My 11 year old lab was recently diagnosed with diabetes and is taking 15 mls. of insulin twice a day. Also has been taking an antibiotic recently for an infection, which has caused his readings to flucuate more. I would very much appreciate any suggestions for a dog food or diet that would help him with his diabetes. The vet said any good dog food is ok since he is on insulin to address the diabetes, however, I think he would benefit from a proper diet for his condition. Any input from others who have experience with diabetic dogs would be so welcome. Thank you
Hi sherrie l, welcome to DFA
Your instincts are correct! Your lab would benefit from a proper diet for his condition, and in my opinion that would be a LOW CARB wet food, preferably homemade, or commercial raw, cooked, or canned.
Diabetes is a disease in which the body either doesn’t produce enough insulin to correctly breakdown carbohydrates, or the body becomes resistant to the insulin it does make. Since diabetes always affects carbohydrate breakdown, it makes sense to limit carbs as much as possible. At least that’s the way I see it, and limiting carbs as much as possible is the best way to normalize blood sugars and avoid diabetic complications.
So, if you agree with me so far then I would like to offer you a few diet options;
1) Homemade, properly balanced, low carb, moderate fat. high protein, lightly cooked. I feel this is the best option. ANY change in diet should be done slowly, over a minimum of 2 weeks. If you want to try raw, I would first do a 2 week transition to lightly cooked, and then an additional 2 week transition from lightly cooked to raw. A good book to start you off is;
Any recipe for raw food that does NOT contain ground bones can be safely cooked. ANY changes in diet will also require an adjustment in insulin. Less carbs = less insulin, more carbs = more insulin. I would NOT change his diet without monitoring his blood sugars at home, at least 4 times a day during transitions. I would also consult a Vet who is willing to support you on a change to a low carb diet.
2) Any 5 star raw, cooked, or canned food that meets these guidelines;
Low carb = less than 15% of calories from carbohydrates
Moderate fat = less than 50% of calories from fat.
High protein = minimum, 35% of calories from protein
These are MY definitions and others may have different opinions on what constitutes low, moderate, or high.
Editors choice (a fee applies) – https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/editors-choice-landing/
I wish you and your pup the best 😉
PS – “My 11 year old lab was recently diagnosed with diabetes and is taking *15 mls.* of insulin twice a day.”
You mean 15 units. U-100 insulin has 100 units per mL, and U-40 insulin has 40 units per mL. Each line on an insulin syringe equals 1 unit, not 1 mL 😉
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