Animals & Money: The cost of your pet getting diabetes


Today is National Diabetes Day, and the folks at Webvet are trying to make people aware that dogs and cats are facing their own mini-epidemic of diabetes. It's not anywhere near as severe as the human spread of the disease. About one in 400 dogs and cats now has diabetes compared to one in 12 people.

Just like in people, lousy diet and exercise habits are causing more diabetes all around. The difference is dogs and cats aren't the ones deciding how much food they get and how many times they exercise. We are. Yeah, I know they have those irresistible eyes. That's why one-quarter of our cats and dogs are now clinically obese, according to Webvet. PetClubUK says overweight cats are four times as likely to get diabetes.

To be fair, diabetes isn't just caused by being fat, in either humans or animals. Genetics plays a huge role. In dogs, females and certain breeds, such as miniature Pinschers and cairn terriers are more likely to be afflicted with diabetes. No gender has an upper hand in cats, though some think Burmese are more susceptible.