Although cats cannot be cured of diabetes at this time, remission for a period of time is possible in some.
Possibility of Diabetic Remission
Cats that are diagnosed early in the course of the disease while the disease is still mild are more likely to undergo remission than those that have been struggling with diabetes for some time without treatment.
In a normal cat, the pancreas is responsible for secreting insulin in response to rising blood glucose (blood sugar) levels. The insulin then acts to decrease the blood glucose levels and keep them within an appropriate range.
In a diabetic cat, for whatever reason, the body is not able to adequately utilize the insulin produced to decrease the blood glucose to an acceptable range. The pancreas still retains the ability, at least to some degree, to secrete insulin. In this situation, if the blood glucose levels can be kept within a proper range with veterinary medical treatment, the cat's body might then have a chance to recover, and the pancreas can resume its task of secreting insulin to regulate the blood glucose.
Why Some Cats Can Enter Remission and Others Cannot
If the cat has suffered from diabetes long enough that the pancreas has been irreparably damaged and the pancreatic cells that secrete insulin have been "burned out," the cat will be beyond any chance of remission and will need to be treated for diabetes for the rest of his life. However, if the diagnosis can be made early enough in the course of the disease that the pancreas is not irreparably damaged, then remission is possible.
The best thing that you can do is to have your cat examined by your veterinarian on a regular basis. Your veterinarian can perform routine blood and urine testing to ensure that your cat is healthy or detect early changes. Your cat should be examined at least once yearly. Many veterinarians recommend twice yearly examinations, particularly for adult or senior cats.
Diabetes Educational Toolkit. American Association of Feline Practitioners.
Feline Diabetes. Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine Feline Health Center.