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Published: Jan 11, 2012

Feline diabetes is most commonly associated with obesity and physical inactivity, which is why it is important for pet owners to keep an eye on their cat's weight and make sure they are getting the right amount of food and proper exercise to help ward off the disease. There are a number of clinical signs that could indicate your cat is developing diabetes, including an increase in appetite and thirst as well as increased urination and urinating in places other than the litter box, lethargy and an unkempt coat, the ASPCA reports.

Treatment can vary for diabetic cats from intensive in-hospital care for felines that are seriously ill to something as simple as oral medication, according to the ASPCA. Many cats benefit from the change to a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates—this helps lower their blood sugar and address weight loss if they are overweight or obese.  This type of diet is not right for every cat and it is important to work closely with your veterinarian to determine what food is best for your cat and whether your cat will require insulin therapy.

When your veterinarian diagnoses your cat with diabetes, it can initially be overwhelming but feline diabetes is a very manageable disease and cats can live healthy, full lives with the help of their owners. Some cats may even go into remission with proper diet changes and medical treatment. You will need to follow up routinely with your veterinarian for examinations and blood tests to ensure your cat is living healthfully with diabetes.