? New member with questions

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Sue Francisco, Aug 15, 2015.

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  1. Sue Francisco

    Sue Francisco New Member

    Aug 14, 2015
    Hi, my name is Sue and my 13 year old male cat, Sage, was diagnosed with diabetes last Wed. Sage's blood sugar reading at the time of diagnosis was 400. He was prescribed Lantus SoloStar insulin 2 units every 12 hours. We put him on Royal Canin diabetic canned and dry food and were told it was OK for him to eat my other cat's renal care dry food.

    We took Sage back to the vet a week later for his follow up blood sugar test 2 hours after his morning shot and his reading was 323 so the vet upped the dose to 3 units and asked us to home test his blood. We failed miserably and ended up taking him back to the vet for testing 8.5 hours after his morning shot (4 hours later than he was scheduled to be tested because my husband was totally stressed out and wanted to wait until I got home to go with him). His reading was 398. Our vet said the high reading was probably because it was close to his next dose and we should try to home test 4 hours after his morning dose the next day (today).

    We tried to home test again today 4 hours after his morning shot but couldn't get it done (first I couldn't get any blood out of his foot. Then I got blood out of his ear but couldn't get it on the test strip right). So we took him back to the vet and his reading was 435! The vet tech that took the blood draw put a message in for our vet to call us.

    So we are wondering if we are giving him the shot correctly. How do you know if you gave your cat a "fur shot"??? We are giving it to him in the scruff of the neck and tenting. But we weren't holding the button down for the 10 seconds until today. We leave the needle in for 10 seconds but were just pressing and releasing the button. We know he feels it because he dreads it and runs away from us when he sees us get it out.

    Can we use urine test strips to test and just skip the home blood tests?
    We are putting our sharps in an empty Planter's Peanut can. How are we supposed to dispose of the can?

    I watched the video that came with the home test kit and learned that sometimes the problem isn't that the cat doesn't have enough insulin but that the insulin isn't binding to its receptors. How do you know if your cat's insulin won't bind to its receptors and what can be done about it?

    Are there any training classes? We don't want our cat to suffer at our inexperienced hands or drag him to the vet everyday. We want to learn how to give the injections and home test with confidence without turning our cat into a lab rat.

    Our vet didn't tell us not to feed our cat dry cat food. What is the reason for recommending he get wet food only? Is it because of the higher calorie content?

    I noticed other people are feeding their cats on a schedule. We were only told if he doesn't eat, he doesn't get the insulin but otherwise we weren't told to take up our dry food that we leave out all day. Are all diabetic cats supposed to eat on a schedule? If so, what is the schedule?

    I am very glad to find this community because our vet didn't give us near enough resources or training!
    I look forward to receiving your answers and suggestions!
  2. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    - You want to feed a low-carb diet but dry food is high carb. A prescription food is not required. Here is a list of low-carb, commercial canned
    - Some caretakers feed two a day before the shot and shoot after eating. Others feed some before the shot and then feed the remainder throughout the day. All you really want is a consistent food intake since insulin without enough food can lead to a low blood sugar which can be life threatening.
    - Testing blood sugar level (BG) at the vent can result ins a BG reading that is artificially raised because of vet stress. That is why BG testing at home is best. BG testing at home is intimidating at first but get very easy later. When getting a sample from the ear make sure the ear is warm. I just the lanced pen that comes with the meter. Start with the deepest settings. Some jsut use the lancet free hand. Also, you want a lancet (the needle part) with a larger diameter. They are sold for human and are labeled for alternate site test (testing besides human finger tips). Larger diameter means low gauge number. You want 25-28 gauge while human finger tip one can be 30-31- gauge.
    Also, make sure that you firmly backup the ear. I use a cotton cosmetic pad for backin up. Otherwise the lancet tip will deflect the ear vice piece the ear. Aftet a whiel the ears learn to bleed more easily since more capillaries are developed in the ear.
    - Where are yo located? Maybe someone is near yo and can give you a demonstration.
    - Most of use here use an insulin syringe to draw insulin form the pen and inject with the insulin. That is usually easer than using the pen. Also, the pen only dispenses in one-unit increments and many cants need non-unit increments of insulin.
    - Also, 2 units is a high starting dose and may be too much insulin. If that is the case the cat compensate by the liver dumping glycogen into the bloodstream to raise BG to prevent it from going too low. That may be happening to you since the vet measure a higher BG with 3 units than 2. However, this dumping is only temporary and too high a dose can result in a dangeriously low BG
    Sue Francisco likes this.
  3. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Oct 6, 2010
    Welcome to FDMB, the best place you never wanted to be.

    There are 4 things you'll need to manage your kitty's diabetes:
    - You - without your commitment, the following won't work.
    - Home blood glucose monitoring with an inexpensive human glucometer such as the WalMart Relion Confirm or Target Up and Up (the pet ones will break your budget!). This saves you the cost of going to the vet for curves and done regularly, removes the need for a fructosamine test.
    - Low carb over the counter canned or raw diet, such as many Friskies pates. See Cat Info for more info. If already on insulin, you must be home testing before changing the diet. Food changes should be gradual to avoid GI upsets - 20-25% different food each day until switched. There are 2 low carb, dry, over the counter foods in the US - Evo Cat and Kitten dry found at pet specialty stores and Young Again 0 Carb found online.
    - A long-lasting insulin such as ProZinc, Lantus, BCP PZI, or Levemir. No insulin lasts 24 hours in the cat, so giving it every 12 hours is optimal for control.
    Sue Francisco likes this.
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