How Do I Take Care of a Dog with Diabetes?

By: Nancy O, AAHA Certified Diabetes Educator for Muffin’s Halo

The first step in caring for a newly diagnosed diabetic dog is to take a deep breath!  Remember that your pup picks up on your emotions so the more stressed you are, the more stressed your pup will be.  Stress affects your pups BG (Blood Glucose) numbers, so do your best to stay calm and take it one day at a time.  If you get a higher number, just take it in stride and move on.  No dog is perfectly controlled every single day.  We can only control so much, so just breathe and move on.  

How To Take Care Of A Dog With Diabetes

Caring for a Diabetic Dog is not that much harder than caring for your pup before the diagnosis.  The only real changes are: 

  • Keeping a 12-hour schedule – find a routine that fits into your current lifestyle.  I did my test, feed, and inject “ritual” at 6:30 am and 6:30 pm because it fit with my work schedule.
  • Make sure that the food that you are feeding is within the appropriate fat content range for a diabetic dog.  We covered this in the last blog entry. 
  • Make sure that you have the right treats on hand – I used small cubes of boiled or baked chicken that I kept in a Ziploc bag in the fridge.  There are many, many treats that you can use that are appropriate for a dog with Diabetes.  You can buy some PureBites treats on Amazon or Chewy.  These are lovingly referred to as “puppy crack” as almost every dog that I know of LOVES them!  Any treat that is pure protein won’t affect your pup’s numbers as a rule.  There are some great treats that you can easily make at home also.
  • Getting a bit of exercise each day.  

    Not so bad…  I know from experience that getting this diagnosis is overwhelming and frightening in the beginning, but once you make up your mind that you can do this, it’s really not a big deal.  

    Routines For Dogs With Diabetes

    My routine was as follows:

    • Wake up, 
    • Outside to pee 
    • Back inside to test, feed and inject, 
    • Wait about an hour and a half before we took our walk.  You want to wait before exercise so that the insulin absorption isn’t affected.

      Then we carried on with our day just like before diagnosis.  See?  Not so bad.  

      What is important to remember is that this is NOT a death sentence.  Dogs with diabetes can live a long and happy life.  With proper management, this disease just requires a few extra steps in your daily routine.  In our group Canine Diabetes Support and Information ( there are lots and lots of pups that have been Diabetic and sighted for 10 years or more!  

      At Muffin’s Halo, your blind diabetic dog’s health is our number one goal.  Call us at (818) 943-9673 or email us at to learn more about how our blind dog halo harness can help your blind dog, navigate safely without bumping into things while increasing their confidence. Take a look at our comfy Muffin’s Halo choices.