hi! i'm new and this succkkks :(

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by mirnta, Jan 12, 2015.

  1. mirnta

    mirnta Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    Well my cat is 10 and was just diagnosed with diabetes. I travel all the time and this has pretty much changed my life, I know very little about the subject but am researching daily. Hopefully i can change his diet and not have to give him shots, since we both hate it very much...any tips or advice mucho appreciated!! Thanks!
     
  2. It sucks today, but it won't suck as much tomorrow. And every day, a little less.

    Depending on what his diet was prior to diagnosis, a switch to canned low carb food can do a lot towards turning things around.

    Is that the immediate plan your vet is advising?
     
  3. mirnta

    mirnta Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    No, I'm supposed to do 2units 2x a day of vetsulin...I'm trying to figure out the diet side of things cuz they aren't super helpful, might have to switch vets..i know you're not supposed to feed dry but for someone in my situation it almost HAS to be sometimes...what is the best low carb dry? I've heard evo and wellness are best? I know about the too much insulin risk with changing diets and giving shots at the same time..
     
  4. The need to feed dry, is that due to needing to travel a lot or your work schedule? If so there are some creative solutions some folks use.
    Do you have other vet choices close by? I ask because of their insulin choice as well. Vetsulin isn't the greatest option for cats (I think it works better with dogs).
    Does your vet have an opinion on home testing blood glucose, or did they even mention it?
     
  5. mirnta

    mirnta Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    I asked about home testing and they said dont bother??! Yes there are other vet options but I am new to this town..i commute regularly to my old town and it is impossible to always bring him with me, or have someone feed him while I'm away..its just a crap situation I'm in!! He is used to grazing on dry food..and barely touches the wet. Ok so vetsulin may not be the best option..also is the back of the neck the best place for shots ? I am super overwhelmed!
     
  6. mirnta

    mirnta Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    Also I have another kitty, hoping i can do same diet for both, he luckily loves wet food..also I have very low income so hoping to save as much money as possible anyway I can...sigh...
     
  7. The scruff is the usual place they tell you to give the shots, but there are other locations that work as well. Basically you want a place where you can grab enough loose skin to make a "tent" and get the insulin under the skin without hitting muscle.
    Some of your questions I can't answer based on firsthand experience, like alternate shot locations, or the best dry food. There are a couple that have lower carb content than most, but somebody else would best be able to tell you which ones.
    He might need convincing that wet food is good stuff over the long haul. Then you might be able to use a timed feeder to dispense meals if you aren't home at feeding time.

    Feeling overwhelmed is completely normal. A lot to absorb and it does sort of turn the world upside down. Did for me too. But there are tons of people here who can help make it less overwhelming. Most are probably sleeping at the moment but we do have members all over the world, and some probably in your area. You've found a great place for help in dealing with all of this!

    By the way, what's your little guy's name? My sugarkitty's name was Bob.
     
  8. mirnta

    mirnta Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    Thanks so much! I feel like I can finally breathe a sigh of relief, this has been so difficult to absorb. I'm just so used to low maintenance kitties, charts and numbers and curves just sound awful to me....and i feel bad that this is so hard for me to transition into. His name is Miel, and i love him with all my heart. I just want him to be happy and healthy. Funny miel means honey...
     
  9. Sighs of relief are good ;)
    Think "baby steps" with this. Miel didn't become diabetic overnight, and this is just the start of your journey. And it is a managable condition. Some cats go into remission, like Bob did, others live long healthy lives even with insulin twice a day, just like people can.

    Home testing is probably what you might want to consider "first". We believe it's the safest way to deal with this. And in the long run, it is cheaper than having " curves" run at the vet periodically. The best thing about it is that it allows you to know how he is reacting to a given dose at any time you want to know.
     
  10. Robert and Echo

    Robert and Echo Administrator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2008
    Welcome to our group. Carl has pretty much expertly taken care of you tonight, so I'll just say again, "Welcome!" (And that you can do this!)

    As you read, feel free to post any and all questions in the "Health" topic forum.
     
  11. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Welcome to you and Miel!

    It is really tough in the early days but, as Carl said above, it does get better the more you learn and also as you find things that help you to manage better. On that note, if you haven't already been there, I suggest checking out Dr Lisa Pierson's site, http://catinfo.org. You'll find great tips there to help Miel to transition to wet food (e.g. sprinkling parmesan or Fortiflora onto the wet food). To help you with feeding while you're at work, a timed feeder is great. A popular model with the members here (and one that's very robust/burgle-proof) is the Petsafe 5. What dry food is Miel eating at the moment? If push comes to shove, there is a dry food called Young Again Zero Carb that might be another interim solution. It does contain a small amount of carbs, but nothing as much as the regular / prescription dry diets. As you're no doubt aware, any food transition should be done very gradually to avoid both hypos and digestive upsets. If you look on the Feline Health Links board here you'll find a thread that explains how to calculate the carb content of foods. With regard to wet foods, many members here feed their cats from the Friskies Paté and Fancy Feast ranges (some of them are higher in carbs, so you need to check individual flavours for suitability). I believe that they are relatively inexpensive foods.

    With Vetsulin, the blood glucose can drop quite hard and fast in the early part of the cycle so it's important that Miel has enough food at the start of the cycle for the insulin to work on, otherwise there's a risk of hypos. As you learn to home test and gather data, you'll be able to learn Miel's pattern of response to the Vetsulin. If you are shopping around for vets, as Carl suggests above it is well worth asking whether they use more cat-friendly insulins (e.g. Lantus, Levemir, Prozinc), and there is scientific evidence that they may increase the possibility of remission in newly diagnosed cats compared to the likes of Vetsulin (although remission is also possible on Vetsulin). WRT things you're not sure about that the vet has suggested, the members here have a wealth of experience of living with feline diabetes 24-7 so post your questions on the main Feline Health board to get help and suggestions about your options.

    Hang in there. You're not alone with this, and you've found a good place to get help with managing Miel's diabetes. :)
     
  12. mirnta

    mirnta Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Thanks everyone!! Great info! Where can I get the cheapest meter? And if its for humans how does that work, are the numbers different? I'm not even sure what I'd be looking for on a meter, I guess I have lot of work to do...
     
  13. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Numbers on human glucometer's register lower readings than pet-calibrated ones. As long as the reference ranges you use for monitoring are matched to the human meter values they work fine, and they're a lot cheaper to feed in terms of test strips. With kitties, using a meter that only needs a tiny blood sample is a boon. Assuming that you're in the States, Relion meters are popular with many FDMB US members and both the meter and test strips are reasonably priced (both and strips available from Walmart) . I think that the most popular ones are the Prime and Micro, but hopefully someone in the US can confirm that.

    Keep asking questions and also check out the health links section. It'll help shorten the learning process for you. :)
     
  14. mirnta

    mirnta Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2015
    I'm not sure how to tell my vet I need a better insulin! Shouldn't they know this?! Ugh...the stress...
     
  15. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Hi and Welcome to you and extra sweet Miel!

    Meter - Walmart's 'ReliOn' brand, either the 'Confirm' or 'Micro' - takes the same strips. Those take the smallest blood sample, this is important when starting. The Prime has cheaper strips but takes larger sample....some move to that meter later.

    Vet likely has never had training concerning the human insulins for cats. After 3 years, my vet is FINALLY suggesting either Lantus or Levemir insulins....yep, took FOREVER to convince them!

    Everyone has you already headed in the right direction but I give good BIG HUGS! This IS doable!
     
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  16. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    See my signature link Glucometer Notes for cat-specific reference numbers using a human glucometer.
     
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  17. mirnta

    mirnta Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Ok thanks! Hes getting into wet food yay!!! Is evo innova also good or just plain evo? (dry) in case I have to do dry..anyone?
     
  18. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    There is a terrific food list at Cat Info to download here.
    Evo Cat and Kitten dry may be OK in modest amounts. It is around 8% calories from carbohydrates.
     
  19. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2014
    @Squeaky and KT - Thanks for posting the correct names for the better ReliOn meters. :)
     
  20. Deb & Wink

    Deb & Wink Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2013
    Welcome to Miel and your caregiver. I see you are already posting questions in the Feline Health forum, so we'll answer any questions you may have over there.
     
  21. mirnta

    mirnta Member

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    Jan 12, 2015
    Thanks!
     

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