Activities For Dogs With Diabetes

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Introduction

Does your favorite canine buddy seem to be heading to the water dish for a drink more often than in the past? Excessive consumption of water is one of the classic signs of diabetes. Other symptoms may be an increase in appetite accompanied by weight loss, and lethargy. Along with these changes in health, you may notice that your dog is getting urinary tract infections often. With signs of illness like these, a veterinarian visit may reveal that diabetes is the cause. This doesn’t have to mean a complete change in your pal’s way of living, though. In fact, a normal doggy routine is very important when treating diabetes in canines. Part of the routine must include exercise and activities to keep your dog moving and engaged.

Veterinarian Hello

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Any Day
Free
Easy
10 min
Items needed
Leash
Doggy Waste Bags
Activity description
What is diabetes exactly? Your dog’s response to insulin is, simply put, off-kilter. Their body is not using insulin properly, or it may not be producing enough. Either way, your veterinarian can explain the ins and outs and all you need to know about helping your furry pal manage this disease. A dog diagnosed with diabetes will need to see the veterinarian on a regular basis so that insulin levels can be checked to verify that the medication they are being given each day is of the proper dosage. Your vet will want to verify your pup’s weight and also keep on top of changes to the eyes that may occur in a diabetic pet. Because of the need for consistent check-ups, we feel it is important to take your dog to the vet now and then for a “hello visit.” This means just a visit to get a pat and a treat - so that your dog knows the vet is their friend!
Step
1
Vet info session
The first visit after a diabetes diagnosis will most likely involve a weigh-in, a blood test to verify all is well with the medication (such as efficacy and administration of injections), and a general check of the heart and lungs. Further visits may include testing of the urine to see how the kidneys are functioning and to make sure that there is no bacterium in the urinary tract. At this time, feel free to ask any questions you have about diabetes and how best to take care of your pet. Stay upbeat throughout your time with the vet; your dog will sense your emotions.
Step
2
Veterinarian hello
The following week or two after your last visit to the clinic, take your pup for another visit to see the vet and staff. Let your dog know as you are getting ready that this excursion will be fun. Keep your tone light and happy as you get ready to walk or drive to the appointment. Once there, it will be a quick meeting where the staff will greet your dog with a smile. Your dog will get a well-deserved pat on the head and a tasty treat and then you can be on your way!
Step
3
Follow-ups
By now, you will have interspersed "hello visits" with check-ups. Your clever canine will be used to the routine and will enter the clinic without hesitation. Keep your veterinarian and the clinic team informed about your pet’s condition in between visits. Your dog’s animal health team love what they do and are genuinely interested in helping animals to live a long and healthy life.
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Daily Stroll

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Any Day
Free
Easy
15 - 30 min
Items needed
Leash
Doggy Waste Bags
Activity description
Keeping a routine is an essential part of managing diabetes. A consistent exercise regimen, regular mealtimes and insulin administration on a regular schedule are all components of diabetes control. Studies show that exercise is key to regulating insulin levels. However, as a pet parent of a dog with high glucose levels, you must be aware that while exercise is important so is knowing what type of activity suits a diabetic dog best. Taking your dog on a daily walk or two at a reasonable pace is a good place to start. Rain or shine, this activity is necessary to keep your pup content and in good shape.
Step
1
Moderate intensity
Did you know that while walks are important for diabetic dogs, a high-intensity pace is not recommended? A walk that is too brisk or intense can cause changes to the blood sugar levels which may become dangerous, causing dizziness or seizures. Walks at a moderate pace a few times a day are ideal for the diabetic pooch. Leash your dog and take a stroll around the block, allowing them time to enjoy the sights and smells.
Step
2
Take a hike
Once your dog is accustomed to walks around the block, you can up the challenge just a bit and take them on a trek through a low to moderate challenging trail. Keep the distance reasonable and do not include vigorous hill climbs. In some cases, diabetes can be a side effect of another illness, such as Cushing’s Disease, whereby the adrenal glands over-produce hormones. Again, regular veterinarian visits will enable you to seek advice about how much exercise your pet should be getting in relation to their particular case of diabetes.
Step
3
Keep it safe
Any form of exercise means that caution should be taken; pet parents with diabetic pets typically bring a form of sugar along when doing activities. A small container that holds a bit of corn syrup or honey can be a lifesaver if your dog has a low sugar episode. As your vet will explain, you can rub the gums with the sugary substance to bring your pet out of their low so that you can quickly transport them to the vet for evaluation.
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Healthy Treat Bake

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Any Day
Cheap
Easy
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Cookie Cutter
Baking Items
Activity description

Studies show that female dogs and male neutered dogs are commonly diagnosed with diabetes. Older dogs are at risk, as are canines with a genetic predisposition (Poodles, Samoyeds, Cairn Terriers and Dachshunds are a few breeds that are predisposed). Obesity in canines of any age is a well-described factor, too. Be careful not to overfeed your dog and avoid giving them too many treats or unhealthy table scraps. Dog-safe vegetables and fruits are a fun treat; check with your veterinary caregiver first before feeding them these known snacks for dogs: bananas, broccoli, sweet potatoes, apples (no seeds, please) and blueberries.

Step
1
Research the recipe
Your veterinarian or dog trainer may have the ideal recipe to try. Yummy dog-tested biscuits can be formed into fun shapes that your hungry dog will love. Common ingredients include oats, eggs, chicken broth and wheat germ. Research a recipe, bake up a batch and let your pup lick the bowl!
Step
2
Frozen treats
Tried and true specialties for hungry pups often include peanut butter. Frozen goodies with plain yogurt and dog-safe peanut butter are perfect snacks on a hot day. Mix the ingredients, pour into cupcake molds and freeze overnight. Supervise your dog while they savor the flavor of frozen favorites.
Step
3
Always bake your own
You can control what your diabetic dog is eating by giving them veterinarian approved meals and snacks along with whipping up your own tasty treats. Incorporate vegetables, meat and healthy additions like pumpkin and applesauce (no sugar added, of course) into your pup’s favorite biscuit. This will ensure that you can treat your dog in moderation without overloading on carbs, sugar and fat.
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More Fun Ideas...

Dancing

Known in the competive world as canine freestyle, teaching your pup a few swift moves like circling around you or walking backward and forward to music is a good start!

Swimming

A cool dip in the pool or lake is a low impact, stress free activity most dogs love. If your companion is not a seasoned swimmer, have them wear a life vest to keep them safe in case of fatigue or panic. Remember, never leave your little swimmer unattended in any circumstance!

Conclusion

Diabetes in dogs is not an illness that means your pup has to sit back and watch life go by. It does mean though, that you need to be aware of signs that your pal is unwell. Adding fun, moderate intensity activities to their day to day routine will go a long way to enabling your pup to continue on as they should - a loving and happy family member!