Symptoms of Cat Diabetes

There are classic signs and symptoms of diabetes you can watch for in your cat. Most are similar to those found in dogs and people, but some are different. Each of these signs is a result of high levels of glucose in your cat’s blood. Your veterinarian will make a diagnosis by testing for extra glucose in your cat’s blood and urine. You can’t perform those tests yourself, but you can keep an eye out for the signs and bring them to your veterinarian’s attention.

Look out for these common signs and symptoms of diabetes in cats

  • Excessive thirst (polydipsia)
  • Excessive urination (polyuria)
  • Excessive appetite (polyphagia)
  • Weight loss despite a good appetite
  • Failure to groom, resulting in dry, dull fur
  • Sleeps more or is less active (lethargy)
  • Weakness in the back legs or an abnormal wobbly walk

If your cat is drinking more than usual, it could be a sign of diabetes. You may notice that you are filling the bowl more than usual, or your cat may begin drinking from unusual places like the sink or bathtub.

If your cat is urinating in places other than his litter box or if he is still using the litter box but you see bigger clumps of litter or more of them, he may be urinating more frequently. This is another sign of diabetes and may be because his body is trying to get rid of excess glucose.

If your cat never seems to get enough to eat and is constantly begging for food but not gaining any weight, or even losing weight, it could be because his body is not capable of getting glucose into his cells. If your cat is not getting the energy he needs, he may appear sleepy and lethargic. This is not the easiest sign to identify in cats, because they sleep a lot normally, but in combination with the other signs, it could be an indicator of diabetes.

Finally, if your cat’s walking or stance seems different, it could be a sign of diabetes. Persistently high glucose levels can damage nerves over time and lead to weakness in the hind legs.

If you see any of these common cat diabetes signs and symptoms, talk to your veterinarian so he/she can evaluate your cat and rule out the possibility of other conditions. Your veterinarian will likely test your cat’s blood and urine glucose levels before making an official diagnosis of diabetes.

Read about the risk factors that may lead to feline diabetes.

TIP: Don’t worry. The signs and symptoms you see in your cat today may go away with proper management.



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