I have so much to learn....

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by BoogiesMama, Dec 26, 2015.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. BoogiesMama

    BoogiesMama New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    Hello all! My name is Leslie and my baby boy Steven was diagnosed on 10/28/15. Started initial insulin therapy treatment at 1 unit of ProZinc q12. After the first BG curve from the vet, daily dose increased to 2 units q12 of ProZinc. Recently upped dosage to 2.5 units q12 for the past 3 days. After initial diagnosis, diet changed to Royal Canin GlycoBalance wet canned 3.0 oz. twice per day and grazing on the dry GlycoBalance.

    Currently spot checking BG at home with a McKesson TrueResult Nipro monitor and strips. Prior to home testing I had my vet take a blood sample with my meter and the vet meter to assess the variances. Over the course of 12 spot checks since December 10th, the average BG is 523. I have noticed a decrease in drinking and urination at night, and sometimes during the day on occasion.

    Seeking any insight or assistance with feeding options, as the current "prescribed" diet is not feasible long term.

    Thank you in advance,

    Leslie and Steven
     
  2. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    Welcome to FDMB Leslie and Steven.

    The wet food your vet has prescribed may be appropriate food (under 10% carbs) but the dry kibble definitely is not. The carb count for that dry food appears to be about 20% by my rough calculation. There are a lot of store brand foods that are far more suitable for our sugar cats as well as being far more economical. HERE is a link to food information. Unfortunately, there is a very limited selection of dry food that has less than 10% carbs. The options there are Evo Cat & Kitten and Young Again which I believe is only available online.

    I am very glad you are testing Steven at home. We consider home testing a vital part of treating our sugar cats. You mentioned you are spot checking. We recommend getting a test before each insulin shot to ensure it is safe to give insulin and doing some mid cycle tests to see just how low the BG is going on the current dose.

    If you decide to remove the dry food from Steven's diet, you are likely to see a decrease in his insulin requirements. Sometimes the change in BG readings from removing dry food can be quite striking so it is very important that you test Steven more frequently when making any diet change to canned food only.

    There is an abundance of hands on experience here and everyone loves to help, so please, if there is anything else we can help with just ask.
     
    Bobbie And Bubba likes this.
  3. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Welcome Leslie and Steve,

    I'm with Linda. The dry food carb value may be a big part of your issue. A vet has a great website discussing the value of wet low carb with a food chart here: www.catinfo.org

    The protocol we put together for ProZinc is in my signature in blue. It may be helpful.
     
  4. Georgie

    Georgie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Welcome Leslie and Steve,

    I'm with those two above me. Georgie and I are new to all this as well and I am still trying to make a regimen myself, but the best thing I have done so far is get rid of all dry food. His numbers are much more reasonable now he is on wet, low to no carb food only. He certainly acts better.
    Welcome to the boards the people here are very nice and helpful.
     
    Mogmom and Goofus likes this.
  5. Bobbie And Bubba

    Bobbie And Bubba Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2015
    Hey Leslie and Welcome.I am so glad you are home testing as that is very important and it's a big hurdle that you are all ready over. The food issue is a biggie. So I hope you'll check out the food chart that Linda linked for you. So many of us had vets who pushed RX diets that were not only very expensive ( and most cats don't like them) BUT, were way to high in carbs for our diabetic cats. So, why do the vets push them? Well, the RX pet food comes in and does " nutrition training" for the vets while they are in school and even do "lunch and learns" for new vets setting up shop. The vets buy into the "million dollar" research. What a bunch of garbage! Many of us are feeding Fancy Feast CLASSICS, 9-lives PATE, and Wellness NO GRAIN. Notice I put in bold the series within each brand because not all flavors within each brand is created equal in the carbs department.

    Please ask away any question that you might have, we are here to help
     
  6. BoogiesMama

    BoogiesMama New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    Thank you all so very much for you insight. As of tonight, we have started to feed Fancy Feast Tender Beef Feast Classic. The only issue I have regularly is that Steven is no longer a willing donor of blood for testing. I do not have someone to assist with obtaining a sample from anywhere other than a paw pad. I attempted a sample from the ear, but poked myself instead. Any suggestions for obtaining blood samples elsewhere?
     
  7. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Welcome Leslie and extra sweet Steven!! You're in the best place you never wanted to be here!

    Here's something I wrote up for others that needed help with testing...maybe it'll help you too!

    It can be really helpful to establish a routine with testing. Pick one spot that you want your "testing spot" to be (I like the kitchen counter because it's got good light and it's at a good height....it also already blocked 2 escape routes due to the wall and the backsplash) It can be anywhere though...a rug on the floor, a table, a particular spot on the couch...wherever is good for you. Take him there as many times a day as you can and just give his ears a quick rub and then he gets a yummy (low carb) treat. Most cats aren't objecting so much with the poking..it's the fooling with their ears they don't like, but once they're desensitized to it and learn to associate a certain place with the treats, they usually start to come when they're called! Or even when they hear us opening the test kit!

    You also have to remember...you're not poking him to hurt him...you're testing him to keep him safe and understand what's going on inside his body. There's just nothing better than truly understanding what's going on inside your kitty's body and with this disease, the more knowledge you have, the more power you have against it. The edges of the ears have very few pain receptors, so it really doesn't hurt them. Also, if you're nervous and tense, it's going to make your kitty nervous and tense too. As silly as it might seem, try singing! It forces you to use a different part of your brain!

    It's also important to make sure his ear is warm. A small sock filled with a little rice and microwaved or a small pill bottle filled with warm water (check temp against your wrist like you would a baby bottle) works well

    Finding the right "treat" will be a great help too! Freeze dried chicken, bonito flakes, little pieces of baked chicken...whatever low carb treat you can find that he really enjoys will help him to associate the testing with the treat! China's Achilles heel was baked chicken, so I'd bake a piece, chop it into bite sized pieces, put some in the refrigerator and freeze the rest to use as needed. It didn't take long for her to come any time I picked up the meter!
     
  8. Mogmom and Goofus

    Mogmom and Goofus Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    Welcome Leslie! Testing the paw pads is just fine, I've tested Goof this way for over a year now and have never had an issue. The hole closes so quickly that sometimes when I get a wonky number and want to retest, I have to re-poke. I just poke a different pad each time.

    Make sure when you make the switch on food from dry to wet that you do it gradually, like over the course of a week or 2, that way youre like to to have to deal with less stomach upsets and vomiting.
     
  9. Shenandoah

    Shenandoah Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2015
    Others can give you better advice on other locations, since I only use the ear. But if you want to try the ear again, I've found it helps to hold the ear with a folded piece of gauze. That way I'm poking into the gauze instead of my own skin.
     
    Bobbie And Bubba likes this.
  10. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Hi....I am new on this site as my cat Calli was diagnosed last week. My vet gave me a large bag of Purina DM dry and now from what I have read, it is to high in carbs. Because I am on a fixed income I chose to maintain good bg numbers with diet only. So far she has responded nicely. Her original reading at the vet was 441 a week ago. In 2 days it came down to 216 and then the next two days under 150. I had started to feed her boiled chicken with broth that I made as she was not eating in the first few days of diagnosis and she ate that. Now her appetite is back, as is her personality and normal routine and it's only a week since diagnosis! She is no longer "flooding" the litter box with urine and drinking much less water. I am doubting my vet's knowledge of diabetic nutrition now. I have been with this vet over 20 years! My cat loves dry food, but also loves the Fancy Feast classics, so my main concern is how much of the canned food should I feed her if I discontinue the dry stuff? Also, how many times a day should I test her BG? I have a meter and home test right now once a day before she eats. I feel there is so much I need to know. I cannot afford to keep going to the vet being on social security. Any advice you can give to get me through this early period will help. Thank you. I am Barb my cat is Calli and she is 15 years old!
     
  11. Bobbie And Bubba

    Bobbie And Bubba Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2015
    Hey Barb, glad you found us. A few questions: How much does Calli weigh? And if she lost weight due to the diabetes, is this her ideal weight?
     
  12. Shenandoah

    Shenandoah Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2015
    Hi Barb and Callie, and welcome!
    I am new here myself, but I just wanted to comment on one thing - go easy on your vet! It's tough for them to keep up on all feline and canine (and whatever other species they treat) diseases. They do the best they can, but sometimes their information is out of date. The people around here will take good care of you!
    The most important thing in your vet seems to be having one who is willing to work with you when you learn things here. So read around here, ask lots of questions on the forums, and you can help yourself and your vet become smarter in the process :)

    That's great that you are able to control Callie's diabetes with diet alone right now! As far as testing BG, I can share my personal plan. We were on insulin for 2 weeks then went into diet-controlled remission. Once we stopped insulin I tested her BG twice/day for about a week (just before am and pm feedings), and then have been doing once/day since, sometimes before am feeding sometimes pm. If all looks good after about a month I will be switching to testing once/week, the same day I weigh her, or whenever I see any potential symptoms.
    I also choose to feed FF Classics 4 times/day to spread her meals out a bit better. I let her eat as much as she wants during the meal, but as soon as she walks away I pick it up, no returning to it several times - she seems to be eating a little under 2 cans/day total at 11.5 lbs. I'll adjust as needed if I start to see problems at her weekly weighings (either limiting portion sizes or leaving the food down for longer).
    Even though you are controlling her with diet, I still recommend using the spreadsheets offered here for tracking her BG. It's a great way to keep a record of what's going on so you can look back at Callie's history. And if you do find you ever need to go on insulin, you'll have everything in place and ready to go. It also means if you have any questions about Callie's numbers, others can quickly look and see what's going on. I made a couple modifications to mine, but there is a lot of information for setting up the standard sheet in this forum.

    Don't be afraid to ask anything around here! Many of us are learning together, but there are also a lot of people here who have many years of extensive experience. It's a great community and there is a wealth of knowledge here.
     
    Critter Mom likes this.
  13. Georgie

    Georgie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Greetings Barb and Calli.
    Welcome to the board. The people here are very nice and helpful. I'm new too and I found that switching to a good wet food worked wonders on his numbers. :) Hope you two are doing well!
     
  14. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    I seem to be having some trouble navigating through this site. Someone (can't figure out who) asked how much Calli weighs and if she has lost weight. At the vet last week she weighed in at 12.2lbs. She is overweight and has been for some time. I had been trying to feed less to have her drop some lbs, but have been unsuccessful probably because of her ravenous appetite and the fact that I did not know she was diabetic until she stopped eating and was vomiting up nothing but what looked like bile. That's when I took her to the vet. She is a small cat and right now looks like a football on 4 legs if you can picture that!! :) I am so happy I found this site thanks to Google! I need all the advice and help I can get. She has responded well to the diet change. I need to switch her over to just a low carb canned and eliminate that awful Purina DM. Catinfo.org recommends canned only. What canned do you all feed your cat? I see that Fancy Feast is low carb only in the Classics. Unfortunately prior to knowing she had diabetes, I was feeding her FF with all the gravies and sauces. I feel bad because I did not know better that these were so high in carbs. I have contributed to her diabetes I believe. :(
     
  15. Bobbie And Bubba

    Bobbie And Bubba Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2015
    Hey Barb, it was me that asked about weight. You had asked how much to feed. The rule of thumb is her ideal weight, times it by 13.5 then add 70 and that is the amount of food you would shoot for each day.
    Let's say she should weigh 10 lbs as an example. So 10 lbs times 13.5 = 135 then add 70 =205. The Fancy Feast classics are somewhere around 92 calories depending on flavor. So you'd figure she would get a least 2 cans a day plus 1/4 of a can for the example we used.
     
  16. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Thanks so much for replying back to me. I sure do need all the advice and help I can get. Calli has always been a very healthy cat and only two visits to the vet because of sickness and she is 15! Because of that I want to do all I can to keep her around longer. My question is do they tend to lose weight when they are diabetic and if not, how do I get her to lose the weight being diabetic? I don't want to complicate the diabetes by doing something wrong. I cannot afford to maintain contact with my vet because each time it requires an office visit even for just questions. I cannot afford to do that. Getting her on the phone is almost impossible as she is so busy always. Hpw far apart do you spread out those 4 feedings? Calli's appetite is finally back and I do not want to over or underfeed. Thanks again for your input. It is so appreciated. If you can think of anything else I need to know I thank you for your time and please let me know anything!! Good luck with your kitty. I hope she remains strong and well.
     
  17. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Thanks Bobbie and Bubba! I can't believe how much there is to learn. I kind of figured around 2 1/2 cans of FF classics per day so I guess I was right! How much at each feeding and how many times and how far apart should feedings be? Thanks so much.
     
  18. Shenandoah

    Shenandoah Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2015
    Others can better answer your other questions (and if you don't get many responses you might also try posting in the Main forum). But to answer this part, as evenly as possible!
    My main feedings are 6:30am and 6:30 pm. She usually eats about half a can at each of those. Then I feed at noon and about 9:30pm right before bed. I'm working on a solution for an auto feeder that will open at midnight, but that's not in place yet.
     
    Bobbie And Bubba likes this.
  19. Bobbie And Bubba

    Bobbie And Bubba Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2015
    If you ask 6 different peeps here, you will probably get six different times and that being because
    Every Cat is Different (EVID) and each feeding schedule is customized to that cat. Here's mine schedule: 5:30AM and 5:30 PM Bubba gets 1 1/2 can FF ( he is a large cat at about 14.6 lb and could weigh as much as 16-18 lbs) then at about 9:30-10am I give him 1/4 can of FF then again around 2:30-3 pm another 1/4 can. In the evening I give him another 1/4 can around 9pm.
     
  20. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    I will try and evenly spread out her feedings, which I already do, but now that I am taking her off dry food I will adjust it. Thanks again.
     
  21. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    I see I am going to have to make many adjustments in feeding to fit into my wake/sleep schedule. Thanks so much for all the advice so far.
     
    Bobbie And Bubba likes this.
  22. Shenandoah

    Shenandoah Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2015
    You don't have to. Many people manage quite successfully with two meals per day, every 12 hours.
    Some just believe it's a bit easier on their systems to spread it out more, if that's feasible for you.
     
  23. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    @BoogiesMama Leslie, it appears your thread got a little hijacked....so sorry! So to get back on topic, re: testing Steven, Chris gave you some great advice for getting Steven more comfortable with the testing and h0pefully co-operate more. Shenandoah mentioned using gauze behind the ear to keep from poking your own finger. I always use either a makeup pad folded in half twice or a tissue, piece of paper towel, whatever you have handy.

    Not sure if you are using the lancing device or poking freehand. If you are using the lancing device, often the depth of the poke can be adjusted and when starting out, it often needs to be at the deepest setting. With time you can adjust if you start getting too much blood. The other thing about the lancing devices is the cap. If you take the cap off , you can see what you doing better. The cap works well with a human finger with it's fleshy consistency but it makes it really hard to get blood out of a flimsy ear.

    The lancets that come with the meters are often very tiny gauge. Using a 26-28 gauge lance (the lower the number the bigger the sharp) can result in a better bead of blood especially in the early days.

    Please let us know how it's going and if you are still having a problem, let us know so we can share some more ideas with you.
     
    Critter Mom likes this.
  24. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Okay. Thanks. I guess I'll play it by ear to see what works. One more thing tonight. She is used to getting some cat treats after I have my dinner. What is a good cat treat with low or no carbs and reasonably priced?
     
  25. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Here's a list of Low Carb Treats

    A lot of us use freeze dried chicken (or other protein) or just buy chicken at the store, bake it, cut into bite sized pieces and freeze...leaving enough out for a few days at a time
     
  26. Georgie

    Georgie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Georgie gets Vital Essentials, Vital Cat Freeze dried cat treats. It is freeze dried raw meat. Georgie likes the Chicken Giblets. Two ingredients only.. Chicken heart & Chicken Liver and he LOVES it. They have many flavors and it is a little pricier than I would like but I only give him small pieces.
    It is what is helping me to BG test him. :)
     
  27. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    When first diagnosed her BG was 441 and she would not eat. I boiled chicken breast and gave it to her in small pieces and she ate some. I never thought of using it as a treat, but it makes sense and I know she would love that. What a great idea! Would save money instead of buying pricey freeze dried treats. Is boiled okay or is baked the best? Thanks you for your great idea. I appreciate your input. :)
     
  28. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    That is what I figured as I am sure these other cat treats are all mostly carbs. I live in a very small town in the middle of nowhere with no pet stores but I order things from catalogs and have priced the freeze dried treats. A bit pricey however as you said, but I would imagine it would last longer as only a few would be given. Not sure if she would eat them though because she loves crunchy stuff, but will give it a try. Thank you. :)
     
  29. Julia Rae

    Julia Rae Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2015
    I found Magellan really liked the freeze dried shrimp as well as the liver ones..
     
    Barb and Calli likes this.
  30. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Boiled is fine too....as long as it's not fried, it's just plain protein and shouldn't effect his numbers
     
  31. Georgie

    Georgie Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Its $5 here http://hiphoundshop.com/vital-cat-chicken-giblets/
     
  32. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
  33. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    I am doing this today! Thanks! A wonderful idea! :)
     
  34. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    You have all been so helpful in this new journey with Calli. May 2016 bring all of you and all your fur babies the best of everything including above all good health, much love and happiness. I look forward to communicating with all of you in 2016. God bless.
     
  35. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Thank you Julia Rae! I need as much advice and helpful information as possible. I've only been on this journey with my cat Calli for 9 days.
     
  36. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Calli appears constipated today. Have any of you experienced that with your cats and what could I give her that won't affect her BG? Will try and get a hold of my vet today if she is available.
     
  37. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    a little bit of canned pumpkin usually helps ...just make sure it's plain pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling

    Another favorite around here is Miralax...it's a tasteless powder that can be put into their food....usual starting dose is about 1/8 teaspoon twice a day
     
  38. Mogmom and Goofus

    Mogmom and Goofus Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    I started using the Miralax with Goof, he's been on antibiotics for UTI, which always constipates him. I mix the Miralax, 1/8tsp and about a teaspoon of water into his food, it's been working great. :cat:
     
  39. Barb and Calli

    Barb and Calli Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Thanks to both of you guys for getting back to me. Can Miralax be bought in Walmart or any other store? Is it expensive? I hope it works for Calli. Thanks again. :cat:
     
  40. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Any pharmacy, including Walmart has it. Get the generic, it is 1/2 the price. It is not expensive. Less than $15 for generic that will last a year or so
     
  41. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Leslie,

    My, but that was some frankenthread! ;)

    Just checking in to see how you and Steven are getting on. It would be nice to get an update when you have a little time. :)


    Mogs
    .
     
    MrWorfMen's Mom likes this.
  42. BoogiesMama

    BoogiesMama New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    We are doing much better so far. I am currently trying different flavors of the suggested FF wet foods. So far, Steven only likes a few, but it is better than none. I spoke with my vet earlier in the week to inform that Steven is no longer eating the Royal Canin dry or wet food. She was happy to hear about this, but suggested that I continue to feed the wet RC until I can find a FF that Steven enjoys. We are currently up to 2.5 units of ProZinc every 12 hours, and I have noticed a decrease in water intake and urination since the dosage increase. I will start 3.0 units every 12 hours tomorrow, and I hope to complete a home blood glucose curve at home tomorrow.

    We seem to be making progress form all visual accounts, but I'm still having difficulty getting regular blood samples.
     
    Critter Mom likes this.
  43. BoogiesMama

    BoogiesMama New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015

    We are doing much better so far. I am currently trying different flavors of the suggested FF wet foods. So far, Steven only likes a few, but it is better than none. I spoke with my vet earlier in the week to inform that Steven is no longer eating the Royal Canin dry or wet food. She was happy to hear about this, but suggested that I continue to feed the wet RC until I can find a FF that Steven enjoys. We are currently up to 2.5 units of ProZinc every 12 hours, and I have noticed a decrease in water intake and urination since the dosage increase. I will start 3.0 units every 12 hours tomorrow, and I hope to complete a home blood glucose curve at home tomorrow.

    We seem to be making progress from all visual accounts, but I'm still having difficulty getting regular blood samples.
     
  44. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Leslie,

    Thank you for the update. You two are making great strides by the sound of it. Great to hear Steven's drinking and peeing less; most encouraging! :cat:

    On difficulty with getting a blood droplet, in the first instance I'd suggest warming the ear for longer. That really helped when Saoirse and I first started out. (I didn't think the ear would need to be warmed up so much and I was very, very nervous about it.)

    Here are some forum stickies for you with a useful diagram of the 'sweet spot' on the ear (tends to be easier to get a sample there) and lots of other home testing tips and links:

    Testing and Injecting Tips (with diagram)

    More Tips and Home Home Testing Links

    If you're still finding it tricky, I'd suggest posting a new thread on Feline Health asking for help with testing.

    Good luck with the curve. :)



    Mogs
    .
     
  45. BoogiesMama

    BoogiesMama New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    Not much luck in completing the curve this past weekend. I was in bed with a migraine the entire weekend. Although, a curve is on the schedule for this weekend! I have added a SS for Steven as well. Thank you for your support.
     
  46. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Oh, not nice. I've only ever experienced a migraine headache once: they're horrendous. I feel for you. :bighug:

    Great job getting Steven's spreadsheet up and running! :)


    Mogs
    .
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page