Hyperglycemia In Cats: What Should You Know About It?


Did you know that not only people, but also animals may experience high blood pressure? Yes, you read it right. Even our pets at home may get affected by it. In the actual fact, high blood pressure or hyperglycemia in cats is common. In this article, we will discuss more about this. Read on to learn more!

Hyperglycemia in Cats: What is this feline condition?

The terminology hyperglycemia actually refers to the higher-than-the-normal levels of blood sugar. A simple carb sugar, which circulate in the blood, it is the main source of energy for the entire body, of which the normal levels may range in between 75 to 120 milligrams.

Insulin, a hormone, which is being produced and released through the pancreas right into the bloodstream when the sugar levels rise, actually plays a critical role in the maintenance of the blood sugar levels in its normal limits. In case the concentration of insulin is so low or there’s outright insulin deficiency, the levels of sugar may rise abruptly, thus leading to hyperglycemia in cats.

Moreover, some of the causes of the hyperglycemia might be pancreatitis, as well as the consequential incapacity to yield insulin. The normally occurring hormones, most especially in the female cats, diets, and bodily infections –including the urinary tract or teeth.

The older and middle-aged cats are at more risk for developing hyperglycemia, yet else, there is no breed that’s specifically disposed to this particular condition. The neutered male cats are at much higher risk. In general, cats are susceptible to high blood sugar level, commonly during periods of stress, where the glucose might reach about 300 to 400 milligrams. Moreover, this is often a provisional increase in the blood sugar, and though it warrants more observation, it might not cause to analyze chronic hyperglycemia, or even diabetes mellitus.

Causes of Hyperglycemia in Cats

Aside from the high-stress situations, harmful interaction to drugs -like heartworm medications, as well as the intake of nutritional solutions comprising high glucose levels, below are the possible causes of hyperglycemia in cats:


  • Urinary tract infection
  • Kidney infection
  • Dental infection
  • Infections in the body may drive the blood sugar levels high

Physiological causes

  • Stress
  • Excitement
  • Exertion
  • Soon after eating a meal

High sugar production

  • Pancreatic neoplasia
  • Glucagonoma
  • Pheochromocytoma
  • Hyperadrenocorticism

Low sugar consumption in the body, leading to high blood pressure levels

  • Scarce excretion of wastes by the kidneys
  • High levels of progesterone
  • Acute pancreatitis
  • Diabetes mellitus

Symptoms of Cat Hyperglycemia

The clinical symptoms might vary relying on the underlying condition or disease. The cat might not be showing any austere symptoms, most especially those when the increased sugar is believed to be just temporary, stress, hormonal induced hyperglycemia.

Some of the most common symptoms of hyperglycemia in cats include the following:

  • Tissue damage because of oxidizing effect of the surplus sugar in the tissues
  • Non-healing Wounds
  • Infections increased due to the excess glucose feeds bacterial and fungal invaders
  • Austere depression
  • Nerve damage in the legs
  • Enlargement of the liver
  • Bloodshot eyes because of the blood vessels
  • Cataract
  • Dehydration
  • Excessive hunger
  • Obesity
  • Weight loss
  • Depression
  • Increase in urination
  • Increase in thirst


An entire blood profile may be conducted, comprising a chemical blood profile, thorough blood count, as well as urinalysis. Vets may also test the blood samples instantly for the blood sugar levels. In some instances, the solitary unusual finding may be the increase in the blood sugar. Additionally, this is actually true in the instances that are in connection to provisional conditions, like hormones or stress. Except there is a causal condition or disease present, the results of the blood test are commonly normal.

Furthermore, urinalysis might also reveal the higher levels of glucose, bacteria, pus, as well as an excessive amount of ketone bodies on the urine, just like in the diabetes mellitus. Moreover, , the low levels of insulin, which comes with high blood sugar levels are also an indication of diabetes. The high levels of amylase and lipase enzyme may be an indication of inflammation on the pancreas. In some instances, the high levels of liver enzyme are present as well because of fatty deposits on the liver tissue. Ultrasound and abdominal x-rays might give significant information about the underlying condition.

In addition, if the cat has had previous infection in the body, you need to tell the vet about it, since it might still be there and causing sugar levels to stay high.


Since there are several conditions, which may raise the levels of blood sugar, the treatments for hyperglycemia in cats may depend on the correction of the underlying causes. In the cases of physiological rise in the levels of blood sugar, stress may need to be eliminated or minimized.

It is never advisable to attempt and reduce the blood sugar levels brusquely, because it might lead to lower blood sugar levels or hypoglycemia. In the diabetic cat patients, the sugar levels may fluctuate –this is common, and the adjustment of the insulin dose or some other drugs may help in resolving the problem. There are various situations that blood sugar are high, yet don’t impose an increase in the insulin and may even get worse by the increase in the doses of insulin. Additionally, the vet may guide you in the determination of when you can adjust the levels and when to not adjust it.


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