Newly diagnosed

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Carolyn Ross, Nov 14, 2017.

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  1. Carolyn Ross

    Carolyn Ross Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    hi. this forum has so much info, but I'm feeling like I'm drowning in worry and doubt because I've done nothing but watch YouTube videos and read about diabetes in cats. I found out yesterday that my 14 year old tabby has diabetes - this was discovered through a urinalysis after I noticed twice as many clumps in the litter box since last Thursday. I take him to a Cat Hospital rather than a regular get because he gets much better care from someone who specializes in cats, but he still gets stressed out from being in the car and being confined, so, I think much of the work will be left up to me. Today I'm going there to get some training in giving the insulin and generally lasting more about caring for a diabetic cat.

    He was on Hills KD dry and Wellness Core canned beef, lamb and venison because there was concern that he might eventually develop kidney disease, but the dry food is going to be transitioning out. I got a sample of EVO dry that he loves, and I'll use that for treats or as a snack (are those allowed?) along with the Fancy Feast classic (which he used to get).

    Last night I got the ReliOn glucometer, test strips and 30 and 33 guage lancets since I know my cat would be easier to test if there is no pain at the very start. So I got the first reading last night of 323 and this morning, a reading of 189 and about 4 hours later it was 396 mg/dl. The testing was easier to do today and I didn't end up pricking myself and he's less concerned about the testing. I really worry about the injections though - I've watched the videos and read comments, but it seems to me that every time I pull up a bit on the hair to lift the skin or try to pinch the skin, he obviously objects, so how can I give the insulin?

    This is all totally new to me - he's my first cat and he's not a mild -mannered one - I've had no experience with diabetes and I'm so worried about doing something wrong or causing him pain. I'll find out more at the vet today, but right now I'm just a bundle of nerves! I'm glad to have found this forum!
     
  2. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2015
    Welcome. It’s great that you are already testing! Does your cat have kidney problems now? If so the Fancy Feast may be too high in phosphorus. The Wellness Beef, Lamb and Venison canned food is fine though. Evo is ok for diabetics as are Young Again Zero and Dr Elseys. We can help you with giving the insulin shots. Come over to the Main Health Forum and let us know how your appointment goes!
     
  3. DavesMom

    DavesMom Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    Welcome! I am relatively new as well. I have found that my Dave does best with insulin shots when I pet the area I will be shooting for a few minutes first, then grab and give the shot, then pet again.

    I have not started home testing yet, and am quite nervous about that, but just keep trucking along! You're doing great. This is a great board with lots of helpful members and I have found such great info here so far!
     
  4. Carolyn Ross

    Carolyn Ross Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    In my mind, I know how it should go - but in practice, I'm not sure I can be quick enough. I think I'll need to practice on an orange to get the "feel" for how much actual pressure to use. Also Sam can be a biter, so I can't usually do anything easily with him - I know my own nervousness is felt by him too.

    I can see where the home testing is really really important so I'm glad Sam got used to it very quickly. If you get the ReliOn glucometer set that comes with the spring loaded lancet, it comes with some microfine needles size 30. I think that the less discomfort for the cat, the easier it will be for future ear pricks. I saw that some people suggest a 26 needle, which is larger and probably produces more blood, but is also a bigger sensation on the ear. There is a setting on the injector and I used the fifth mark (I saw that most people seem to use 5). I just warmed his ears by a bit of gentle rubbing and massaging - they warm up fast and the cat seems to like it. I also let him see the things I'm using - he even rubbed his face on them, so he wasn't as nervous, as he would have been if I immediately started to do something to him that was scary. Then find a spot close to the ear edge like in the videos, put a small piece of paper towel behind the spot (that's more for you in case the injector misses and gets your finger instead) and try to center the needle close to the edge and click the injector. Now the spot of blood will be tiny, a bit of a rub close to the spot will bring up the drop - touch the test strip to it and the meter beeps when it's adequate. It takes so little blood that the ear doesn't even continue to bleed, so it's tiny - make sure you're in a bright area. I know I'm far from an expert, but knowing how difficult my cat is to work with, my vet was impressed, heck I was impressed too! Relaxing (which is hard for me), taking your time ( I'd read that the meter will timeout when you first insert the test strip - but you've got 5 minutes on this model - and if it times out you just remove the strip a bit and then push it back in, no biggie, but it increased my anxiety about getting it done too fast when I didn't know) and letting your cat relax from your petting and smelling the items, all made it easier.

    Thanks for your encouragement.
     
  5. DavesMom

    DavesMom Member

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    Nov 13, 2017

    Thank you for the encouragement as well! I'm lucky in that Dave has a great temperament, so he should be pretty good when it comes to the testing. I have the vet coming for a one week check up on Friday, and she will be walking me through home testing. I got the ReliOn micro from Walmart and all the gear to go with it. That is a great idea to let them rub on things a bit before using it so they get more comfortable with it! I am sure I will come back here after the vet leaves to talk about my experience. Fingers crossed it goes well!

    I can understand your nerves when it comes to insulin shots. It seems to me though that they don't even notice the needle! I have confidence that you can do it and will get more comfortable with it over time.
     
  6. Carolyn Ross

    Carolyn Ross Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    You're so lucky that your vet comes to you! The vet we go to is about a 30 minute drive and Sam gets car sick usually, so he's not in the best shape when we arrive. She's the best vet we've found, very practical, knows her stuff, with a quiet office and easy demeanor, it's expected that some cats are not stranger friendly. Sam is still not a great patient, but he actually let's her touch him without growling. Other general vets covered him with towels (which he hates), basically attacked him for innoculations and suggested that I tranquilize him before he comes in. The cat Hospital vet is fantastic, never a problem - just wish she was closer.
     
  7. DavesMom

    DavesMom Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    I'm glad you found a great vet, but I definitely wish for you that they were closer! I would advise to ask around, we had no idea about our Dr. Bonnie until we were talking to a family friend who recommended her! You never know who is in your neighborhood. Good luck with everything!
     
  8. Carolyn Ross

    Carolyn Ross Member

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    Nov 13, 2017
    I don't think we'll change vets since we really love her and she knows Sam. Most people seem to have these easy-going, never-a-care cats and mine is this stubborn boy who is very picky about his friends, and seems very sensitive to how he's treated. I'm pretty much the only one who can handle him, everyone else better be nice to him or suffer the consequences! He's the first cat I've ever owned and I sure wish he were a bit more simple to operate.
     
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