, and follow your doctor’s instructions for blood sugar monitoring — and still wake up in the morning with unexplained blood sugar spikes. Even in people who don’t have diabetes, blood sugars fluctuate constantly, says Linda M. Siminerio, RD, PhD, director of the University of Pittsburgh's Diabetes Institute. But when you have diabetes and wake up with an increase in blood sugar levels, you shouldn’t ignore it. If high blood sugar happens once in a while and you're able to get it under control quickly with insulin or exercise, it may be nothing serious. “Maybe you have high blood sugar in the morning because you went to a party last night and had a bigger piece of birthday cake,” Dr. Siminerio says. “Or it snowed, and you couldn’t go for your morning run the day before.” But if you consistently wake up with blood sugar spikes and don’t know why, you need to investigate the cause. You may need to adjust your diabetes treatment plan, possibly changing your medication. You won’t feel right if you have high blood sugar, a condition known as hyperglycemia, says Anuj Bhargava, MD, president of the Iowa Diabetes and Endocrinology Research Center in Des Moines and founder of My Diabetes Home, an online platform that helps users track their blood sugar and manage their medication. When your blood sugar is too high for a few days or weeks, it can cause more frequent urination, increased thirst, weight loss, blurry vision, fatigue, and nausea. It also can make you more susceptible to infections. When you have high blood sugar for a long time, it can damage the vessels that supply blood to your heart, kidneys, nerves, and eyes, and caus Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia - Low Blood Sugar

Hypoglycemia - Low Blood Sugar

What is Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)? 1. The brain requires glucose (blood sugar) for normal functioning, and unlike many other organs, the brain has a very limited ability to store glucose. As such, the brain is the organ that is most affected when blood sugar gets too low. 2. Low blood sugar can cause seizures 3. Puppies - especially small breed puppies - are particularly susceptible to low blood sugar because their liver is not able to store sufficient amounts of glycogen, as compared with older dogs. 4. Hypoglycemia can be a life-threatening - even fatal - condition, and is known to be a cause of canine seizures. The occurrence of symptoms depends on how far, and how fast, the blood sugar has dropped 5. Treating Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar): During an attack of hypoglycemia your goal is to stay calm, to bring the blood glucose back to a safe level, to continue to observe your dog. You can contact your veterinarian if you feel you need to. These are general guidelines for treating hypoglycemia. Ask your veterinarian for information that is specific to your dog. Severe hypoglycemia: If your dog is severely hypoglycemic, especially if it is having seizures or unconscious, you must give Haggen-Dazs vanilla ice cream immediately. Carefully rub small amounts of ice cream on the inside of the cheeks and gums. Do not put a lot of liquid in the dog's mouth, and be sure the dog does not choke. Do not stick your fingers inside the teeth of a dog that is having seizures - you may get bitten. Then, call your veterinarian if you feel you need further guidance. If your dog continues to be unconscious your dog should be taken to the veterinary emergency room immediately. Moderate hypoglycemia: Haggen-Dazs plain vanilla ice cream should be given, either alone, or combined with f Continue reading >>

4 Signs Of An Impending Diabetic Pet Emergency

4 Signs Of An Impending Diabetic Pet Emergency

Caring for a diabetic pet can be challenging, but there are certain precautions pet owners can take to prevent a diabetic emergency like hypoglycemia. Preventing a health crisis in a dog or cat with diabetes involves employing a consistent daily routine involving diet, exercise, insulin therapy, and supplementation. It also involves avoiding any and all unnecessary vaccinations. Even the most diligent pet parent can find himself facing a diabetic emergency with a dog or cat. Hypoglycemia is the most common health crisis, and is usually the result of an inadvertent overdose of insulin. Symptoms of hypoglycemia can appear suddenly and include lethargy or restlessness, anxiety or other behavioral changes, muscle weakness or twitching, seizures, coma, and death. At-home treatment for a diabetic pet with hypoglycemia is determined by whether or not the animal is alert. Signs of other potential impending diabetic emergencies include ketones in the urine; straining to urinate or bloody urine; vomiting or diarrhea; or a complete loss of appetite or reduced appetite for several days. By Dr. Becker Caring for a diabetic pet can be quite complex and time consuming. It involves regular monitoring of blood glucose levels, making necessary dietary adjustments, giving insulin injections or oral medications, and keeping a careful eye on your pet at all times. Frequent veterinary visits are the norm for dogs and cats with diabetes, as are the costs associated with checkups, tests, medical procedures, and insulin therapy. And unlike humans with the disease, our pets can’t tell us how they’re feeling or help in their own treatment and recovery. Preventing Diabetic Emergencies The key to preventing diabetic emergencies with a pet involves implementing a consistent daily routine and sti Continue reading >>

Why Is My Dog's Blood Glucose Level Abnormal ?

Why Is My Dog's Blood Glucose Level Abnormal ?

Why Is My Cat's Blood Glucose Level Abnormal ? To see what normal blood and urine values are for your pet, go here For an explanation of causes of most abnormal blood and urine tests go here To see how tests are often grouped, go here Ron Hines DVM PhD Lots of my articles are plagiarized and altered on the web to market products and services. There are never ads running or anything for sale with my real articles. Try to stay with the ones with in the URL box or find all my articles at ACC.htm. Your Pet's Blood Sugar Level Glucose , GLU Your pet’s blood sugar level (glucose level) needs to remain in a narrow corridor or bad things begin to happen. Glucose (dextrose is a form of glucose) is the primary fuel that runs your pet's body (Fatty acids can also provide some fuel energy). Without sufficient blood glucose (=hypoglycemia), cells cannot live very long. With too much blood glucose (the common cause being diabetes mellitus) the body begins to rely on fats rather than glucose to meet its energy needs (=ketoacidosis). If blood glucose remains high in your pet; with time, urinary tract infections, decreased disease resistance, kidney failure, nerve-related weakness (neuropathies) and eye damage can occur. Why Your Pet’s Blood Glucose Level Could Be Too High (hyperglycemia) : Stress and excitement – especially in cats and toy dog breeds is the most common cause of a single high reading. When your pet's lab glucose values are repeatedly high in a non-stressed situation, diabetes mellitus and Cushing’s disease are the most common causes. Corticosteroid tablets or injections, acute pancreatitis, IV fluids containing dextrose or a blood samples collected too soon after eating (post-prandial blood sample) can all cause the glucose level to be high. Glucose levels can b Continue reading >>

Signs Of Hypoglycemia In Chihuahuas

Signs Of Hypoglycemia In Chihuahuas

Hypoglycemia is also known as low blood sugar. This condition occurs when the glucose in the blood suddenly drops below normal levels, according to Go Pets America. Many toy dog breeds have hypoglycemia, including toy poodles, Yorkshire terriers, and Chihuahuas. Recognizing the symptoms of hypoglycemia can make the difference between life and death. Margret Casal, DVM, PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine explains that the brain uses only glucose for energy. Low glucose levels in the blood cause neurologic symptoms, such as trembling and disorientation. Some of the other symptoms of low blood sugar in Chihuahuas include a lack of coordination and muscle spasms. Hypoglycemic dogs are often cold and trembly and have difficulty standing and walking. They act weak, tired, and lethargic and may not want to eat even when food is offered. Dogs sometimes develop a bluish tinge or other discoloration around their gums or on their skin. These symptoms are the warning signs of hypoglycemic shock. If the dog's brain is deprived of glucose for long enough, the dog will become progressively weaker and more lethargic. Some dogs go into convulsions or seizures from low blood sugar. The animal may fall to the floor and jerk in uncontrollable muscle spasms. Dogs in seizures often lose control of their bladder or bowels. Hypoglycemic dogs can also lose consciousness or slip into a coma. The Epi Guardian Angels canine epilepsy website warns that death from sugar shock occurs quickly if the dog's blood sugar drops far enough and fast enough. Hypoglycemic attacks usually occur when the dog has not eaten for a long time. They can also happen if the dog becomes overly excited or stressed. The Chihuahua Club of America recommends feeding toy-breed dogs 3 or 4 tim Continue reading >>

More in blood sugar