Quality of Life of Diabetic Pets


Your diabetic pet's health and lifestyle

"Will my pet live a normal life?" That's often one of the first questions owners ask when their pet is diagnosed with diabetes. Of course each pet's experience is different, but many pets live a long, healthy, happy life with diabetes. Some pets may have a difficult time, but there are many factors that may play a part in this including the pet's age or other health problems. This portion of the site is devoted to sharing  experiences about your diabetic pet's Quality Of Life. Please take some time to share your experiences so others can understand what it's like to have a diabetic pet. Your experience will be incorporated into the Quality of Life Stories.  If you are interested in reading or sharing experiences about the details of how owners manage their pet's diabetes (feeding and insulin schedules, home testing, etc.) please see the Personal Techniques section. 

In writing your response, please consider the following questions & situations:

  • Do you have a dog or a cat?
  • How old is your pet?
  • How long has it been since your pet was diagnosed?
    A newly diagnosed pet will likely have a different quality of life than a pet that was diagnosed years ago and is well regulated.  
  • Overall, has the diabetes been poorly controlled, reasonably well controlled, or very well controlled? There will likely have been some good or bad times, but looking back over all the time your pet has been diabetic, how well controlled has the diabetes been?
  • Has your pet experienced a decline in health due to diabetes?  What is the problem?  Is the decline slight, moderate, or severe?
    For example, your cat may have moderate hind-leg weakness or your dog may have developed diabetic cataracts. Or maybe your pet is having chronic paw or bladder infections.
  • Has your pet experienced a decline in lifestyle due to diabetes?  What is the problem?  Is the  decline slight, moderate, or severe? 
    For example, is your pet unable to do a favorite activity, unable to be outside unsupervised?  Has your dog had a difficult time adjusting to blindness?  Or maybe your pet is unhappy about frequent vet visits or not being able to eat a favorite food.
  • How old was your pet when the decline in health or lifestyle occurred? 
    Has the age of your pet been a factor in it's ability to adapt to the changes?
  • Does your pet have non-diabetes health problems?
    For example, hyperthyroidism or  Cushing's disease.
  • Is your pet's health and lifestyle appropriate for its age, even if he didn't have diabetes?
    What's important here is that you make it clear whether your pet is experiencing a decline that is a normal part of the aging process or if the decline would not have occurred if your pet didn't have diabetes.
  • Have there been any benefits of your pet being diabetic? Sounds like a strange question, but if you are more aware of your pet's health and are more proactive about care, then that's a benefit. 

After writing your story, please use this form to send it to me. You can copy and paste the text in a box provided. If you would like to send a photo, you will be given that option after your story text is sent.  

Read some Quality of Life Stories.


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Updated August 2001
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