Pets & Diabetes

1:46 PM, Nov 14, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +



Excessive thirst
Excessive urination
Excessive appetite
Weight Loss
Cloudy eyes and vision loss
Deterioration of hair coat
Decrease in energy level

What to know about diabetes in pets:

Often Type 1 (pancreas not making enough insulin) in dogs, Type 2 (too many carbs/not enough exercise) in cats

Diabetes is very treatable

Pets with controlled diabetes have excellent quality of life

You CAN do it!!!

Find a high quality veterinarian that will help you learn how to properly manage all aspects of your diabetic pet's care

Rechecks with a veterinarian are critically important to avoid the tragic side effects of mismanaged diabetes

Pets Dying or Becoming Ill from Jerky Treat Ingestion:

As of September 24, 2013, FDA has received more than 3000 complaints of illness related to consumption of chicken, duck, or sweet potato jerky treats, nearly all of which are imported from China. The reports involve more than 3600 dogs, 10 cats and include more than 580 deaths

The FDA reports that of the complaints of illness it's received, about 60 percent entail gastrointestinal illness, with or without elevated liver enzymes. About 30 percent entail kidney or urinary signs. The remainder involve a variety of signs, convulsions, tremors, hives and skin irritation among them.

Common early signs of illness are decreased appetite, lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, increased consumption of water and increased urination.

Among the cases involving kidney and urinary dysfunction, the FDA reports that about 135 have been for a specific kidney disease known as Fanconi syndrome, or Fanconi-like syndrome. In Fanconi syndrome, part of the kidney called the proximal tubule does not work properly, causing nutrients such as glucose, bicarbonate and amino acids to be lost in the urine.

Fanconi-like syndrome has been identified by veterinarians as a hallmark of the mysterious jerky-related disease. In dogs, Fanconi syndrome typically is seen as an inherited condition in breeds such as basenjis and Norwegian elkhounds.

The agency has been unable to identify a contaminant. However, the discovery of residues of antibiotics not allowed in foods led in January to the recall of several varieties of chicken jerky, including the popular brands Waggin' Train and Canyon Creek Ranch by Nestle Purina PetCare Co. and Milo's Kitchen by Del Monte Corp.

Since then, the FDA reports, there has been a "sharp drop" in the number of complaints. "FDA believes it unlikely that the reports of illness it has received are caused by the presence of antibiotic residues in jerky treat products," the agency states. "Rather, because the brands that were recalled represent a significant portion of the jerky pet treat market in the United States, FDA theorizes ... that the drop-off in complaints since January 2013 is more likely the result of the general lack of availability (of) jerky pet treat products."

Despite its doubts that the antibiotic residues explain the thousands of illness complaints, the FDA says it is studying the possibility that low levels of antibiotics may make dogs ill when fed over time. The line of inquiry "may take many months to complete," the agency notes.m

The takeaway right now: Avoid jerky treats for pets, particularly those made in China until this mess is figured out. Monitor the FDA website at: for up to date information on this and other timely topics.


Richelle Smith, DVM
Safe Harbor Animal Hospital
4547 Cascade Rd. SE 49546 

Most Viewed Articles

Most Watched Videos