Practitioner Updates

Pharmacist’s Corner: FDA Approves New Liquid Oral Feline Diabetes Medication

The Cat Is Out of the Bag

Boehringer Ingelheim announced in early August that a new medication for cats with diabetes has been approved by the U.S. FDA. SENVELGO (velagliflozin) is a once-daily liquid oral solution that owners can administer directly into their cat’s mouth. This is the second oral diabetes medication to receive approval this year, but the first oral solution.

Diabetes in the feline population is one of the most common endocrine disorders. Studies show that up to 30% of diagnosed cats are left untreated due to the complexities and challenges of existing treatments (1). SENVELGO (velagliflozin) oral solution helps simplify the treatment process and can eliminate or delay the need for injections to improve glycemic control in cats that have not previously been treated with insulin.

SENVELGO (velagliflozin) is of the sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors (SGLT2 inhibitors) class that inhibits glucose absorption from the kidney. Inhibition of renal glucose reabsorption has a high desirable effect of lowering blood glucose with minimal risk of in­ducing hypoglycemia. Due to an increase in glucose being eliminated from the kidney and urinary tract, common side effects to be aware of include gastroin­testinal effects, urinary tract infections, and weight loss.

SENVELGO (velagliflozin) will be available to the U.S. veterinary practices by mid-October. This oral solution provides another treatment option that can help owners and their feline companions continue to enjoy a normal life, despite the chronic illness at hand.

By Sarah Lira, PharmD, pharmacy resident


  1. Susan Gottlieb & Jacquie Rand (2018) Managing feline diabetes: current perspectives, Veterinary Medicine: Research and Reports, 9:, 33-42, DOI: 10.2147/VMRR.S125619