Monroe vet offers free pet diabetes screening

With canine and feline diabetes on the rise, one veterinary clinic in Monroe is working proactively to help increase awareness of the condition and facilitate timely care.
Throughout the month of March, Kindness Animal Clinic (KAC, 19845 U.S. 2), located near Haggen grocery store, will be offer diabetes screenings for pets two years old and older. Through a partnership with several corporate sponsors, including Abbott, Merck and Purina, the clinic will offer free diabetes treatment starter kits to any pet owner whose pet receives a positive diagnosis. The kits will include a glucose meter, insulin and samples of food specifically formulated for pets with diabetes.
KAC Veterinarian Dr. Bruce Garver has worked in Monroe for 25 years. His wife, Dr. Paula Garver, also a veterinarian, has worked at the clinic in the past. It is important for pets to be screened as soon as warning signs are observed, Paula said.
"Diabetes is on the rise in dogs and cats GÇô just like in humans GÇô and may be affecting as many as one in 100 dogs and cats,GÇ¥ Paula said. "Because it leads to other serious health problems, early diagnosis is very important. It is treatable, and with proper diagnosis and care, diabetic pets can lead a good, quality life.GÇ¥
Diabetes occurs when the animal's body is either no longer producing sufficient levels of insulin or experiencing an abnormal response to the insulin being produced. Symptoms include excessive hunger and thirst, frequent urination, lethargy and weight loss despite an increase in food intake. In felines, symptoms might also include urinating outside of the litter box, while dog owners may observe more middle-of-the-night trips outside than usual.
Feline diabetes can be treated with a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet and twice-a-day insulin injections. As with humans, obesity can increase the likelihood of a dog or a cat developing diabetes. If left untreated, diabetes can shorten the animal's lifespan, but the condition can be successfully managed with a consistent diet and insulin treatment.
With dogs, individualized treatment protocols must be developed, and dogs may need to be monitored more frequently, to determine how they are responding to insulin treatments.
Both feline and canine diabetes can be treated successfully.
"We can vastly improve their quality of life,GÇ¥ Bruce said. "If we have them on a very specific diet that has a certain amount of calories, then we can control them quite well with insulin.
"With some cats, if we get them to lose weight and we get them on this high protein diet, they can actually go into remission,GÇ¥ he continued.
Differences exist between feline and canine diabetes; with feline diabetes, male cats are more susceptible. With canines, females seem to be more susceptible. The test for diabetes is uncomplicated, requiring only a drop of blood, and the results are available in just a few minutes. Diabetes primarily affects older pets, which is why the free screening will only be available to pets two years or older.
If KAC obtains a positive diagnosis during the complimentary screening, the pet owner will be asked to schedule a follow-up appointment so the pet can undergo a comprehensive examination. A complete diabetes consultation will be given during that appointment.
Sultan residents Jody and Tiffany Kerr, owners of the Scottish Thistle Farm along U.S. 2, have experience in caring for a diabetic pet. About four years ago, they noticed their 10-year-old dog, Melba, was giving off an unusual, sweet, candy-like odor, in addition to being sluggish and unlike her normal self. They took her to the veterinarian and learned that the 100-pound husky-malamute-wolf mix was diabetic.
"We put her on a high-quality adult dog food, in measured amounts, twice a day,GÇ¥ Jody said. "She got a shot of insulin at the same time.GÇ¥
Jody and Tiffany were able to successfully manage Melba's condition. She passed away last year, at age 14.
To schedule an appointment for free diabetes screening for your dog or cat, contact Kindness Animal Clinic at 360-794-8813. For more information on KAC, visit, or


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment