extremely high GLU levels after 12 units 2x/day

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by tigsmom, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    Tig was recently diagnosed with feline diabetes and had an initial GLU of 686...and above. We started him on 5 units of Prozinc 2x/day. Two weeks later, he's up to 12 units 2x/day and his GLU range remians between 519 and 595.

    I am feeding him home-cooked chicken two times a day...approx. 4-4.5 oz's per feed (no more kibbles). He's 15 years young. Can anyone give me consult on what else to try? His appetite is very good, he's voiding well (less than pre-diagnosis), he plays with our young cat again and is resting well. I'm concerned that his levels are still so high. And my vet has suggested changing insulin from Prozinc to Hummarin (sp?). I thank you for any support you can gift us with.

    Tig is a tough-guy. Believe it or not...when we lived in NH...he chased a black bear out of the yard and into the river. :) We're behind him all the way. Thanks...Gail
     
  2. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    When were those BG obtained with respect to how long after the insulin injection? You really need a BG curve, BG levels taken every two hours after an injection. It is likely that he is being overdosed. Are you adding the necessary supplements to the home-cooked food? Cats, and humans need a balanced diet and boiled chicken is not sufficient.
     
  3. Kelly & Oscar

    Kelly & Oscar Well-Known Member

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    Feb 17, 2010
    5u is a whopper of a dose to start out on, even with the glucose readings over 600. Did your vet give you any reason why it started that high? Also, there is no way it should have been upped by 7u over the course of only 2 weeks. An increase like that should take months to get to and should only be done at 0.5u at a time. It sounds like your kitty is being greatly overdosed and the body is in Symogi rebound trying to protect itself from too much insulin. Does your kitty have a history of ketones? Do you have a meter to test at home yet? Testing the glucose at home is the only way to get a truly accurate idea of how your kitty is reacting to the insulin.
     
  4. Kelly & Oscar

    Kelly & Oscar Well-Known Member

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    Feb 17, 2010
    I wanted to get that first post up there immediately, but here is some info of the other things you mentioned.

    Prozinc vs. Humalin - DO NOT switch to Humalin. Prozinc is a much more gentle acting insulin than Humalin and you will end up having better luck with the Prozinc in the long run. Please see my previous comments as to why you aren't seeing a budge in the numbers yet.

    Feeding - you mention home cooked chicken - are you adding vitamins and minerals to this? Is this your kitty's only source of food? I make my own kitty's food too, mostly because I can feed Oscar a better diet and pay less for it than if I bought the canned stuff, BUT you have to add the appropriate supplements to make it a balanced diet (taurine, vitamin b, e, liver for vitamin a and d, potassium, etc)
     
  5. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I'm not sure I'm responding to your post accurately...so you'll be able to read it. I just signed up. But I took his GLU levels every 4 hours, for 48 hours, in order to gain a curve. His levels remained high, so my vet increased his insulin injections by 2 units each time I did this. I'm using a U-40 insulin syringe.

    I'm feeding him home-cooked chicken, no kibbles, no corn or sugar. He was raised on home-cooked chicken until a couple of years ago when my husband died and I had to start to buy canned food and kibbles. Now, I'm feeding him what he grew up on and the heck with me. You know? :)
     
  6. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    I want to make sure I am understanding you. You test his blood glucose levels with a glucometer? If so, what kind of numbers are you seeing?

    Or are you testing his urine only?
     
  7. LynnLee + Mousie

    LynnLee + Mousie Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    have to agree with what's been said, i.e. starting dose is very high and furthermore, the dose was increased waaaaaay too quickly. most likely the ideal dose has been entirely missed for your kitty.

    couple more things too, are you adding supplements to the chicken? just plain chicken isn't nutritionally complete for kitty. it's great for him and great that he'll eat it but you'll want to add supplements to make sure he's getting everything he needs. check out http://www.catinfo.org

    next, humulin would be a step back from prozinc. i'd stick with the prozinc for now but start over at about 1 unit twice a day and take up hometesting if you haven't already. numbers obtained at the vet are often inaccurate and then dosing is done based on those numbers and one ends up at outrageously high doses until kitty od's.

    fwiw though, i am going to ask an owner of what we call "high dose" kitties to pop in here to perhaps ask you some important questions just to make sure your kitty doesn't show any signs of another illness that could call for such a high dose of insulin k
     
  8. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Your vet has been treating your cat in a very dangerous manner. There are two options as to why your cat has not yet crashed...either his body is going through somogi/rebound and will crash, or there is another condition going on. Raising the dose the way your vet has makes it impossible to know what your cat's true insulin needs are.

    Second, as others have said, you are not feeding your cat a balanced diet. In the wild, cats do not eat just muscle meat from prey, they eat some or all of the entire body, gaining various nutrients from different body parts. Your cat really does require a more balanced diet to be healthy.

    I'm not sure what to tell you to do next. I think that you need to read up on feline diabetes, that you need to test blood glucose levels at home, and that you should at the very least cut that dose in half.....

    Consider letting us know where you live, in case one of us can provide local resources

    Jen
     
  9. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I can't believe how much support you all have already extended to me! I'm in tears. I've felt sooo confused about this, even though I've tried to research things as quickly as possible.

    1st...yes, I am using a glucometer. I was instructed to poke T's ear with a 20 gauge needle to get a blood sample. Believe me...the insulin injection is easier than poking his ear solo. Yet...he's a love and has been a brick about it.

    2nd...no...I am not giving him supplements to the chicken. I was instructed to deny all kibble products that had corn, etc because of the sugar content.

    3rd...U can't thank you all enough for your support! I moved from NH to a very rural community in Fl and my vet, although a wonderfully supportive man, is not an expert in fleine diabetes. Gail
     
  10. KarenRamboConan

    KarenRamboConan Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Three questions :

    1. Does your cat have ketones in his urine? (Please monitor daily)
    2. Has he been diagnosed with Cushings or acromegaly?
    3. (And this is REALLY important) Are you using U40 or U100 syringes?

    Unless the answer is "yes" to one of those, I strongly suspect he is in chronic rebound. In other words, your cat is on waaaay too much insulin too fast. Unlike other mammals (humans, dogs, etc.) insulin dosages for cats are not based on weight or by initial blood glucose levels. They have a whole different body chemistry. We start low (1 unit, twice a day), give it a couple of days to "settle" and then do a curve.

    My Rambo - a 17 pound Maine Coon with initial BGs of over 600- was started on 1u, twice a day, and that was too much. He eventually went down to 0.5u

    You need to learn about something called rebound. It sounds odd, but giving too much insulin can cause the BGs to RISE instead of fall, as a way of protecting themselves against hypoglycemic shock. Starting at 5u is scary, and raising by 2u each time is too, too much, too, too fast!

    http://www.felinediabetes.com/concurrent-somogyi.htm

    I do realize that confusion increases at first, but the more you read and understand, the less confusing it all becomes.

    Good luck, and welcome.
     
  11. KarenRamboConan

    KarenRamboConan Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Your vet is right about the kibble! But you need to feed a balanced diet, so get some good ol' Fancy Feast or Friskies (pate style) cans of food. Use Janet's charts to pick flavours low (below 10%) in carbohydrates.

    I am so sorry we are upsetting you, but this is scary to us ... and we want to help.

    So - deep breath and we can do this!
     
  12. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    How wonderful that you are hometesting. You do not need to poke his ear with a syringe; you can use the short lancets that human diabetics use. I think it will prove to be much easier for both of you.

    So what kind of numbers are you seeing when you hometest? We test before every shot to make sure it is safe to give the dose of insulin we are planning on and then in the middle of the cyle (with PZI about 4-6 hours after the shot) to see how low the insulin takes her.
     
  13. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I'm using U-40 syringes for the correct vial...I was told anyway.

    Okay...let me take a BIG breath here.

    Tig has been with me for 15 years. He gave me solace and strength though my husband's death after moving down here. So, in a way, he is one of my anchors.

    That being said...I will and would do ANYTHING to help him, especially in a health crisis. And I thought I had researched feline diabetes in a responsible way. Apparently I haven't.

    When I explored diets, I read that including mushed kidney beans, minced clams, and turine was good. However he ate around allll that and just ate the chicken. What do you suggest I add now? Please...he's a cherished member of my family. You all know.
     
  14. KarenRamboConan

    KarenRamboConan Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Make your life easy and buy good quality canned, low carb food. Here's a link to Janet's charts : http://binkyspage.tripod.com/canfood.html

    Check out both the old and the new tables and choose foods that get less than 10% of their calories from carbohydrates. They are already perfectly balanced foods. And you can still feed the cooked chicken as a supplement or snack.

    Oh- and check out Dr. Lisa Pierson's site on cat nutrition. It's the best! http://www.catinfo.org/
     
  15. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    We have bombarded you with information but one of the sites was http://www.catinfo.org. It is a site done by a vet and explains how to develop a raw diet and what kinds of manufactured foods are best and why.

    When you give us your numbers, try it like this:

    amps (means the blood glucose number in the morning before shot) ## Units of insulin given
    +6 ( would be 6 hours after the morning shot)
    pmps (evening preshot ) # units of insulin

    So it could look like this (I made up numbers)
    amps 345 2units
    +6 267
    pmps 345 2 units

    We are in all time zones, so this format is easy for everyone to understand.
     
  16. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    His GLU readings have ranged, over the past 6 days from a low of 513 to a high of 595. HIs mid-range is 540.

    And that has been with 8 units 2x/day to what is now 12 units 2x/day.

    And my personal problem is...I couldn't afford to pay for either the in-house vet bills or the inulin etc bills. But my vet agreed to let me pay for this in installments...so my boyfriend agreed to foot the bill. So I can't really afford to change vets.

    That's why I finally decided to research further...and found this website. But I also found an expert that I've asked my vet to contact. Her name is Margie Scherk. I'm hoping she can provide him with some sound advice. Gail
     
  17. judy and squamee(GA)

    judy and squamee(GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Hi Gail, and welcome! Very impressive that you are already getting his blood and testing his BG levels. Many people come here not doing that and need our help because they find it so difficult. We could help you more with dosage suggestions if you could give us the test results you are getting. If you could set up a spreadsheet, that would be most helpful. If you go to the tech forum there will be info on how to do that. If you have trouble, you can post asking help (or ask Sue and Oliver, she is a wiz)
     
  18. KarenRamboConan

    KarenRamboConan Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
  19. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I have to qualify his readings for you, okay?

    2/4 7:00am reading before eating or insulin 595
    2/5 7:00am reading before eating or insulin 513
    2/6 "" """ 519
    2/7 "" """ 579
    2/8 "" "" 585

    And I know that you've been through this...but it sure does make me feel better to understand that I'm not alone in this...and that I'm not doing my guy badly in my wont to care for him. Truly...truly, truly, truly....thank you for being there...hearing us...and trying to lead us in the right direction. :)
     
  20. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Please do not feel that you have done wrong. You have not. Not one person reading this thread wil feel that way either, I promise you that you are not being judged. (((((hugs))))) You will get the finest help from fdmb, and no matter the tone in which a hurried post appears to be written, no one will think for a second that you did anything wrong. :)
     
  21. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Those are high flat numbers which is usually suggestive of a dose that is too high. The other possibility is Acromegaly or another high dose condition. Here is some information on those high dose conditions: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=375 Do any of the symptoms sound like your kitty?

    You don't need to change vets. This is a home managed disease, just like with human diabetics. You test, you adjust insulin, you feed a lo carb diet.

    As Judy said, a spreadsheet is a valuable tool for you and for us when you are asking questions. If you are computer savvy, it isn't hard. Setting up a spreadsheet If you want help, just send me a pm and I can get it set up for you.
     
  22. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Here's the thing

    The 'optimal' way to treat FD is to start with 1 unit max of insulin twice a day. Gather data about blood glucose levels prior to shot, and at various times inbetween to see how the insulin is working. That is, how quickly it kicks in, how low blood glucose levels go and when the insulin has worn off. Based on that information, doses are typically raised by no more than 0.5 units at a time after a period of approximately 3-7 days (this really varies) because it can take time for a dose change to reach full effect.

    So. What your vet has done has started too high and raised by very large amounts.

    Your cat is on a diet that is low in carbs, so we can't blame the high numbers on dry food.

    Your cat's liver is likely protecting its body and it can only do so for so long. If you continue, you may have a dead cat.

    One very confounding potential complicating factor is that some cats have a condition called acromegaly and this is the other possible reason why this dose hasn't killed your cat. But because you didn't follow the 'optical' treatment path, its hard to know. And thus it is hard to give you advice because cutting the dose too much could be bad if your cat actually needs it due to acromegaly, but if your cat doesn't have acromegaly then the dose really needs to be cut.

    Confusing yet?
     
  23. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    PS Echoing Carolyn's comments...we in no way blame you and just want to help you to do the best for your cat :D
     
  24. judy and squamee(GA)

    judy and squamee(GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Thanks for providing the numbers. Do you only test in the morning? Ideally, we would want you to test before each shot (AMPS-am preshot, PMPS- pm pre shot) and about 4 or 6 hours after shot---that is the minimun. Even better would be to do a curve every 2 hours (this only occasionally when you can, on weekend or whatever works for you).
    If you want more info about PZI check out the PZI insulin support group forum. Very nice friendly group of people.
     
  25. jojo and bunny

    jojo and bunny Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
    are you paying lots of money for the VIN vet to consult w/ your vet? (i like a lot of what she says too karen but....) you don't need to do that since money is tight, would rather you spent the dough on some other things like canned food and ketone urine testing strips (those are only like 10-15 bucks for bottle of 50 test strips and SO VERY important!). but we can give you all you need to manage your precious boy's diabetes here, tons of collective knowledge right here on this board.

    you need a plan....
    okay think you've gotten by now that the dose and how it was so rapidly increased by such huge steps was not right. but first before suggesting anything we need to know~ how was your cat diagnosed? like was he licking water bowl dry and flooding litter box so you took to vet and h tested urine and found tons of glucose and then drew blood and got super high BG and maybe sent some blood to lab for a fructosamine test? or was your cat very sick, in DKA at diagnosis?
    need to know answers to that before going further.....
    ~jojo
    ps. don't get overwhelmed, k? we'll take this step by step, no worries! :)

    ETA: i just read post above mine~ i strongly suggest staying on health forum right now until you've gotten the basics down. can do fine tuning of dose in PZI ISG later on. right now ya need what health forum offers. thanks!
     
  26. dian and wheezer

    dian and wheezer Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    also, since $$ is tight, the cheapest food would be walmart special kitty, then friskies, nine lives fancy feast and on up from there. although SK is not the best, you have to do what fits into budget. at least it has all the nutrients you need. this would be a start and later you can figure out if a better canned is in the budget.
    I use special kitty and my guys are thriving
     
  27. janelle and Nomad

    janelle and Nomad Member

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    Jun 6, 2010
    My first reaction was YICKS,another crazy vet?When I first saw this tread I was at work and reading it on my phone.I worked at a skilled nursing facility and showed it to one of my coworkers who is a diabetic nurse.She looked totalyl dumb founded and said "we have people here who are on lower doses of insulin".

    That being said, I really hope you get some feedback and drop the dose now! You said you live in a rural part of Florida? Are you anywhere near Broward, Dade or Palm Beach counties? From my signature you can see I am in Fort Lauderdale.Maybe some of us could help you with some supplies.
     
  28. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I appreciate your kindness. I'm in the northern panhandle of the state of Florida..and as I said, my boyfriend has stepped up to the plate regarding the bill. But I thank you...very much..very much for your offer.

    I just don't know what to do now. T is on 12 units 2x/day. From the feedback, this is much too large a dose. He's only 10 lbs. I just don't know.

    It's like, if we change the insulin type...how many units will be prescribed? Too many? Not enough? And I trust my vet. His heart is in the right place.

    I have from now until 7:00 tomorrow to think about this. And I desperately need some sleep. Please...please gift me with your opinions. And I thank you.
     
  29. dian and wheezer

    dian and wheezer Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    hi gail and welcome
    please read jojo's post and answer her questions, she is a vet tech and has helped many many people here and really knows her stuff.
     
  30. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Gail,

    I think we can help you with a decision but we need more info. As JoJo asked - what were your cat's symptoms? did you have a fructosamine test done or was the diagnosis based on the blood glucose number at the vet? Did you look at the acro symptoms? viewtopic.php?f=12&t=375 Do any sound like your kitty?

    We want to be careful about giving you advice, and the more information, the better the advice.
     
  31. Patti and Merlin

    Patti and Merlin Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Hello Gail
    A heads up was given in the hi dose forum considering your kitty and your dose. I'm one of those Hi dose moms. Sounds like you've been thru sooo much. And your kitty is most important to you.

    To me it sounds like you started on way to hi a dose - usually here we all recommend starting at 1 unit 2x/day - no matter what insulin you are on - and slowly working up from there and NOT just over 2 weeks. Considering that your cat is eating no dry food - we can't blame any of those hi numbers on the dry food. But the dose you're on was increased awfully quickly as all the others have said. And also - because of that - I have a hard time thinking of the acro or cushings diseases just yet - something that I'm most familiar with.

    Have you ever been able to test Tig's urine for ketones? There are strips you can buy and you just dip them in the urine and they change colors - it would be good to know considering Tig's hi numbers and the thought to have you DROP your insulin dose.

    I will ask a few questions related to hi dose kitties just to get a baseline:

    Does Tig's snore or breathe loudly?
    Does his jaw seem large or his paws seem bigger? or any other changes you've noticed in his head or extremities?
    Have you noticed any change in how he can jump up on things? as if he's in pain in his back legs?


    And if I have it right Tig is 15 years old and weighs 10lbs - has he lost any weight - gained any weight? Sounds like he is eating good.

    I am not a vet tech but a Peds ICU RN - work with diabetes alot - and have been involved with the acro group a long time. I really think it would be best to first think about decreasing your dose and doing more spot checks AT HOME.

    I'll check back later. I hope this helps a little.
     
  32. judy and squamee(GA)

    judy and squamee(GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Gail, I hope we are not terribly overwhelming you with our questions. It's because we are so eager to help you protect your kitty. The possible problem to be concerned with in lowering the dose (even if only temporarily) is the ketone issue. Sometimes diabetics begin burning fat (when they are not getting enough insulin or are unable to utilize it to burn carbs), and ketones are a byproduct that let us know that process is occurring .It can be very damaging to internal organs, and even lead to death. That is why people keep asking you if you have strips to test the urine with. If you are testing and there are no ketones in the urine, that means you are much safer in doing a trial of lowering the dosage of insulin.

    It is very hard to be in the position you are in. You love your cat and you trust your vet, and you do not know us. Unfortunately, many well-meaning vets are simply not up to date enough on the treatment of feline diabetes. I had a vet who was very well known and respected throughout the NY metropolitan area, yet he gave me insulin and told me to come back in week for a BG test. He told me home testing was not necessary. I found this site and started testing and one night her BG was 35. If I had followed his advice I would have given insulin and it is likely she would have died. And this is not an uncommon story. So I understand your dilemma. Is there anyway we can help you make this decision? You have to follow your heart in order to protect your cat. Good luck and keep posting!
     
  33. squeem3

    squeem3 Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Have you thought about feeding raw chicken with added supplements? A homemeade raw diet is great for diabetic cats. Catinfo.org has a good recipie. You can also buy commerical raw pet food. Just make sure that it is grain-free.

    You could continue to feed the cooked chicken but you will need to add a pre-mix such as http://www.knowwhatyoufeed.com/alnutrin ... ments.html or http://www.knowbetterpetfood.com/cat_fo ... in_the_raw or http://rawmeatcatfood.com/ to make the food nutritionally complete.

    Or, as others have said, feed canned food such as Fancy Feast or Friskies or Wellness or any brand that is on the canned food chart that is low carb.
     
  34. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    I'm at the very beginning of understanding all of this. And I thank each and every one of you for your understanding, knowledge-sharing, opinions, and caring.

    Tig has always been an 'alpha' kind of male feline. But not in an overtly aggressive sense...just in a Tig-sense. He has always ruled. Whether it be dogs, cats, chickens, etc. He's ruled....with grace.

    He's basically laid-back. He used to be an inside/outside cat...but after we moved down to Florida, he became an inside guy. My decision. Guilt. !! After my husband died, I didn't want T getting-got by an owl or anything. Pfft.

    Previous...he had been an inside/outside cat. And when he roamed, it was his 'roam'. After that, he was an inside guy. For the past two or so years.

    OMG!!! I'm rambling!!! Pfft! :) I feel like a jerk, because I can't derive the formula/other for T's needs. And thar's the gist of it all. T's needs.

    He's family.

    And here I am...wah-wah-wah. For myself, kinda...while I wah-wah for T as well.

    And thank you, once again, for understanding. I'm waiting for my vet's reponse to the insulin change...and more. But I wish you a grande evening. :) xoxox
     
  35. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    We really bombarded you with information and questions. Maybe the place to start with your vet is to show him your high flat numbers and tell him you are wondering if it might be too much insulin. Here is some info you could share him and see if it makes sense:

    http://petdiabetes.wikia.com/wiki/Somogyi_rebound
     
  36. judy and squamee(GA)

    judy and squamee(GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Sending you hugs!
     
  37. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

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    Feb 5, 2011
    T's GLU this morning, pre-feed, was 550. His reads have been in the 500 range through the night. I'm a bit sleepless and he's getting tired of being poked every 4 hours.

    To answer some of the questions that I missed: yes, he snores but always has. The reason I brought him in to the vet was because of the weight loss, dull coat, incredible increase in urination and lethargy. I have 2 other cats and so had to set up another litter box and put him in solitary confinment in order to track his voiding. He also became nauseous and had diaherra (sp?) so it was an emergent trip to the vet given all the other symptoms.

    I feed him seperately in order to monitor his food intake and take up all feed after everyone else has eaten. I have 2 dogs, so I want to make sure no one is eating his food, thus the reason for feeding him seperately. And, in order to track his urine output, I've put a litter box in the master bath and try to keep the other two felines away from that box.

    I'm sorry this sounds disjointed but I'm rather sleepless right now. Again, I thank you all for your support.
     
  38. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    So what is your plan? Please consider cutting that dose in half. If his numbers stay the same or get better on half a dose then you have a good indication he was being overdosed...and you need to start testing his urine for ketones, a nasty side effect of unregulated diabetes...

    Jen
     
  39. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

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    May 26, 2010
    Hi Tig's Mom,

    Glad you found us! You are now in absolutely the best place in the world to help you help Tig. These folks are absolute Angels when it comes to helping diabetic kitties become the very they can be. I know how you feel right now, when I first got here with my first extra sweet kitty Muse, I was trembling as I made that first post. Muse had seen me through some pretty rocky times coming out of a divorce. These people held my hand every inch of the way. Except in my case, my Muse had lots of other health problems going on so she has gone ahead.

    But then there was this cat sitting in a vet clinic with 24 hrs left on this planet. His only crime was being diabetic, and having his mom fall ill and need to go to a nursing home. That was my current sugarcat Max. I adopted Max from right here, I was able to give Max a second chance at life by listening to these folks. And Max deserved that you see he had already survived Katrina. Just like my beautiful angel Muse.

    Max was in awful shape when he was saved out of the vet clinic. He had a BG of 485, he was a walking rack of bones at 10.5 lbs., and had been shaved into a lion cut to rid him of mats. That was Oct 8, 2010. Claudia (cjleo) from this board pulled him for me, she started him on 1u b.i.d. (twice a day) and also switched him to just commercial low carb/high protein canned cat food, while we lined up his transport to be in Nebraska. She had him for 1 week. On Oct 15th he arrived home with me. This first picture is of him on that very first night:

    [​IMG]

    Within 3 days of being home with me and listening to these folks. Max was OTJ (Off the Juice) or in remission. Now Max was started on Lantus, but from what I have read here and understand is that your PZI works verymuch like the one I used with Max. It is a much better insulin for Tig, than the other your vet is suggesting. Please don't go backwards, stick with the PZI, we have lots of folks here that can help you with it.

    Here is Max today...Still in remission and diet controlled, he eats Friskies pate flavors. He now weighs 15 lbs up 4.5 lbs from when he was dxed.

    [​IMG]

    And the biggest thing is, while my vet does know Max exists, he has Max's vet records he came with, he has yet to actually see him. I completely managed him care at home and with the help of this board. He is just another member of the family, no dragging him in all the time for something I can do better and easier at home. Not to mention cheaper.

    These folks have given you there best thought on how to help Tig the best. Congrats on already home testing that is usually the hardest step. The next toughie to get over, is taking advice from a bunch of strangers on the internet when they are telling you to go against your vet. But we to this 24/7 with our own furry loves.

    Sorry now I'm the one that is rambling...But I thought just maybe seeing how a diabetic cat can turn around in just a matter of months might make it easier to breathe, and relax a little. Its overwhelming, the learning curve is steep. But where there is love there is a way. And I can tell you love Tig like life itself.

    (((Hugs)

    Mel, Max & The Fur Gang
     
  40. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Thank you Mamaofmuse for your encouraging words. Ironically, I just got off the phone with my vet and he is suggesting we try Tig on Lantus. He apparently consulted with a specialist in the field and this was the recommendation.

    I'm a bit confused...again...but aside from the initial 2 hour 'pokes' to establish a curve, the number of GLU testing will eventually be less. I'm sorry...I'm soo bleary-eyed right now in both cranial and physical means that my ability to transpose info is limited.

    The thing that has had me totally stumped through this whole process is the fact that Tig has remained...consistent in his demeanor. Once we got over the nausea and 'runs'...he's continued to be Tig. He's eating well, voiding a bit more than what I would consider normal, drinking water on a consistent basis. He's Tig. And he's gained weight. But booting him with up to 12 units of insulin 2x/day...his demeanor hasn't changed...nor has his GLU level. Which is God-awful high. That's the dilema. I've been expecting him to thrust into a coma at any moment...thus my sleeplessness. But he's just being Tig.

    So maybe this new insulin, at the lower dose, over a long period of time...will do the trick.

    Thanks again to all. Because I was starting to feel like I was doing something wrong. I'm also going to get him some diabetic food. Any suggestions? I've been educated that feeding him chicken is not the way to go. Thanks again guys. Gail
     
  41. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Gail

    You are tired and so we understand.

    We've given you some suggestions on foods that are suitable...if you look at these charts http://binkyspage.tripod.com/canfood.html
    anything that has less than 10% of the calories from carbs...so friskies, whiskas, fancy feast, wellness, etc. Basically foods that don't have grains in them...

    FYI re lantus...I'm not sure what your vet was suggesting regarding less testing..my suggestion is to make sure you write everything down so you can refer to it later. Lantus is given twice a day like PZI, and you test prior to shots and also get spot checks or curves to see how its working inbetween shots.

    You will need to start at a much lower dose than what you are currently giving, and I'd strongly suggest that you get some sleep and then read up on lantus over at the lantus insulin support group.
     
  42. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    You sound like you have a plan, and that is always good - for kitty and for parent.

    Lantus is a good insulin but very different than PZI. We have a Lantus forum on this site and the stickies at the top of the page will be invaluable to you. This one tells you what to buy and how to care for it: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=151 This one explains the shed (which is one of the reasons it is so different than PZI) viewtopic.php?f=9&t=150 This one cites the protocol they use and how to determine a starting dose: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=1581

    If I were you, I would print off the stickies and look at them, share the info with your vet and just check out the forum in general to see how others are doing with Lantus: viewforum.php?f=9

    Since he is on a high dose now, I hope you will add daily ketone testing to your schedule: ketones

    Here is our food chart: Janet and Binky’s chart We pick a food that our cats will eat, between 8-10% carbs.

    Best of luck. Please check back in with us and let us know how things are going.
     
  43. dian and wheezer

    dian and wheezer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    as I stated above, if money is tight, special kitty from walmart will do for a start. I buy the large cans (130z) and I get supper supper, mixed grill and I forget, there is one more. I feed about3 oz per meal and I feed 2xa day.
    on the insulin, I am not sure of what to do here. the PZI may be working but you are so high on the dose, just may need to drop dose in order for results.. if switching to lantus. you are going to need to start at 1/2 u or 1u anyway, but I am thinking I would try with the PZI and dropping dose providing nothing else is going on with kitty.
    1)pick up a bottle of keto sticks at the pharmacy and check urine every time he goes for ketones
    2) I would add water to wet food just to keep bladder flushed and to help prevent ketones IF there is a possibility he is sensitive to them
    3) if you decide to go with lantus, the initial cost is high but over all usage makes it cheap. make sure you get the 5 pens or cartridges. you do not need the needles to use. just insert insulin syringe into bottom of pen or cartridge to withdraw. you will want to read the stickies on lantus usage and storage ect. it is different than PZI in the handling
    4) if your cat is not insulin resistant, have cushings or is acromegaly (vet does blood tests for this) {others can tell you more}, I personally would start all over with the proper diet and drop insulin down to 1u BID. this is just my opinion
    oh yea, if you need confirmation on listening to a bunch of internet people, post and ask patrick_777 and his cat sabian. believe he saved his cat by listening to the crazy cat people. he posts here on health
     
  44. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Thanks so much to you all. I did receive a post from Patrick777. As for the Lantrus info...I started to read the stickies but then glazed over. I tried to make myself stay awake until noon and am now going to crash. Tig is still being himself and staying cooler than a cucumber...but his Mom is a total basket-case! Thus the need for sleep. Pfft.

    Maybe he's staying alert and alive because the newest addition to the clan...Frank (she's a she but has a male name)...has been switching from totally caring for him (grooming, cuddling, etc) to totally trying to drive him nuts (attacking, pommeling, etc). I don't know. At this point I just need sleeeeeeep. Tig is doing wonderfully. Thank you all sooooo much for your continued support. And...give your little people a smothering cuddle and hug from Tig and me...it's well-deserved. :)
     
  45. patrick_777

    patrick_777 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Hey Gail & Tig!

    My vet did prescribe PZI at 6u since her levels were over 400 (in the office). We gave her 6u in the exam room on Thursday and then I gave her 6u on Friday morning. Then I started reading here and I was freaking out about hypo and everything else. It was really overwhelming because the one thing I didn't want to do was have my cat die due to something I did or didn't do right. You can take a look at my spreadsheet in my sigline.

    She was diagnosed on 2/3. I picked up a meter and strips on Friday afternoon and started testing 8 hours into her AM 6u dose. Thank God I did that and tested before the PM dose, or the 6u would have killed her overnight. My vet said not to bother with hometesting because it would just stress her out too much and she'd become afraid of me. This has not been the case. She now comes in and wants the attention - maybe the treats too.

    After just looking at the numbers myself it's a little hard to take in, but the gist of it is this:

    The first day was really low because of the major high dose - 6u.
    After not giving the shot that night, her numbers returned to what would seem like her "normal" level of mid 300s.

    On the second day, I gave her only 1u, and her numbers barely moved, in fact, they went higher than they ever have been. This is because her body was still trying to cope with the insulin-induced hypo from the day before by releasing its stores of sugar. It was trying to ward off another hypo by being cautious (like us stocking up on milk, bread and eggs before a snowstorm).

    The third day, even though her numbers were still high, I only gave the 1u on advice from here. Her numbers started leveling out to her "normal" and then they started dropping into the 200s after the PM. It apparently took a good 24 hours for her body to realize it wasn't going to need all that sugar.

    After that, the 1u has been moving her up and down in the 200s range. I'm still testing to see how it affects her, but overall, the 1u is pulling her down more steadily and the 6u dumped her way too fast.

    Tig's body is used to the 12u now, so it's just burning through its stores of sugar in the liver and trying to combat the insulin at such a high dose. If you drop the dose entirely, yes, his sugar will rocket up for a bit (mine was 24 hours), but he will stabilize back to his "normal" high-level. Then you can gradually add the insulin in small dose (1u) and watch how his levels react by doing a mini-curve or even a full-on 12h curve like I did yesterday. Only then can you tell if he's reactive to the insulin. Right now his body is so busy sugar-dumping from its stores, he can't get a chance to level it out without another 12u getting pushed in.

    I know this is a rambling post, and I probably presumed a lot in it, but I was right where you were a few days ago.

    Here's my freak-out thread: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=35957

    Please read through it. There's some good advice in there.
     
  46. hollyall

    hollyall Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    I'm a newbie too. I don't have anything to add to the great advice you've already received. Just wanted to say "hi" and send you and Tig hugs. So hard when our fur babies are hurting.
     
  47. Lori in Ohio

    Lori in Ohio Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    This is if you decide to stay on the prozinc.

    Did you read the sticky in the Prozinc forum with all the prozinc info?
    There is alot of info there.
    Sticky Link: viewtopic.php?f=24&t=32799
     
  48. Lisa and Witn (GA)

    Lisa and Witn (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I buy my Friskies at Walmart. I don't know if the pricing is the same at all Walmarts, but for the large can of Friskies, I pay 70 cents which is only 2 cents more than the Special Kitty.
     
  49. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Gail, are you around? please, come back and tell us what you are doing about that dose...I'm worried...
     
  50. Deb415andNikki

    Deb415andNikki Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Dearest Gail, and, of course you too, extra-sweet Tig,

    I just wanted to say hi and give you both a big hug. I know how much I needed one after Gizzie was diagnosed diabetic... And, here on this wondrous Board, I got them!




    It's a lot to take in, all this information, isn't it? Consumed my brains for weeks!

    Yet, somehow, managed to dance with Giz for four years. She was diagnosed shortly after her 14th Birthday. And, no, Gail, diabetes didn't take her; being 18+, or 90 something in human years, did...



    Tig's on a hell of a lot of juice -- our term for insulin. And, please forgive my cursing...

    It's so good you're hometesting... Please listen to the others here, okay?





    I'm just here to welcome you to the place you never wanted to be; but, will be blessed for having found.

    Much love and countless encouraging hugs for you, dearest Gail, who must be frazzled; and, for precious Tig, who could probably use just a regular smile and a headbutt from you, his mom, kind of hugs,
    Deb and Nikki -- and, Giz, forever whispering in my heart...
     
  51. Patti and Merlin

    Patti and Merlin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Just one more concerned "mom' here to check in on you. It's all so overwhelming and tiring. But you are doing so great - trying to read everything - take care of your special boy! Please hang in there -

    Like Jen said - please get some sleep - Tig needs you - and you need to take care of yourself! This truly will all get easier.

    We are all here for you - ask a million questions - a million times - in any way shape or form you want - we'll help you!
     
  52. Christie & Willie (GA)

    Christie & Willie (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Hi, Gail and Tig! I know you've got so much on your plate... I just wanted to say hello and pass along a tip I discovered this week. Do you have a Costco in your community? If so, my pharmacist there was willing to sell Lantus pens individually, which helps tremendously... $41 for a pen, instead of $205 up front for five. Should you decide to go with Lantus, I would try there, or alternatively, contact the pharmacy at your local hospital and see if they would be willing to do the same. Willie and I have been at this for 2 months now, and I know how overwhelming it is in the beginning. Hang in there!
     
  53. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    I've been focusing on Tig and so haven't been online. I was doing BG every 4 hours after he came off the PZ. HIs levels remained in the low-mid 500 range. Today we started on the Lantus and I'm doing 2 hour BG. He's on 2 units 2x/day and I plan to go very slowly with it. He continues to eat well. As soon as I can get into town I will pick up ketone strips. Unfortunately town is quite a distance away so I won't feel comfortable in traveling in there until I have a bead on how Tig is reacting. I can't thank you all enough for the information and continued support.
     
  54. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    So good to hear an update. It sounds like you have a good plan in place. I hope you see some lower numbers soon.
     
  55. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    SOOOO glad to see this update!
     
  56. judy and squamee(GA)

    judy and squamee(GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Thanks for letting us know. Paws crossed!
     
  57. Patti and Merlin

    Patti and Merlin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Oh so happy to see an update from you. Living far from a big town - I understand about having to wait to get some supplies! :):)

    Does Tig like to travel? My Merlin did and now so does my Boris - I figure - it's easier to take them with and not stress over the numbers and then test along the ways sometimes. But then I know not all kitties like to travel either! :eek:

    We'll keep checking in on you- take good care of yourself too!
    xxx
     
  58. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    So far, so good! Been doing BG every two hours. Without typing all the levels, thus far his apex is 583 at 6:30 pm and the nadir is 408 at 10:30pm. The next 4 BG will give me a baseline 24 hour curve. Then, God love him, he can take a break from the pokes.

    It appears that his hunger rears its head about every 5-6 hours, so I've given him very small amounts of kibble to tide him over between his main 12 hour meals and he's pretty satisfied with that, but will continue to monitor and adjust if necessary. I'm letting him tell me how he's feeling and doing. Frequency and amount of urine output has decreased somewhat as well as fluid intake. He's also taken to grooming himself more attentively again. I know this is just the beginning but it's really encouraging.

    My main concern is that he doesn't go too low too fast, but I have the Karo syrup on hand in case as well at the vet's number. Looking at his levels he's been up & down. The BG prior to his 10:30 of 408, was 429 at 8:30. Prior to that he was mainly in the 500's. Fingers crossed guys!! :)
     
  59. Patti and Merlin

    Patti and Merlin Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Love hearing that he's grooming and even has decreased urine output. YOU are sounding better too! :)

    And sounds like you're prepared too with having the Karo around. You've got quite a ways to go for Tig's to be "too" low but planning ahead is great!

    Hoping each day continues to bring better and better news. Keep the updates coming... :mrgreen:
     
  60. Deb415andNikki

    Deb415andNikki Member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Dearest Gail, and, of course, you too, sweet Tig,

    You both rock!

    Like Patti, I love it that he's grooming! It's such a great sign!

    Just put the Karo in the cupboard, for now...

    And, get those Ketodiastix test strips when you can, okay?

    You're both rock stars in my book!

    And, do try to get some rest, dearest Gail. You're dancing now...

    Much love and countless encouraging hugs,
    Deb and Nikki -- and, Giz, forever whispering in my heart and who sent me Nikki!
     
  61. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Well, I fell asleep sitting up and missed the 12:30 & 2:30 BG. The 4:30 was back up to 542. But I'm prepared for the roller coaster ride and am still encouraged as I know this will take a while.

    When I woke up and looked in the water bowl I was horrified to find that a tremendous amount was gone...until I quickly discovered that Frank, my 7 month old kitten, has taken to playing in the water...splashing it with her paw. The rug was soaked. Phew!!

    I'm going to do the 6:30 BG and then give Tig a break. His poor ears must be so sore.

    How do you all handle the ravenous times? I've been giving him small amounts of kibble to tide him over but I'm a bit conflicted from all the info I've read. I've been trying to let him tell me, but then I've read to allow him free feed. I'm not sure that would be wise right now. Still trying to figure this all out.
     
  62. Blue

    Blue Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  63. tigsmom

    tigsmom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Thanl you! I have been feeding him poached chicken and was giving small snacks of chicken in between, but then tried the kibbles. When you say let him free feed in a feeder, what kind of food are you giving? I'll nix the kibbles and increase the chicken. I did note that his lowest levels were after the chicken.
     
  64. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    I free feed all 11 of my cats, or at least basically do, since I put out canned food 4 times a day. They get fed at 6am, noon, 6pm and 10pm right before we go to bed at night. I add about 1/3 of a can of water to each can of food to keep it moist until it is eaten.

    The only thing kibble gets used for here is to feed the racoons and squirrels.. :D

    Mel, Max & The Fur Gang
     
  65. Blue

    Blue Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I have this auto feeder for Shadoe; Oliver just gets a 5.5oz can with shot and then another left for during the day. Then he gets his 3rd can at his pm shot.
    Petsafe 5-meal Auto Feeder

    I feed mine Friskies Pates with added water to all their meals.

    The chicken is given at all different times when I am home; I don't leave the raw or even the steamed chicken out for hours. The raw is kept in the frig and the steamed is in the frig but warmed in the microwave for snacks.

    The kibble has been said to stay in the body for days; it is useless in hypo situations and wrecks the BG numbers.
    It is not needed if you cat is eating wet foods and snacks on chicken, so just toss it.
     
  66. squeem3

    squeem3 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009

    You can put canned food into a timed feeder. The food won't go bad if left out all day but you do want to throw away any leftovers at the end of the day. Some people put frozen chunks of canned food into the feeder so it lasts longer. The food will slowly defrost until it it ready for your cat to eat. Other people use a feeder that has an ice pack.

    I have two PetSafe 5 c ompartment feeders and they work very well :thumbup There's a 2 compartment one but it's not cat-proof (cats can easily pry the flimy lids off. My previous cat was even able to flip the feeder upside down and push it around the house :eek: ) and very noisy (manual timer dial which ticks anoyingly). http://www.petsafe.net/Products/Feed-an ... matic.aspx

    Plain chicken, either cooked or raw, is fine for snacks but not as a complete meal unless you add in the essential vitamins and minerals. You can also feed freeze dried raw chicken for snacks. Most brands of freeze dried raw are nutrionally complete but some aren't (Nature's Variety being one).
     
  67. Lori in Ohio

    Lori in Ohio Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Glad to hear you are going to stop feeding the dry kibbles.
    Feeding low carb canned and chicken as snacks is a good choice.

    Fancy Feast Classic cans are all low carb and are what my cats have always liked.
     

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