Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Julia R, Nov 17, 2017.

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  1. Julia R

    Julia R New Member

    Nov 14, 2017
    Just wanted to introduce Pumpkin, my cherished 12 year old cat who was diagnosed with diabetes a month ago. I have been reading the excellent information at feline diabetes and I am both confused and overwhelmed about which glucometer to buy. The number of hours I have spent reading has brought less clarity. Watching videos of people using their glucometers does not give me much comfort, as my vet tried 3 times last Saturday using one of the glucometers specifically for pets and could not get enough blood for a sample. And, he is an excellent vet, and has a gift with interacting with my 2 cats, who started out their lives outside, feral and I adopted them when they were about a year or a year and a half old.

    How do I choose the simplest and least painful method for Pumpkin? Despite increases of insulin from 1 to 3- his blood sugar has not gone down. Diet changes have been made and we have transitioned to only 2 TBSP daily of Purina dm - diabetic dry food. Pumpkin is always starving now, and I want his symptoms to lessen and for him to be more like himself.

    I apologize if I am not in the correct forum. I tried to follow the directions, but could not get on the introduction page.

    With gratitude,

    Julia R

    Ps. If there is a phone number for tech support so that I am able to ask questions so that I am better educated re: participating in these forums, I would be most appreciative.

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  2. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

    Jun 8, 2016
    Pumpkin is adorable!! Love me some big orange kitties.

    Meters. Most on here use Walmart Relion Micro or confirm meter. I use an Alphatrak pet meter. Either is fine.

    Advantage of alphatrak is is the same meter your vet probably uses. It's very accurate. Disadvantage is that it's very expensive at about a dollar per strip. So expect to spend 100-50 dollars a month in test strips per month.

    Human meters such as the Relion... The advantage is that the strips are about $36/100 so much more adorable. The numbers are lower than the pet meters, but either meter will tell you if your cat is high or low.

    I have a video in my signature showing how I test my cat CC. You want to aim for the sweet spot.

    Food: what are you feeding besides that tiny bit of dm? How many cans and what kind of food? Dm food is actually too high in carbs (14-16%) for a diabetic cat despite it being labled for diabetics. You want foods under 10 percent carb. (Even better stay under 7). Here's a great food list.

    Most of us feed fancy feast classic or Friskies pate foods. Diabetic cats need more food then normal because they have trouble utilizing the nutrients properly. They are literally starving. So feed him as much as he wants, except no food 2 hours prior to the preshot test so the number is not food influenced.
    Astra&Purrfect likes this.
  3. Tanya and Ducia

    Tanya and Ducia Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2017
    Hi Julia, welcome!
    If you are in the US the best beginner option is the Relion from Walmart - efficient and economical, human graded, of course, you 'll never really need a pet specific one... Anyway, here is what I had to get and never regreted since:
    Relion Prime (cheapest) or Relion Micro - Or Confirm human glucometer;
    A box of testing strips Prime - $18/100 or Micro/Conform $38 per 100;
    Relion Lancets - gauge 26 or 28 $1.50/100;
    Cotton balls or cosmetic cottom rounds ~$3;
    Neosporin Ointment wit Pain Relief (not cream) ~$4-5.

    If you go to Walmart to get these things do also stop at the Cat Food Aisle - and get 2-3 cans each of Fancy Feast Gravy Lover Beef Feast, Chicken Feast and Fancy Feast Grilled Tuna Feast - do not feed these- keep then in your Hypo Safety Box along with a bottle of Karo Syrup or Honey. ) not to feed these foods/ daily, again, just store and to be prepared in case the kitty goes too low w/ insulin).

    Do I read it correctly - he eats only 2 tablespoons in 24 hours?
    It is too small of a portion...

    HERE is Emmy Nominated worth tutorial by our very own Janet - the best video info as to how easy it it on your cat AND on you to home test! The most painless way to keep your baby safe!

    Hmmm.. might have been raised too much.. Let's see you spreadsheet! HERE is the Instruction Post for the SS (really easy) or ask us to do it for you (we have IT wizards here!).

    :bighug: You are doing so very well! At 1st I barged into people's private conversations screaming 'bloody murder- my cat is dying -I speak no English" - because I knew nothing about how to use Forums/ Post Boards - and they 've forgiven me, they actually helped to understand how it works. Don't apologize - we are here to help your kitty, not to judge or anything like that!
  4. Astra&Purrfect

    Astra&Purrfect Member

    Dec 16, 2016
    Welcome, Julia and Pumpkin!
    You've definitely come to a fantastic place for advice. I'm still at a stage where I myself am asking the wonderful people on this forum for advice to get my cat's stubborn numbers to go down. However, I have already got through some of the initial hurdles associated with a diabetes diagnosis. You might choose a pet-specific meter like the Alphatrak but they are pretty expensive what with the strip price. I borrowed my vet's Wellion Glucocalea for a while before deciding to buy my own one. I don't know where you are in the world. Due to cost considerations, I went for a human meter over here in France: the Freestyle Papillon Vision which is made by Abbot, an American company. It only needs a 0.3µl blood sample to work which is much smaller than the 0.5µl required by the Wellion. Although be aware that human meters read around 30 to 40% lower than pet meters.

    The ear pricking with a 28 gauge lancet can be difficult, especially at first, but it will get much easier for you with time. Janet's already put in a pic of the place to aim for on the ear. Don't forget to give a low-carb treat afterwards! I'm surprised the vet couldn't get enough blood out -- perhaps he doesn't do ear pricking very often.

    Are you giving two tablespoons of dry food in combination with other food? If you go to that address Janet recommended, you'll read that cats are obligate carnivores. They don't naturally eat wheat, rice, oats, potatoes, etc. Carbos convert to sugar in the blood. I would drop the kibble (cat biscuits) entirely and like I did with Purrfect convert your cat to a 100% wet food meat diet. Also, make sure those tins don't have "cereals" or "sugar" listed as ingredients. However, when the cat is already on insulin, you need to keep a close eye on numbers when you remove all kibble to make sure it doesn't have a big effect on lowering numbers, so would recommend this link to read, also on I read it when Purffect was first diagnosed.

    What type of insulin are you using for Pumpkin, Julia?

    P.S. I should add that at the beginning, Julia, there’s quite a lot to read up and lots of tips and tricks to learn about Feline Diabetes but please don’t feel overwhelmed. Just take your time and it’ll all start to fit into place and become second nature.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2017
    Reason for edit: Add a P.S.!
    Tanya and Ducia likes this.
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