1. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all
    My Cat Loki has just been diagnosed as diabetic. He is a rescue cat and was over weight when we adopted him. we were told that he was 4 years old but 3 vets at our practice have said that they would put him at about 8 yrs old. We were advised to put him on a diet of a dry food and to reduce the amount we gave him at his feeds. Approximately 5 weeks later he stopped eating. after a couple of days of not eatnig we took him to the vets. After a lot of testing and keeping him in for a week plus a very high vets bill, they said he could come home tonight. He has been at home tonight and we told to feed him at 8pm and to then give him 2 units of insulin. he has only just started eating (9.35p.m.) so I have been advised by the vets to give him insulin after he has eaten. I am finding all of this a lot to take on board! thanks
     
  2. Vyktors Mum

    Vyktors Mum Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2011
    What type of insulin are you on and why was he hospitalised, was it diabetic ketoacidosis?

    Diabetic kitties do better on low carb wet food but you will want to be home testing before you swap him over as the change can have a big effect on the numbers.

    Welcome aboard :)
     
  3. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Teresa, and welcome to you and Loki. :)
     
  4. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all. Unfortunately he has barely eaten a thing over night. The vets have said to check back on him during my lunch break and if he still hasn't eaten they will probably want him back in to monitor. This is just not an option for us after the last vets bill there is no way we can afford for him to stay in again.
    He has been put on royal canine diabetic food (dry food) 30g twice a day. They said he ate it whilst he was with them for the last week! They also said he was a nibbler rather than eating in 1 hit but prior to all of this he used wolf his food down.
    he is on caninsulin. But I have not given him any since he left the vets at 6.30pm as the vets told me it was dangerous to give him the insulin if he hasn't eaten.
    Just don't know what to do now
     
  5. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    Sorry about this but I feel at my wits end. We saw our vet 5 weeks ago for flea treatment and were advised to put him on a diet of dry food. This was fine for 4 weeks then he stopped eating. By day 2 of not eating I was concerned so took him to the vets. They were concerned because he was dyhrated and wanted to keep him in for tests. 2 days later they informed me that his glucose levels were high and suspected diabetes. He was on a drip for 5 days and didn't eat for 3 days. By day 4 he had started eating the diabetic dry food I previously mentioned. Yesterday they said his glucose levels had dropped enough for them to be able to send him home. Now he's home he's not eating again. He seems interested in food as is actively searching out food but turns his nose up at the dry food the vets gave us. It just feels like we're back at square 1
     
  6. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Teresa and Loki, and welcome to FDMB :bighug:
    Why did the vet do this?
    Was Loki eating wet food before this?
    Do you think Loki would eat the food he was eating before?
    It is very important that Loki eats.

    Have I understood you correctly that you are not giving insulin at the moment?

    And you say the vet has prescribed Caninsulin. Are you in the UK? Oz? NZ..?

    Big reassuring hug to you,

    Eliz
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2015
  7. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Teresa,

    Here's a bit more info for you.

    Most of us here feed ordinary low carb wet/canned food. It's not necessary to buy prescription food. And dry food will further elevate the blood glucose and exacerbate dehydration.
    The foods available to you will vary depending on the country you live in.

    I fully understand that what we feed our cats conflicts with your vet's nutrition advice. But folks here have a lot of day to day experience of what works for their diabetic cats; and vets get very little training in feline nutrition.

    For cats on insulin caution is needed when switching from dry to wet food. That's because switching to a lower carb diet will probably reduce the blood glucose, and that means that the insulin dose may need to be reduced also.
    Therefore, for a cat on dry food who is currently receiving insulin we recommend that the diet switch only takes place if/when the caregiver has learned to test their cat's blood glucose at home (way easier than it sounds) and can adjust insulin dosage accordingly.

    Sometimes people hold off from giving insulin in order to switch their cat to a wet low carb diet first.
    However, if the cat has a history of DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis), or has shown ketones in it's blood/urine, then it needs insulin ASAP.

    Teresa, was Loki diagnosed with DKA?
    And if not, for what reason was he hospitalized?

    If Loki hasn't eaten, but his blood glucose is high, then it may still be possible to give some insulin; a reduced or token dose, perhaps. (Maybe something to ask your vet about?)

    I strongly advise you to monitor Loki's pee for ketones at home using Ketodiastix (or equivalent). They are available from most pharmacies.
    Does Loki use a litter tray? Putting some crumpled plastic food wrap in the tray can help to catch a sample. You only need a tiny weeny amount.
    You may also want to be aware of how Loki's breath smells. It should smell like normal kitty breath. Some ketones have a distinctive smell like acetone/peardrops.

    The best way to know what's going on with Loki's blood glucose is to learn to test that at home also. We can help you learn to do that...

    Eliz
     
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  8. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

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    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi again, Teresa, (Geez, you're going to be getting sick of me! ;))

    Most of us here test our cats' blood glucose at home using ordinary glucose meters made for humans.

    This is a quick process and should not hurt the cat at all, as the blood is usually taken from the outer edge of the ear where there are very few nerve endings.

    In a nutshell, the process is this:
    The outer edge of the ear is pricked to get a teensy weensy blood droplet; that blood droplet is transferred to a test strip in a glucose meter; and then the glucose meter counts down and gives a result.
    Hometesting is a fantastic tool for the management of feline diabetes.

    I expect it probably seems a bit much that I'm suggesting hometesting when you haven't even got used to giving insulin shots yet. But I just want you to be aware of what you can do if you want to. :)
    Here is a link to the FDMB page of hometesting info, tips, tricks and example videos:
    Hometesting Links and Tips

    Eliz
     
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  9. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Teresa,

    Has Loki eaten anything yet?
     
  10. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all. Thanks for all your responses.
    We put loki on a diet after our vet adviced us to because he was overweight. Things seemed to be going fine then he was given some whiskas biscuits and after those he stopped eating. That's when I took him to the vets again. They kept him in and a few days later said his glucose levels were high so they suspected he was diabetic. He was on a drip for 5 days and eventually began to eatthe royal canine diabetic dry food. His levels were still high so they told me they had started to give him 2 units of insulin twice a day.
    He has finally eaten today (last nights food was consumed between 9am and 1.30pm when I popped home on my lunch break). I gave him his second feed at 7pm and he has eaten most of it so I have given him the 2 units of insulin. My vet advised me to not give him any insulin until he had eaten tonight as they wanted to ensure he was eating properly first.
    we live in the UK
     
  11. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    Yes loki was eating wet food before he went on the diet the vet advised
     
  12. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Teresa,

    I'm also in the UK, as is Aine ('Critter Mom') who posted above. There are a few UK folks here at the moment.

    I'm really glad to hear that Loki has eaten now.

    There is some very useful info on Caninsulin (also known as Vetsulin in the US) in this document here:
    Vetsulin/Caninsulin user guide

    Some of us have found that Caninsulin can drop the blood glucose quite fast; and feeding a snack about an hour to an hour and a half after the shot can help to slow down that drop a bit. (There may be some info on this in the document I linked to)

    Do ask if you have any questions at all. We are here to help. :)

    Eliz
     
  13. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Teresa,

    Relieved to hear that Loki's eating again. :)
     
  14. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Day 2 and he's woken me up this morning (jumping on my head and meowing! ) so I guessed he was hungry. Gave him the food and he wolfed it down followed by the insulin injection which wasn't as scary (even though I've passed out at the sight of needlesbbefore, think it's just when they're aimed at my arm!)
    Have put out a little bit of extra food for whilst I'm at work this morning as you advised Elizabeth and Bertie, thanks.
    so feeling a bit better about things in general.
    Thanks to everyone for your advice, I will look at those articles when I get home from work.
    Thanks from Teresa and Loki
     
  15. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Glad that things are better today, and doubly so that Loki's found his appetite again. :)
     
  16. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi everyone. Loki went to the vets today so they could do a glucose curve over the course of the day. They have advised me to get a home testing kit so I don't have to keep taking him into the vets. They quoted me £140 for the kit which sounded expensive to me. Does anyone know anywhere I can get one from that is a more reasonable price? thanks
     
  17. phlika29

    phlika29 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2014
    Hi

    Most is just use human meters. I bought mine from boots and it was called the accu-chek aviva. The meter is cheap but the strips are the pricey thing for all meters. I buy mine off eBay. The meter is good but it does need quite abit of blood.

    https://www.accu-chek.co.uk/gb/products/metersystems/aviva.html

    @Elizabeth and Bertie what meter do you use?


    Have you gone back over to wet food? This should really bring down the blood glucose readings and the need for so much insulin. If you haven't I wouldn't do so until you are testing at home. We recommend you test before each shot and then during the cycle.

    Where do you live in the UK . I am in dorset.
     
  18. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi. Thanks for that. I didn't know I could use a human one, the vets said it had to be a pet one. I haven't switched him to wet food yet as he has started eating the dry food really well and would rather wait for him to settle down a bit more.
     
  19. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    I am in Bristol
     
  20. phlika29

    phlika29 Well-Known Member

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    Sep 14, 2014
  21. phlika29

    phlika29 Well-Known Member

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    Sep 14, 2014
    Yes very few people use the feline specific one, just too expensive.
     
  22. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    See my signature link Glucometer Notes for feline-specific reference ranges using human glucometers with cats.
     
  23. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2014
    Hi Teresa,

    I'm another West Country denizen. :)

    How are things going?
     
  24. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all,

    things seemed to have completely settled down with Loki. He is definitely back to his old self and has staked his claim back on every thing inside the house and in his garden. His appetite has vastly improved. Gone back to I can't put his food out quick enough! I can do the injections in my sleep now and he doesn't seem to mind them at all. He has been my great companion for the last 2 weeks as i have injured my back and am currently off work. He is being very helpful lying on my back, it's like a hot massage when he purrs! We are going to be a home kit for testing his glucose levels on as it just gets too expensive booking him into the vets. Is there a particular one people in the uk would recommend? (sorry I can't remember if I have already asked this!)
     
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  25. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Most meters made by Abbot, that take a .3nm droplet should be fine. Then compare cost and availability of test strips to estimate costs using that meter for based on your tests per day or week.
     
  26. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi has anyone experienced their cat being ridiculously hungry? For the past few days Loki has been constantly meowing, getting into cupboards and trying to steel food off me. I have had to shut him out of the room so I don't have to eat stood up! Today he's been going crazy in the garden trying to catch birds. As he was originally home cat when he rescued him he never showed an interest in the birds and if anything he was scared of them. Today he has been trashing my fences trying to get to them. I worry that he's actually really hungry and am not sure what to do.
     
  27. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    How much Caninsulin are you giving him? Not enough, too much, or an insulin that wears off too fast will all result in a higher appetite.
    How much are you feeding him?
     
  28. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    We give him 3 units of insulin twice a day (caninsulin) and 2 servings of 30g food (royal canin diabetic food)
     
  29. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Teresa,

    Quite a few folks in the UK use the Accucheck Aviva. It takes a fairly small blood sample and the test strips (the main cost of testing) can often be bought ongoingly for around half the RRP.
    Edited to add: I see that Sarah gave this link to the meter in one of her posts above:
    https://www.accu-chek.co.uk/gb/products/metersystems/aviva.html

    I would strongly encourage you to try to test, because that odd new behaviour that you're seeing could be related to Loki's blood glucose levels.
    As BJ said, hunger can be caused by blood glucose that is too high or too low. But if it comes on suddenly out of the blue then it's more likely that the blood glucose could be low. And you mentioned Loki getting into cupboards? Is that just because the food is there? The reason I ask is that cats going into cupboards, or staring into corners, can be symptomatic of hypoglycemia. I'm not trying to alarm you, just thinking through possibilities.

    Re food, is Loki being fed twice a day, 30g Royal Canin dry food?

    Eliz
     
  30. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    With Caninsulin , you could be running into any of those 3 issues.
    It may be dropping him too low around +3 to +5 hours post shot.
    It may be wearing off by +6 to +8 and the unusable elevated glucose may be causing the hunger after that.
    Depending on what he is eating, he could need more insulin.
    Testing is the only way you'll know.
     
  31. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all. I have ordered a kit so I can test him at home as the vets costs a fortune plus I don't think it's fair on him having to go there.
    we have increased his insulin to 4 units twice a day after his recent glucose curve.

    he has 30g of royal canine diabetic dry food twice a day followed by the 4 units of insulin.
    He was just getting into food cupboards but thanks for the concern.
    Hoping that I can continue to monitor him at home
     
  32. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Teresa,
    Well done for ordering that test kit, and good luck with the hometesting. (Please shout out if you need help! :bighug: )

    Once you are comfortable with hometesting and able to monitor Loki's blood glucose you may be able to switch him back to a wet diet. I know that vets often push the 'prescription' foods but our experience is that diabetic cats do very much better on wet food (and stand a far higher chance of getting into remission (ie, becoming diet-controlled diabetics)).

    Please do keep us updated on Loki's progress.

    Best wishes,

    Eliz
     
  33. Adam

    Adam New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2015
    Hi Teresa, my cat Atreyu was just diagnosed with diabetes last week. The vet too recommended the royal canin dry food. I got some canned food too but slowly switching him to wet friskies canned food. I leave some of the dry food out for my other cat and because I work long hours but noticed that he is also very hungry all the time like you mentioned with yours.
     
  34. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all.
    Well we got the home testing kit that we planned to use this weekend with us being off of work but unfortunately we can't as loki isn't eating properly again.
    He ate 15g of his 30g serving yesterday morning and I managed to get him to eat some ham last night but he is not interested in his normal food. He is not drinking as much either.
    The vets did a glucose curve test last week as we were waiting for our kit to arrive. They told us to increase the insulin to 4 units twice a day. I have not given him insulin this morning as he hasn't eaten anything. I checked his levels last night and it was 18mmol (I got him to eat the ham after this)

    I'm very hesitant to ring the vets as all they say is bring him in and keep him for a few days not really doing anything other than giving me a huge bill that I can't afford
     
  35. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi Adam
    Are you testing your cat at home too?
     
  36. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    My partner told me that on Thursday loki had gotten into the bin and eaten some left over pork with carbonara sauce along with the grease proof paper it was in. I don't know if this is a coincidence but could this have made him ill?
    Really don't know what to do now
     
  37. Adam

    Adam New Member

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    Mar 26, 2015
    Yes I am testing him at home.
     
  38. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Can we get you started using our grid to record your glucose tests? It will help us give you better feedback. Instructions are here.

    Understanding the spreadsheet/grid:

    The colored headings at the top are the ranges of glucose values. They are color-coded to clue you in as to meaning.

    Each day is 1 row. Each column stores different data for the day.

    From left to right, you enter
    the Date in the first column
    the AMPS (morning pre-shot test) in the 2nd column
    the Units given (turquoise column)

    Then, there are 11 columns labeled +1 through +11
    If you test at +5 (5 hours after the shot), you enter the test number in the +5 column
    If you test at +7 (7 hours after the shot), you enter the test number in the +7 column
    and so on.

    Halfway across the page is the column for PMPS (evening pre-shot)
    To the right is another turquoise column for Units given at the evening shot.

    There is second set of columns labeled +1 through +11
    If you snag a before bed test at +3, you enter the test number in the +3 column.

    We separate day and night numbers like that because many cats go lower at night.

    It is merely a grid for storing the info; no math required.
     
  39. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Hi all
    thanks for advice so far.
    Unfortunately we've had to rush Loki to the vets today as he would not let us touch him without whimpering and his breathing was getting very shallow.
    The vets have found an abdominal mass which they are investigating at the moment but things aren't sounding good.
     
  40. Adam

    Adam New Member

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    Mar 26, 2015
    Where do I find the spreadsheet bjm? I can enter in what I've recorded on paper so far. Tomorrow I plan on doing another curve test to see where he's at. The vet told me to up him to 2 units twice a day and I started the 2 units about 4-5/days ago.
     
  41. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
  42. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

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    Sep 6, 2010
    Oh, gosh...
    Sending well-wishes to your boy, and a big (((hug))) to you.

    Eliz
     
  43. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

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    Feb 24, 2015
    Thanks Elizabeth and Bertie.
    Unfortunately this morning we had to make the hard decision of putting Loki to sleep. He was in a lot of pain and whilst the vets were doing a laparotomy they discovered his liver was severely damaged and his pancreas was enlarged. We decided to let him go whilst he was under and pain free. They have taken some biopsies as they are as confused as us as to why this has suddenly happened etc. The problem is we only had him a year so I can't answer his medical questions properly. But we had a fantastic year with him! Thanks to everyone for your help and support over the last few months
     
  44. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I am saddened by Loki passing and the decision you had to make. Sending purrs and prayers.
     
  45. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    So sorry to hear you had to make the most difficult of all decisions. It's never easy to lose a fur baby no matter how short our time with them might be. I'm sure Loki thought it was a fantastic year too. You're in my thoughts. Rest in peace Loki.
     
  46. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    Requiem aeternum, Loki.
    {{hugs}}
     
  47. teresa84

    teresa84 New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2015
    Thanks all for your kind comments. We have had all the results back and it has shown that Loki had diabetes for quite a while. Unfortunately he had not shown any signs before. Plus everything we were told about him from the place we got him from was wrong. However I understand when you get a re homing pet they will not know all the information. I am very angry as if we had been better informed we could have helped him a lot sooner.

    we had the best year together and we are glad that we got that time with him.
    I would like to thank you all again for your help and advice, it really made a difference.
     

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