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Diabetes in Reptile Pets

November is Pet Diabetes Month—although diabetes in reptiles isn’t as common as it is in cats and dogs, it’s certainly possible. It’s actually most common in turtles and tortoises! Find out more below from a Mint Hill reptile vet.

Causes of Reptilian Diabetes

Diabetes in reptiles can be caused by a variety of factors, including malnutrition, dietary changes, environmental triggers, and diseases like liver disorders and infections. Diabetes in reptiles is characterized by a lack of glucose in the blood, caused by a lowered insulin output, just like it is in humans and animals!

Your veterinarian will be able to tell you about how and why your particular reptile has contracted diabetes.

Symptoms in Your Pet

The first symptoms you may see in a diabetic reptile are lethargy and weakness, increased urination, increased thirst, a heightened appetite, or dilated pupils. Turtles and tortoises in particular may not be able to right themselves if they wind up on top of their shell.

Since these symptoms can also point to a wide variety of other health conditions, it’s important to check with your veterinary professional as soon as you see any of these symptoms. He or she will examine your pet to determine the best course of action.

Treatment and Management

If diabetes is suspected, your vet will take urine samples and blood tests to confirm. If it’s positive, medications, insulin injections, and glucose monitoring will probably be necessary to keep your pet healthy. In some cases, dietary changes and lifestyle modifications will be necessary for your reptile. Again, your vet will be able to give your more details for your particular pet.

Since diabetes is known to change in severity over time, you’ll need to keep regular appointments with your Mint Hill reptile veterinarian’s office. Call today to set up a schedule that best suits you and your reptilian companion.

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