People tend to use human glucose monitoring systems for their pets, but if your pet has diabetes, you ought to be using testing supplies that are geared towards their specific needs. An animal’s blood composition, after all, is much different than a human’s, so the testing equipment we use for them should be as well.
The blood glucose meters we use on ourselves are calibrated for human blood. Meters that are specialized for cats, dogs, and horses are calibrated differently. In a sense, if you were to use your own diabetic products to test your pet, it would be like comparing apples to oranges. The readings that you get won’t be as precise, and if you are having to base your pet’s medication dosages on those readings, you may end up under-dosing or overdosing by mistake.
The Difference between Our Blood and Our Pet’s Blood
Our own human blood differs from animal blood primarily in how the glucose is distributed between plasma and red blood cells. In humans, the distribution is more even, with 58 percent of the glucose found in plasma and 42 percent in red blood cells.
On the other hand, a cat carries 93 percent of their glucose in plasma and only 7 percent in red blood cells. In dogs, you’ll find 12.5 percent of their glucose in red blood cells and the rest in their plasma.
All things considered, this is a good illustration of how different we truly are from our furry friends, at least where our blood is concerned. Using a pet-specific blood glucose meter and blood glucose supplies is a much more reliable and accurate way to determine blood glucose.
Testing Your Pet’s Blood Glucose at Home
Your vet will probably ask you if you feel comfortable testing your pet’s blood glucose yourself. Pets need to be tested in a different way. Pet blood samples are taken from the ear of a dog or cat.
Monitoring Ketones in Your Pet’s Urine
Like humans with diabetes, pets are susceptible to ketones and ketoacidosis. If your pet has been diagnosed with diabetes, your vet may suggest that you test for ketones up to three times daily. Once you and your fur baby get stabilized with your treatment plan, you won’t have to test quite so often. The initial phases of diabetic treatment are often the most crucial to their quality of life.
Collecting the urine from your pet might not be quite as simple, however. Take a clean container with you when you walk your dog and try to slide it under the urine stream when they start to go.
For cats, there is a special type of litter you can get called hydrophobic sand. You would place this on top of your regular litter to collect the urine when the cat uses the box. The liquid will sit on top of the sand, allowing you to collect it for sampling with ease.
In either case, once you have the sample from your cat or dog, you can test with the same type of ketone test strips that you use for your own testing.
In conclusion, it can’t be stressed enough how important it is to use the correct testing equipment for your pet. Browse our selection today for a full range of pet-specific testing and monitoring supplies.
The content, information, and links on this page are intended for informational and educational purposes only, and does NOT constitute any medical professional advice.