? Newbie to this forum

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by CarolineSnow, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. CarolineSnow

    CarolineSnow New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2016
    Hello everyone, I have recently found this site and am excited to receive some feedback on my cat Webber's diabetes journey so far. Webber is a 1 1/2 year old rescue cat who was diagnosed with Feline Diabetes in July 2016. I took Webber to the Vet when I noticed him drinking lots of water, peeing a lot, and losing weight - he went from 11.8 lbs in March 2016 to 8.5 lbs in July 2016. It was surprising to the Vet since most cats don't develop diabetes at his young age, so a blood chemistry panel was ordered, in which all tests were within normal range except for a blood glucose of 560 mg/dL! !! Although I was excited that Webby's labs revealed that his (disease) was treatable, I was concerned about how he was going to react to the insulin. The Vet placed him on Vetsulin - beginning with 1 unit 12 hours apart /daily and set up an appointment for a type of glucose tolerance test to evaluate his glucose levels throughout a day at his office.
    Well, that didn't go well - his glucose stayed up in the 500's and 400's level throughout the day after 1 unit at 8:00 AM. The Vet contributed that to Webber's stress level and his limited daily activities, so we increased the insulin to 2 units/twice daily. After 14 days on the new dosage, I brought Webber into the Vet's office one afternoon at 5:00 PM to see how he was responding only to find that his blood glucose was 560 mg/dL!
    So, his dosage was increased to 3 units, twice daily. A Fructosamine level on that day was 434 umol/L. The Vet stated that the level represented good glucose management and I was encouraged about that.
    Last week, I took Webber back to the Vet for his 1st annual Rabies vaccination, his blood sugar at 5:00 PM was 560 mg/dL , so I asked the Vet to collect another Fructosamine - which came back as 630 umol/L. Not happy with that, the Vet increased Webby's insulin dosage to 4 units/ twice daily. I inquired about changing the insulin type from Vetsulin to Lantas, or something similar, since Webby's glucose is not well- controlled at this point, but the Vet stated that we should wait a few months to see how he responds to the new dosage. I will add that Webby's weight was 13.3 lbs on this visit. I am feeding him Fancy Feast wet food with a small amount of tuna during pre-shot meals and he eats DM dry food during the day.

    After reading this blog site, I decided to try performing home glucose tests to obtain spot glucose tests throughout the day. I have obtained a glucometer with test strips and lancets and looked at UTube videos on how to collect a blood sample on a cat - and tried it several times- leaving me with an unhappy cat and no blood!!!! So I need some direction and guidance on collecting the blood sample.

    I apologize for the lengthiness of this introductory post, but wanted to share all of the issues we've faced since Webby's diagnosis.
    Thanks!
    Caroline
     
  2. WileyWonderCat

    WileyWonderCat Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Hi Caroline and welcome! Webby is so young to have diabetes. He is so lucky to have you to take care of him!! I would highly recommend reading as much as possible on this forum for tips on testing, feeding, etc. There is a forum specifically for Vetsulin support, which I would check out.

    Regarding his diet, is there anyway you can stop feeding the dry food? Dry food is typically way too high carb for diabetic cats, even the dry food that is prescription. If Webby is a kibble addict, you may want to order a sample of Young Again Zero Carb. If you think stopping dry food is viable, you may want to try freezing wet food in ice cube trays with a little bit of water and leaving out a food cube during the day instead.

    Regarding testing, what is the problem? Is Webby too wiggly? Is the ear not bleeding? Are you warming the ear before attempting the prick?
     
  3. CarolineSnow

    CarolineSnow New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2016
    Thanks so much for your response! I may need to try the Young Again Zero Carb for Webby's dry food. I appreciate the guidance on best food choices for him.

    I may have lancets that are too small to stick Webb's ear , though I make sure they are warm. upon researching some good suggestions for pricking the ear, I may be sticking the wrong place, more at the edge of the ear instead of the portion just inside the ear. He isn't wiggly, but perhaps gets impatient with my slowness, which I am sur will improve with practice. I so wish I knew what his blood glucose is. wishing someone lived close to me to practice with. the ear is warm, I don't think that the lancet is deep enough to puncture the vessel too.
     
  4. donnalea

    donnalea Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2016
    You might want to check out U tube for videos on testing his BG. There are some good ones. If he gets wiggly, wrap him up in a large towel like a kitty burrito.

    Take your time and read as much as you can, there is a lot to learn. If you have any questions, ask in the main health forum. It seems to me that 3 knits is a large dose for Vetsulin for a kitty that is new to insulin. I would check on the Vetsulin forum for dosing advice.
     
    CarolineSnow likes this.
  5. WileyWonderCat

    WileyWonderCat Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Are you using the lancet freehand or with the lancet pen? What gauge are your lancets? I use freehand with 30 gauge and normally can get a blood drop on first try- but sometimes it takes two or three pokes- or sometimes I need to massage the ear a bit after the poke to get the blood drop. What type of meter are you using?
     
  6. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Welcome Caroline and Webber!
    Have you seen this?
    http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/threads/hometesting-links-and-tips.287/
    Be sure to use a size 25-28 gauge lancet. I vigorously rub my cats ear to get the blood going before I poke, then I sometimes have to milk the ear rubbing from the base toward the poke spot. Always give a low carb treat after, even if the test was unsuccessful.
     
  7. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    Welcome to FDMB and kudos to you for home testing Webby. He is indeed young to have diabetes. My sugar was only 4 yrs. old when diagnosed and even that was considered young.

    You've got some great tips already but here are a few more.

    Some folks freehand test but if you prefer to use the lancing device, take the cap off it. The caps are meant to be used with fingertips which are far more "fleshy" than the ear pinnae. Hold the device at about a 60 degree angle to the spot you want to prick. You can put a very thin skim of Vaseline on the target spot to help the blood bead up. And make sure you put something behind the ear to provide a bit of support as well as protect your fingers.
    If Webby gets impatient about your speed, hold a few mock tests without him. I did this just so I developed a routine of getting the lancing device ready and the strip into the meter at just the right time and it helped to make things go more smoothly because I wasn't fumbling around causing kitty curiosity and head tossing to see what I was doing.

    The ears grow more capillaries as you test more so it will get easier to get blood as time goes on.
     
  8. CarolineSnow

    CarolineSnow New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2016
    Webby is wiggly and doesn't want to sit still. BUT !!!! I was successful tonight and we got a BS on webby at 10:50 PM it was 429 mg/dL.. I gave webby since insulin at 9:15 PM, so I guess this one will be just a "spot" check. 429 mg/dL is still high, but I can't evaluate anything at this time. I noticed some spreadsheets that are confusing to me, but I would love to know where I can find one.
    I am so excited that I got blood. thankful that the testing kit only needed a small amount of blood. Thanks for your guidance!
     
    WileyWonderCat and Kris & Teasel like this.
  9. CarolineSnow

    CarolineSnow New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2016
    I am using the ReliOn Micro glucose meter with a 1.5 mm lancet which seemed to work perfectly. It just expressed a way small drop enough for the meter. I used it freehand (without a pen).
     
    WileyWonderCat likes this.
  10. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    Congrats on getting a test. It definitely does get easier with time and before you know it, it will be second nature for both of you.

    Below are links to the instructions for the spreadsheet and an explanation of it. It looks confusing at first but it's really very simple. Does all the colour coding automatically and all you have to do is input your readings. We don't use times but rather AMPS/PMPS (morning/night pre-shot tests) and then mid-cycle tests input according to how many hours past the shot. We do this so the sheet is understandable by anyone viewing and offering assistance because we have members around the planet so clock times aren't meaningful when you need assistance.

    The instructions for setting the spreadsheet up are HERE.

    And THIS document explains it in more detail.

    If you have any problem setting it up, just holler and we can have someone assist you. :)
     

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