Just like us, our pets don't always suffer from illnesses that will simply go away and never return. Many of the conditions that can affect them are known as chronic diseases. This means that they are either constantly recurring or are a long-standing, persistent problem with no reprieve.
As loving and committed pet owners, we want to ensure that our animals enjoy a life that is as painless and fulfilling as possible. However, if we have a pet that suffers from a chronic disease this can be easier said than done.
Helping you to manage your pet's chronic disease
Typically, chronic diseases require long-term medication and fairly regular veterinary appointments so that your pet can be closely monitored. We will work with you and your pet to develop a chronic disease management plan that is tailored specifically to the needs of your pet.
This will involve multiple elements including:
- Creating realistic expectations for the long-term management of their condition
- Preventing the progression of the disease wherever possible
- Managing your pet's pain
- Managing other symptoms
- Discussing the best nutrition for her ongoing care
- Choosing the best medications to help manage her condition, including minimizing any negative side effects
- Increasing your pet's quality of life
- Creating a plan for how often further checks are needed
- Helping you to find an insurer that will help you cover the costs of chronic disease care
It is important to understand that while there is no single, simple cure for chronic illnesses, with the right care, it is still possible for your pet to live a long, happy and fulfilling life.
What is classed as a chronic pet disease?
There is a range of different illnesses and diseases that can be classed as being 'chronic' in nature. Some of the most common chronic diseases affecting our beloved pets include the following:
Allergies occur as a result of the body reacting negatively to environmental influences such as dust, pollen, parasites, and certain foods. Animals are just as likely to experience allergies are humans are.
Just like us, pets can suffer from degeneration of the joints as they age. This is known as arthritis and it can be a source of pain and mobility problems for your pet.
Chronic renal insufficiency
Also referred to as kidney disease, this is when your pet's kidneys lose their ability to properly filter waste from her body and can no longer effectively retain water and electrolytes.
In humans, this is better known as Alzheimer's disease or dementia, but in pets, it is simply referred to as cognitive dysfunction. This tends to occur as a result of advancing age and it can cause our pets to experience problems such as urinary incontinence, confusion anxiety, and sleep disturbances.
This refers to a chronic problem affecting your pet's adrenal gland, which causes it to release excessive steroid hormones such as cortisol.
One of the most common chronic illnesses affecting our pets, diabetes in animals is the same as the human version of the disease. Your pet will be unable to control her blood sugar levels herself and will require support and medication to remain healthy.
Unsurprisingly, pancreatitis refers to the inflammation of the pancreas, which can cause symptoms such as jaundice, abdominal pain, vomiting and more.
If you are concerned that your pet may have a chronic disease and you would like more information on managing her condition, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our compassionate, sympathetic and knowledgeable veterinary team.