Leo's been newly diagnosed and I'm completely confused!

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by Reg, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. Reg

    Reg New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2018
    Hello everyone! I'm so glad I found this forum and am very impressed by all the insightful and helpful posts. About a month ago, I noticed that my Leo (9 yo) was losing weight and looking a bit "raggedy". Took him to my vet (Dec. 29) and his glucose came back at 400+. I asked about changing diet before we went to injections, and was given Hills w/d dry & canned. When I took him back two weeks later, the glucose was 320. The tech came in with a bottle of Vetsulin & syringes, and showed me how to tent the skin above his shoulder blades, & inject the insulin.

    They instructed me to start with 2 units every 12 hours and to continue him on the w/d formula or the m/d formula. A week later he was at 260 so they told me to increase the Vetsulin to 3 units every 12 hours. The following week? 61! So back to 2 units & keep giving him Hills w/d, m/d or Purina DM. Well, this past weekend his number was back to 300 and they want me to bump him back to 3 units and add a "snack" mid-day. I realize trying to regulate his sugar is a "process" and can take a while, but I'll admit that I'm scared to go back to 3 units. He gets his shots at 7:15 am & 7:15 pm, but I leave the house as soon as I give him his morning shot and I'm nervous that if he drops low again it'll be a dangerous situation.

    So I guess my questions are: 1) Has anyone else had these up & downs with their vet regulating the dosage & blood sugar? 2) They told me not to home test but I'm thinking maybe I should, just to get a better idea of what I'm dealing with. Is it hard to do? 3) Has anyone had luck with the prescription diets? Or should I just put him on Fancy Feast (which he loves) or another regular food (Natural Balance, Wellness, etc.) and go with the 3 units? I read that the insulin + a script diet can result in the sugar going to low... is this true?

    Thanks in advance for any & all suggestions! Sorry this is so long but I'm a little confused by this whole process & I really want to do what's right for my Leo. I'm afraid all this up & down with the Vetsulin might make things worse.
     
  2. Nan & Amber

    Nan & Amber Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    OMG, I can't believe they kept him on 2U Vetsulin after that 61 (on a pet meter)! Or increased to 3U when he was 260 (at the vet, likely under stress), for that matter.

    No need for the prescription foods, they're actually mostly too high in carbs, anyway, but DON'T switch to low-carb foods without home testing! You are correct that there is a risk of going too low. Home testing is the best way to keep him safe while doing a food transition, I really wouldn't even consider changing Leo's food without doing it, especially on a relatively high dose of Vetsulin. Eventually, though, we can help you find a low-carb food that is not only better for him than the prescription foods, but also a lot more wallet-friendly (Fancy Feast pates for example). In the meantime, make sure you are leaving the (higher carb) food out for him, especially when you have to leave the house for work.

    I'm going to tag @JanetNJ and @Kris & Teasel, who know more about Vetsulin dosing than I do, to see what they think about what is going on with Leo (who is adorable, by the way!).
     
    Reg and Critter Mom like this.
  3. Veronica & Babu-chiri

    Veronica & Babu-chiri Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2016
    First of all Wellcome!! is nice to have you here and is great that your are willing to care for your kitty

    Usually getting a cat regulated takes time and many dose adjustments in the process, is quite normal especially in the beginning that his blood sugar will have ups and downs

    I think that home testing is an absolute most if you want to keep your cat safe, people that use insulin test themselves before shooting why wouldn't you do the same with your cat, insulin is not a medicine that you establish a dose and keep it forever, your cat insulin needs will change with time and the only way of knowing how he's doing is by testing.
    Is not that hard once you establish a routine with him and get a little practice we can help you with that

    A lot of people here have had very good results with Fancy Feast you just need to check that the variety you are giving him is low carb and yes if you change to a low carb diet ( not all prescription diets are ) odds are that his insulin needs will lower, which makes home testing even more important if you are going to change his diet so that you can be sure he's ok
     
    Reg likes this.
  4. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Your vet sucks at dosing. You can't base a dose one one reading. The only way to know if a dose is too much or too little is to home test. I have a video in my signature showing how I test my cat CC at home.
     
  5. Reg

    Reg New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2018
    Hi all - thanks for the quick responses and good advice! I'm going to purchase a meter & start testing Leo myself at home. Question regarding the insulin - I was given Vetsulin and UltiCare U-40 syringes. Any opinions on this brand? I read that some members use syringes that are already dosed and was curious about if that was more effective. I spoke to my vet about giving Leo 2.5 units but the issue with that is the syringes don't have 1/2 marks. Anyone else dose in half units?

    Thank you!:)
     
  6. Kris & Teasel

    Kris & Teasel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2016
    We rely heavily on syringes with half unit marks because the dose changes we recommend are often no larger than 0.25 u and that has to be eyeballed. Very hard to do without those half unit marks. Vets would be aghast at this idea and they often prescribe full unit dose changes. That means you can easily zoom past a good dose and end up giving too large a dose, potentially producing a hypo.
     
    Reg and Critter Mom like this.
  7. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Look on Adwdiabetes.com for u40 with half unit markings. These are the ones I use.

    https://www.adwdiabetes.com/product/18553/ulticare-u40-pet-29g-3-10cc-1-2in-half-unit


    Most of us dose in fractional units, yes.
     
    Reg likes this.
  8. JeffJ

    JeffJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Welcome to the forum.

    I didn't like the original U40 syringes the vet sold me. At the time, Leo was on Prozinc, requiring U40 syringes and large gauge. Anyhow I started using U100 syringes and doing the conversion. The U100's I got were very small gauge, so there was less impact going into the skin. Just food for thought. There is an online conversion chart for dosing - if you go that route. http://www.petdiabetes.com/pdorg/u40_conv.htm
     

Share This Page