Boehringer Ingelheim has launched Senvelgo (velagliflozin oral solution), a once-daily oral treatment for diabetes that cat owners can give with a small amount of food or directly into the cat’s mouth. 

Boehringer says Senvelgo controls blood sugar levels usually within a week1,2 without the risk of symptomatic hypoglycaemia and without the need for twice daily insulin injections.

Studies have shown that around 1 in 200 cats develop diabetes4,5 - somewhere around 55,000 in the UK - of which 20% are euthanased within a year: 10% because of owners not wanting to inject with insulin, and a further 10% because of lack of success or compliance with insulin.3

This new treatment, with its once-daily oral treatment regime and simple dosing according to bodyweight, could have a significant impact on those numbers. 

On top of which, there's no need for glucose curves to determine dosage, it's easily stored and doesn't need refrigeration, and it creates less waste than insulin (1 reusable oral syringe vs 180 insulin syringes).

Samantha Taylor BVetMed(Hons) CertSAM DipECVIM-CA MANZCVS FRCVS said: "This is the development in diabetes management we have been waiting many years for; a practical oral therapy to treat this challenging disease.”

To support vet professionals with using Senvelgo, Boehringer has produced a toolkit that includes a veterinary management guide, CPD webinar, cat owner leaflet and homecare journal, along with websites for vets and cat owners.


  1. Niessen, S. J. M. et al. (2022) Once daily oral therapy for feline diabetes mellitus: evaluation of SGLT-2 inhibitor velagliflozin as stand-alone therapy compared to insulin injection therapy in diabetic cats. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine 36, 2512–2513. 
  2. Sparkes, A. H. et al. (2015) ISFM Consensus Guidelines on the Practical Management of Diabetes Mellitus in Cats. J Feline Med Surg 17, 235–50.
  3. Niessen, S. J. M. et al. (2017) The Big Pet Diabetes Survey: Perceived Frequency and Triggers for Euthanasia. Vet Sci 4, 27
  4. McCann, T., et al. (2007) Feline diabetes mellitus in the UK: the prevalence within an insured cat population and a questionnaire-based putative risk factor analysis. J Feline Med Surg 9, 289–9
  5. O’Neill, D., et al. (2016) Epidemiology of Diabetes Mellitus among 193,435 Cats Attending Primary-Care Veterinary Practices in England. J Vet Intern Med 30, 964–72

PS: Whilst you're here, take a moment to see our latest job opportunities for vets.