New diagnosis can't afford HELP

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by LittleFella, Nov 27, 2012.

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  1. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Just received troublesome diabetes diagnosis in 8 1/2 year old cat. She has lost half her body weight within the last three months. Already spent $250 for diagnosis. I am being told I will need to spend $200-$300 more to get started. I can't do this but I love her dearly. I have two kids and Christmas is coming. I am so upset. Suggestions?
     
  2. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    First, diet change to low carb canned food from RETAIL, like Friskies Turkey and Giblets pate (No dry, no gravied foods, period). Read at Cat Info Diet change may reduce the glucose levels as much as 100 points. Depending on the cat, that may be all that is necessary to get the cat off insulin. Do you know what the initial readings were?

    Second, cats don't generally use as much insulin (a few units per day), so getting something like Lantus by individual pen may be possible (ex, 300 units per pen, 1 unit twice a day, means the pen would last 75 days). It may sometimes be found on Craigslist, but you have to check that it isn't expired, has been kept refrigerated and in a stable environment.

    Third, if you hometest, you save a bundle - the cat does NOT need to go to the vet to "get regulated", nor to do a curve as you can do that following the protocol written by a vet. You can use a human glucometer such as the WalMart ReliOn Confirm which is inexpensive and has inexpensive test strips that are available most times of the day.
     
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  3. Denise & Honey

    Denise & Honey Well-Known Member

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    Oct 12, 2012
    Welcome to the board.

    Caring for a diabetic cat isn't cheap but there is help out there.

    First off, I assume the $200-$300 more figure is coming from your vet and is for blood glucose testing? ie. glucose curves to figure out the correct insulin level?
    If so, you don't have to go to the vet - I had a similar quote but thanks to the help from this board, bought a human glucose meter for $16 from Walmart (Relion Confirm) and test strips at $35 for 100 - but Walmart's Relion Prime has come out and that has cheaper strips!, lancets ($4 for 100) and now I home test - a big saving, plus better for the cat.

    Secondly, there maybe some financial help. You could try http://felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=29083 or look at some of the stickies on this board - I think there are some suggestions and coupons.

    The biggest expense will be the insulin, but again, there are coupons around. And, its possible, your cat's diabetes might be controlled by diet - if she moved from a dry (guessing this is what you currently use) to a canned diet. Pretty much any low carb canned diet - Walmart's own, Friskies etc. - is better than dry for her and it will lower her numbers although she may still need insulin.

    And, by finding this board and sticking with it, there's a fairly good chance she could come off the insulin altogether - I'm heading that way (I hope ) with my cat who was diagnosed a month ago.

    Don't give up hope!!!
     
  4. squeem3

    squeem3 Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Frugal Feline Diabetes for tips on how to save money: http://binkyspage.tripod.com/frugal.html

    Diabetic Cats In Need may be able to help: http://felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=29083

    Food, insulin and insulin syringes, and blood glucose testing supplies are the three main costs for a diabetic cat. There are numerous ways on how to keep these costs low, from feeding commerical canned food instead of the expensive prescription junk to using a good long lasting insulin that may seem expensive upfront but well worth every penney to testing blood glucose levels at home instead of paying the vet $$$ for inaccurate results.
     
  5. Misty&Bast

    Misty&Bast Member

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    Oct 16, 2012
    i hate to push walmart and this is the only reason I have step foot in one for years. Relion prime cheap meter- strips 9.00 for 50. (ask at pharmacy if they are not on floor)
    needles 10/$1.75. You can get 3 packs a day w/o a perscription.
    Lancets are cheap. lancet machine is 5.00. You also need ketone strips.
    I feed friskies, 9 lives, trader joe tuna for cats and petsmart canned food for about 40 cents a can. My cat won't eat special kitty.
     
  6. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Thank you for so much for all the info. I am overwhelmed but trying to research everything. The $300 more dollars includes $90 for first three months of insulin and $120 to do a curve in two weeks. Do I need the curve? If not how do I respectfully tell him I don't need it? Also, I agree that food change would help a lot but she is so sick she refuses to eat at all.
     
  7. Denise & Honey

    Denise & Honey Well-Known Member

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    Oct 12, 2012
    No, you don't need a curve at the vets but you do need to home test and then do a curve at home.

    The curve at the vets would probably be inaccurate anyway as cats get so stressed from being there with strangers all day. If you do home testing, your readings will be more accurate and more available.

    My vet said the same and advised against home testing as most seem to do. I cancelled my appointment for a curve with them and then called them back a few weeks later to say I was doing home testing. I also emailed them my spreadsheet showing bg numbers, insulin amount etc. - far more detail then anything they could produce.
    She is your cat, you have the final say. Obviously, its better for the vet to work with you but you can always find another vet if you have to.
    From the posts I've read, most vets seem to come around to the idea of home testing once they realise you are serious about it and know what to do.

    There are stickies on this board for setting up the spreadsheet that most of us use and all sorts of info. on home testing and when to test.

    And yes, it is overwhelming at first but it does get easier.

    Regarding her eating, is she having any food? Have you tried adding water to canned food and making a sloppy soup? She can't go long without eating.
     
    dmc likes this.
  8. Julia & Bandit

    Julia & Bandit Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    The one place you don't want to try and save money is on the insulin. Cats do best on the human insulins Lantus (glargine) or Levemir (detemir), and with the right treatment plan the majority of cats go into remission (meaning they are diet controlled without insulin). The initial cost is expensive--a pack of 5 Lantus pens is about $240 at Walmart, and a vial is about $110. However, if you get the pens, that much insulin will last you at least 6 months, but more likely a year if handled properly. That works out to be only $20 a month for insulin. I understand it's close to the holidays but perhaps you could get some financing to make the insulin purchase and pay it back over time? Here's a link to coupons for $25 a pack of pens: http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=36964.

    If you can't handle the insulin expense that way, perhaps you might be able to get a hold of a donated pen to get you started until you can afford the insulin on your own.

    My cat's been in remission for over 2 years, and once you get there a diabetic cat is no more expensive than a non-diabetic. The majority of cats (84+%) go into remission with the right insulin (Lantus or Levemir), the right food (low carb, canned), and dose adjustments via daily hometesting.

    You do not need to do the curve at the vet if you are hometesting. Vet numbers are unreliable anyway because stress will inflate blood glucose in cats. Plus, it's way cheaper to do it yourself. As others have mentioned, the Walmart Confirm, Micro, or Prime meters have very inexpensive strips and are reliable. As for declining your vet, show him this: http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=36964. Note p. 218 where it states (first bullet under "Precautions and Details") that hometesting is preferred and ideal. No decent vet will argue with the research once you bring it to them. Unfortunately, it's more common than not that vets are not up to date in their feline diabetes treatment. It sounds like your vet may not be giving you the best treatment recommendations, so I would make sure you do some reading on your own. I was fortunate that my vet was current in her research and recommended home testing, but we did disagree on Bandit's dosing (she wasn't giving correct dosing advice), and so I brought her the research with the correct dosing plan, and that solved the problem.

    The eating problem is very serious. She's not eating anything, even her old food? Lack of appetite is not a symptom of diabetes (quite the opposite, diabetic cats are ravenous). Did the vet test for ketones? I would run to the pharmacy right away and grab a bottle of Ketostix, and test her urine for ketones--this is a deadly complication of diabetes that needs immediate treatment by the vet. If it's not ketones, there may be some secondary condition like pancreatitis that she needs to be tested for and treated.

    Cats should not go longer than 24 hours without eating, so you may need to syringe feed her. Inappentence in cats is very serious and needs to be treated right away. Here's some tricks to make the food more appetizing: http://catinfo.org/#Transitioning_Dry_Food_Addicts_to_Canned_Food_. I would also grab some stage 2 Beechnut baby food--turkey, beef, and/or chicken and see if you can get her eating that.

    I know this all seems very overwhelming now, and I felt the same way as you when Bandit was diagnosed. There's a lot of information to absorb right away. This board is so incredibly helpful in that respect. I promise, though, after a little time an scheduling, you'll find that the diabetes is NOT a big deal at all, and that it's not difficult or expensive to treat (apart from the initial insulin expense).
     
  9. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    New Development :Fella is dehydrated... Will no longer drink. Her ligaments appear to be stiffening. She will not jump and has trouble walking and lying down. I have an appointment for a diabetes consult tomorrow evening. I hope it's not too late..... Thoughts.......
     
  10. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    if she is dehydrated, you need to get her in ASAP - so they can administer fluids, then you can spend tonight syringing water into her, but she needs to get fluids immediately - can you get in now to see the vet for at a minimum?
     
  11. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Vet not possible... Will force fluids tonight. I am trying to give her Science Diet ground food. She gets a little excited about it but then rejects it.
     
  12. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    is the food canned or dry kibbles?

    add a lot of water to canned food to ensure she is getting enough to stop the dehydration. if you are giving dry food, stop immediately as this will only further dehydrate her.

    if she isn't eating, try other brands of food, friskies fancy feast etc you can even try meat flavored baby food - beech nut stage 1 is a good option - it's just meat and meat juice, no spices, onions, or anything else -

    is she vomiting or having diarrhea?
     
  13. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    No vomiting or diarrhea... Food is Science Diet canned food. I cannot get her to eat at all.
     
  14. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

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    Oct 31, 2012
    Do you have anything else canned food wise? If she is rejecting the one she might eat a different flavor, style or brand? ALso is she taking the water you are trying to give her? When was the last time you did a glucose check on her and what was it?
     
  15. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    You can pick up a low cost human glucometer and test strips, plus urine ketone strips from a pharmacy (ex WalMart - Relion Confirm works well) and home test her glucose asap, plus the next fresh urine specimen.

    If her glucose is high and there are ketones in her urine, those plus the lethargy and not eating sounds very much like she may be going into diabetic ketoacidosis which can cost thousands to treat.
     
  16. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Just syringed two teaspoons of water into Fella and she lapped about a teaspoon of baby food earlier. I am so discouraged. She is so weak. We are already very worried about the possibility of the holidays for the kids and now this ketoacidosis thought sounds very possible. What to do....? :(
     
  17. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    She needs more water in her, can you keep syringing it. HOnestly, it sounds like she needs to get immediate vet care, is there any way you can take her in now?
     
  18. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    She rejected more water... I will try again in a bit. Have to try to make the night then will call in the morning.
     
  19. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    will she eat the baby food - add water to that and see if she will take it, even syringe it into her.
     
  20. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    I think you should be prepared to let her go tomorrow and prepare the kids for the possibility.

    It may not come to that but having that talk with the kids will prepare them if that turns out to be the decision made. I'm sure you don't want her to suffer needlessly.
     
  21. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

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    Oct 31, 2012
    Is there an Emergency vet close to you? Even if she has to be pts they can help make her final hours much more comfortable.
     
  22. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    I am out of luck until morning. Tried again Beechnut baby food and water syringe. Struggled to get a teaspoon into her. Her breath smells strongly of a sickening nail polish remover smell. She is most definitely in ketoacidosis. She purrs weakly when I pet her. She mostly wants to be near the fire. She urinated for the first time today a couple hours ago. I still have that smell in my nose.
     
  23. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    Yes, the smell of acetone is quite distinctive.

    {{Hugs}}
     
  24. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Thank you
     
  25. squeem3

    squeem3 Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    The after hours phone messaage for your vet office should tell you who to call for emergencies. Give that a try if you haven't already done so.

    Please get your cat to the vet this morning ASAP. Ketacidosis can be fatal if not immediately treated. This is not something you should attempt to treat at home.

    Ask if the vet offers some sort of financial help. Many do. You can also apply for help from one of these places: http://www.felinediabetes.com/vetbills.htm The link to Diabetic Cats In Need has already been posted for you above.
     
  26. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

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    Oct 31, 2012
    Another option for vet bill assistance is Care Credit. Please apply to that and use it for your baby it will help also.
    How is your baby girl doing this am?
     
  27. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    She is resting comfortably by the fire. The smell is so strong my eyes water when I was a foot away from her. Her breathing is fine and she is responsive and affectionate. She hasn't moved since 2:00 this morning.
     
  28. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    You need to take her to the vet immediately! She is in DKA and if you don't get the vet to treat it, she could die. Sorry to be so harsh, but you need to understand the situation.

    DKA can kill. She needs to be treated at the vet - with IV fluids to flush her system and other drugs to help her.

    Can you call the vet and tell them you have an emergency and she needs to be seen Now.
     
  29. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

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    Oct 31, 2012
    I agree with Hillary!!! Please take her in now!! The description you are giving sounds like a severe case of DKA!!! The vets office should be able to help you with Care Credit or any other payment options they may have or be able to access. But Please do hurry and get your baby to the Vet bcatrun_gif
     
  30. Sienne and Gabby (GA)

    Sienne and Gabby (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    I am going to be blunt. What you are describing sounds like diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). The acetone smell is a givaway. If you do not get your cat to an ER immediately, you risk your cat dying. Diabetes can kill and this is one of the ways it can kill. DKA is treatable if the intervention is done in time. You cannot manage this at home once you start smelling acetone. My cat survived it. Many people here have cats that have survived DKA but you must act immediately.

    Diabetic Cats in Need, that others have mentioned, may be able to help fundraise to help you with costs. You may also want to contact the Banfield Charitable Trust which will also help with emergency veterinary care.
     
  31. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Any update on your cat? How is she doing?
     
  32. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Smell of acetone is strong. Leaving for doctor's in an hour. Don't know what will happen. I will message when I get home. I sent a message to Diabetic Cats in Need and no answer. I keep trying to attach a picture of her and it won't work from my Android. Anyway, she is an 8 1/2 year old calico, best cat I have ever had. She weighed 16-17 pounds before and today she weighs 8 1/2 pounds now.
     
  33. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Honestly DO NOT WAIT - TAKE HER IN NOW! THIS IS AN EMERGENCY AND THEY NEED TO ADJUST THEIR SCHEDULE TO SEE YOU - DID YOU TELL THEM THIS IS AN EMERGENCY.

    DO you understand that your cat has been in distress and DKA for more than a day already and your cat may DIE. YES, DIE - that means the love of your life may not be here in an hour.

    With a smell that strong, she needs attention NOW!

    How else can I stress the importance of this. Leave and take her in now. Demand they take care of her immediately!
     
  34. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    DCIN is not in a financial position to pay for a DKA. DKAs take 4 or 5 days of hospitalization at $1000 to $1500/day. I have responded to the OP's PM and told her this, and given her my phone number.

    I will monitor this thread. If folks here think that the FDMB community will come together to try to help save Little Fella, I will open a chip-in through DCIN so that donations are tax deductible. But I will only be able to pay the vet what DCIN gets through the chip-in. DCIN has no reserves for a DKA.
     
  35. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

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    Oct 31, 2012
    Thank You for responding Venita and for monitoring this thread. We have all been trying to convince Little Fella of the emergency her kitty is in, I just hope the poor baby will recover. I will be watching this thread for the evening as well, as much as I can.
    Thanks again
    Dani and Sandy aka Bug
     
  36. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    We are home. The vet did not keep her. He gave her two mg of Lantis and sent her home. I was given a prescription for a 10 ml bottle. He said to see if she reacts in a day or two. A couple of days ago, as I said, they told me that it would cost me $80-$90 now and $120 for a curve later. I am sick I am so upset. I was charged $45 for today and after calling around my husband is getting the bottle for $148 and change, so I expected to spend $80-$90 now and instead have been trapped into spending nearly $200. My daughter is in tears from the stress. We have no money for anything now. On a positive note, Fella seems more alert and took a little food, but I truly don't know how we will pay for groceries, our prescriptions, bills, and Christmas? There is still the question of arguing with the doctor over the need for a curve in two weeks. I was told it is their normal procedure, and sometimes it gas to be repeated several times until it gets right. I feel sick I am so upset. I want the best for Fella and the family. One week has cost $400 that I don't have. On top of it all, my husband just texted me from the pharmacy that this $148 bottle will barely last one month, not three months like we were told. We can't do this.. Please help... I need support. I am in tears myself.....
     
  37. Sienne and Gabby (GA)

    Sienne and Gabby (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    The vial of Lantus can last up to 6 mos. if you are careful with it.

    Please go out immediately and purchase Ketostix. You can get them at any pharmacy. You will need to catch your cat in the litter box and get a urine sample or hold the stick in the cat's urine stream. There is a color code on the canister. If you see more than trace ketones, you need to take your cat to the ER. You cannot manage more than trace ketones at home.

    Did your vet test for ketones. If not, he's irresponsible given the information you've given us.
     
  38. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    He did not test for ketones if that requires urine, which I assume it does. I have no money. I can't take her to an emergency room. I have nothing. In fact, I have less than nothing. My husband says to start preparing the kids for a barren Christmas. I feel sick.
     
  39. I agree, you need to call and ask the vet if they tested for ketones. If the smell was that obvious, I have to believe they at least checked???

    My cat Bob, was diagnosed DKA a couple days after he was diagnosed as diabetic. When I brought him in, well, let's just say that a lot of what you have posted about the way your cat looks and acts brought back some scary memories. My vet told me that if I had waited just one more day to bring him in (and he spent 3 days in emergency care), Bob would have died. He came that close to dying. Tonight, he's up in my feet as I'm typing this, insisting that the clock doesn't really say 7:30, but that it says it's time for his midnight snack. :lol: He's fat, happy, and he's not needed a shot of insulin for 16 months. He went from nearly dead to remission in 10 weeks.

    I never made it through his 1st vial of insulin, and he got some fairly hefty doses in the time he was getting shots. That vial of insulin you got holds 1000 units of insulin. Even at a dose as high as 2u per shot, that vial can last you 250 days, well over 6 months.

    The box of ketostix that Sienne mentioned might cost you $5, but if she's DKA, the sticks will show that, and can save her life.

    Carl

    Edited to add - ketones can also be tested from a blood sample, so they may or may not have done that. Can you call them and find out?
     
  40. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Hi, what is your name? Where are you--generally--state and nearest large city. There may be someone nearby who could provide some hands-on help.

    Please email me and I will arrange for DCIN to reimburse you for today's costs. Ask your husband to also get a bottle of Ketostix, and hopefully he is getting syringes too. Have him get a pack of 10 syringes from that pharmacy. A box of syringes is too much $ at this point.

    Venita@dcin.info.

    Send me your shipping address and I will get a glucometer, strips, syringes to you by Saturday morning....everything you need to get started that you won't already have.

    Going forward, we can talk about getting your signed up for DCIN's financial assistance program.
     
  41. Oh, one other thing.....about "curves" at the vet's office.

    If you home test, you will never need to bring her to the vet for a glucose curve. You will be able to do it just as well, in fact, better, than they can in the comfort of your own home. In fact, unless there's some sort of emergency in the future, once you get past this one, you won't have to bring her to the vet for any diabetes related reason.
    If you could smell the acetone scent across the room, and your vet didn't check for ketones, then that isn't a place you would want to bring her back to anyway.

    Carl
     
  42. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    ok, first take a deep breath and try to calm down. you can do this in an economical way without having to take the cat to the vet for curves.yes, you will go against the vet, but if you are prepared for that and possibly finding a new vet, we can help you to do this.

    you need to home test. this is the only way that you can safely give insulin AND avoid taking the cat to the vet for a curve. all a curve is, is testing every 2 hours or so over a 12 hour period. the problem with testing at the vet's office is that the results may not be accurate due to vet stress, cat not in home environment, etc. so you can save your money by not doing this.

    we will help teach you how to test.

    i realize you purchased the vial, next time, get a scrip for insulin pens (solostar) and there currently is a $25 offcoupon available for it. we can get into that at another time.

    if you tell us where you are located, there may be someone close by who can help show you how to home test.

    deep breath and remember this is doable.

    do you still smell the acetone smell?
     
  43. Sandy and Brie

    Sandy and Brie Member

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    Oct 23, 2012
    Did the vet tell you what your kitty's glucose was? I'm hoping that they did an ear stick. Please try feeding just fancy feast classics. They are lower in carbs, readily available. Many people on the board feed this. FF classics are cheaper at Target than Petsmart in my area plus alot of times if you use your debit card you'll get coupons for .75 or 1.00 off if you buy 20 cans.

    Sandy
     
  44. Wendy&Tiggy(GA)

    Wendy&Tiggy(GA) Well-Known Member

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    Nov 15, 2011
    Take a deep breath. We are here to help you.

    1. DCIN are sending you supplies for testing
    2. Buy some keto diastix from Walmart, they are cheap and will let you keep an eye on his ketones in his pee.
    3. Stop feeding dry food and buy canned instead. Fancy feast classics are cheap and low carb, keep an eye on local flyers as they go up and down in price so buy more when they are on sale!
    4. Start reading the stickies on how to test the blood, and handling and deal with low numbers
    5. Don't do a curve at the vet. It's a waste of money, it's more accurate and cheaper to do it at home, ignore the vet if he pressures you to do it. A lot of vets don't know enough about cat diabetes.
    6. Make sure you store the lantus in the fridge. Don't roll it. Read the stickie about handling insulin. It can last up to six months don't worry!
    7. Engage your husband and daughters support if you can.
    8. Come over to the lantus land forum and set up your spreadsheet and profile. Visit us daily with updates.


    Wendy
     
  45. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    one way you can deal with the vet if he insists on the curve. tell him you would be more than happy to oblige, but you cannot afford to do it, so would he would donate his services for doing the curve and do it for FREE! then you will bring the cat in.

    i bet he won't do it and will stop bothering you about it.
     
  46. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    Again you all have been angels, thank you for your support. Thank you Venita so much. Little Fella ate a third of a can of A/D food from the vets office. She is resting now. I will be syringing liquid into her very shortly.
    Thank you...
     
  47. KPassa

    KPassa Well-Known Member

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    Oct 23, 2012
    Since everyone has already mentioned quite a few cost-cutting methods for supplies, I figured I'd mention a few ways to cut costs on food. I've been doing a cost-comparison of the low carb, wet foods on Dr. Lisa's awesome list from my local pet store (I'm in Southern California, so it's most likely even cheaper wherever you're at). Friskies is so far the cheapest for me at $0.53 per 5.5oz whereas Fancy Feast averages out to about $1.08 for every 5.5oz (~$0.59 per 3oz can, although they have sales a lot and discounts on bulk). They're both also around the same calorie count although the carbs differ. For example, with the Turkey and Giblets variety, the calories/carb come out to about 187/8 (Friskies Classic Pate), 166/5 (Friskies Special) and 172/3 (Fancy Feast Classic). Another fairly inexpensive food is the Merrick's BG (Before Grain) at $1.25 per 5.5oz can and ~146 calories and ~2 carbs (for the Turkey variety).

    Where are you located? There might be someone in your area who can help you out with getting started on all of this (i.e. testing, dosage requirements, food, treats, etc...). It can definitely be overwhelming at times, especially when you're already stressed-out about the financial burden and the potential DKA.
     
  48. KPassa

    KPassa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    One last thing: add MORE water to all wet food. Unregulated diabetic cats have a greater need of both food and water, yet all cats don't experience "thirst" the same way a human does. Naturally, they get the majority of their water from food, so when they're thirsty, they want to eat a lot more food. Adding water helps curb a diabetic cat's insatiable appetite and lighten the load on your pocketbook (and your kitty's belly :lol: ).
     
  49. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  50. Lisa and Witn (GA)

    Lisa and Witn (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    The pharmacy told you that the vial of Lantus will only last a month because for humans, it has an expiration date of 28 days. But that is only for humans. It does not mean that it is suddenly no good, that is just a FDA requirement. For cats you can continue using that vial for several months until it begins to become ineffective. You will know when that starts by hometesting and you start getting higher readings than nomal.

    Please tell us where you live (city & state only) We may have members that live nearby that can show you how to hometest. Many of us understand what you are going through, we have been there ourselves. At one point, I was unemployed with 2 diabetic cats. So I found ways of cutting costs but not quality of their care. Right now everything is overwhelming and scary. But we can try to help you get through this.
     
  51. Sandy96

    Sandy96 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2012
    Any news on LittleFella?
     
  52. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Update: This morning I got up and couldn't find LittleFella. After 45 minutes of searching, I found her under the couch, somewhere she never goes. I pulled her out and gave her the morning dose of insulin. Then I gave her food and water. She took half a teaspoon if A/D food and two syringes of water. Then she perked up a little. She came and sat with us as we homeschooled, then went and laid on my bed. She rested there for a little bit, and when I came to offer her more water, my entire bedroom smelled strongly of acetone. She did not raise her head until I touched her, and that was only a split second. Before that, I had to watch carefully as she laid thereto see if she was breathing or not. I picked her up and gave her another syringe of water. She spit out anymore that I gave her. I then carried her to the fireplace and put her in her bed. She has not moved. As I was building up the fire, the smell of acetone made me sick. DCIN has been gracious enough to cover yesterday's costs, leaving just the $200 in diagnosis costs that we have to somehow compensate for. Thank you Venita and DCIN. Right now we are determining with Venita how to proceed. I am concerned that if it is too late, I don't want her to feel deserted and be completely stressed out at the hospital. I want her to be comfortable and not scared. Should I just keep giving her fluids, food, and meds, or should I take her in? Keep in mind that I am not terribly happy with the vet. I do feel that she is going downhill. Also, we are in Rochester, NY. Thoughts.... Venita what do you think?
     
  53. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I know you can't afford ER, and neither can DCIN.

    I know you couldn't get her to the vet earlier today because of no vehicle. Do you have a ride now? Please take her to the vet. Either the vet will feel he can do something with some IV fluids and Regular insulin, or he will suggest euthanasia. She can't continue like this. DKA is a cruel condition and she is suffering.
     
  54. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Don't leave her there. Stay with her. Insist on being where she is when she is treated or euthanized.
     
  55. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    PS: Not to mention I was up until 3:45 this morning and there are two preteens and three poodle terriers that want all of Mommy's attention too. Everyone is very upset. The smell is really upsetting the dogs.
     
  56. Julia & Bandit

    Julia & Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I have quite a few friends in Rochester--let me see if I can get a vet recommendation for you. What part of Rochester are you in?
     
  57. terri1962

    terri1962 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Yes this poor cat needs to get to the vet thats for sure right away, one that can test for ketones.
    Thanks Julia

    Terri
     
  58. Julia & Bandit

    Julia & Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  59. If you can get her to the vet that Julia suggested, please, please do so right away. If she can't go to the vet to be treated, she needs to be put to sleep. She will die if this is DKA, and it will be a horrible way to die. If all you can do is have her put to sleep, then please find it in your heart to do that for her. Of course, none of us wants that, and I'm sure you don't either. But it would be a last gift to her to let her go without pain, rather than suffering through DKA without treatment.

    I am so very sorry for her, for you, and for your family,
    Carl
     
  60. Julia & Bandit

    Julia & Bandit Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I completely agree with Carl. :sad:
     
  61. baileysmom

    baileysmom New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2012
    Hello,

    I undertand where your coming from because today I found out my 1 year old Main Coon has diabetes. Have to go to the specialist next week.
     
  62. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Just got home from hospital for myself... Little Fella has lost kidney control and is having seizures. I called the vet. They are closed. I cannot afford an emergency euthanasia. The truck broke down as my husband came in the driveway.
     
  63. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    $130.00 for emergency euthanasia
     
  64. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Will they come to your house?
     
  65. KPassa

    KPassa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    :cry: I'm so sorry for everything you're going through. I don't have much to add besides letting you know your family has been in my prayers. {{Hugs}}
     
  66. Dyana

    Dyana Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  67. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Please have her euthanasized. DKA is a horrific death. DCIN will pay the vet for a reasonable PTS fee.
     
  68. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Called link above... Closed and just refers me back to number I have already called. I have no way of paying for that.
     
  69. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    DCIN will pay to have her euthanized.
     
  70. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  71. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    How do I go about it?
     
  72. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    click on the link get the physical address and go there. Do you have transportation?
     
  73. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Take her to that vet. Don't let them make you wait around in the lobby. Tell them she has been DKA for a couple days and is currently having seizures. You need her PTS. Have them call me for payment. You have my number. Just in case, I am sending it by PM again.
     
  74. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    585-424-1277
    Address:
    825 White Spruce Blvd.
    Rochester, NY 14623

    call ahead to let them know you are on your way, so that they are waiting for her with an open room.
     
  75. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Ok. My husband will take her. I will keep the kids home. He is trying to patch up the truck so it is drivable. The kids saw the seizure. They are very upset. I will be talking to the office and explaining things to them. I will message you when he gets there. I will have them call you then.
     
  76. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Little Fella's dad is on his way to the vet with her.
     
  77. Thank you Venita.

    Carl
     
  78. Dyana

    Dyana Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Thank you, Venita.
     
  79. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Thank you Venita..Sending a prayer for this precious soul... :(
     
  80. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    {{Hugs}}

    May your good memories help lighten grief.
     
  81. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Thank you Venita. Thank you all. Little Fella is with my husband now. They just put a catheter in her. My husband will sit with her. He is very emotional.
     
  82. Wendy&Tiggy(GA)

    Wendy&Tiggy(GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
  83. Nancy&Pepper (GA)

    Nancy&Pepper (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2012
    So sorry for the loss of your beautiful girl. Try not to think of the last few unhappy days, but remember all the happy years she had with you.
     
  84. Dyana

    Dyana Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    (((((Hugs))))) to you and your husband and your children.
    Fly Free and happy and healthy Little Fella.
    [​IMG]
    Know that she will be waiting for you at the Rainbow Bridge to one day reunite with the ones she loves. She knows you love her, and she loves you too.
     
  85. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  86. Sandy and Brie

    Sandy and Brie Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2012
    I'm so sorry that you are so sick LittleFella. May you soon be at peace baby girl.

    Sandy
     
  87. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    At about 6:10 pm LittleFella passed away at the emergency vets. Thank you all for your wonderful words
     
  88. Hope + (((Baby)))GA

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

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    So very sad and my heart and deepest sympathy go out to you, your husband and children and all who loved Little Fella. Been following the posts and was saying my prayers for LF.......so glad to know your husband stayed with her and she wasn't alone wings_cat
     
  89. Laura and Harley (GA)

    Laura and Harley (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Tears. ((((Hugs to you, your husband and children))))

    Fly Free Little Fella rb_icon
     
  90. While my heart is broken for you and your family, find peace in knowing that your last gift to Little Fella was one of love.

    Fly free sweet girl.

    Carl
     
  91. Ry & Scooter

    Ry & Scooter Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2011
    From DCIN's Facebook:

    I am so sorry. :(
     
  92. grapey

    grapey Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2012
    I'm so sorry for your loss. Thank you for giving her a pain-free passing. She's not hurting anymore. Give yourself the time you need to grieve.
     
  93. j_o

    j_o Member

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2012
    I am so sorry for your loss I know the greif that you are going through. My heart goes out to your family. RIP Little Fella I can tell from the posts how much you were loved and how much you will be missed.
     
  94. Squeaky and KT (GA)

    Squeaky and KT (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    I'm so sorry it was Little Fella's time to cross - THANK YOU to all that helped her on her journey. Fly free sweet baby, and land softly right back in your family's hearts.

    BIG LOOOOONG HUG,
     
  95. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Thank you all once again for your support and sweet understanding. Tears come to the eyes often. We are trying to rest and heal today. Little Fella is resting in the back yard now. We miss her dearly. I finally ate for the first time in two days last night at midnight. The dogs act quite upset, especially Ginger, the one who was closest to Little Fella. Little Fella would give Ginger baths and they would lay together. Ginger and her sister have been sniffing around quite a bit and then they act sad and confused. I am sure the smell was very troubling for them. When Little Fella went through the seizure yesterday, it was all we could do to control the dogs. I am keeping them close today. Blessings to all.....
     
  96. Caryl & Sebastian & Alex (GA)

    Caryl & Sebastian & Alex (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I'm so sorry for your loss but if I were you I'd report the vet you first took your cat to. There is no way that a Vet, any Vet, would not suggest keeping a cat that smelled like acetone in the hospital. Every article on the internet about Feline Diabetes will list DKA as an immediate danger by paragraph 2, if not sooner. If that information is available to us lay people, then a VET surely would know better than to send an animal off to die.

    I have a ketone prone cat...well he was a ketone prone cat (unjinx and knock wood) and I KNOW that smell well. And how sick my Alex was when the smell was that bad that you could smell it across the room. I realize that you didn't have the money for 5 days in the hospital but that Vet could have gotten your little guy started. There is no excuse for that. I'd like to know who he is because I have friends in Rochester with cats. If you would PM me I'd REALLY appreciate it.

    Again,
    I'm so sorry for your loss.

    Caryl
     
  97. LittleFella

    LittleFella Member

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Thank you for your support and I have sent you a pm. The doctor said on Thursday when I brought her in, quote "She smells like acetone because she has diabetes. She needs to get on insulin twice a day. Force feed what you can. Give it until at least Saturday." This was after I stressed to him several times that she was going downhill quickly. By the way, I broke down in the middle of the pet store today when my daughter and I came across a five month old little boy kitten that looks exactly like LittleFella. It was too much for me. I couldn't look at him.
     
  98. Tara & Buster

    Tara & Buster Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2012
    So sorry it was time for LittleFella to go. I love the way she got her name - I'm sure she will always be remembered fondly. My sympathies to you and your family.
     
  99. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I am very sorry for your loss.
    Fly free sweet Little Fella.
    May you soar high and wide and land softly at the bridge.
     
  100. x3smokey

    x3smokey New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2016
    Just received that my 9 year old cat almost 10 on August 30! Is diabetic. I was overwhelmed thinking how could I possibly afford this. Although I haven't gotten through all the messages on this tread I am already feeling a little relieved that I will be able to help her.
     
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