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Southlake Animal Hospital
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Call us today! 219-942-0909

3570 E. Lincoln Hwy
Merrillville, IN 46410

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Diabetes in Cats

November 1 2023

November is Pet Diabetes Month. Diabetes is somewhat more common in dogs than it is in kitties, but it’s not unusual for our feline friends to develop the condition. A local Crown Point, IN vet offers some insight on feline diabetes in this article.


While Type I diabetes is more common in dogs, we usually see Type II in cats. Both types are associated with insulin, which is the hormone the body uses to metabolize glucose and turn it into fuel. In Type II, the body produces insulin, but cannot metabolize it properly.

Risk Factors

Any kitty can develop diabetes, and at any point in their life. However, some furballs are at higher risk than others are. Obesity increases the risk. Given that well over half of our feline pals are overweight, that is quite concerning. In fact, chubby cats are four times more likely to develop diabetes than others are. Fluffy’s risks also increase as she ages. Other risk factors include a lack of activity, castration (neutering), and steroid therapy. Breed plays a role as well: some cats, such as the Burmese, are more prone to developing diabetes than others are. It’s also worth noting that males are at higher risk than females.

Warning Signs

The most common signs of diabetes in cats are weight loss and increased thirst and urination. This is because the body often turns to using fat and protein as fuel, since it can’t properly utilize glucose. Vomiting may also be a warning sign. Call your vet immediately if you notice any of these things. 

Treatment Options

Treatment options are generally focused on maintaining good blood glucose levels, keeping the kitty at a healthy weight, and reducing the increased thirst and urination that are so common in this condition. This is generally done through diet and insulin therapy. The insulin portion will typically involve giving injections. This may sound scary, but most people find that once they’ve gotten used to it, it’s actually very easy. There are several options available to choose from. Your vet will be able to discuss these with you after evaluating your furry pal.


A good diet is also crucial. Fluffy may need prescription food. These are available in both kibble and wet food. It’s also important to maintain a consistent feeding schedule and to be careful about monitoring portions. Ask your vet for more information.

Please contact us, your local Crown Point, IN pet hospital, for your kitty’s veterinary care needs. we’re here to help!