My Kitty has diabetes :( scared, worried, stressed.

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by NitroViper, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    First off I love this cat! He has been my buddy for almost 13 years. I took him to the vet because I noticed his rear legs getting weak. They did a test and told me he has diabetes, they also took blood for testing but I wont get those results until Monday.

    The insulin is VETSULIN, is this good stuff?

    Sooo, they gave me syringes and insulin. Im very nervous about stabbing my cat every day :( He loves me and I don't want him to start to hate me. He is a very relaxed cat tho and hopefully he will adapt well.

    They told me to start with 2 units twice a day for 2 weeks and then bring him in for a glucose check. Always during/after he eats, if he doesn't eat then don't give it to him.

    They also said food twice a day for a total of 2/3 a cup a day. This seems very little to me but I will do what they say.

    My main question, they told me about a food called EVO, but there is many different versions. Does anyone know which I should buy?

    Im very concerned about how much it costs to keep him healthy every month. Does anyone have any tips on saving money?

    Thanks you!

    This is what I wake up to every day!
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Arienna

    Arienna Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Hey NitroViper! Welcome to you and your new sugar dude. You are completely, 100% in the right place and the most important thing to do right now is to take a deeeeep breath and relax. It seemed like the end of the world when Theo was struck down with diabetes but it really wasn't. It's completely treatable and you're now surrounded by people who are all managing happy, healthy kitties on a daily basis. :)

    Theo hasn't started to hate me for injecting him yet! I use Lantus which doesn't require any fancy feeding habits (other insulins may vary and everyone's gonna wanna know what kind you're using and whether you're going to home test, so get ready for the questions :D) so I just load up his needle then I put down his food and when he hops over to eat, I pinch up some fur and give him a poke. All I get is an annoyed mew when I pinch up his fur - insulted, not injured. :)
     
  3. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    OH OH OH!!! NUISANCE'S BRUDDER!!! Oh I just love that face...

    NOW, first....BREATHE! ...and BREATHE again! Diabetes is VERY manageable! No your kitty isn't going to hate you, he'll quickly learn the 'sugar dance' right along with you...you'll dance together well! KT was our first diabetic - we've been shooting him for nearly 3 years, he's right here beside he hollerin' for loving and foods. We adopted Dakota knowing he was diabetic, I started poking him with tests and needles the day he arrived, he slept between us last night. Sound like they hate me? Nope! In fact, they come get me if I'm late!

    Few questions/comments:

    What kind of insulin did they give you? It could be Humulin/Novalin N, ProZinc, PZI, Lantus, Levimer or Cannisulin. When we arrived, I didn't even KNOW there were different kinds!

    Sounds like you're not home testing yet - there's no sense in paying the vet to do tests! You wouldn't give a human child insulin without first checking to be sure it's safe would you? Shouldn't be any different just because our 'kids' have 4 legs. We use human meters - no they're not calibrated for animals but it's fine. Your vet may insist that you need to use an AlphaTrakII pet meter...it's very costly, the strips are EXPENSIVE and only available when your vet has them in stock AND they're open! With human meters, we can run to the store and get more... :D

    We all live feline diabetes 24 hours a day - you'll find a HUGE amount of experience and knowledge here.

    BIG HUGS! WELCOME AGAIN!
     
  4. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Thanks for the reply, I added VETSULIN to my original post. I couldn't even fathom thinking about putting him down, he is just to happy and purrs and looks at me with those eyes lol.

    He still goes up and down the stairs pretty good and jumps on my bed to sleep with me at night. His rear legs are deff wobbly tho. Are they going to get better/stronger? Is he going to get better? Is there like a percentage somewhere how well cats do on insulin?

    I don't plan on doing testing at home since the vet said its not necessary? He said for the first few months he will check him periodically and adjust the dose accordingly.

    Id like to know what this EVO cat food is tho so I can go buy him some today.

    I cant believe I gotta stab my kitty with a needle tonight :'(

    What do people do with old needles? Disposal I mean.

    Can I use a needle twice a day then throw it away? I need to save as much money as possible since I am on disability.

    Thanks!
     
  5. Dusty Bones

    Dusty Bones Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2013
    Welcome! The EVO they're talking about is EVO Cat and Kitten dry food which has about 8% carbs. It's very expensive so unless your kitty is really hooked on dry food the best thing to do is get him on wet food like Fancy Feast, Friskies or others that are low carb. Make sure it's the pate style, not the gravy. Dry food is unnatural for cats and is usually high in carbs, some as high as 40%, very bad for diabetic cats! A good number of cats go into remission with the right low carb wet food, good insulin, home testing, exercise, and weight control. That's what happened to my Dusty so you can easily achieve good glucose regulation for you kitty too!
     
  6. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Thanks for adding that!

    This is diabetic neuropathy and can clear with good insulin support. You can also add 'Zobaline' to help support that too.


    PLEASE PLEASE don't give insulin without knowing if it's safe to give it. If I wasn't hometesting, I would have killed KT LONG LONG AGO. It's better to be too high for many hours than HYPO for a minute - hypo kills...hypo causes blindness..hypo causes brain damage...PLEASE reconsider this. Your vet is treating your baby like a 'sub human'...MY cats are 4-legged fur persons and deserve the same consideration as any other insulin user. If your cat responds to insulin like KT, all your vet will say if something bad happens is "sorry....". It's not hard, it's not expensive - saves a LOT of VET DOLLARS too! We can teach you to test, it's really no big deal, just different. There's a good chance your vet only knows how to test by drawing veinous blood and doesn't KNOW about ear testing!

    EVO is mostly sold online altho' there are stores in larger metro areas that carry it. www.evopet.com

    It's according to your state laws - Oklahoma laws say just put them in a COLORED plastic container with screw-on lid and throw away with regular garbage. I have a needle cutter that snips off the needle end making them no longer "sharps". Texas law says 'Sharps Containers' and bio-hazard disposal. I know there's a website that tells all the laws but I can't remember it right now... :roll:

    There's lots of other ways to cut costs rather than reusing needles. Each time a needle is used, it's edges get ragged - that second shot will have a much duller end. It can also contaminate your second dose of insulin because of the lubricant in the syringe barrel. Saving dollars testing will more than pay for more needles!

    Welcome again! Please tell us your name and your sweet baby's name!
     
  7. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I really appreciate the replies!

    My name is Jason and my cats name is Wease, short because when he was small he was weaseling into everything lol.

    I been reading the forums and it seems so stressful and so much work testing every few hours and cats doing this cats doing that it's very discouraging, almost overwhelming that I wont be able to do it.

    If the cat was high, or low I adjust the insulin shot? That part scares me because he said 2 units twice a day right when he eats.

    I plan on doing the feeding and injection at 10am and 10pm, what if I am not around during that hour once in a while? Say I have to leave at 9am, or I wont be home till 12am? How do I go about that issue?

    Im about to go buy the EVO cat/kitten because they have it in the store. I want to get him use to that and then maybe switch to wet. Is the wet cheaper? EVO is $21 for 6.6 lbs.

    Im afraid I am going to mess up and he will suffer :'(

    I feel like a wuss for being a guy! but he is like a part of me. Is there any other guys on here?
     
  8. Arienna

    Arienna Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2014
    Testing at home is a learning process and can be pretty intimidating... Theo was diagnosed very recently and while I had initially planned on testing him at home, my vet discouraged me. She said Theo would go distrustful of people and wouldn't let anyone touch him. Since my few attempts had been so graceless and irritating to both of us, I gave up and stopped testing at home, determined to let the vet check him every week or two.

    Yesterday I woke up with a weird feeling that I should test Theo. He wasn't due in at the vet for another week, he wasn't behaving oddly at all, I just had this impulse to do it. I tested him at a 74 which, on human meters, is right square in the middle of the happy zone. Knowing that he was so low without a shot, I did not administer his insulin. If I HAD... it's possible I would have gone to school, done my classes, gone to work, and come home hours later to find a deceased Theo. That evening when I tested him before his second shot, he was at 34. On our meters below 40 indicates you need to start watching for an hypoglycemic incident. Had I not tested, I would have injected him and gone to bed. In the best case scenario, I would have woken up to find a cat in crisis. Instead I knew to give him small amounts of gravy and watch his results. By 1 am he had climbed back up to 40 and I was able to go to sleep.

    I think if I hadn't been home testing last night, the best case scenario would have been $1000 in emergency vet bills. Instead it cost me... a few cents worth of strips and a 50 cent can of a grilled cat food. Theo is healthy and happy right now and while he doesn't want me messing with his ears, he's full of love. Whether you test at home is obviously your own decision, but I am so grateful I decided to start checking last night.
     
  9. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    The best thing to feed your diabetic cat Wease would be Friskies or Fancy Feast wet cat food. The pate styles are best as they are low carb which is best for the diabetic kitty.
    Go to Walmart, I am assuming you are in the US and buy a really cheap glucometer such as the Relion Micro or Confirm, the test strips are very cheap.
    Never reuse needles.
    Also Vetsulin is not an not a good insulin for the cat. Most people here use Prozinc, Lantus or Levermir. I would not give him 2 unit twice a day to start with that may be to much,maybe start with 1 unit , you did not say what his numbers were at the vet. You must be able to test him when you give him that insulin as I do think that is a very short acting insulin but I am not sure about that.
    I would feed him more than twice a day that is simply not enough. I will try to get you some more help as I am not familiar with Vetsulin, not many people use it any more
    Welcome to the board, your kitty is very, very handsome. I pulled up a user guide for this insulin for you to read. Just click on the topic below.

    viewtopic.php?f=19&t=302


    Terri
     
  10. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I don't know if I can do this.... seems like way to much info all at once. Everyone has a diff way of doing things and if I kill my kitty ill die!

    I just got him some EVO food to start with and to get into a routine. Ill learn as I go but I am very afraid to give him 2 units like the vet said. He didn't tell me his readings.

    My cat seems perfectly normal except for his legs are weak. If I start giving him insulin and he suddenly gets worse its going to be a nightmare...

    Should I watch him very closely after I give it to him tonight?
     
  11. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    Where are you located? Its okay to go ahead and give him the Evo, that's fine. We don`t want you to get overwhelmed. Are you in the US?
    I would not however give him 2 units to start. I am trying to get you some help, unless someone else pops in that knows that insulin. I would however if you are here in the US go to Walmart and get a cheap glucometer like I said, such as Relion Micro or Confirm.
    You and kitty will be fine, there are many people here to help.

    Terri
     
  12. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Sorry, we don't mean to overwhelm you. We are trying to help. We're concerned that you are going to give a larger than suggested dose of an insulin that is not popular here. Would you consider starting with one unit until you get acclimated? Our thinking is it is better to start at a low dose and raise it slowly rather than start at a higher dose and run the risk of it being too much insulin. We have a saying "better too high for a day than too low for a minute". Once you give the insulin, you can't get it out of the cat! :D

    How about getting the shot down. (it's best with Vetsulin to feed him some first, make sure he is eating and keeping it down and then give the shot.). Then, give him another snack and shoot him while he is eating that. Most cats don't even notice while their heads are deep into their dinners.

    We want to help you keep your boy safe, so we will continue to urge you to test him at home. Especially with Vetsulin, which can cause a fast, sharp drop and not last as long as other insulins, it is important to know what his numbers are.
     
  13. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I live in the US and Walmart is close. I will need to use this meter every time while he eats?

    What if it reads real high? Give him extra insulin? and low don't give him any?

    After reading that article you sent it says a cat's normal blood sugar ranges from 60-120. How high does a diabetic cats get?

    Insulin lowers glucose correct? Id rather not give him any than get hypoglycemia. Is this why you recommend 1 unit?

    Should I get a test kit in the morning and not give him insulin until then? Id rather not start it tonight before bed anyways.

    Sorry for all the questions.
     
  14. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    Please ask questions, that's why we are here. I would not give him the insulin until you get the meter. You have no idea what his blood glucose levels are. So even 1 unit could be to much insulin.
    Lets get the meter first and we can teach you how to test and see where he is at, how does that sound?
    Yes insulin lowers the blood glucose levels. Did the vet show how to give the shots to Wease?

    Terri
     
  15. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Hi Jason! Sorry...sure didn't mean to overwhelm you!

    Yep, Wallyworld trip first - lots of people recommend the ReliOn brand 'Confirm' or 'Micro' meters. I iz one of those... :D The strips are $20/50. They also have the ReliOn Prime, strips are cheaper...fairly new meter. Some have had issues with them, others don't. I think Sue has a handy dandy shopping list she'll post for you...

    BREATHE! It's very doable!
     
  16. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    The only question we don't like is the one you don't ask. Everyone who replies to you is paying it forward for help they received when they were new and scared.
     
  17. Dusty Bones

    Dusty Bones Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2013
    Jason,
    I'm Rick and I also felt pretty overwhelmed at first but it's really not bad at all. You will basically set a dosage, say 1 unit, then you test once in the morning and once at night before you give the injection. If his glucose isn't too low you inject and feed him. You can feed him several small meals a day, you're not restricted to just twice a day or anything like that. You can post your readings here if you think they're too low and someone will chime in to help you. After a few days if his glucose numbers stay high you can ask for advise here and someone will tell you to raise the dosage a little bit. Eventually his numbers will stabilize and you'll notice them dropping, as they do you will also drop the dosage. Really simple... Test in the morning, inject, and feed. Feed several times a day. Test in the evening, inject and feed.

    You can feed Evo for now, it's one of the better dry cat foods with low carbs but eventually you want to get him on wet food.
     
  18. Jason, although we are grossly outnumbered probably 100-1, there are some guys that post on the board. :D
    Also, it seems for the most part that there are a lot of "guys" in the background that help out with the treatment routine at home. The ladies seem to be the ones that do the majority of the posting.

    One step at a time. Don't let it all overwhelm you.
    And nobody here thinks you're a wuss. :lol:
    I understand completely how you feel that Wease is a part of you. Bob was the same for me. And as you move forward with this, the bond between you and Wease is only going to grow stronger.

    You found a great place full of incredible people. Welcome to the family.

    Carl
     
  19. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    As Bob said there are only a couple of us guys here. Just stay calm and relaxed and do not rush things.
     
  20. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I think im getting overwhelmed because I also ask people in person what I should do, listen to the vet, listen to the forum. I should call around and get other vet opinions and tell them what I've learned from the forums and other people.

    I feel its a very generic telling an owner to feed twice a day, 2 units of insulin twice a day, bring him back in 2 weeks for a test and that's that...

    The vets assistant told me he had a diabetic cat and once they got the dose right he fed it twice a day and same does twice a day. No in home testing and the cat lived 6 more years. I also met a lady buying the cat food today, she said her sister has a diabetic cat and she just gives him a dose twice a day and he had it for years. She doesn't even regulate the food.

    It's so confusing that Im not sure what to do. You guys seem very smart and have a lot of experience, that's why I decided to post.

    I really feel like my head is going to explode as Wease lays on my lap looking as happy as ever.

    Is it ok to wait till tomorrow or tomorrow night to give the first dose of insulin? He should be fine 1 more day I would think. I just want to learn as much as possible before I go gun ho.

    Im afraid im over complicating things, the cost of all this might be to much for me tho, the test meter is cheap but those test trips are pricey, 35 for 100. almost enough for 3 months.

    Insulin
    $80 10ml doc says it will last 2 months.
    $40 for syringes 100 count, enough for 3 months
    $50 for 15lbs of cat food, dunno how long that will last and 3/4 a cup a day.
    $35 for 100 test strips again 3 month supply.

    That's $205

    syringes
    test strips
    =$25 a month


    Cat food probably = $50 a month

    Insulin = $40 a month

    So we got

    Pay $115 /for 1 month
    then pay
    $90 /for 2 months


    I know I cant afford that... omg im gunna be sick!
     
  21. Yes, you can wait one more day before starting the insulin, Jason.

    I agree, very generic. However, I have talked to a few local vets since Bob was diagnosed to try to understand why they advise "generically" if they do. What I have found is that a lot of vets don't feel like the caregivers will go to the lengths that "we" do here. They think that if someone is told up front that they will need to home test, and change the diet and try to manage things at home, that they might instead just choose to have their kitties put to sleep because they will be overwhelmed by it all. All I remember thinking when my vet said "Bob has diabetes" was "WHAT? I didn't know cats could even be diabetic!"
    I had a good deal of experience with wildlife rehab, so giving shots or using a glucose meter didn't freak me out. And changing to canned food didn't present a problem because all I had to do was convince two dry-food only cats to switch. Both thought they'd died and gone to heaven when I plopped down the bowls of canned food, so that was easy.

    The 2u dose sort of confuses me though. I like to point people towards the AAHA guidelines for feline diabetes that seem to call for a starting dose of 1u twice a day for most cats. I think the dose guidelines are on the fourth page down:
    http://www.aahanet.org/PublicDocuments/AAHADiabetesGuidelines.pdf
    It can be a "weight-based" calculation, and it can be altered if the vet sees something else strange in the bloodwork, but most cats would seem to fit the "1u" or even less, twice a day mold.

    Can you ask your vet how he determined that 2u twice a day was the "right dose"? Ask him if he uses the AAHA guidelines?

    I believe that Vetsulin is a "U40" insulin. So that 10ml vial has 400 units of insulin in it. Even if you gave Wease 2u twice a day, that's 100 days' worth, so a vial should last a little more than 3 months. I'm also thinking that the dose will probably be lower than that, so as long as the expiration date is beyond 2 months away, the vial could last at least 3 or 4 months. That will lower your expected costs.
     
  22. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Thanks for the reply Carl, Tomorrow is a Saturday so I am not sure if they are even open. I feel comfortable using the weekend to do a lot of research and waiting for Monday to start him on insulin. He seems healthy and happy, I doubt he will get worse in 2 full days.

    If I wait till Monday I will also get the blood tests back to see if anything else is going on. On the paperwork it says "He appears to have diabetes and possibly some other organ diseases." Ummm other organ diseases? Im not sure why he even put that there...

    The paper says glucometer shows blood glucose is Hi. He didn't even put a reading to show how high.
     
  23. Lisa and Witn (GA)

    Lisa and Witn (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Don't worry, we can help you save money. I had two diabetic cats at one time and spent less than $100 per month.

    Insulin - a vial of insulin will last a lot longer than 2 months. The biggest issue with the vial is because cats use such a small dose, the insulin will become ineffective long before you use all of it. However, if your vet prescribes either Lantus or Levimer, as for a prescription for the pens instead of a vial. The initial cost is more than a vial, however, since you have 5 pens and they are packaged in smaller amounts than a vial, you are able to use almost every drop. One pack of 5 pens will give you enough insulin to last almost a year.

    Since you live near a Walmart, you can buy the Relion brand of meter/test strips, syringes and lancets. I have used all of these and highly recommend them. A box of 100 syringes will cost less than $15.

    I feed my cats canned Friskies. They eat a about 1 1/2 cans a day. Even at $.50 per can, my food costs are about $23 per month. Usually I can find it on sale so it really costs less.

    So your costs come out to:

    Insulin (Lantus pkg of pens) $225 / 9 = $25 per month This is a conservative estimate, a box will probably last longer. Also on the Lantus' website, there is a coupon for $25 per pen so a package will be $125.

    Syringes $15 / 3 = $5 per month
    Test strips (Relion meter) $39 pkg 100 / 3 = $13 per month
    Food (Canned Friskies) $23 month
    Lancets (Relion brand box of 100) $5 / 3 = $1.70 month

    Total monthly costs = approx. $68 per month.

    Hometesting will also save you money be eliminating the unneeded trips to the vet just to have your cat's glucose levels read.
     
  24. See if you can get a copy of the lab results. There are some folks here that are pretty good at explaining what all the numbers mean. Certain values might reveal if there is something going on beyond just diabetes.
    You might have mentioned it earlier and I might have missed it, but how old is Wease and what's his current weight?
     
  25. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I really appreciate the help on prices I will look into all that. That makes me feel better a lot!

    Wease is almost 13 years old and 12.5 lbs. He did weight much more. I will ask for a print out of the lab test for sure! I paid for the full blood test that shows everything.

    Is it ok to wait till Monday night to start insulin? I just read this thread http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=94948#p1017295 and since he only did a test inhouse while my cat was stressed shouldn't I wait for the test results incase its not a thyroid or something else first? Then I can ask him about the pens.
     
  26. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    If the paperwork says his glucose was "HI", that usually means it's over 600...which is high, but if there's a possibility that there are other things going on, it's important for you to know exactly what you're dealing with.

    Wease didn't become diabetic overnight, so waiting a few days isn't going to make any difference, and you'll be better prepared if you slow down, get your wits about you and learn everything you can.

    The question of "who do you listen to"? is a big one here...All we can say is that the people here live and breathe feline diabetes 24 hours/day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Your vet MIGHT have 2 cats in his practice that are diabetic, and there's just no way a vet can keep up with the latest treatments for every disease, for every type of animal they see. Most vets see more dogs with diabetes than cats, and just assume they can be treated the same. They can't.

    The costs..yes..start up costs are high, but manageable. I use Lantus insulin (a vial is about $200 but will last for 6 months if handled correctly) or you can ask for a prescription for the Solostar pen. The pens come in boxes of 5, and if your vet will write you a prescription for the Solostar, have him write it for ONE pen...You may or may not find a pharmacy willing to split open a box, but it's worth the effort to call around. Target stores, Costco, Sams and hospital pharmacies seem to be the places I hear of that are most likely to sell one pen at a time.

    You can get the Lantus Savings Card but you must fill out the info and be over 18 or the caretaker of a child. They don't cover cats. Not all pharmacies will take it, but it's free and it sure can't hurt to try! That could bring your cost down to $25 per pen for a total of 6 refills.

    Here's the Getting Started List
    1. Meter ie Walmart Relion Confirm or Micro.(about $15)
    2. Matching strips (about $36 for 100 for the Confirm/Micro...but once you get good at testing, you can switch to the Prime and those strips are only $9 for 50)
    3. Lancets - little sticks to poke the ear to get blood . new members usually start with a larger gauge lancet such as 28g or 29g until the ear learns to bleed. Optional - lancing tool.
    4. Cotton balls to stem the blood
    5. Neosporin or Polysporin ointment with pain relief to heal the wound
    6. Mini flashlight (optional) - useful to help see the ear veins in dark cats, and to press against
    7. Ketone urine test strips ie ketodiastix - Important to check ketones when blood is high
    8. Sharps container - to dispose of waste syringes and lancets.
    9. Treats for the cat - like freeze dried chicken
    10. Karo syrup/corn syrup or honey if you dont have it at home - for hypo emergencies to bring blood sugar up fast
    11. A couple of cans of fancy feast gravy lovers or other high carb gravy food- for hypo emergencies to bring blood sugar up fast

    Walmart Relion syringes are about $13 for 100...you want the 3/10cc 31 gauge, 8mm syringes with half unit markings. Not all syringes have half unit markings, so be sure to ask..and some Walmarts have been saying they don't have them...make them check because they do.

    This REALLY is manageable! I'm on SSI as my only income, and I fed Friskies pate's and Fancy Feast Classics which are both affordable and available. They're also under 10% carbs and that's important.

    Keep asking questions!! We've all been where you are at some point, and are just paying it forward for the help we got when we were scared, worried and stressed
     
  27. KPassa

    KPassa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    I'm a little late on joining in on the conversation, but I wanted to point you to this document I wrote up regarding the cost of managing feline diabetes. In fact, I was talking with my brother last week about what it really worked out to and it's only costing about $30 extra a month now to treat Mikey's diabetes (a year and a half in) accounting for the syringes, insulin, and test strips (excluding species-appropriate food). This is about $1-2 a day, depending on how much I test (you do need to test much more in the beginning, so it will be slightly higher when first starting out and closer to around $3 a day). Mikey only has to go to the vet's about once a year for an annual check-up, which is more for my own piece of mind than for him actually needing to go. :lol:

    As others have pointed out above, the best chance for Wease is a good insulin and a low carb, wet food diet. Once you have those two thing down, along with home-testing (which we can help with), everything becomes much more manageable. Wease might even be one of the numerous cats here that achieves remission (not needing insulin), which will also make things that much less expensive for you. ;-)

    Keep asking questions, keep asking us to repeat ourselves or clarify what we're saying if necessary. "This is a marathon, not a sprit" and we've all started where you're at so we know how overwhelming it can be at first. :YMHUG:
     
  28. krazyfourkats

    krazyfourkats Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2014
    Hi Jason,

    Glad to see another guy posting on here. Dont worry about feeling like a wuss around us, I cant speak for evryone here but I have absolutely no shame admitting that I am a super wuss when it comes to my kitties. Come to think of it, I'm a wuss when it comes to any kitties. I cant even read the posts about the GA kitties, I bawl my eyes out every time I try.

    Oh ya....almost forgot to mention....you are pretty lucky to be waking up to that sweet face everyday.
     
  29. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Well sign me up for the super wuss when it comes to my kitties club :) lol

    I really appreciate all the support, It's the only thing keeping me going. Reading and reading all these threads about people reading their cats levels multiple times a day and not knowing what to do, It's kind of making me feel worse. Making me feel my chances are very low. Waiting till Monday to start insulin is bugging me tho, knowing my kitty is sick and weak. He acts like there is nothing wrong tho. He still jumps up on the bed and chair, its just watching him so weak compared to before.

    He isn't liking the new cat food tho, I fed him once last night and once this morning, he eats less than a hand full. I mix it with the old stuff not trying to do it so fast. I know if I buy wet food tho he will think its heaven lol.

    Im still confused about dosing levels.

    I wish there was a thread that says what to do in certain situations, Like a basic What if thread, or basic care thread.

    Say my cats level was 600, im still not sure what the danger areas are yet. Does that mean I give him more insulin than normal?
    If it was 300 do I give him 1 unit, 2 units so it doesn't drop below danger level?
    What if say 450, do I give him so many units and a half?
    If its 120 do I give him none even tho he hasn't had a shot in 12 hours?

    Is there a general number 1 unit will bring it down? Say if it was 600, and 1 unit brings levels down 200 and 2 units bring it down 400 and so on?

    Sorry if it seems like I am learning slow, my mind is in some sort of day dream mode lately.
     
  30. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    We do have protocols with the commonly used insulins that will give you some general guidelines. Unfortunately not for Vetsulin. You will need to get some levels and then let that data guide you.

    We consider a car regulated if the are in the mid 200s at preshot and in double digits at their lowest point in the cycle, but not below 50, which is approaching hypo territory. We suggest a new diabetic not shoot a preshot under 200.

    So, interpreting the data, for instance if he has a preshot of 400 and you give him one unit and he stays in the 300+ range all cycle, then you know one unit is too little and you raise the dose by .25 units. If he is at 250 at preshot and you give one unit and he drops below 50, then you know to reduce the next time. It does seem confusing at first, but we promise we will help.

    All the people asking dose advice on this forum are new, like you. Once they get the hang of it, they post in the insulin forums and they have a good handle on how the insulin works in their cat and which dose to give. This forum is for new people and those with other Health questions. That's why you see so many people asking for dose advice.

    People using Vetsulin and Humulin stay here as there are no active forums with people using those insulins.

    Breathe. Enjoy your kitty. You are working very hard to help him, and we will help you. He didn't become diabetic in a day; it will take awhile for you to feel confident. The first step to feeling confident is home testing. Once you know where his levels are, you will be amazed how much more in control uou feel. You'll know that the dose you are giving is safe. And you'll know how the insulin is working.
     
  31. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Should I tell the vet I want a different insulin? Lisa and Witn was talking about Lantus pens. Wouldn't that be better and cheaper than Vetsulin, since it really has no data here. Should I change before I start?

    My cats ears seem delicate, isn't he going to hate getting them poked twice a day? Seems like it would get very sore and painful after a while.

    Im just hoping the blood tests come back normal Monday. What am I going to do if there is other problems included :'(

    I made him a really fluffy bed with a heating pad under it on low, he seems happy :)
     
  32. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Lantus, Levemir or ProZinc would all be better than Vetsulin. They are more expensive - generally in the $100 range for a six months supply. But they work better and give you a better shot at getting him regulated or even in remission. There is also a compounded insulin called BCP PZI that is very similar to ProZinc. It is about $50 for a 6 month supply. Your vet has to write a prescription for it and call the compounding pharmacy.

    Most cats don't seem to mind the ear poke. Especially when you give a treat each time you do it. There are few nerve endings in their ears; they seem to be more annoyed that you are doing something they didn't ask you to do (as opposed to petting or feeding etc. :mrgreen: ). It does take awhile to figure out how the process of warming the ear, poking and which treats are your cat's favorite, but thousands of people here have learned how. We can teach you. I'd suggest you get him ready by picking a place where you are going to test - on the counter, on a blanket or towel, maybe your fluffy pad etc. Take him there first, play with his ears, praise and give him a treat. The next time, warm his ears (a rice sack is a lightweight sock filled with raw rice and heated in the microwave until very warm or use a pill bottle filled with very warm water), give him a treat and let him go with praise. By the time you poke him, he should be used to the process and be waiting for the treat.

    Let us know how we can help.
     
  33. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Are these pate foods ok?
    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Friskies-...Canned-Cat-Food-5.5-oz-12-count-Cats/10535016

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Friskies-...Pleasers-Cat-Food-13-oz-12-Pack-Cats/22234387

    Should I get the 5.5oz or 13oz? How much should I feed him a day. Twice a day and give him his shot right after or during?

    When I choose to home test him do I test his ear, let him eat then give insulin?

    Or do I let him eat, wait a bit test his ear then insulin?

    I don't know how long it takes for these levels to go up and down.

    What if he doesn't each very much at the time of insulin?
     
  34. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    The Friskies pates are generally fine. You can check the food nutrition list at Cat Info for most US foods.

    Roughly 0.5 to 1.0 oz food per pound of cat, divided into 2 or more feedings seems to work.

    I'm feeding 15 cats, so I get the 13 oz cans and put down 4 am and pm.
     
  35. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Either one of those Friskies is fine...that's what I feed my civvies so if China gets into their food, it's still low carb.

    As for which size, it's totally up to you. Wease will eat more than "normal" until he's better regulated because without insulin, their body can't use the nutrients so they eat lots more to try to compensate. They're actually starving although they're eating lots of food.

    What is Wease's perfect weight? The formula for "how much to feed" is [13.6 X optimal lean body weight in pounds] + 70. You can look on the Food Chart to see how many calories are in each type of food.

    Sue is a little off on her prices. I just bought a vial of Lantus not long ago and it was $180, but that will last 6 months if it's cared for properly. Levemir is about the same price. I'm not sure about ProZinc but the only place you can get it is from a vet. The others are available at any pharmacy. Go back to my prior reply and there's information about the Lantus Solostar Pen too, including the link to a Savings Card you may be able to use.

    We test, feed and shoot all together, so you test (to make sure they're high enough to safely give insulin), feed (to make sure they're going to eat normally) and shoot, all within about 5-10 minutes.
     
  36. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Reading this page http://diabeticcatcare.com/protocol it says "Protamine zinc insulin (PZI) is, by far, the most effective form of insulin available for use in the diabetic cat today" is this true?

    Sue and Oliver, you said PZI is $50 for a 6 month supply? is that the same stuff? That would be great for me but the vet has a hard time getting it?
     
  37. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I cant even express how much I appreciate all these suggestions. I promise you all I am reading them and trying to take the best info from them to suit my budget and plans to treat Wease.

    Does anyone every talk on the phone about these issues? That may seem a little weird? lol

    This confused me a little. I would guess his idea weight would be around 14 lbs. He is 12.5 right now and seems skinnier than he has ever been.
     
  38. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    I know money is an issue for you. You might want to try contacting Diabetic Cats in Need to see if they might be able to help you.

    Here is their information on How do I get Lantus less expensively?

    Personally, if there was any way to do it, I'd not start giving insulin until I had one that was recommended here. Why spend the money on Vetsulin if you're going to switch? BUT, it's also important to try to get Wease's diabetes under better control. The worry at those high numbers is DKA, which is very expensive to treat and not always successful. (Which makes testing for ketones very important right now)

    Where are you located? It might be possible that another member is close enough that could help you with the pens. Just thinking out loud here.

    Edited to Add...if 14lb is his ideal weight, then it's 13.6 x 14 (190.4) + 70...so a total of 260 calories per day. He may need more though because of the diabetes not being under control right now. You can feed multiple times per day as well, not just with shots. Small meals is actually better for the pancreas to heal.

    Once you're actually giving insulin, you want to take food up 2 hours before shot times though, so the tests aren't influenced by food
     
  39. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    If you click on the pic, it will be larger
     

    Attached Files:

  40. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    So I estimate 8oz a day. That's around 280 calories. Don't them carbs seem high? 6 to 10 on that list.

    Walmart only has the poultry pleasers and variety pack.

    I don't see poultry pleasers on the food nutrition list but it cant be that far off.

    Do I really need to be this particular as long as I am close? I mean anything has to be better than the shape he is in correct?
     
  41. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    I think you mean Poultry Platter and it's on the list at 9% carbs, 187 calories per 5.5oz can (I buy a lot of Friskies and haven't seen any called Poultry Pleasers)

    Anything under 10% is fine. What you feed does make a difference since higher carbs means having to give more insulin. It's the same as a human with diabetes. The first thing they tell you is to get on a low carb diet. Some cats are very carb-sensitive, others not so much, but until you're testing and feeding, there's no way to know how sensitive Wease is. Some cats actually do better at higher carbs...but some see a big difference going from 2% to 4% ...it's a matter of ECID (Every Cat Is Different)

    ProZinc is a good insulin for cats, as is Lantus or Levemir. There's no way to know if your cat will do better on one versus another. All I can say is that Lantus is the only insulin that has a proven protocol that's been published in veterinary journals as effective on getting as many as 84% of cats off the insulin within 6 months.
     
  42. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Poultry Pleasers is what the website says. Im actually going to look at walmart in a few minutes and get him some since he doesn't want this EVO food. I kinda mix it together slow at first. He has always got sick with wet food because he eats it to fast.

    I will try to feed him 4oz in the am and 4oz in the pm for now and see how that goes till Monday.
     
  43. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    The case marked Poultry Pleasers is a combo pack of 2 varieties of Friskies poultry pates - Turkey and Giblets, and Mixed Grill.

     
  44. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Oh..yeah I see what you mean. That's the name of the 12 pack since the flavors inside are all "poultry" flavors, like chicken and turkey. The individual cans are Mixed Grill or Classic Pate Turkey & Giblets

    The Mixed Grill is 11% carbs, 171 calories per 5.5 oz can, and the Turkey & Giblets is 8% carbs and 187 calories per 5.5 oz can
     
  45. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I have asked someone to respond re the cost and exact pharmacy for the BCP PZI. We have several people on the PZI forum using it.

    As far as insulin, as someone wise once said, the best insulin is the one that works for your cat. And unfortunately, there is no way to tell that before giving it. But Lantus, Levemir and ProZinc are all milder (no big drops) and last longer than Vetsulin (12 hour cycles instead of the average 8 with Vetsulin and people have success using them here.

    You can certainly pick someone and send them a private message (it's the little PM button on the left hand bottom of everyone's post). And they can give you general info like diet or home testing tips. No dosing info is allowed by private message. As we are not vets, and our posts are peer reviewed (thanks, Chris, didn't realize I was low on the cost for Lantus), it is necessary for dose advice to be given only on the forum. And truefully, although it is overwhelming to get lots of replies, something someone says may be easier to understand than the way another person says it. In the beginning, hearing things more than once, in a little bit different way, can be very helpful.
     
  46. I bought BCP PZI in November for Bob. The 10ml vial cost $50 and that included overnight UPS delivery. Your vet would need to call them and give them the prescription info, then they'll speak to you to get your CC info and shipping address.
    If your vet gave you U40 syringes, you can use them. Have him specify that he wants the U40 PZI when he calls in the 'scrip.

    Here is the contact info -
    http://www.bcpvetpharm.com/contact.htm

    Carl
     
  47. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    My vet gave me monoject u-40 1/2ml

    29g x 1/2" syringes.

    I just got wease the wet food and he ate it like no tomorrow lol. Only gave him 1/4 a can of the 5.5oz and some of the evo food mixed in. I don't want to waste that food since I just bought it yesterday.
     
  48. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I'm not positive about EVO but most companies will accept food if you return it. Just say he won't eat it.

    Glad he is entusiastic about the wet low carb!
     
  49. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    So I have to make a decision before I talk to my vet Monday, Lantus or BCP PZI. Lantus has pens but BCP PZI doesn't? Im mostly worried about shelf life now and don't want to waste any.

    Im going to call every vet in town Monday and tell them my concerns and maybe atleast 1 will listen to me. The one that listens is the one ill stick with :)
     
  50. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    BCP PZI comes in a vial so you use needles with it, just like other insulins. It usually lasts 6 months if you keep it in the frig.
     
  51. Deb & Wink

    Deb & Wink Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2013
    The diabeticcatcare site you mentioned is another diabetic cat forum. The one vet there, does believe that PZI is the best insulin for cats but that is based on her own opinions, not any research that I'm aware of. There are many cats on that forum that use other insulins too.

    They have some very strict rules, like no grains at all in any food so the Friskies foods are forbidden.

    We'd love to see a picture of your Wease on every post. Here are directions on how to shrink a picture and get one in your user control profile as an Avatar. Look at the 3rd response down for step by step instructions of one way to get your Avatar up and running. You could take that first picture you showed us and make that your avatar. Wease looks really cute and loving in that photo! ;-)
     
  52. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I talked to a pharmacist I know and he said Lantus is good for a year in the fridge? He said it says 28 days because that's as long as the pharmacy can keep it in their stock. I guess I should ask him more about it.

    It seems like the pens would be the least waste?

    Is PZI is really $50-60 for a 6 month supply tho? I may be confused.
     

    Attached Files:

  53. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    The price for the BCP PZI vial is correct. How long any insulin lasts varies with each cat, but generally it is about 6 months per vial.
     
  54. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    It seems like PZI is much better for my budget. Everyone thinks its good insulin to use?

    Here is more pics of wease, I almost start getting really sad when I see pics of him tho!
     

    Attached Files:

  55. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Oh Wease - you're so absolutely stinkin' cute!
     
  56. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    anyone know anything about Glipizide Tablets?
    http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=10701

    Who is it for?
    Glipizide is for cats.

    What are the benefits?


    * Prescription diabetes medication for cats in convenient tablet form
    * Manages diabetes mellitus by lowering blood sugar levels
    * Use Glipizide oral hypoglycemic tablets for long-term diabetes management

    Glipizide is a prescription diabetes medication used to manage diabetes mellitus in some cats by lowering the blood sugar level. Glipizide does not cure diabetes and will usually need to be given for the rest of the cat's life.
    How does Glipizide work?
    The exact way Glipizide works in the body is unknown. It is thought to work in the pancreas by helping it to produce more insulin. It may also work in the body to make the cells more sensitive to insulin.
     
  57. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    We don't think glipizide is any kind of a substitute for insulin. It taxes the pancreas rather than letting it rest and recover. No one here has used it with success. With insulin, there is a chance for the pancreas to recover, for the cat to be regulated or in some cases, go into remission.
     
  58. Sandy&Tommy

    Sandy&Tommy Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2013
    I too want to welcome you to the forum. My Tommy was DXed in Oct. like you I was scared and stressed about all of this. My vet sent me home with insulin, a 10 pack of syringes and a bag of dry "diabetic" food. I'm not new to diabetes though feline diabetes was new to me. Luckily I had a morning appointment with the vet so I had plenty of time to research. I truly thank God that I found this place!! I know that it saved Tommy's life. Cost is a factor that most of us share. My husband wanted to just put Tommy down as he thought it would be too expensive. Tommy is still with us and so much healthier. When I had a question for the vet she shook her head when I said I'd switched to low carb Friskies. I think she thought I was poisoning him.
    These angels here will get you through all your "firsts". They will stay with you and help you, even cry with you. Think of this as a great adventure. If you love Wease as much as I do Tommy, all of this we do here is more than worth it. We all love our sugar dudes and each other's sugar dudes. Ask all the questions you have and we will guide you to helping Wease to a better health. I read the posts when I can and still learn from them. My prayers go to you and Wease. :razz:
     
  59. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Im still so scared reading everyone else posts about constant testing and nothing going right. Constant testing 4-8 times a day, choosing whether to give insulin or not, to give more or less. If I kill my cat ill never get over it.

    What I am afraid of is if I start this regiment that he will all of the sudden get worse quickly and if I didn't start it he would survive along time with a better diet. Like he is fine now, he doesn't act strange, he seems very happy and alert. Just his legs are getting weak. Im afraid if I start giving him insulin and testing he will turn into a different cat, and health problems will start showing up quickly.
     
  60. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    i am sorry you are getting worried reading the newbie threads. It's true people here are brand new to diabetes and like you, they have lots of questions and worries. If you could read their threads a few weeks from now, it would be completely different. Maybe you should go over to the PZI forum and read some of the threads there. Their cats are doing well on small doses of insulin. Most decide on doses themselves. When they need help, they ask.

    http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewforum.php?f=24


    If I were you, I would start with the hometesting first, see what his numbers are, see how the wet low carb diet is working. Then it should be an easy decision about the insulin. Either his numbers are high enough to need it or not.

    Nearly every bean here reports that having diabetes, doing the testing and insulin, brings them and their cat closer together, creating a special new bond. It's as though the cat understands that the bean is making them feel better.
     
  61. KPassa

    KPassa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    The Main Health Forum is for new members who are just getting started in this Sugar Dance, much like you. There is a huge learning curve, as you've seen, but we help you cross that hurdle and hold your hand all the way through it. Once you've gotten better at testing and have set up a spreadsheet, we will usually re-direct you to one of the ISG sub-forums for more specific daily assistance. If you check out those sub-forums, there's a lot less of "nothing going right" and many cats achieve remission within the first 6 months of diagnosis as people settle into the day-to-day management vs. the initial crisis of diagnosis.

    As to testing, there are at minimum of 4 tests a day that help guide us on when to increase/decrease the dose:
    • Before every shot (the pre-shot (PS) test)
    • Mid-cycle test when possible (depending on the insulin, this is usually around 4-8 hour after the shot is given)
    • Before-bed test
    All other tests provide us with additional data on how the cycle works specifically for your cat because ECID (Every Cat/Caretaker Is Different).

    Home-testing is the safest way to manage this disease and significantly reduces the chance of you "killing your cat." Michelangelo was diagnosed diabetic around a year and a half ago and has never had a hypo or DKA because I test. Whenever he's gotten low numbers, with the help of the people here, I know what to do to keep his numbers up. When he seems to be running higher numbers and/or has a lack of appetite, I know what steps to take to stave off a potential DKA. All of the tools and information provided on this site help prevent the chances of something bad happening and that is what is most important here: the safety and well-being of the cat and caretaker.
     
  62. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Jason,
    Not starting insulin if it's needed isn't going to make this go away....it's doing things inside you can't see right now. Changing to a good low carb diet may be the key, testing will tell you that.

    KT and Dakota come to me when they hear their meter beeps, sometimes to the sound of the zipper. Dakota sometimes tries to put HIS head under my hands while I'm trying to test KT! "HEY Mama! I iz first!"

    When KT was diagnosed, I was TERRIFIED of needles - literally fainted at the sight. KT taught ME quickly it was no big deal. Within a couple of weeks, we'd learned the steps - he spent over 2 years doing well. He does now have other issues but they're not associated with nor caused by diabetes. Last May, we adopted Dakota - our second diabetic, knowing he was extra sweet. He didn't know me from Eve ;-) when I started poking him less than 4 hours after I got him. He's happy, healthy and rarely hands me anything surprising.

    I'll echo above - you're reading a lot of our newer people trying to learn the dance too. Some cats like nice slow waltz's, others like things like Tangos and FoxTrots....others can't yet figure out their favorites.

    Wease, u iz adorable...dis is why I think so, u look like my baby I lost a year ago:

    [​IMG]
     
  63. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    ^^^Wease brother :)

    Ill ask the vet tomorrow what his level was when he tested him. Im going to ask about a strict diet with me testing him to see if he can live that way. I mean if his levels aren't that bad. Or am I just being not willing to accept it yet?

    I still haven't decided on Lantus or PZI, I can tell you this tho. I have been reading for 2 days straight from wake up till bed and I still feel like I haven't learned any thing!

    Now I am messing up this post with doubt. Sigh
     
  64. Jen&Eddie

    Jen&Eddie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2013
    Hi Jason and Wease! LOVE his pictures! He is so darn cute! My sugar dude Eddie was diagnosed just before Christmas. He wasn't feeling well at all. :cry: I can tell you that we went through the same fear and anxiety that you're experiencing. Like, how on earth are we going to be able to make this shot thing work with our schedule? Hypo - OMG I could kill my cat accidentally?! His numbers aren't going down!? WHY?! I think every newly diagnosed kitty caretaker goes through this.

    The shots themselves are definitely not a big deal. It really doesn't hurt them. The needles used for insulin injections are really fine gauge and they barely feel it, if they feel it at all. If anything, it annoys them that they have to hold still for 5 seconds while you give the shot. My DH does most of the shooting now, but when I first was giving shots, I know Eddie could sense that I was nervous. Now, I take a few deep breaths before getting Eddie ready for his shot, which we give right after eating, so he's all full and happy, and make sure I'm in a positive, calm state of mind. I give him pets and love and praise after each shot.

    The ear testing definitely gets easier. It took three days of trying before we got blood. DH wanted me to quit because I was so frustrated, I was in tears! Wouldn't you know it, within about two weeks, we were testing pros. Now, we usually get more than enough blood for each poke, and it takes about one minute. There's tons of tips on this board for the ear testing, and lots of people are happy to chime in to help you be successful with testing. Eddie, and I think most other cats, really don't mind the ear tests at all. The better you get at it, and the more their ears "learn to bleed (which sounds weird, but is true)" the simpler and quicker it is. It takes me way longer to set up the testing supplies now than it does to actually test. Eddie actually likes testing, since it means he's going to get a special, exclusive treat. He sits patiently on my lap and purrs while I do it. I'm convinced that Eddie thinks the ear testing is making him feel better, so he associates me doing it with feeling better. This process has definitely given Eddie and I a closer more loving relationship.

    A lot of folks here test very frequently. And that's who you're going to see posting more frequently to the board as well. There's no requirement as to how many times a day you have to test, other than before each shot (for safety), and if possible, some mid-cycle tests so you have more information about how well his dose is working. Any other testing is really just to get more information. With Eddie for example, I test all the time because I really like to know the data about how a given dose is working for Eddie. It's really not necessary for me to test as frequently as I do -- I just like to have the info. :smile:

    While you may be able to lower Wease's overall BG with a diet change, that's probably going to be just part of the picture. You don't want him to just "survive" if he feels miserable with high blood glucose all the time. Unregulated diabetes means that the cat cannot process it's food, and it's pretty much a slow starvation. :sad: DKA, which is a complication of unregulated diabetes can be deadly, and extremely expensive to treat. You are here because you love Wease and want to do what you need to do to get him healthy, and that is likely going to include insulin. Many, many cats are able to go into remission with the use of insulin and a diet change, meaning that your cat would no longer need insulin injections. Misty and Rumpelteazer are an example of a PZI (ProZinc) cat and caretaker that very recently went into remission, meaning kitty no longer needs shots! :mrgreen:

    There's several different choices of insulin, and it sounds like you're considering a compounded PZI. That works similar to the ProZinc that we use for Eddie. It's really a flexible insulin, and you can adjust his dose as needed, and you don't have to be quite as consistent with the timing of the shots. You may be reading the threads for cats that are on one of the depot insulins which are a bit more complicated to understand. PZI is "in and out" which means that once it wears off, it's done, and you don't need to worry about a carry over into the next dose.

    As for worrying about changing dose, there's different "protocols" for different types of insulin. What you might be reading again is questions from folks about whether to adjust based on the protocol for their particular insulin. The dosing advice you will get on this board will always be aimed first and foremost, for Wease's safety, and secondarily, to improving his blood glucose numbers. Assuming you go with the PZI, you'll likely want to start posting on the PZI sub-forum for dosing advise. Sue and others will chime in to give you advice on dosing, and the information you get will also come with an explanation as to why a particular recommendation is given. With Eddie, for example, we followed a conservative "sliding scale" with very gradual increases at first. We then had some discussions and some input on going with a more aggressive dose, and I made the decision to do that, since I felt comfortable with monitoring Eddie's levels. Other people feel more comfortable with a more conservative approach.

    When I very first started posting, I asked for dosing advice about three times a day! :D And there's nothing wrong with that at all! You can ask for dosing advise for each and every shot. :smile: You can see that I post in Eddie's daily "condo" what's going on with his numbers. This is not required, but it's nice to have some folks look over Eddie's numbers and give input and support. Sometimes people simply post encouraging words on your kitty's condo, and if you're having a rough day, that can mean all the difference in the world. :smile: If I have a question, like I did just this afternoon, I ask, and I get an answer. :smile:

    There's a LOT of information to absorb, but you will get it! My suggestion would be to focus on one thing at a time, like Sue suggested. Start trying the ear testing, and start working on the diet change. You can always start the insulin at a low dose, and then once the testing and diet are under control, focus on tweaking Wease's insulin dose. Hang in there! It gets easier! Before you know it, you'll be posting on the threads of "newbies" telling them how nervous you were when you very first started, too. :D

    Jen and Eddie
     
  65. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Well that post makes me feel a lot better. I appreciate that. He is just so important to me!

    Your post makes me lean more towards PZI. Its hard to get tho I read? I like that its cheaper fore sure. I don't mind filling a syringe.

    I just would hate to waste insulin so being cheaper makes it feel better.

    So you guys think I should try the ear testing for a few days before I start insulin? Especially since I might have a hard time at first. I been babying the heck out of Wease I think it actually makes me feel he is worse off than he is!!

    So far I been feeding him twice a day, all the regular junk cat food is taken away. I been giving him about 8oz of food a day 4oz at 10am and 4oz 10pm a mix of wet and the evo cat food. I do not accurately measure the food but it should be close to 280 calories which was mentioned earlier in this thread.

    I just want to make sure this is right

    10am check BG from ear
    10:05 give food
    10:06 give shot according to BG reading

    Check level again within a couple hours to see what it is?

    Then repeat at 10pm?


    After doing this a while his mid day check should be close to an average every day? Like I wont have to do that mid day check anymore? That's if I feed him the same thing the same time every day? Wease does not like eating twice a day that's for sure :) He dives right into wet cat food tho, his tail gets all puffy!
     
  66. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    No...the nadir (which is the lowest point during each cycle) is USUALLY around +5 to +7 but can change with every cat and every cycle, so it's not something that will "average" out. It's important to know how far down a dose is taking Wease so mid-cycle tests are really important.

    This will also be a little different depending on which insulin you end up using, but will still need to be done.

    Yes, this part is fine, and getting a +2 or +3 is a good test to get because it can give you an idea of where Wease's blood glucose is going later in the cycle, but if at all possible, you'll still need to get a test later in the cycle

    You really can do this! We all arrived here scared, worried and stressed, and then were confused and overloaded with information. It will get better, we promise!
     
  67. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Just a note: if the glucose drops fast or drops to an unfamiliar number, compensatory hormones release a form of stored sugar (glycogen) which acts to bring the glucose back up. This is a protective/safety mechanism to help the cat. It can lead to somewhat higher numbers for the next 3 days or so, which is why we wait it out a bit before making any dosing decisions.
     
  68. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    +2 +3 +5 +7 is hours past the shot? not sure exactly what that means. 5 to 7 hours is the mid point? When is the lowest point? right before the pm shot?

    So I should start with the 1 unit dose and not change it for 3 days?
     
  69. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Yes...the + means how many hours after the shot, so you have 2 cycles each day, an AM and a PM cycle. You test/feed/shoot and the clock starts and runs for 12 hours. If you get a test 3 hours after you shoot, it's +3, 7 hours after a shot is +7...then when it's time for the next shot, the clock starts over again.

    Since we all live in different time zones, it's the best way for everyone to understand how long it's been since you gave a shot. That's the important thing.

    The lowest point (i.e. the nadir) is the point in each cycle where the insulin is working it's best...so the lowest reading...Usually it's around +5 to +7, but nadir's can move from cycle to cycle, so it's important to get tests at different times too (when you can)

    1 unit is a good starting dose for most cats. Depending on which insulin you end up going with dictates how long you hold the dose. Lantus is dosed differently than ProZinc
     
  70. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    What the test numbers mean:

    Comparing a human glucometer to a pet-specific glucometer is like reading temperature in Celsius vs Fahrenheit. Both are correct. You just need to know the reference ranges to interpret what the numbers mean.

    Here are some glucose reference ranges used for decision making using glucometers. Human glucometer numbers are given first. Numbers in parentheses are for non-US meters. Numbers in curly braces are estimates for an AlphaTrak. There are some examples following at the bottom of how to use them.

    < 40 mg/dL (2.2 mmol/L) {< 70 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - Treat as if HYPO if on insulin
    - At nadir (lowest point between shots) in a long term diabetic (more than a year), may earn a reduction.

    < 50 mg/dL (2.8 mmol/L) {< 80 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - If before nadir, steer with food, ie, give modest amounts of medium carb food to keep from going below 50 (2.8).
    - At nadir, often indicates dose reduction is earned.

    50 - 130 mg/dL (2.8 - 7.2 mmol/L) {80 - 160 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - On insulin - great control when following a tight regulation protocol.
    - Off insulin - normal numbers.
    (May even go as low as the upper 30s (1.7 mmol/L){60s for an AlphaTrak}; if not on insulin, this can be safe.

    = 150 mg/dL (8.3 mmol/L) {> 180 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - no shot limit for ProZinc, PZI, or other non-depot insulins

    > 150 mg/dL (8.3 mmol/L) {> 180 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - At nadir, indicates a dose increase may be needed when following a tight regulation protocol.

    200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L) {230 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}
    - no shot level for beginners; may slowly reduce to 150 mg/dL (8.3 mmol/L) {180 mg/dL} for long-acting insulins (Lantus, Levemir, and ProZinc) as data collection shows it is safe

    180 - 280 mg/dL (10 - 15.6 mmol/L) {may be 210 - 310 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}- Any time - The renal threshold (depending on data source and cat's renal function) where glucose spills into the urine.
    - Test for ketones, glucose is too high.

    >= 280 mg/dL (15.6 mmol/L) {may be >=310 mg/dL for an AlphaTrak}, if for most of the cycle between shots
    - Uncontrolled diabetes and thus at risk for diabetic ketoacidosis and hepatic lipidosis
    - Follow your insulin protocol for dose adjustments
    - Test for ketones; if more than a trace level of ketones, go to vet ASAP.

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *​
    How to use the glucose reference values chart:

    When you get a test, look for the number on the chart that either equals, or contains, the test value you have. Read the information. As needed, make a decision and act.

    Ex. You are a new insulin user and you test your cat before giving insulin. The test is 300. It probably is safe to give insulin.

    Ex. You are an established user of Lantus, following the Tight Regulation protocol. You've tested around +5 to +7 to spot the nadir. It is 200 mg/dL. You probably need to increase the dose, following the instructions for the protocol.

    Ex. Your cat is acting funny. The eyes are a bit dilated. You are concerned and test the glucose. The number is 35 mg/dL. ACK! The cat may be in a hypoglycemic state. You quickly follow the HYPO protocol linked in the glucose reference values chart. (which we really, really, suggest you print out and post on your refrigerator.)
     
  71. ebuckley

    ebuckley Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2014
    Keep in mind most folks will post a lot more with questions and concerns. You naturally won't see as many "things are going great!" and "things are still going great" posts.

    I cannot overstate how much the generous folks on this message board have reassured me, given me confidence, and helped my cat, Napa. (Thank you everyone!!) Yes, we are still working on dosing, but that is because she generally needing less and less; and she is definitely eating better, peeing less, and has much stronger legs since we started insulin and testing in early January.

    I can only echo what everyone else has said....deep breaths, take your time...it's worth it to understand how your cat is reacting to the changes.
     
  72. Marje and Gracie

    Marje and Gracie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Hi Jason and Wease

    Lots of info has been coming your way the last few days. In trying to decide which insulin to use, you might went to consider more then just the cost. Lantus and levemir are gold standard insulins for cats. They are long duration, lasting at least 12 hours so we typically shoot every twelve hours. They are also depot insulins so, as an oversimplification, they build a depot under the skin by different methodologies and the insulin is released slowly over time. PZI is a medium acting insulin lasting about 8-10 hours or so.

    The L insulins like consistency so you would typically shoot the same dose twice a day unless an increase or decrease is warranted and doses are primarily based on the nadir. With PZI, you dose based primarily on the preshot.

    The tight regulation protocol for Lantus and levemir is the only scientifically researched protocol published in a scientific veterinary journal and it provides cats with the best chance for going into remission. The great thing about the protocol is it gives you a guide for the starting dose, when to increase, when to hold the dose, and when to decrease. Plus...there is almost always someone around on these forums to help you.

    I think you need to decide which insulin you are going to use, learn how to hometest, and get started. The longer Wease remains at high numbers, the more glucose toxicity and insulin resistance can occur. He also needs the Zobaline to help with the neuropathy.

    Most cats adjust quickly to hometesting. My Gracie often sleeps through her tests. You'll learn how to do it quickly. Most of us will tell you that while we wish our kitties were not diabetic, it has increased our bond with our babies. Many of them learn to go to their testing spots.

    There are two things that put you in control to keep Wease safe: hometesting and feeding.

    We have quite a few male members who adore their cats and do everything they can for them. While their numbers might be in the minority, they love their cats every bit as much as the female board members. My husband, Mike, is extremely involved in Gracies care and had been from the beginning. He tests her, shoots her, manages her curve with food, posts on the board, and is integrally involved in dosing decisions.

    It's scary but you have to start somewhere and I'd start with learning to hometest. If your vet tries to discourage you, ask him if he'd give his child insulin without testing first. I bet he wouldn't.

    This forum is a phenomenal place. It's saved many, many kitty lives. Hundreds of kitties have gone into remission.
     
  73. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
  74. Does wease have an extra toe on his front paws?
     
  75. RobinCot

    RobinCot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    Hi Jason and Wease

    I haven't seen too many posts on tips for transitioning to canned food. We can give you pointers on that too. I had a sugarcat addicted to high carb dry food but she was also very thirsty. When I added lots of water to her pate food, she chose to eat that over the dry food so I removed the dry food and she has not missed it. She also rejected any other dry food like EVO.

    I never thought I would see it but she also never drinks from the water bowl because she gets all her hydration from her watered down food. There are also many other tips we can provide.

    It is good that you are learning. We all did this in the beginning - read, and asked and read and read some more. It gets easier and then becomes just a part of the routine of your day. And the reward is that your kitty is happy and living a long life with you.

    This disease is manageable. And only ten months ago, I was the nervous newbie like so many others here. You will get to where we are and then be able to help others.

    You will be fine.
     
  76. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    No he has 5 toes on each :)
     
  77. Deb & Wink

    Deb & Wink Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2013
    Please read this post A message from your cat but replace the Mom with Dad. It may help you to relieve some of your anxiety and know that Wease is ok.

    We'd love to help you make him feel even better.

    One step at a time. One day at a time. It does get easier, trust me.
     
  78. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    Did you go to Walmart and get a meter yet?

    Terri
     
  79. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I will today after I get Wease's blood test results. Praying nothing else is wrong.

    After looking at some of your spread sheets it doesn't look as bad as I expected. Its easier to watch what their BG is and the unit shot you gave them. It seemed to get better after a short time. I was thinking my numbers were going to be all over It was going to be a stressful nightmare. I know I don't know his numbers yet but those spreadsheets made me feel better.
     
  80. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    Please let us know after you get his results what is going if you would. Yes we are all praying all else is well with Wease, he is such a handsome boy.

    Terri
     
  81. skippersmom

    skippersmom Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2013
    Hi Jason,

    I just wanted to share my story with you to help you feel encouraged.

    My cat Skipper went to the vet on December 19, 2013 very close to death. He had diabetic Ketoacidosis. He didn't get to come home until Christmas Day. There were several times during that extremely expensive stay that I wondered if I was doing the right thing trying to save him. The vet was never able to get his BG into low numbers, but then they were feeding him a prescription cat food that was 26% carbs! The day he came home his BG was in the 500's and they had given him 3 units of Prozinc. While he was at the vet, I found this message board. So before he came home, I was armed with low carb food (we started out with Fancy Feast), testing strips, lancets and a meter. The vet did encourage home testing, but maybe not to the extent that I planned on doing it.

    I wasn't that great at testing at first but I got better. Sometimes he still gets mad at me but he snuggles with me later so all is well. Skipper loves PureBites freeze dried shrimp cat treats for his reward. I basically tested 3 times per day and set up a protocol of dosage based on others charts, and help from people on the PZI message board. Check out Skipper's chart.

    So here we are now 7 1/2 weeks later and Skipper is off insulin and diet controlled. The important thing for us is that we keep contraband out of his reach...crackers, popcorn, and pizza crust. We also need to make sure that he is fed at regular intervals. This can be tough when you have things to do, so I am looking into getting some timed wet food feeders. Skipper is very sensitive to carbs. I find that even the Friskies Mixed Grill is too high for him so we stick with Turkey and Giblets and a few Poultry platter because Walmart doesn't usually have enough Turkey and giblets. I buy the big size cans and store in the refrigerator until used up which isn't long since we have 3 cats. I switched all our cats to the same food and feeding schedule. They all did great and look healthier. It amazes me how they do not need much water now that they are off the dry food. They use to drink a ton.

    Hang in there! You can do this. It is not as hard and overwhelming as it seems. You definitely do not need to be paying a vet to test your cat and change your dose. We were told that we would have to go back to the vet and pay for a curve around $284.00 (this is after a $1387 bill from his stay), but we never did. It wasn't necessary. He hasn't been back to the vet since. I do text the vet occasionally and let her know how he is doing. Oh, and I bought my needles from American Diabetes wholesale and they came with a disposal container. I use the ReliOn Ultima meter and the lancet thing that came with it. I also have a Onetouch Delica lancet system which I like better but the lancets are really expensive.

    I think that is all the information I have. I'll be thinking of you today as you get your test results. Let us know how it goes!

    Rae Ann
     
  82. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I still don't have the results yet, Ill just be patient. I actually don't want to do anything to him yet till I know for sure everything else is ok. Ill buy the testing stuff when the results come back. If anything else is wrong I will have to make decisions based of that. I could never decide to put him to sleep, look at his face! But if other stuff is wrong ill talk to the vet about my options so that he never suffers and let him go with me happy.
     
  83. Suzanne & Cobb(GA)

    Suzanne & Cobb(GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2013
    Hi Jason and Wease!

    The initial diagnosis is incredibly overwhelming! My husband and I did discuss putting Cobb down. We had a baby on the way. How was I going to poke him and give him a shot every day?!

    Our vet sounds similar to yours. She said dry "diabetic" food was fine. We were feeding Evo. And we didn't need to monitor daily. Cobb was diagnosed in April and remained in the 500/600 range for months!! We maxed how much we could use of Prozinc and ultimately switched to Lantus. After a vial of it, and no results, I was pretty upset and found FDMB. Cobb was on 10units at the time. We were doing a curve every 3-4 weeks. It was frustrating! We've all been there!

    Since getting here, we do test multiple times a day and Cobb's numbers have improved GREATLY!

    Everyone does things differently so you're going to get a lot of different advice. You have to pick and choose what works for you. But the main things are switching to wet food - that can bring Wease's numbers down several hundred points immediately. And you need to get the preshot tests to make sure it is safe to shoot. In that sense, higher numbers are "safer" than low ones, which can quickly kill. Higher numbers at preshot time don't necessarily mean a higher dose of insulin, at least on Lantus.

    Ask lots of questions. If you're ever unsure of what to do, post here. The board is pretty active. Usually there is someone online.

    Good luck. Don't stress. You got this!

    And don't worry about Wease hating you. He'll quickly adjust to the ear pokes and shots. Cobb doesn't even flinch. It's a minor irritation from me holding him still.

    ~Suzanne
     
  84. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Is 8oz of food a day good for him? His weight was 12.5 at the vet but he is skinnier than normal. Feeding at 10am and 10pm. He seems like he is starving. I guess he is use to having food out all day all night tho. I am not measuring it exactly, but eyeballing it. Do these things have to be exact every day?

    Im feeding him Friskies classic pate variety pack, that's all walmart had.

    There is 8 Mixed Grill, 8 Turkey and Giblets and 8 Ocean and Whitefish Dinner.
     
  85. RobinCot

    RobinCot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2013
    I feed my cats several small meals and snacks throughout the day especially since I removed the dry grazing. I have never heard of feeding only two meals exactly 12 hours a part. That seems strange to me. We do shoot insulin twice a day exactly 12 hours a part but I wouldn't have a house left if I restricted food that way. Do you think you misunderstood or your vet confused the two?

    I even freeze the pate food with added water in muffin tins to make cat cicles that I can leave out to thaw during the day when I am not home to offer a middle of day snack.
     
  86. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Lots of vets say to feed 2 times/day when you give shots. This is just because they want to make sure the cat is eating before shooting.

    It's actually better for the pancreas to give several small meals, so it's NOT necessary to only feed every 12 hours. Decide how much you should be feeding, and divide it into smaller meals. Some people try to feed before +6 so that as the insulin is wearing off, there's no more food, but some of us feed on a schedule like Pre-shot, +4 and +8. How your cat reacts to food and insulin will determine what feeding schedule is best for him.

    It's important to take food up 2 hours before shots so that your Pre-shot tests are without the influence of food, but otherwise, you can feed when it works best for Wease

    If Wease weighs 12lbs, to stay at that weight you'd need to feed him 233 calories per day. You can find the amount of calories in each 5.5 oz can of Friskies pates on the Food Chart

    Cats who aren't controlled yet will eat a lot more food but still lose weight because without insulin, they can't get the nutrition out of the food. They're actually slowly starving. Once better controlled, the amount of food they'll want will come down.
     
  87. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    but 8oz a day is ok? That's about 270-280 calories. That's about 2.6oz a feeding. I would feed about 10am 4pm and 10pm. About 1 and a half cans a day. they are 5.5oz each. I think that would make Wease much happier.

    imagine the calories he was consuming before grazing dry cat food all day and with me giving him treats and sometimes human food!
     
  88. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Sounds good Jason...you may find later on that he's very carb sensitive so you may not want him eating in the last half of the cycle, but that's something you can't know until you're testing, shooting and gathering data.

    You can also weigh him. It's not a bad idea to do that anyway so you can make sure he's getting enough and you can monitor his weight gain. When he's at his "perfect" weight, you may have to feed less since we don't want him to get too fat either.

    Mixed Grill..11% carbs, 171 calories per 5.5oz can
    Turkey & Giblets..8% carbs, 187 calories
    Ocean Whitefish & Tuna...9% carbs, 187 calories
     
  89. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Ok Im am very $!@#$! off.... and I don't get $#@%3 off very easy....

    I called the vet this morning to see if the results came in. They didn't get the full results yet so I told them I would stop there at 1:30 to see if they had them and get a copy. So I did and they still didn't have them. About an hour ago I called to speak to a vet tech to ask a little bit about diabetes and treatments and diff kinds of insulin.

    The vet called me back about 30 minutes ago and told me they came back and the results came back fine and any abnormalities are coming from diabetes... Ok I was fine with that.

    I went on to tell him what I was reading and doing research and asked If he could get me Lantus or PZI. He immediately got mad and said Vetsulin is a form of PZI with a different name.

    He said since I came there and didn't have much money they helped me out with needles and some insulin, which they did and I told him I understood and im grateful for that. He said now im going against what he is telling me to do and I looked on Dr.google and not listening to him. He said the people hear are advertising or promoting Lantus or PZI.... Then he says I think you need to find another VET. I said you should be happy I am trying to find the best ways to help my cat. He then said you didn't even want to treat your cat when I was there... That's BS I never said that to him and was aking questions how to do it with very little money.

    So I say to him, well can you prescribe me Lantus? He says I don't know Ill have to look it up in the next few days.

    He actually told me you called here 4 times today leaving a message, that's borderline harassment... I said harassment? Because I care about my cat and I am curious whats going on? I was never mean or nothing. I am a very polite person....

    So now I don't know what to do, I am not going back to that person.
     
  90. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Jason,

    Wow, I don`t know what to say. I can`t believe a vet would talk to you like that. I am not sure what to tell you to do. You need to get Wease on some kind of insulin. Go right now and get a meter. Do you already have the Vetsulin and needles? What were his levels per the paperwork?
    I am so sorry a professional would speak to you like that cat(2)_steam

    Terri
     
  91. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Oh Jason!!! That's AWFUL! THAT vet has a 'God Complex' which I can't stand! He works for YOU - it's YOUR money paying him! I don't care how 'nice' they thought they were being with the offer of a bit of insulin and syringes, that attitude is just WRONG. Yep, time for a new vet...

    HUGS!!! Xtra scritches for Wease too!
     
  92. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Do you want to give your city and state? Maybe someone knows a Fd friendly vet near you.

    I'm sorry you were treated so badly. He clearly has forgotten that you are the customer!

    I agree that you might get the inexpensive ReliOn meter from Walmart, strips and lancets (no prescription needed) and try home testing and see where his numbers really are.

    And no, PZI is not Vetsulin. Different insulins made by different companies. Vetsulin is made primarily for use in dogs; PZI is only used in cats.
     
  93. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Unfortunately, that's an attitude we hear about all too often Jason. We had to go to 3 vets before I found one willing to work WITH me instead of dictate TO me.

    Call around and talk to other vets. Tell them you know you have a diabetic cat and ask them if they support things like home testing, feeding a low carb diet and prescribing a good insulin for cats, such as Lantus, Levemir or ProZinc.

    When you find one you like, get your blood test results from your old vet. You paid for them, they are YOURS! That will save you money by not having a new vet have to re-run the same tests.

    It's great that at least the only thing Wease has is diabetes...I know you were concerned about him having multiple problems. Since it's "only" diabetes, you're already in the best place you could be, and have learned enough to advocate for Wease with other vets so you're treating him the best way possible.

    Sorry you had to put up with yet another vet who thinks they're God.
     
  94. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I live in Horseheads NY if anyone is close to me :) Or knows a good vet.

    Well I really want to go get his testing stuff but I think im going to wait till tomorrow and get a new VET. It's not easy finding a new one when they wont talk to you without being a patient.

    I don't want to start him on vetsulin and maybe tomorrow I can find a new vet that will listen to my concerns and prescribe him PZI or Lantus.
     
  95. Suzanne & Cobb(GA)

    Suzanne & Cobb(GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2013
    Gosh Jason. I'm so sorry about that! I had a similar issue with my vet, in that she got ticked off I came to her asking questions about things I learned here, including high dose testing. She wanted to charge me to discuss everything even though all I had asked her was how much the tests were.

    I'm now "in between" vets. I'm still able to get the insulin since it is filled at Publix and the prescription was on file. But we are not returning to her.

    I'd go ahead and get a meter and start home testing. And work on switching the food. If Wease's numbers aren't incredibly high, you might be able to bring them down with a food change. Some diabetics can be diet controlled. And it's better to start the wet food before insulin so the dry food isn't influencing those BG numbers!
     
  96. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I'll send out an enquiry, but it looks like you are about 80 miles from Rochester or Syracuse? Is it pretty rural or there a few vets in your town? You may have to do your own search. Call up vets and ask if what kind of insulin they prescribe for diabetic cats, what kind of diet they suggest and if they support home testing. At this point, the insulin is the most important answer. You can feed what you like and you can test at home without their permission.
     
  97. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    You should be able to find a new vet by calling and asking them to call you back when they have time. That's what we did. At least you'll learn how willing they are to work with you that way. You shouldn't have to be their patient first. You're just asking how they'd treat a diabetic cat if you choose to use them...if they tell you you must buy some great prescription food they have there, or you have to buy a pet only meter, keep looking.

    I agree you should go ahead and get the testing supplies. You could be using this time to get Wease used to testing when it's not so important since you're not giving insulin yet. Once you start actually shooting, you will HAVE to get tests in...you could be spending this time getting him used to the idea.

    It will also let you (and us) know how important it is for you to start treatment..if his blood glucose numbers now are in the 200's, that's one thing...if they're in the 500's, that's another and we'd at least want you to start testing for ketones in his urine. DKA is expensive to treat, and not always successful. It's easier to treat at home if you catch it early though.
     
  98. NitroViper

    NitroViper Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    I did ask what his BG level was on the blood test he said 540.... but he was stressed and was on the junk cat food.

    He actually just called me back as I was writing this post....

    He was a different person, musta felt bad, but he still recommends Vetsulin over lantus. He told me Lantus has dropped off lately.

    He told me again that Vetsulin is PZI for cats and dogs.

    He also told me he has been treating cats with diabetes for 21 years and only 2 ppl have home tested.

    Should I stay with him and use the Vetsulin? Why does he keep saying its PZI and the forums say it isn't?

    Vetsulin® (porcine insulin zinc suspension) is an aqueous suspension containing 40 IU per mL of highly purified
    porcine insulin consisting of 35 percent amorphous and 65 percent crystalline zinc insulin. As a lente insulin,
    Vetsulin is classified as an intermediate-acting insulin. In cats, the peak activity following subcutaneous
    administration of Vetsulin is generally expected to be around 4 hours, but can occur between 1.5 and 8 hours.
    The duration of activity can vary between 8 and 12 hours. The peak, duration of activity, and dose required to
    adequately control diabetic signs will vary between cats. In general, cats require twice-daily dosing of Vetsulin.


    Here is the Vetsulin tech bulletin http://www.vetsulin.com/PDF/Vetsulin-Feline-Tech-Bulletin.pdf
     
  99. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Vetsulin is most certainly NOT the same thing as Prozinc. I don't know why your vet is continuing to say that other than that's what he's used to using (probably with dogs since they're much more likely to see diabetic dogs in their practice than cats).

    Here's a good article on the differences http://endocrinevet.blogspot.com/2013/05/whats-best-insulin-for-diabetic-cats.html

    Taken from that article:
    Is this the initial insulin of choice for cats?
    A number of studies have proven that Vetsulin will certainly control hyperglycemia in cats, especially if combined with a low carbohydrate diet (<10% of calories) (8-11). However, the duration of action may be too short in some diabetic cats, and most feel that the longer acting insulin preparations (glargine, detemir or ProZinc) work better to maintain better control of hyperglycemia in cats (11-13).

    Of course, maintaining glycemic control throughout the day is more important if diabetic remission is the goal (13,15,16)— if not, Vetsulin might be less expensive and certainly would be more than adequate in most cats (8-10)

    Most authorities would rank insulin glargine as the first choice of insulin in cats (Lantus), then insulin detemir or PZI (not the compounded product (17), but FDA-approved ProZinc), then Vetsulin, then finally NPH as a very last choice.

    The Lantus TR Protocol is a published protocol that has shown to get up to 84% of cats OTJ (off the juice) within the first 6 months. The hope is to get remission so they're off insulin and diet controlled.
     
  100. Deb & Wink

    Deb & Wink Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2013
    Vetsulin = porcine zinc suspension
    PZI = protamine zinc suspension

    Not the same thing at all.

    Some cats do get a long duration on Vetsulin/Caninsulin. You're more likely see good control of clinical signs but poor glycemic control. It's the 1st legally required choice of insulin in Europe. We have some UK members that could help to guide you in the use of the Vetsulin, if that is the way you want to go.

    Does your vet encourage or discourage home testing? If he is not actively encouraging home testing, then it's no surprise that so few people in his practice do home test.

    The AAHA Diabetes Management Guidelines for Dogs and Cats ,vet journal published in May 2010, certainly encourage home testing.
    That same vet journal article has this to say about the Vetsulin:
    You might want to ask your vet what the remission rate is for cats in his clinic that are using the Vetsulin he prefers. Some studies show Lantus has a >90% remission rate, Levimir 80-90% remission rate, PZI 37-50% remission rate, Vetsulin/Caninsulin 20-30% remission rate.
     

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