How to Take Blood From Your Dog for Glucose

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Your veterinarian's staff should show you how to use all of your dog's diabetic supplies.
Your veterinarian's staff should show you how to use all of your dog's diabetic supplies. (Image: Click_and_Photo/iStock/Getty Images)

Dogs can be diabetic, just like humans. After your pet pooch is diagnosed, your veterinarian needs to keep a close eye on his blood glucose levels to monitor and make changes as necessary to his insulin injections. According to Dr. Kristina Ruotsalo, a veterinarian, you will probably have to monitor your dog daily when starting insulin, but later you'll check it only weekly if the medication is working correctly. Taking blood samples with the lip-stick method is the least painful way to test your pet's glucose at home.

Things You'll Need

  • Pet glucose monitor
  • Glucose test strip
  • Lancet
  • Sterile gauze pads

Hold a small dog in your lap on his side. Place a large dog on his side on the floor.

Turn on your pet glucose monitor and insert a glucose test strip into it. Lift your dog's outer top lip and wipe saliva from the inside of the lip near the edge -- not near the gum line.

Pull the round end of the lancet backward and prick your dog's lip on the area you cleaned. Keep holding his lip with one hand and set the lancet down. Pick up the glucose monitor and touch the droplet of blood to the tip of the test strip.

Wipe the pricked area on your dog's lip with a sterile gauze pad. Read the results on the meter; they normally display in 5 seconds. Record them on a blood glucose record for your next veterinary visit.

Tips & Warnings

  • Prick the lip on the side of the mouth that is facing down if your dog is already lying down before you take the blood sample. Pricking the lip on the side nearest the floor will make harvesting a droplet quicker.
  • You may have to squeeze your dog's lip slightly after piercing it with the lancet to get a blood sample.
  • Blowing in your dog's face lightly, immediately before using the lancet, will keep him from feeling the prick the first few times you get a blood sample.
  • Keep a log of all information your veterinarian requests, including feeding times with amounts of food, glucose testing results, insulin injection time and date records, the amount of water your dog drinks, and his potty breaks.

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