Unfortunately, dogs can have the same health issues as humans. Canine diabetes — a disorder characterized by impaired pancreatic function — is one of the most common and serious examples.

Without a functioning pancreas, the dog will have trouble controlling blood sugar levels. If left untreated, diabetes can lead to severe complications and even death. So, you will definitely have to work with your vet to keep your dog as safe as possible and provide it with food that offers the kind of nutrition that every diabetic dog needs.

Grains and Carbohydrates

Veterinarians believe that diabetic dog owners should adopt methods that are likely to slow down the delivery of glucose into the bloodstream. In moderation, complex carbohydrates (as opposed to basic or highly processed carbohydrates) and high-fat foods (pumpkin, unsweetened apple sauce) can help to slow down the delivery of glucose.

High Digestibility Diets

Numerous diets are available in the market for dogs with sensitive stomachs. Usually, these foods are designed for fast digestion and absorption. Although this helps the dog with digestive problems, fast digestion and absorption results in higher blood glucose levels after eating. This may not be the safest thing for a diabetic dog.

In the same way, soft moist foods are preserved and flavored with sugars. These, as you would imagine, increase postprandial blood sugar quickly and are bad choices. These diets are not as popular as they were once and should not be confused with canned foods.

Water Consumption

You should measure your dog at least once a month. It is safer to use the same scale each time. Also try to find a way to quantify the intake of water. The average dog can drink no more than 7-1/2 ounces of water per 10 pounds of body weight within 24 hours.


Adding more fiber to your pet's diet will help with both overweight and regulation. Insulin resistance can occur, at least in part, because the dog might be too heavy. Fiber helps with weight loss since it allows one to feel "full" without having to eat more calories.

Fiber can also help with certain intestinal disorders, absorb moisture in the case of diarrhea, and use it to aid with constipation. It also finds its use in weight reduction / weight maintenance diets. The use of a high-fiber diet can also be beneficial for dogs with anal gland issues.

Prescription Diets

Sometimes, even with a healthy and regular diet, your dog can still experience hyperglycemia, and in that case, a prescription diet might be required to keep your pet's glucose levels stable. Your vet can recommend one of the prescription options to help food break down at a slow and steady pace. These foods give your dog a healthy diet with high fiber and low fat content. A prescription diet doesn't have medications in it, but rather, it's very fixed — the composition of the food is absolutely unchanged, helping to keep your dog healthy. A huge concern with prescription diets is that they might not be particularly appetizing. Your dog may not enjoy consuming this diet, and it may need to be forced down their throat.


Some diabetic dog owners choose to supplement their dog's diet to help control their dog's diabetes. These supplements are best provided at meal times and include a certain group of nutrients: L-carnitine, chromium, omega-3 fatty acids, cranberry extract, probiotics, and digestive enzymes.
Not all dogs with diabetes need supplements and not all supplements need to be provided to see any benefit. If you want to use pet supplements, it is important that you speak to your vet about the proper dose of each supplement for your dog.

You must also track any supplements with your vet, as some of them may affect the efficacy of drugs, or may even interfere with drugs that your pet could be taking. Supplements can be useful for the treatment of canine diabetes, but only when properly administered and closely monitored.

Timing of meals:

• Dogs should be given insulin once a day
• The first meal (e.g. 25-30% of the daily ration) is given before the injection of insulin in the morning. This helps the owner to see that the dog feels healthy and eats normally before the insulin is given.
• The second meal (the rest of the regular ration) is typically provided 6-8 hours later.
• Dogs receive insulin twice daily

Things You should avoid?

Since we want consistency in the diet, home cooking is not recommended due to batch-to- batch variability as well as lack of testing to evaluate how different nutrients communicate with each other (e.g. fiber) and are consumed and used by the dog. Veterinary clinical diets from organizations with good nutritional experience are highly acknowledged for digestibility. Also, half-moist dog foods should be avoided since they include sucrose, fructose, and other simple carbohydrates that can result in higher blood sugar levels, so check the list of ingredients that include 'sugar,' 'corn syrup,' or 'honey' on the label if your dog has diabetes.

Author's Bio: 

Ellen.J California, United States.