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Dr. JD
Dr. JD, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1420
Experience:  15+ years experience, special interest in behavior, shelter medicine
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my 7-yr old dog has diabetes and weve been treating for two

Customer Question

my 7-yr old dog has diabetes and we've been treating for two months now. our min-pin continues to lose weight (14 lbs to 9.5 lbs) and we're worried. We give her two 10 unit shots of insulin a day...which was recommended by our vet after we spent $350 on tests, etc. We can't afford to continue to run more tests because of our fixed income. Do you have any suggestions? Do we need to increase the insulin? She's slowly fading away.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. JD replied 8 years ago.
I understand your financial concerns, but unfortunately diabetes is a very tricky disease to treat and you never want to change the insulin dosage without running blood glucose tests to make sure that is the proper and safe thing to do! The more insulin you give, the lower you will drive her blood glucose (assuming she is responding to the insulin in the typical manner we would expect.) You run the risk of sending her into a hypoglycemic episode (shock, seizures, death) if you administer too much insulin. You may want to speak with your veterinarian about running a blood glucose curve. This is a test that is run in the clinic over the course of the day to determine what her glucose levels look like before and after her insulin doses are given. This is very useful in determining if the insulin dosage should be changed. You should also review with your veterinarian the proper storage and handling of the insulin and administration of the injections to be sure she is receiving her insulin dosage correctly. Also, unfortunately, some dogs are very difficult to regulate and may also have other underlying disorders that can make them very difficult to control. Additional blood and urine testing may be required to check for these conditions. Many owners can learn to monitor the urine or blood glucose of their pets at home but it is very important to receive proper and thorough education from your veterinarian before attempting to do this. Please contact your veterinarian, discuss your concerns, be honest about your financial concerns, and see if there are any solutions you can come up with together. And again, please do NOT increase the insulin before you consult with your veterinarian as this could be a very dangerous move.
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Customer: replied 8 years ago.
the dog seems to eat well but the food and water just seem to go straight through her and she doesn't put on any weight...she just poops and this typical?
Expert:  Dr. JD replied 8 years ago.
It is often a sign that the diabetes is not well controlled when the pets are still drinking and urinating in large amounts. However, it is not safe to arbitrarily increase the insulin. Weight loss is also observed in these cases. But again, since other disease processes can also have these symptoms, I think a blood glucose curve and examination is the best place to start. Also, speak with your veterinarian about at home monitoring techniques. Many veterinarians will try to work with their clients when there are monetary concerns, and some even have credit programs available. Also, remember, that since their life spans are shorter than ours, a two month period between physical exams for our pets is equivalent to about a year for us. Alot can change in that time frame.