New Cat, new diabetic situation. Because they can make it!

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by Beth & Atlas, Mar 17, 2010.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Years ago I had a diabetic kitty. Since she passed away some 4yrs. ago I have been fostering cats. I had found Feline Diabetes at the time very, very helpful.

    Tonight I was called to the shelter to pick up Atlas. He is a diabetic kitty who has been severely neglected. He is so thin that shots must be given between his shoulder blades or you might hit a bone.

    The shelter vet has him on N. I know N is a fast acting insulin, but for a shelter situation it is inexpensive. He is on only 1 unit BID. He doesn't go for a BG curve until next week.

    Of course I know to test before shots and even how to do the BG curve etc. I am concerned with his extremely poor condition of forcing more stress onto him. That is part of the reason they wanted him out of the shelter situation and into foster care.

    He disposition is very friendly, purrs and seems very loving. His fur still is matted even though he has been shaved in several locations. I want to try to gently brush him etc., but tonight we're just getting to know each other. I am hoping when he goes for his BG curve that maybe he will get a lion cut. The vet tech at the shelter says he has been doing much better since starting the insulin. They have not changed his foods yet and I am rolling with the punches on that for this week.

    We just did our first shot. I've forgotten how hard it is to read the syringes... He accepted the shot without a fuss. I suspect I should be able to get him on a monitoring schedule fairly easily.

    Right now I am just reaching out for another friend. Looking at him, my heart just breaks.
     
  2. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    It is still recommended that you test before each shot. Your Atlas sounds like my Mario when I adopted him. He was not being treated and was skin and bones and matted. I thought he would not survive. He recover from the diabetes when on insulin. However, he was shortly diagnosed with lymphoma. He live for two more years before the lymphoma finally got to him (he was treated with Leukeran for the lymphoma).

    When you change his diet you should ensure you test before each shot since a low-carb canned food usually reduces the need for insulin.
     
  3. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction


    I am sorry to read about Mario. It sounds like he did have a wonderful guardian angel in you. What was his treatment protocol?

    I just got off the phone with the foster director and the head of the Cat Committee Chairperson. A special fund has been set up for Atlas. And I have authorization to directly deal with any emergency situation that arises (ie. low Bg.).

    The Cat Committee Chairperson explained to me that Atlas has some other issues besides diabetes that he will need to overcome. He has an undescended testicle and the other one is severely swollen. He will need abdominal surgery which right now he is too weak. She told me his story of how he came to the shelter. The night he arrived he needed to be bathed and the water was like mud when they were done. They carried him around in soft blankets his skin was so fragile. I suspect now that is why he is not fully groomed. I told her he needs a lion cut when he goes for the BG curve at the vets.

    Thank you for responding to my post. When I got word he was coming here, the FDMB was the first place I thought of to find support. Thank you all again.
     
  4. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Mario started on Ultra Lente (U) but I switched to BCP PZI since the U (which I had already for another kitty) was working that good.
     
  5. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    If that's the situation, maybe you can start gathering information to support an insulin change. The healthier you can get him, the more adoptable he will be.

    You can get a hometesting starter kit from Cindy. See http://felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=127. Ask her for something that will take inexpensive strips. Or, I am presently trying to find a home for a Walmart Relion meter with 17 strips. The Relion strips are some of the least expensive around. PM me your address and I will put it in the mail tomorrow. To PM me click the PM button under my name over there----> I can toss some lancets into the mailer also. Do you have the u100, .3ml syringes with 1/2 unit markings? I can send some of those your way as well.

    Please pick up some ketostix to test for ketones in the urine. Or ketodiastix that test for urine and glucose until you get your hometesting skills back.

    I coordinate a project called Diabetic Cats in Need. There's a link in my signature line. We (meaning me and my "staff" of more than 1500 here and on another diabetic cat Board) can help you afford to properly care for Atlas and maybe even find him a home with an experienced caregiver. Let me know if you are interested in that.

    BTW, where is Atlas located? City, state/province?

    And what is the shelter and does Atlas have a Petfinder page?
     
  6. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    WOW! :eek:

    What a response! The honest to Bastet truth is I still have my Relion meter and my One touch Ultra 2. I also still have a box of syringes U-100's that when my old kitty died...I just put away in a wicker chest. I could never bring myself to give them away. I'm sorry. Even when I unpacked them in anticipation of Atlas...I couldn't get a grip on my grief. I suspect I'll need to get new test strips and a testing solution, which I can manage.

    The vet tech gave me some granule stuff to collect a urine sample....? I said I would do it, but plan to pickup some ketodiastix in the morning. I expected them to be handed to me tonight, but ???? We're working with some inexperience here.

    The syringes are the .3's. I know there used to be a conversion for it, but the site has changed. It took me a few tries to get the 1 unit dose, but I suspect a few days it will be old hat. The shelter provided a box of 100.

    Venita, I may take you up on the offer for finding Atlas a home. I personally can't afford to care for a diabetic cat right now. Atlas is only here because of my experience. Which is thanks to everyone here from a few years back. Feline Diabetes gave me the knowledge, confidence, and skills to be able to help this cat today.

    Oh...almost forgot your last questions.

    Atlas is in Ohio. I am a foster for The Berea Animal Rescue Fund. http://www.bereaanimalrescue.com/

    If anyone reading is so motivated they can go to the donation page, http://www.bereaanimalrescue.com/catalo ... cts_id=294, and select Angels for Animals. Those funds are for special cats like Atlas.
     
  7. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Regarding your statement:
    "The syringes are the .3's. I know there used to be a conversion for it, but the site has changed. It took me a few tries to get the 1 unit dose, but I suspect a few days it will be old hat. The shelter provided a box of 100."

    All 0.3 cc insulin syringes a U100 syringes and all human insulin (N, Lantus etc.) are U100 insulins so not conversion is necessary. Conversion is only necessary if you use a non-U100 insulin such as ProZinc which is U40 and is an animal only insulin.
     
  8. Gia and Quirk

    Gia and Quirk Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    I think I recognize your writing style, though I can't put a name to it. Nonetheless, thank you for adopting Atlas. Please let us know hoe things go with you two.
     
  9. PeterDevonMocha

    PeterDevonMocha Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    thank you for taking in atlas.
     
  10. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Well, this isn't looking too good.

    Yesterday Atlas seemed to be doing OK. Still drinking/peeing a lot. He pee'd on the bed :sad: Odd because there were two clean litter boxes right there .

    He ate last night and had his shot.

    This morning he is refusing to eat. So, I can't give him his shot. I will be making up a gruell and trying to force feed him with the syringe. Then maybe I can give him is dose.

    I am calling the Foster Director to update him and I really feel he needs to go to the vet. If I am not mistaken the refusal to eat is a real bad indication.
     
  11. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: Atlas Update

    Atlas is at the ER vet. nailbite_smile
     
  12. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    We are purr'n for Atlas.
     
  13. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    You know it always amazes me how quickly one can have a cat sneak into your heart. Less than 48 hours ago, Atlas was just another cat at the shelter. Last night as he slept in my lap, purring and seemingly content...he is my big boy. Thin, ragged, mouth sores, bed pee'er, et al. He is my big boy.
     
  14. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Poor thing. Prayers for Atlas. Yes they do find heart places quickly.

    Inappropriate peeing is something unregulated diabetics often do.
     
  15. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

    Hope + (((Baby)))GA Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Prayers coming for Atlas. Kitties that are as ragged looking as Atlas are the ones that can really grab the heart quickly. Please let us know how he is doing.......paws and fingers all crossed that ketones are not involved. He will be a beautiful cat and look forward to seeing his "after" picture. Poor baby and bless you for helping him.
     
  16. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Thanks for the purrs and the Prayers.

    The intake doctor said they were going to keep him probably most of the day. Maybe he'll get the BG curve done etc. and the full appropriate work-up he needs. She was surprised I knew to not give him his shot and said that would give them the window of opportunity to really check him out.

    I am glad he came into my care.
     
  17. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

    Hope + (((Baby)))GA Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    I'm glad he came into your care too cat_pet_icon
     
  18. Steve & Jock

    Steve & Jock Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Refusing to eat is indeed a bad sign, and in a poorly-regulated kitty can often mean Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA). This in turn means a desperate need for insulin and fluids, so it's good that you took him to ER, not so good that he didn't get his insulin shot. Please make sure they don't give him back until he is entirely 100% ketone free.

    Wishing him a successful recovery!

    Let me share with you some of my mental images for a moment. "N" insulin causes a steep drop in blood sugar for about 2-4 hours, followed by an equally steep rise. In most cats it's gone within 6-8 hours.

    Food may or may not cause a correspondingly steep rise in blood sugar, though dry food almost certainly will. But there's no guarantee that this food 'spike' will be timed to match the "N" insulin "drop". If they're not well-matched, you can either see dangerously low numbers, or a DKA episode as he runs out of insulin.

    Inexperienced vets tend to think of the role of insulin as being to keep food being passed on to the cells, to avoid starvation, and/or to keep blood sugar from rising too high.

    But I think of those as just a first step. After that, insulin is an instrument for keeping blood sugar level and in safe (about 60-160) healthy areas at all times, and that requires more than just dosing -- it requires a smooth-acting insulin and a smooth-acting food. No spikes or drops. As you change to a low-carb food and a slow-acting insulin and a testing regime with lots of blood tests at first, you will see the difference this can make!

    Best of luck and thanks for taking on Atlas! Looks like you too have the world on your shoulders!

    steve
     
  19. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Atlas Update #2

    Spoke with the technician this evening at the ER.

    Atlas will be spending "at least" the evening. He is on fluids and they are doing his BG curve to see if they can regulate him. They are syringe force feeding him and he is under continual observation. I asked if they had done any blood work and the answer is no. They are working off of the blood work done a week ago?

    Atlas will be re-evaluated again by the doctor in the morning.

    Steve, thank you for the reminder explanation about Humilin N.

    A plus side is I spoke with someone who has a girlscout troop working looking to work on their bronze awards. After she heard about Atlas and his situation she is going to suggest that maybe they can earn their award by raising funds for his care. They've done work for the shelter before to earn their awards and she thought this might be a very special of effort for the girls to make.

    Here's crossing my fingers he makes it through this episode.
     
  20. JL and Chip

    JL and Chip Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: Atlas Update #2

    Color me somewhat confused. Does Atlas have ketones? DKA? If so, should they not be using fast-acting insulin and monitoring his electrolytes carefully (which, by default, means they'll be running new bloodwork, not operating off of last week's values)?

    If not, then what is the logic for keeping him at the E.R.? Syringe feeding and IV fluids to get him back on the right track? If so, that makes sense for now, but syringe feeding and subQ fluids can be done at home (just ask them to teach you how).

    Or are they keeping him to "regulate" him? If so, "regulation" does not occur in one or two days, nor does it occur at the clinic where the environment is alien and stressful to the cat. Regulation takes time and is best achieved in a normal, home environment that represents what will be his regular, day-to-day activities and eating/playing/sleeping schedule.
     
  21. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: Atlas Update #2

    Hi JL, as funny as it might sound right now...Atlas is probably in a situation he is very familiar with. He has been in the shelter for 3 months before coming into my home for foster care on Weds. He is a very, very laid back kind of cat with a lot of health issues on top of being diabetic. His daily activities have been eating, sleeping, peeing, drinking, peeing...all in a kennel cage.

    The potential alien environment was/is my home. He has not had a BG curve done until today. We don't even know if the 1 unit BID was the right dose, he wasn't getting the correct foods, etc., etc., etc.

    There is a lot I have to work on from an education standpoint and unfortunately...there is only so much I can do. I cannot order up tests etc. for Atlas. All that has to be approved once he is at the ER. I am only his new foster guardian and had him less than 36 hours before he stopped eating. Atlas and a few folks in our system are counting on me, counting on my experience, and are advocating for the care he needs.

    He has come a long way since the day he came to the shelter. Read back through the thread and you will see a very tough little cat. We all love him and we're all pulling for him.
     
  22. JL and Chip

    JL and Chip Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Hi Blue,
    First, Atlas sounds like one special guy, and kudos for getting him out of the shelter and into your home, no matter how temporary. I understand the restrictions with which you're working. :)

    The basis were my comments/confusion were simply:
    1. I was concerned about ketones or DKA and wasn't clear whether that was the diagnosis.
    2. In an E.R. situation, someone is footing the (usually expensive) bill, so if he didn't have ketones or DKA, I was curious as to the driving reason for keeping him hospitalized (if it was to regulate him, then it seemed unnecessary). Although he was in a shelter situation previously, he'll be living in a home when he leaves the E.R., so it made more sense to work on regulating him in the situation in which he WILL be living, not where he was living previously.

    Regardless, I was just curious. If in doubt, I'd always leave a cat in the E.R. a bit longer...it never hurts to be cautious. I see that you are an experienced caregiver, so good luck and please keep us posted. Welcome back to the board!
     
  23. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Updat #3

    I spoke with the Dr. this morning.

    Atlas has only a 50/50 chance of making it through this. His BG numbers are all over the place!


    This evening I just got word that, the overseeing vet from the shelter, has picked up Atlas and is caring for him in his home. They (both ER Dr. and shelter DR.) think the complicating matter is potentially cancer of the swollen testicle. The shelter Dr. is going to remove/biopsy etc. (probably as we speak). Atlas will remain in his care for the next week to 10 days.

    It sounds like the Dr. is doing this without charge. IF Atlas makes it through surgery and IF the next 10 Days they can get his numbers regulated ....

    Just Prayers.

    If this had been any other cat, in any other shelter...it would have been a death sentence right away. A lot of workers, volunteers, and care givers are doing amazing efforts for this little guy.
     
  24. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

    Hope + (((Baby)))GA Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Bless that vet for going above and beyond......prayers coming for Atlas. They can grab the heart, even from just a picture.
     
  25. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    Well, I have not heard anything today. So, I am taking it as no news is good news. :?:
     
  26. Carol & Yoshi

    Carol & Yoshi Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Introduction

    OMG, that poor sweet face. I am praying hard that he will recover and get to spend many more good years to make up for what he has been through. You are one of his angels.
     
  27. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: Update #4

    Atlas was neutered yesterday and is recovering now.

    To everyone's surprise, there was no testicle inside. Dr. did an exploratory, but it appears Atlas only ever had one. So we made it past the first hurdle, but we're not quite out of the woods yet.

    Dr. will be keeping me updated on his progress and his blood sugar levels, so I'll pass along any information. Hold a good thought for our boy. :roll:
     
  28. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. UPDATED!

    I'm glad Atlas is recovering. For the next update I recommend starting a new topic and reference this one for history.
     
  29. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

    Hope + (((Baby)))GA Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. UPDATED!

    Glad he made it through the neutering. Still thinking of him, sending prayers and please, as Larry wrote, start a new thread for more updates. this poor boy needs all the help he can get.
     
  30. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. UPDATED!

    Thanks Larry and Hope! I won't hear much until later this week when the test results come back.

    I'll start a new thread at that time.

    I hope he continues to get better.

    Thanks for all the support too.
     
  31. PeterDevonMocha

    PeterDevonMocha Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. UPDATED!

    praying for all involved ... atlas, you, the vets ...
     
  32. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. UPDATED!

    No real update yet. Hope to hear something soon.
     
  33. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation.

    Blue hasn't been here for a week. I sent her an email asking about Atlas.
     
  34. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
  35. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

    Hope + (((Baby)))GA Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)

    Blue, Atlas is looking so much better......you can see it in his face, eyes, and his coat and looks like he's gained weight too. Good job, Blue.
     
  36. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)

    Blue, you have worked miracles on Atlas. I am so glad, for him and for you!!
     
  37. PeterDevonMocha

    PeterDevonMocha Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)

    what a wonderful difference .. I so hope someone takes in atlas and gives him the puuurfect forever home he deserves!!
     
  38. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)


    So do I. He is a wonderful cat, patient, sweet and was no trouble at all testing. He even now sits in his test spot and purrs...waiting.
     
  39. Denise & Sidney

    Denise & Sidney Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)

    I'm so happy to see Atlas is doing better. He is very lucky to have had someone like you take him in. I'm the foster coordinator for the Texarkana Animal League. I didn't think about how lucky I've been not to have had the same situation so far. At least now since Sidney has been diagnosed, I've actually found a few more people in my area that know how to take care of a diabetic cat if we ever have one come through foster.

    Hugs and purrs to you and Atlas
     
  40. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/2010)


    This is just a bump up for those who missed it!
     
  41. Danette & Esmeralda (Essi)

    Danette & Esmeralda (Essi) Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/20

    Great humbling story, thank you for sharing, Im such a newbie still, but I can lend my support and hugs.

    Danette & Essi
     
  42. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/20

    Prayers for Atlas...
     
  43. Beth & Atlas

    Beth & Atlas Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. (special update 8/26/20

    New Years Eve...and a year ago...

    a cat came into our shelter.


    This is a bump...to let you know ...they can make it!
     

    Attached Files:

  44. Karen & Smokey(GA)

    Karen & Smokey(GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Because they can make

    Just read this thread from top to bottom....

    ...VERY Happy New year to Atlas and Blue.
     
  45. KarenRamboConan

    KarenRamboConan Senior Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Because they can make

    Just saying a very belated "welcome" and "thank you" for doing what you are doing for that sweet boy.


    Karen
     
  46. Marci and Buddy

    Marci and Buddy Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: New Cat, new diabetic situation. Because they can make

    People like you , (and so many others like you on this site) restore my faith in humanity....thank you for your help with Atlas--
    continued support and prayers going your way!
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page