Opinions on Methyl B-12, other options...

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by quo1, Mar 3, 2011.

  1. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Hi all- first time posting here..looks very helpful..I have a cat named Ben, who is 11, diabetic ( insulin 11 units TWICE a day!), constipated ( now controlled w/ cissapride,lactulose,& laxitone), food is Science Diet WD and looks like he is starting to get some Neuropathy/ arthritis in his hind legs for about 4-5 weeks now..he's 25-26 lbs...yes, a big boy..I have his diabetes pretty well stabilized...his glucose tests around 75-80...my vet told me to start Ben on Cosequin, which I did about 24 days ago..he said it takes 4-6 weeks to see some improvement, and 2-3 mos. to see full effect..I have brought him in twice so he could see Ben's walking problems, but of course, when I bring him to the vet, since he hates the whole ride,exam,etc., Ben shows no signs of anything when the vet examines him or makes him walk..he said he knows there's some "epinephrine" here going on and Ben seems OK...however, when I brought up the possibility of trying the Methyl B-12 vitamins , which I read about on several websites, he got a bit nerved and told me " not to read any of that crap on the internet"..he said there was no proof that B-12 did anything for arthritis or Neuropathy..last Thursday ( 2/24) he gave Ben an anti-inflammatory shot. He said he couldn't use it on a regular basis because of Ben's diabetes..8-10 hours later Ben was 100% improoved..walking around, playing, purring,etc...it lasted till mon afternoon ( about 4 days)...then Ben got " bad" again..by that I mean he could barely walk, slept in one position for 3-5 hours, didn't seem happy..you know when something's wrong with your cat by his disposition & his responses to you...the vet agreed to give some Prednisone 2 days ago, which I picked from his office...I gave his 1st Pred pill around 11 AM (w/o food- maybe a mistake?) and Ben slept on a towel he likes on our kitchen floor from 11 till 4 PM.Then at 4, he got up, seemed fine and clearly the Pred worked....BUT Wed morning around 6:30, Ben vomitted, then pooped some major diarrhea in the litter, followed by TWO more poops on our bed..yes, on our bed ( he has steps to get up there now..)..he seemed OK after 3-4 hours of sleeping..I didn't give him a Pred pill yesterday because I saw the side effects, PLUS he was walking around OK...this morning ( Thurs) I got up and Ben was "bad" and seemed unable to walk...I gave him a Pred pill at 6 AM, and by 9 AM he was much better...as I write this, he seems fine, playful, walking, eating, drinking, and doing both # 1 & 2 in the kitty litter..no diarrhea BTW...

    Here is my problem: I hate seeing Ben feeling "bad" and having problems walking..seeing him sitting in 1-2 spots for 3-6 hours, not happy, not very responsive to me,etc. BUT then after some sleep/ rest, he seems better, even w/o the Pred...my wife & I got married late ( mid 40's), and so no kids...Ben & Jerry ( his twin) are our kids...Ben is so loving, affectionate, and wonderful, I am willing to try ANYTHING to help improove his walking...any suggestions? Should I try the B-12? And I read there are pills & shots...where can I buy them? How much for a 25 ilb cat? I heard 3 milligrams a day, but I only see 1 or 5 MG doses...Thanks, and sorry if I seem anguished and desperate- I am....
     
  2. Lisa and Merlyn (GA)

    Lisa and Merlyn (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Welcome aboard. You have got your hands full! Sounds like theres a lot going on here..

    Firstly, you are looking for Methyl B12..there is an injectable form of it I believe but its hard to find. Xobaline is a brand many of us have used, in pill form. you do not need a prescription.
    http://www.houseofnutrition.com/lilixofca3mg.html
    I do not think it will hurt to do the Methyl B12, however it does sound like theres something else going on. Diabetic neuropathy in cats usually means that they are walking on their hocks. It can be very severe looking, but can be reversed with regulation of blood glucose and methyl b12 both. It sounds to me like there might be another condition going on, arthritis or pinched nerve or something. I dont believe diabetic neuropathy would be helped by the steroids. diabetic neuropathy can cause constipation so the Methyl b 12 could help that. I am not a vet but it sounds like his back and spine need to be evaluated with xrays or CT scan if its not been done before

    Are those glucose checks you mentioned at the vet, how are you checking. Are you testing the ear? What insulin are you using and what size syringe. 70-80 is indeed seeming like good control but how many tests are we talking about? 11 units is a whopping dose of insulin. Some cats do need that much because they have other conditions like acromegaly, or they are getting too much insulin. What can happen when a cat is overdosed is that the body compensates for too much insulin, creating a rebound effect. It is also hard to tell which it is because w/d is a "OLD SCHOOL" food for FD, it is high in carbohydrates and will raise bgs. Low carb canned food, commercial food, is fine...BUT DO NOT CHANGE THE FOOD ON 11 units of insulin! BGs have been known to drop dramatically when changed to low carb canned food.

    Your vet is a bit out of date, perhaps because he will not look at the internet.
    check out our FAQs link at the top of the page. Here is a great site for nutrition info for cats..by a vet.
    http://www.catinfo.org
    http://www.laurieulrich.com/jasper/meth ... ticle.html
    The Insulin support groups forum has a High dose group, you can get info about acromegaly there, as well as a link to the acrocats site.

    I know its a lot to take in, and theres a steep learning curve, but you found us!
    Hopefully more people will see your post and respond, I have to go to work now.
     
  3. Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA

    Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    What kind of insulin is Ben on? 11u BID is a lot.

    There are some health conditions that cause a cat to need a "high dose" of insulin like Acromegaly, IAA or Cushings.

    My Norton had Acromegaly -- we found this out after coming here to FDMB, on a dose of 13u BID.

    With a diet change to low carb canned food, Norton was able to go down to 8u BID.

    Read this post about the "high dose" conditions -- Acromegaly is the "giant" disease -- excess growth hormone which interferes with insulin. http://felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=375

    With Ben being such a big cat and getting a lot of insulin -- he might have this condition.

    Norton also got terrific relief from Prednosolone -- it helped him feel much better.
    So he got 6 mg per day every day (dose based on weight and he was at 14 lb).

    (Norton passed away in 2008 from cancer - GA is short for Gone Ahead or Guardian Angel)

    Re: B12 --- this is a water soluble vitamin, meaning you don't need to worry much about overdose because it won't build up in the body -- so you could crush up the 5mg vitamin and mix it in food every day.
    any "excess" would just be peed out.
     
  4. Blue

    Blue Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I don't have much to add other than to say that I have two cats with acromegaly: Shadoe and Oliver.

    If you can advise what type of insulin you are giving, it would be quite helpful.
    There is a possibility that with a change in diet to a low carb wet food, you may see quite a drop in the dose you are needing to give. As has been mentioned, with such a high dose, you would want to be home testing first, then once you know what BG numbers your cat is getting, you could lower the dose and make a switch of food. Do not change the food on that current dose
    The wet food that you are giving as a treat is likely closer to what the full diet should be.
    There have been many cats who do not need any insulin, or drop to a much lower dose, once they are a decent diet.

    My two cats are Shadoe, weighing about 16lb, has a dose of 16.25u Levemir BID, and Oliver weighs 28.7lb, and has a dose of 21.25u Levemir BID. Oliver is very large, about 40inches long laid on the floor, but Shadoe has no features but the pot belly.

    I can't comment on the other issues and have not had a need for B12, but did want to comment on the dose you are giving.
     
  5. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Gals- Thanks for all the replies...Ben is on PZI U-100..it is very $$ and because he takes 22 units a day, it costs me $75 every 6 weeks...BUT- possible good news...yesterday, I had a vet who makes house calls come by and he took a blood test and fructosomine level on Ben...this morning, I spoke with him and he said based on Ben's numbers, he doesn't think Ben is diabetic anymore....Glucose was 118 after food, and Fructosomine was .7 or .8..very controlled is 1.1..he told me to give him some Nutrical ( to raise his blood sugar), then get some Ketone strips and try to get a urine sample..I have been home since noon waiting for Ben to pee....I've never done this, so I'm a little nervous...I'm going to try and put a plate under Ben when he urinates and see if I can catch some...he then told me to wait 30 seconds and look at the color..If indeed he's no longer diabetic, that's great news..it also means I can treat his hind legs problem more aggressively..I am VERY angry with my Vet, who almost NEVER asked to take Ben's glucose levels....we waited 15 months last time and he tested around 75-80....This vet who came to my house also said I might try baby aspirin (81 mg) once every 3 days for inflammation relief and also gave me Tramadol for pain- he said it tastes terrible and I will have a hard time giving it orally unless I use a Pill Pocket..never used one before..he said I could put it in cat nip....he said also if Ben doesn't have diabetic neuropathy, then his back problem may indeed be arthritis.....any other suugestions I welcome...I also think I will change Vets...don't think my guy is aggressive enough nor does he try options..anyone know where get I can Cissapride 10 mg chewables?
     
  6. Kelly & Oscar

    Kelly & Oscar Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    I would not give nutracal with a 118 number. There is no need to raise his blood sugar from that. That will only set you back since an introduction of so many carbs/sugars like that can bring a diabetic cat in remission back to needing insulin. Also there is a VERY big leap between giving 11 units of insulin twice a day to giving NONE. This sort of thing needs to be eased down from. You really can't stop insulin all of a sudden with a dose like that and expect his numbers to stay in non diabetic range all on their own. I highly suggest that you get a human glucose meter and start testing at home so you can gradually ease him down from that dose and try to get him off insulin that way. How long after his last shot was he at 118?
     
  7. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    That was taken yesterday around noon...gave him his shot this morning, and was told not to give him another injection till we see what the test strip says...the vet believes we need to make sure he's no longer diabetic...I don't think I would stop all the injections...I also think we would gradually decrease his dosage.....
     
  8. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    edited

    Ok, so he tested 118 yesterday at noon but he still had a shot this morning of his usual 11 units? Was the test yesterday also after receiving insulin in the morning?

    You cannot base dosing on a urine test, nor can you tell for sure if he's diabetic or not that way. He will spill glucose into his urine if he's over renal threshold but that may be as high as 250 ...he could be under renal threshold and still need insulin

    Jen
     
  9. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Jen- yesterday when he tested I did NOT give him his insulin PLUS he had a Prednisone pill, which raises blood sugars..considering he had eaten, 118 is pretty low..but it's the fructosomine level that is more specific ( according to the vet who came by..)...still waiting for him to pee...
     
  10. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    how long after having insulin was the 118?

    The fructosamine helps but not if he's swinging between highs and lows.
     
  11. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    About 4 1/2 - 5 hours....
     
  12. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    If he was 118 4-5 hours after his shot then this is what you want! It doesn't mean that he isn't diabetic at all! Sorry, a bit concerned here. Are you testing blood glucose levels at home and can you tell us more?
     
  13. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Never tested at home..always brought him to my other vet...BUT yesterday when this new vet came by, he asked if I wanted him to test his blood sugar and do the Fructosomine test.. is said yes and that was done around noon..I'm only going by his advice.. his concern was Ben has always tested 70-80 and we NEVER did the Fructo test before..I've had others ( at the emergency clinic when I brought him in for constipation ), they thought his blood sugar was a little low at 79..another time in Oct I found Ben when I got home trembling his head a bit while lying on the ground..I gave him some food, called the clinic, brought him in, and they said he looks like maybe his sugar was low and to keep some honey near by...
     
  14. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Ok, so you've been giving 22 units a day (11 units BID) to your cat who has been testing at around 80 whenever tested...This makes absolutely ZERO sense to me and I've no idea why your cat isn't dead. Seriously.

    I don't know what to tell you to do next, except that you need to get yourself a meter ASAP so you can test at home and see what's going on. And IF your cat tests higher than 200, consider giving only 1 unit. I'm going to flag this post to people who deal with high dose cats just in case I'm missing something.

    Jen
     
  15. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Remember, Ben is almost 26 pounds....when we started monotoring him, I brought him in to the vet 2-3x a week to adjust his dose..we started at 5 units 1x a day, then 7, then 10...it took 3 months to finally get his glucose stable with 2x daily at 11 units each time....we tried once a day at 20 units...vet said he wasn't metabolizing the insulin well and let's try to break it up into 2x a day, 11 units each time....it worked- Ben was finally stable...I know it's alot, believe me...
     
  16. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    What insulin?

    But the progression you describe is not any sort of acceptable progression. Start at 1-2 units twice a day. If it is lantus, leave it sit for up to a week before adjusting dose, by 0.5 units at a time. Not what you've done. It is possible your cat needs a lot of insulin but it is also highly possible that your cat has been overdosed and his body has been doing a miraculous job of protecting itself. There ARE conditions where cats require a ton of insulin and I've asked someone with knowledge of this condition to come and take a look. but considering you are doing checks at hte vet clinic at not at home, there is really now way of knowing what his correct dose is. and, weight has NOTHING to do with dose required....

    Sorry to sound argumentative, but I've been here awhile and what you've described really concerns me.
     
  17. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    I know you're trying to help, but I just followed what my vet told me 4 years ago....he worked till Ben was stable at 11 units BID..what else can I do? Now, I 'm excited to think maybe he's not diabetic, but don't worry, I won't do anything drastic- Ben is my boy....
     
  18. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Hi
    I'm a high dose mom, and I've had 4 diabetics, 2 have passed, 1 is off insulin, 1 is an acrocat at 12u BID. He was once at 40u BID with R boosters. I understand your cat's been diabetic for 4 years, but your dose is frightening. I would recommend a few things:
    1. get his kidney values checked right away (weakness) - it's very very common that they lose rear end strength with kidney disease
    2. switch insulin to lantus or levemir, it will save you a ton of money. the insulin you're on right now is a hand compounded form of pzi yes? you're getting it from a pharmacy, or a larger compounder such as BCP? This is likely why your cat is still not hypoing on this dose, my bet is it is a weaker compound than what you would buy that is normally referred to as PZI. Lantus or Levemir can be had at canadian pharmacies as cheaply as $115-$165 shipped for (5) 300u cartridges or pens. They are u100 insulins so you would not need to change syringes.
    3. weight has no effect on insulin dose, no matter what the vets say. it's something that's been tossed around by nearly every vet we've ever heard from. I had one cat on .50 total per day at 16lbs, another on 20u a day at 9lbs. A fat cat might take some more due to absorption problems, or it might not. it's not a rule of thumb and it's sad that this is still thought, but pretty typical of stuff we hear
    4. pooping on the bed = distress, something is wrong
    5. you need a new vet. they only say that stuff because they hate it when you know more than they do. I hate to put that so bluntly but it's true. My vet loves that I read stuff on the internet, because I always bring it to her and show her data, website pages, who said what, who tried what.. if your vet can't let you look on the internet, it's time to find a new vet.
    6. food - skimming here but is that food dry? time to switch, especially if there's kidney problems.. a nice delicious wet food diet will soften stools, provide more nutrition, and help those bg's and dehydration (constipation) there's no such thing as a food formulated for feline diabetes. first, pet food companies are not regulated by any governmental agencies, so they can say anything they like and they do. secondly, google human diabetes diets and see what they say. that answer is gonna be "no carbs" which is in every "diabetic" diet out there for pets. a good rule of thumb is: if it sounds like it came from a plant, it's a carb. cats are carnivores. they eat meat. only. no plants aside from the occasional grass nibbling. part of the reason we have a diabetes epidemic is due to these so called truthful pet companies filling our animals up with absolute crap and calling it a scientifically formulated diet for "weightloss", "urinary tract problems", "diabetes", "indoor cat" lol wtf really???? inside cats should eat something different than a wild cat? we are gullible, we humans.. we will fall for just about anything, I know I did. I starved the hell out of my cats on Iams diet cat food for years. Poor babies, and yes, I am ashamed of my own gullibility.


    Anyway, food for thought ok? Don't feel attacked, people are annoyed with your medical advice, and most definitely not you. They are also scared for your cat. It's rare anyone sees someone show up and say hey my cat's on 22u and testing real good at 81. Now.. if it turns out you have an acrocat, which is truly a possibility, you've got a problem. That problem would be too much insulin.. and your numbers running too low. Acrocats should run a little higher, so first things first.. let's whack that dose a little bit and see what happens.. can you buy a meter and strips? Not sure where you're located but Walmart has a great little Relion meter and strips, and the pharmacist will be glad to show you which strip goes with which meter and get you the lancets you will need.

    Edited to add: Welcome!
     
  19. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    I know you want to do the very best you can for Ben. It is very clear that you love him dearly, so please let these wonderful people here help you. I know you have been only following what your vet has told you to do. I know it is hard to listen to what a bunch of folks on the internet are telling you as opposed to someone that is suppose to be a professional. But think of it this way, a vet has to know everything thing there is to know about every possible critter to come through his door. He can't possibly stay up to date on everything all the time. Now everyone here on this board live with or have lived with a diabetic cat or cats that we all love just as much as you love Ben. We eat, drink, breathe and sleep feline diabetes.

    Now with that said, unless there is an underlying health issues that would require that much insulin, I'm with everyone else and slightly freaking out on how much insulin Ben is getting and completely surprised he is still alive. Now if he was my kitty, here is what I would try, since you have already said that you hate seeing him feel yucky. Get a cheap human meter, I personally use the Relion Micro from Wal-mart ($9-$12), get the test strips that match the meter ( for my meter $20 for 50 strips). Some lancets and a lancet pen. Drop his dose of insulin down to no more than 1u twice a day for a week or two while getting the hang of home testing.

    If he isn't eating low carb/high protein diet, switch his and his brother's diet out...again you can go cheap I have 11 cats, only 1 a diabetic they all eat Friskies Pate Flavors that are under 10% carbs. Just give it a shot. If Ben doesn't start looking and feeling better than you can go from there. A couple of weeks isn't going to hurt him one way or the other and may very well save his life.

    Mel, Max & The Fur Gang
     
  20. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Ben pooped on the bed because of the Prednisone, which also gave him diarrhea...most meds for inflammation seem to do this...I will start being more careful and I will switch vets..thanks for all for the advice.....
     
  21. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Hi Ben's Dad! welcome to the best place in the world for a diabetic cat, (or a high dose cat)

    Wow, so much to say...
    I came here just over a year ago with a 3 yr diabetic on about 13units bid (2x/day). Cody was very constipated and has a condition called megacolon, for which he was on lactulose and ci$apride. After slowly absorbing the things folks here shared we tested him and found out Cody has acromegaly (which explained the 13units), and got on other over the counter meds for the constipation, which work sooo much better and are much easier. I already home tested, but but not as regularly as I do now.
    And I learned more about the foods he was eating and how they affect his diabetes. So PLEASE stick with us. this site is awesome. You need some help, as your kitty's situation is pretty unusual/(scary) and it sounds as though your old vet is NOT giving you the best advice.

    I agree, the first thing you need to do go to the closest Walmart and buy any Relion glucose meter ($10), with 50 test strips. I suggest this meter because it has very economical strips and it works well (strips are the REAL expense). Folks here can help you learn to home test by pricking his ear and getting a tiny drop of blood. For example I test Cody about 5-6x every day, but many only test prior to injections.

    The Fructosamine test is useful in seeing the AVERAGE blood glucose over the last few weeks, but as was said earlier, the average could be from a combo of very high and low numbers, OR non diabetic numbers. The fact that you are injecting a HUGE amount of a U100 insulin, it is unlikely that he doesnt have some fluctuations going on. Testing at home would tell you what fluctuations are going on. If you click on the spread sheet links in almost any of our signatures you will see how we test and record. A hypo event could certainly cause a cat to stumble and be unable to walk, and possibly seize... I couldn't shoot and not test...

    Many acro cats are large, but not all. Cody is only 13lbs. Acros frequently require more insulin because they have a tumor which produces excess growth hormone, which block the insulin receptor sites on the cells throughout the body. Any cat that gradually gets to 5units of insulin without regulation should be tested for acro. Unfortunately MOST vets do not know how common this condition is and refuse to test, because it is outside their own knowledge base. that where we come in, yes I would be willing to bet that we know more than your vet about acromegaly.... Unfortunately, your vet STARTED him on 5 units, so its hard to know what is going on here. SO please go get a meter and learn to test. Urine glucose strips are NOt accurate or current data.

    I could go on... about the constipation meds, but I think the blood glucose, high dose and food choices are more pressing. BTW WD is a high carb food and current knowledge prefers high protein, low carb foods for diabetes. There are tons of links here that have helped thousands of moms and dad like you. poke around and learn- to help your sweet baby!
     
  22. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    another point that many newbie folks do not really understand,
    insulins have a typical "curve" of action over the course of 24 hours. For example PZI 100 has an onset of about 2 hours and a duration of about 10 hours and a peak action (nadir) frequently around +6hrs after a shot. SOooo during the day, the blood glucose fluctuates according to
    -the hours post shot,
    -the timing, quantity and carb content of the food consumed,
    -other medications, and other medical conditions involved.
    -compensatory liver hormones which generate glucose to try to avoid hypo

    what Im saying is that one random blood test here and there, do not tell you much about the whole picture. Please learn to test :D :D :D
     
  23. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Hi

    I'm going to answer your question about MB12 and recommend this brand to purchase:

    http://www.vitacost.com/NSI-Vitamin-B-1 ... cobalamin/

    While yes it's 5mg, it's ok to mix into wet food and give to Ben once a day. Whatever his body doesn't need, he will pee out. No harm if he gets all or some of it daily.

    I like this one because it doesn't contain any sugar or fruit flavor.

    Again, it's easy to use, just mix into wet food one capsule once a day.

    Regarding the high dose. You've got the high dose experts here to help. The one thing I will highly recommend as will everyone on this board, the sooner you learn how to home test the BG's, the better off you and Ben will be and the more in control you will be and not need to rely or pay for a vet to do the testing.

    It's not difficult to test, we can help you, you just have to be willing to test.

    Think about it like this, if Ben were your human child or spouse, would you give insulin without home testing - no way. All human doctors will tell you if you are giving insulin you need to test yourself, then why is it different because Ben is a cat? You are giving insulin and why give it blindly?

    If you tell us where you live, city, state, province, etc. we may have members local to you, who could provide in person assistance to help you learn how to home test.
     
  24. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Finding some one to show me how to do this would be fabulous!! I live near West Palm Beach, Fla.....
     
  25. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Awesome, and don't be a stranger, please! We'll be glad to help show you, and show you what you're seeing, and walk you through learning to test, which sounds so macabre but really becomes a terrific bonding time with your cat. I was terrified to learn how to do it. In fact when I got here, I was pretty sure everyone from this site was a member of some blood-letting cult of old or something lol :eek: Sure enough, my cat comes running for tests, because with tests comes lovin's, delicious treats, and he associates the tests with feeling better. Here're some tips:

    Don't change the food without changing the dose.

    If you're going to switch to canned, lo-carb food (friskies or fancy feast pate's are a great place to start), also change your dose to about 1-3u.

    In the forum called Health links there's a whole slew of How to Test links with videos and step by step instructions.

    When changing the food, be prepared for some gastric "delights". Cats don't often transition seamlessly, as the dry food is loaded with fibers, and the canned food is not. You may have a gassy cat, or you may see the squirts. This should settle down in 1-3 weeks. http://www.catinfo.org has lots of transitioning tips should your cat balk at wet food.

    Keep us updated and we'll be very glad to help you out. :)
     
  26. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Dang I live at the wrong beach lol
    I put a shout out to my friends to see if we can help find someone close to you :)
     
  27. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    REITERATE what several have said
    Changing to a low carb food WILL drop the insulin needs EVERYTIME. If you stay at this dose, and if he's not an acrocat, this will produce a hypo and you could lose him...

    learn to test FIRST
     
  28. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Cross posted over on community to see if we can find someone to give you hands on help with home testing. =)

    Mel, Max & The Fur Gang
     
  29. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    I can't tell you how great this site is....I feel so lame now, not knowing about this stuff and trusting my vet to have ALL the answers..I'm so angry now....Science Diet WD has double and triple the carbs that others have....my vet likes it also because it is high in fiber and helps Ben's constipation, which as I said in my 1st post, seems now under control....I'm also out of work ( released by MERCK along with 2000 others 13 mos. ago..), so price of everything is important... I really need a more "hands-on" vet and more from myself. I just tried FINALLY to collect some urine from Ben, but I think I messed up....I put a plate under his bottom, collected a little urine, then put the test strip face down in the urine, waited 30 seconds ( for Glucose) and both colors barely turned anything....Glucose color was still aqua, and other color was still beige...if it's accurate,it means Ben was negative in both areas ( I think)...I waited 8 hours to collect this....following Ben around ,sitting outside with him ( that is where the litter box is)..I'm exhausted... I showed my wife some of your comments, she thought it was great....again, Thank you all soooo much....
     
  30. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    first.. the pee test.. that's what's supposed to happen when there's no glucose or ketones in the urine.. My friend Jenn is going to put up her famous pee test post for you. you'll learn a lot from it, she's a pro lol

    second.. do NOT feel lame. your vet is a jerk, (we're not supposed to say that so pretend I didn't) and makes a HELL of a lot of money on prescription diets. They are supposed to try to sell it to you.

    third.. I was out of work for nearly 2 years with a cat sucking down insulin like it was diet coke (2 vials of $100 levemir a month) so I know the pain.. we'll do everything we can to help you out with budgeting this, we can see how dearly you and your wife love ben :)

    fourth.. constipation (expletive towards vets comments omitted lol) is a sign of dehydration.. diabetes causes dehydration.. cats are naturally dehydrated (they are desert animals) so.. what to do if they get clogged up? miralax. It's a human "drug" but not a drug. It's just an additive and you can put it in their food with water to help soften things up. We mostly start around 1/8th tsp twice per day. This goes right through them and comes out the other end, so don't give it sporadically, if you notice he's getting clogged up, just use it daily for maintenance. You can up and down the dose, in other words, if you notice his stool is too loose, back off the dose. If it's not soft enough, up the dose by 1/8th tsp. There are cats on this board getting over 1tsp per day and cats getting less than 1/8th tsp per day so I can't really tell you where your cat will end up, but I can tell you this is a very inexpensive, very safe way of keeping constipation at bay. :)
     
  31. jenn and sabrina

    jenn and sabrina New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Welcome to you and Ben :)!!

    I just want to say ... I am SO impressed with your love & concern for Ben! WOW! What a lucky kitty ... and, something tells me he gives just as much back to you as you give to him ;) . Just thought I'd "chime in" with 2 things here:

    1) You are getting excellent advice here from some people with lots of experience. Just to let you know, my Sabrina is currently a happy, healthy kitty who just happens to live with diabetes. We have been doing the "sugar dance" for 5 years now ... and I definitely know how you feel when you say "I feel so stupid". I did too! And never more so when than when I found this site. My vet, who really did care about Sabrina ... I guess did what she had been "told" ... put Sabrina on expensive dry "diabetes food" (ie. garbage and costly), never even mentioned hometesting ... checking her Blood Glucose levesl (BG) before each shot to see if it was even safe to give a shot, let alone getting BG checks during the cycle to see if she was going too low or if the current dose was working. As a result? I shot "blind' for the 1 1/2 yrs. The only BG checks Sabrina ever got was the $250 fructosamine test we went to the vet for every 6-8 weeks ($250 because Sabrina is SO fractious at the vet, she has to be sedated in order for the vet to even lay a finger on her, gassing her costs $100).

    A fructosamine is NOT the way to really manage your cat's diabetes. It can ONLY give you and "average" of where the cat's blood sugar has been for the previous 2 weeks. Yet, my vet would have me increase Sabrina's dose based on this. We increased it so much, that one day I called my vet and said that Sabrina was having very disoriented, aggressive behavior and facial twitching. I brought her in, they did a fructosamine test ... it came back "non-diabetic, very controlled". And so my vet took Sabrina off insulin.

    Problem there? My cat IS diabetic. So after 2 weeks of no insulin, I noticed her becoming VERY lethargic, staying in one spot for hours, moving around very slowly. I called the vet, brought her in, her BG test was "HI" and the fructosamine eventually showed totally unregulated. We went back on insulin & the vet had me rapidly increase up to 4 units. Sabrina wasn't getting any better. FINALLY, thru the grace of powers higher than me AND this board ... I found a way to hometest my girl. I knew I had to find a way to see what was going on with her blood glucose in REAL time (not a fructosamine 2-week average). My first BG test showed 497 ... AND, what I soon learned, with the help of people on this board, was that because of my inability to hometest and shooting too much insulin, Sabrina had developed glucose toxicity ... a temporary resistance to insulin which has to be "broken" and requires very aggressive shooting, more than 2x per day and at higher doses.

    2. How did i find out Sabrina had diabetes? She had "DKA" (diabetic ketoacidosis) ... a very serious and potentially deadly condition resulting from long term unregulated diabetes. Testing for ketones became mandatory for me. Don't bother Ben with a plate ... here is a very NON-invasive way for you to test for ketones and not disturb Ben's privacy, lol.

    Now for a lesson in how to test your cat's pee for ketones:

    Testing for ketones is more important when your cat is diabetic and especially if his numbers are high and/or he isn't eating as he usually does or not at all. You already know that ketones can quickly develop into a serious disease called DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis) that can be life threatening and require extensive emergency veterinary treatment. So, what do you do to get a handle on this? Well ...

    First - Go to any pharmacy and ask for a bottle of Keto-diastixs. You can either get the kind that only test for ketones, called ketostixs (they are a little cheaper) or the kind that test urine glucose and ketones (they run about $14/bottle of 50 - but urine glucose testing is not that important in diabetic cats because, of course, they are going to have sugar in their urine, if they didn't, well then, they wouldn't be diabetic grinning smiley!). You may also want to purchase a box of disposable latex gloves ... you will see why as you read on.

    Second - Testing the pee ... Yuck, right? Not as bad as it sounds. Now, some people actually collect a urine sample as their cat is peeing ...using a cup, spoon or soup ladle and I say ... good for them (if your cat will let you hold up it's tail and stick a spoon under there while he/she is "doing the business" and you don't get peed on at the least or bitten and scratched at the worst, then - more power to you!) ... however you can test ... then test! But I live with a "prima donna kitty", who would rather let her bladder explode then let me disturb her "private moment" by catching pee as it is coming out. So ... here's what I did:

    Before I started testing, I mixed some clean litter with water and tested it with a strip. I did this to make sure that the strips weren't reacting to the type of litter we use - they were not. I do not actually collect a sample as she is peeing. I only have one cat ...and she really likes her "private time" in the litterbox. So I let her go in her box and pee with the litter in the box ... then I kind of "chase" her out before she can "bury" it. The pee hasn't all been absorbed yet, usually there is still a tiny puddle and, after putting on a latex glove, I drag the test strip thru it.

    Sometimes I get a little bit of litter on it which I wipe off and then get my test results. This has made it alot easier for me to test, so I can usually test at least every other day. Even if you have more than one cat - this should still work. All you have to do is "stalk" your diabetic cat (yes, I know ... it's sad the lengths that we will go to!) until he goes into the box. If you wait and chase him out right after ... it will be very apparent where he peed and you can still conduct the test!

    By doing this simple test combined with hometesting ... you are more likely to avoid ever getting to that point where Ben is in trouble with ketones.

    Wishing the best for you, your wife & Ben ... it's wonderful to see people who truly care about their cat as part of their family. Hang in there, learn all you can, ask ALL the questions that pop into your head, try different things and you will soon have a happy, healthy kitty living with diabetes :J)!!
     
  32. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Great post along with the others...I'm going to bed now..I've lost 5 lbs. this week over this..I need it..I'm diabetic myself...the stress is terrible worrying about our boy..his brother Jerry, is 20 lbs, and has NO problems...people go by our kitty litter and say, "What do you have Mountain Lion here or what?? Yes, that litter box is FULL and I scoop it 2-3x daily......will respond to more of you manana.....ZZZZZZZZ....
     
  33. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    GREAT ADVICE...GOING TO SLEEP....will check in tomorrow....I need ZZZZZ's......Ben sleeps like 17 hours a day....I try for 6.....
     
  34. janelle and Nomad

    janelle and Nomad Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    After reading all of this,my head is spinning! There is a vet with a feline only practice in Deerfield Beach. That would be about a thirty to fourty minute drive for you.If You are willing to travel a ways, There is Coral Springs Hospital and Hollywood Animal Hospital in Broward County that are 24 hour hospitals. The first thing you need to do is get a new vet and have the cat evaluated again from scratch.

    I read all the post and why your cat is on so much insulin still doesn't make sence to me.As you can see from my signature, I am about a little over an hour south of you.Maybe I can help you find a new vet and sort this out!?
     
  35. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Whew! Thanks everyone!

    Quo1, could we know your name?

    I'm really glad you have stuck around, and I promise, within a few weeks, things should be MUCH easier!

    Jen
     
  36. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    My name is Alan...thanks for the names in Broward..it is a bit far...Ben HATES the ride & vet..mine is only 13 minutes away and it is crying the whole way ( the cat, too..)..BUT perhaps they can recommend someone in Palm Beach.....

    Alan
     
  37. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Janelle- maybe you could ask those places for a recommensdation for the Lake Worth/Greenacres/ WPB area......Thanks for your help!

    Alan
     
  38. Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA

    Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Good morning Alan,

    What manufacturer is your PZI? Is it IDEXX, BCP, Prozinc or a different one?

    Also, if you do want to consider other insulins, Lantus has an acidic base liquid, and Levemir has a neutral base liquid -- so at higher doses, Levemir is a better choice.

    Additionally, Levemir has a 42 day "shelf life" after piercing the seal to Lantus' 28 days.

    We get the 5-pack of 3ml cartridges "for use with pen" but we use regular syringes. The 5-pack of Levemir costs about $125 ordered/shipped from Canada.

    phoebe
     
  39. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    You can also phone around and find out which clinics prefer lantus or levemir.. It'll be important to not start out a new vet relationship with a close-minded vet. ;)
     
  40. mrmush

    mrmush New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Hi Alan - I am a former Acro mom (GA Sammy) and live in Port Saint Lucie. I sent you a PM last night and can show you how to home test. I will be at a Red Sox spring training game in Jupiter Tuesday 3/8 and can come to your house after the game to show you how to test. Laurie
     
  41. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Laurie- That would great if you could do that...but it's so far for you..Jupiter is 25 min from my house....my e-mail is statusalan @ bellsouth .net (remove spaces for email. _changed by Rebecca) I will give you directions & phone # if you still wish to come by......Thanks again!

    Alan
     
  42. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Carolyn- I tried using Metamucil for a week, but I read on City-data boards to be careful because Metamucil builds up the bulk, and you don't want BIGGER bulk, which makes the cat push harder..I asked my vet and he agreed...Is Miralax the same? Right now as I stated, Ben is 2- 2 1/2 10 MG Cisapride a day, 4 ML Lactulose 2x a day, and Laxitone, about an inch on my thumb every other day ( directions say 2-3x a week, vet said every other day..) he seems finally controlled..I have enemas ready to go which I haven't used since 1/26...thanks for your info...
     
  43. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    You rock, chica :D
     
  44. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Morning Alan,
    Nope it's not the same at all. These are tiny tasteless absorbent crystals, they carry the fluid they absorb into they colon to keep the stool from drying out as it travels through. Its important to add water to the cat's diet while using this because its very good at it's job. Most of us add water anyway to stretch the food and help maintain hydration with the diabetes so it's something you should do anyway. I add 1/2 a can of water to 1 can of water per can of food. That well prevent the miralax from drawing water from outside the stomach. You can google miralax and you will find a more technical description of how it works lol
    Hope that helps!
    ..C
     
  45. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Thanks, I will try it!!! Just ordered the Methyl B-12 pills...hope they help....
     
  46. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Hi Alan,
    No, miralax and metamucil are not at all the same.

    Miralax is a tasteless white powder which does not add any bulk, but it chemically attracts and holds water, it actually draws water into the colon, so the poo stays soft and easy to pass. (It acts like the lactulose, but unlike lactulose it is not a man made sugar)

    If you read up on lactulose, (on the internet LOL) there are warnings to be cautious using it in diabetes, because it is a man made sugar. Cody was on lactulose before I found the FDMB, and I always wondered if it affected Cody's numbers- cant really say, but didn't want to risk it. Lactulose is also sticky and yucky to administer.

    Cisapride- Cody was on it for awhile, as well. It is a drug that has to be compounded for pets, because it was taken off the human market because it caused fatal heart attacks. Cody has an enlarged heart (part of his acromegaly) and again, I never felt great about using it, and it was very expensive for me because it was compounded. I was glad to get off it when the miralax worked.

    Miralax- I was thrilled with how easy it is to use. I mix a slightly rounded 1/4 tsp into EVERY can of Friskies pate flavors (Ocean white fish, Turkey and Giblets, mixed grill, etc no gravy)

    if you give too much Miralax it can cause gas and diarrhea. I would not try it YET however, because when you change diet off of WD, you may find you have diarrhea for a week or so during the transition. Once he settles into a new diet, you can see where you are and begin the Miralax (available at the grocery store- purple label- white bottle)

    laxatone is a vet sold prescription (i think) hairball remedy. If you read the ingredients, it has sugars (corn syrup and molasses, I think.) GREAT for his diabetes..... It also has white petrolatum (otherwise known as vaseline). I now give plain white vaseline if I think he needs hairball help, and for awhile, before the miralax, I used it for the megacolon/constipation. I don't think its good chronically though, because it may inhibit nutrition exchange from the colon- it lines and lubricates the colon and acts as a barrier (in my mind). So, there you have it.

    Hope that helps explain our choice to use Miralax.

    I also perform warm water enemas as needed, sounds like you do as well.
     
  47. janelle and Nomad

    janelle and Nomad Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Hi Alan-here is a vet practice closer to you : Palm Beach Veterinary Specialist (954)-434-5700. They have an I'm specialist and also a 24 hour emergency service. They may be a bit more expensive though.

    If you decide to go with Lantus and can get a prescription. I have a bottle that should be good for another month and is almost still full. My cat uses such little insulin now I was thinking of switching to the cartridges anyways.

    If this post is a duplicate, please forgrive me. I went to send the last one and I am not sure what happened.
     
  48. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    I think that's 561, not 954 , then 434-5700..they are the vets I use for emergency 24 hour..I have brought Ben there 5-6 times mostly because he needed enemas...now I do them at home, if needed -(did it once at home 1/26, what a mess!)...thanks,though!
     
  49. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Its great that you learned how to do an enema at home-It can be a life saver, and a wallet saver :D
    While I've read that the colon can hold 2 weeks of poo, I never wait that long. plain warm water works fine for Cody, no need for the soap water the vet suggested.
     
  50. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    FYI- (for anyone wondering) I found an old tube of Laxatone (for hairballs and G-I lubrication) "sold exclusively through Veterinarians":
    white petrolatum, light mineral oil, corn syrup, malt syrup, soybean oil, cane molasses, water, gelatin by products, preservative and flavors.

    pretty sweet... this might explain some of those 11u, and probably isn't ideal for use in a diabetic.
    Hope you can start testing soon. Is Ben pretty easy to handle for his shots?

    It does suggest 2-3 x / week; and I guessing this might be because it impairs GI absorbtion of nutrients, or causes diarrhea in some cats.
     
  51. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Ben is wonderful with shots..also no problem swallowing the Cisapride, nor the Lactulose,only the Laxatone he's nor crazy about, but still no problem...I didn't really start using any of the constipation stuff till last July/Aug- 3 years after he started his 22 units per day.. I have an appt with a Diabetes specialist Tuesday and I'm hoping I can either stop his injections or switch to lower dose......This Home House call vet was terrific in opening my eyes....
     
  52. Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA

    Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Please learn to test his urine for KETONES.

    If you reduce dose or stop insulin, it can quickly result in Diabetic Ketoacidosis, which requires Emergency room treatment / hospitalization.

    Ketostix are used to test the urine for presence of ketones. (available at human pharmacies)

    The Fructosamine test that your vet said meant Ben was no longer diabetic -- WRONG INTERPRETATION unless Ben has not been on insulin for the past 3 weeks!!!

    The result shows that the 22u insulin per day is CONTROLLING the diabetics symptoms Very Well -- producing a NORMAL blood sugar result.

    This means that Ben is a WELL REGULATED diabetic on 22u per day.
     
  53. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    It would be so awesome if you could go into this new vet armed with blood glucose readings you took at home. The stress from the car ride and the barking dogs at the office, unfortunately make readings at the vet less than ideal :shock: :lol: The fructosamine gives you the average, not the whole minute by minute fluctuations, so its somewhat flawed.
    Since he's so patient with the whole shot process you should have little trouble getting those readings, if you are diabetic yourself, do you have a meter/strips to test yourself? That will work perfectly for Ben...
    If not, it is good to get a meter with cheap strips that requires a very small blood drop (.5 microliters or less)

    Great job!
     
  54. Jen & Squeak

    Jen & Squeak Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Phoebe

    Question. I thought that if a cat were rebounding, the fructosamine could theoretically be the same as if the cat were well reguated?

    And this cat is not well regulated by the sounds of it if you read the original post about him being barely able to walk for hours at a time each day, inappropriate pooping, etc. Plus the high dose and the illogical way in wich it was reached.
     
  55. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Nancy- I do have my own strips BUT I don't know how to draw the blood form him..if you look at several posts before yours, you will see someone named mrmush who has offered to come by my house and show me how to do this...nice, huh? I will learn how to do this.....
     
  56. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    The inappropriate pooping was due to the Prednisone, a common side effect along with vomitting..it was also his 1st dose...2nd time he was fine PLUS gave it w/ food, which I didn't the 1st time...the walking bad is not every day..it must be either arthritis or neuropathy...
     
  57. Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA

    Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    "mrmush" is Laurie - she offered to show Alan how to home test next Tuesday, 3/8, when she will be in the WPB area.
     
  58. Hillary & Maui (GA)

    Hillary & Maui (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    if you would like to attempt it yourself, it's really not hard to do.

    You can use the lancet with or without the device, and you want to poke the outside edge of the ear, between the vein (if you can see it - use a flashlight if dark ears) and edge. If you hit the vein, you get lots of blood.

    This is the area I'm referring to:

    [​IMG]


    Try this link for more helpful information on home testing:

    viewtopic.php?f=14&t=287

    Also, if you free hand (without lancet device), I recommend poking at an upward 45ish angle, like this pic:

    [​IMG]


    So, give it a try.....
     
  59. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Alan, I know the proper way is to look for the vein, but I never learned that, and honestly I just fold the ear over my finger and poke anywhere I find furless skin. I always poke in the middle of the ear and it bleeds just fine for me.

    If your lancet comes with a clear top lancet, you can HOLD the lancet with pressure over a spot for about 5 sec before and after you pop it. peek into the clear lancet top to see when the drop is big enough to draw.

    Some folks warm the ear first by warming a sock filled with rice in the microwave.
    Some folks rub the ear vigorously first. Both of these help increase the blood flow before popping the lancet.
    Lancets come in various needle thicknesses. the larger ones bleed better. I think these are 26 or 28 gauge, whereas, 31 gauge make a tiny hole and don't bleed as well.

    Give it a try :D :D
     
  60. Sophia

    Sophia Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2009
    I live not far from you.. if you live in west palm beach.... my husband and I could at least show you how to test.. but we would not be able to advise re dosage. I think you should start to test asap... when my cats were diabetic we never gave a shot without testing before.... much too dangerous. They are now diet controlled.
     
  61. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011

    Nancy- How often do you use Miralax? The emergency Vet yesterday told me to start Ben on Miralax and I did ..BUT once a day or twice? GREAT NEWS! Ben has stopped his insulin till at least Tuesday, when he has an appt. with the Diabetic Specialist....Long story short: Fri night I tried to give Ben an enema BUT 80% of it shot out in the air because Ben was so agitated that he pulled away from me JUST after I squirted the solution and very little got inside him...he threw up, pooped VERY LITTLE..next morning ( Sat.) I noticed Ben trying to poop several times with no success..as he was trying, I called that Home house calls Vet who had come over Wed and took some blood and told me he DID NOT think Ben was diabetic according to his BG & Fructo numbers... I asked The Vet if he could come over and help me do another enema and he said he could not since he was booked all day Sat...BUT he suggested I bring Ben in NOW to the same Emergency Clinic I made an appt for Ben Tues morning with the Specialist..he told me he recommended them HIGHLY and I did immediately...I dropped Ben off at 8 AM, expalined to the nurses & Vet the situation...listen to this: The House call VET CALLED THE CLINIC AND SPOKE WITH THE VET there about Ben,so when I got there , he knew about the possible not Diabetes thing, the constipation,and his possible arthritis/ neuropathy in his hind legs area!! Wow, I was impressed that DR. P, (home Vet) called Dr. J ( clinic) and they spoke..my wife & I had to go into Miami to visit a cruise ship ( NCL EPIC- I'm a cruise consultant now), so I left Ben around 9 AM...we agreed they would call me on my cell if there was an important decision to be made if they discovered anything urgent ( you know what I mean...)...SO- We picked Ben up around 4 PM..Vet said 1st, they took x- rays of his colon and he DOES NOT have Mega- colon, which is great..BUT, there is a problem with the function of his colon and the Specialist will address that..told me to STOP the lactolose and try Miralax, because Lactolose can upset the stomach..keep doing the Cisapride and Laxotone..2nd: Ben has a little arthritis in his back, BUT not too bad..he must LOSE WEIGHT..Vet said to try and get him to lose weight- 26 pounds is alot..so no more snacks 3-4 x times a day w/dry foods..I admit I give in and feed Ben & brother Jerry waaaay too often.. I will definitely start feeding them less even when they cry and look at me for food....3rd: Ben's BG was 148 with NO insulin,lactolose, Prednisone ( both which raise BG), and this horrible trip to the clinic, which also raises BG..The vet concurred with DR. P, STOP the insulin till I see DR. T., the specialist Tues AM. Giving that much insulin to a NON- diabetic cat is dangerous.. BTW- NO KEYTONES IN his urine... told me to look for excessive drinking water and excessive peeing, and if I see that before Tues., to bring him to the clinic ASAP..Kidney values were perfect! Vet said Ben was a terrific cat, allowed them to do everything with no problem..I cannot tell you the RELIEF we felt when we heard this..bad news: this cost ALOT of $$$, and both Ben & Jerry slept on our bed last night, so I didn't sleep much...BUT Ben ate this morning, peed, pooped, and went back on my bed ( I have steps they can use to climb now..)..he is currently purring and resting comfortably on the bed....SO- after Tues AM, I will know FOR sure about Ben, but with now 2 diagnosis that he is probably NOT diabetic anymore AND does not have Mega Colon, so far, this is all good news!! Please advise on the Miralax and how often- once a day or twice?

    Alan- VERY HAPPY in FLA..

    p.s. ONCE AGAIN ..THANKS FOR ALL YOUR ADVICE, CONCERN, TIPS & MOSTLY your education on Feline Health!!!
     
  62. janelle and Nomad

    janelle and Nomad Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    I am updated on your info now. Going to a specialist to sort all of this is a good plan. Much of this could have come from past bad advice from your old vet. I call it vetotis.....LOL Keep us updated.
     
  63. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Alan,
    Thanks for the update :D - thought we lost you- and after all the time-consuming detailed explaining, that gets frustrating. :roll:

    EVERY TIME I crack a can of food, I mix 1/4 teaspoon of miralax thoroughly into it. Cody does not eat any food without Miralax mixed in. Cody however, DOES have megacolon. It is very important that I use a measuring spoon because there is a very specific amount that works without causing cramping and gas.

    Cody only eats wet food, because ALL ALL ALL dry food has too much carbohydrate for a potentially diabetic cat.
    Dry food also contributes to constipation in cats. Canned food supplies the needed water to reduce constipation.

    Cats CAN and DO go in and out of "diabetes", requiring insulin and then not requiring insulin. This does not mean he is not diabetic, it means he is "OTJ" (off the juice,) for the time being. If you want for this to continue, you need to do everything you can to keep him OTJ with DIET, which means WET FOOD ONLY.

    Friskies pate flavors (with NO gravy) are a good inexpensive option. You can read COUNTLESS stories here of cats OTJ for long periods that go back on insulin after the owner eases up on the no carb rule.

    Lastly, a timed feeder can be used for doling out measured quantities of wet food while you are out of the house. He does NOT need dry food. In warm months, measured amount of wet food can be frozen into pucks to load the feeder for mid-day and/or middle of the night feedings.

    Good luck :D
     
  64. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Here is a post I wrote a long time ago, which may be of help to you with the Miralax:

     
  65. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    and as for the enemas

    You really don't need a "solution" sold by the vet, warm water works fine, and is less toxic to their system. The one and only time the vet used soap solution, was the one and only time Cody tested positive for ketones. Coincidence? I don't know.

    Also don't panic and think your cat has to poop everyday, they really don't. If xrays show he does not have megacolon,
    I would :
    -switch to canned only
    -add a bit of extra water to the canned food

    the switch to canned may well be the only change needed, BUT if issues continue after about 10 days of this I would:
    add a scant 1/8 teaspoon of miralax to 5.5 ounces of food
    wait a week and see.

    It takes days for the Miralax to travel through the system to see if it is softening the poop :lol: so you need to be methodical and slow in your dose changes.
     
  66. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Nancy said:
    I can not emphasize enough what Nancy said. Wet food, wet food wet food.

    I am also very leery of the off the juice pronunciation. Please keep your appointment with Laurie, if he still needs insulin, and doesn't get any, he could get a heck of a lot sicker. Knowing how to test at home will save you a lot of money and possibly save his life as well. He was at an extremely high dose, and he was showing signs that the insulin was too much. Overdose will cause weight problems and muscular issues, to be sure, but mere overdose does not mean the cat does not need insulin. Only several successive days of non-diabetic numbers will prove that.

    Sounds like your new vet did great, but... I want you to read Dr. Lisa's page on weight loss. Your vet is correct to be concerned about his weight, 26lbs is a very heavy load for the heart to work with. Cats eat many small meals a day, so snacks are ok, as long as they are not junk food (temptations, dry food) and as long as it is not too much food. http://catinfo.org/?link=felineobesity It is very important that you do not put him on a crash diet, as losing weight too fast can have extremely unhealthy side effects. A healthy cat should eat 6-8oz wet food daily. Your cat does not really fit into that range because of his weight, so you will need to probably start a little higher and work your way down. Try to calculate how many calories he WAS taking in on dry food and then cross reference that with canned food. Janet and Binky's food charts show how many calories are in each flavor of food so it's simple math. It sounds very technical and like a lot of work but if your cat does not get enough calories, he could develop a disease called HL (hepatic lipidosis) and that will not only be life-threatening, but extremely expensive. Slow and steady is the best plan of action in weight loss for cats, anything sudden and there could be very bad consequences.


    When dosing Miralax, it's important to remember this: Cats' digestive systems work very quickly. What goes in, comes out fast.. since Miralax does not build up in the system, and gets pooped right back out, you should take care to make sure it's in the system at all times. Don't skip. I once skipped Leo 2 doses in a row and incurred a 5 day constipation that resulted in a lot of effort to relieve. Also make sure to add water to the food so he doesn't get dehydrated from it pulling fluids from him. 1/2can per whole can of food is a good start.

    Keep us updated, we're very proud of all you've accomplished with Ben and we're rooting for you guys!
     
  67. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    One other thing.. the mere switch to canned (or raw!) food will take lbs off him. Dry food has often been compared to Twinkies. It's junk food, little protein, which means they have to eat a lot of it to get the protein they need. Initially, the wet food may be less satisfying for them as far as filling them up, but it's only because they are used to the bulk of the dry food. After a time, they will slow down on their own.
     
  68. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Thanks so much for the tips and encouragememnt!! Hardest thing to know is HOW MUCH to feed Ben...yes, he's 26 lbs and used to eating waaaayy to much, thanks to me...I will give small WET food snacks with water and Miralax every time with his 2 main meals a day..thanks for reminding me no crash diets....Problem: their food is in the kitchen area on the floor..EVERY time I come into the kitchen, they think they are going to be fed. ( and it breaks your heart to see them both look at you and CRY!!)..and no, I don't feed them every time...but I do give them small snacks ( sometimes WD dry food because it has ALOT fiber- just look at the Binky charts..)...maybe I'll just give them a few SMALL wet food snacks with water to start reducing the volume down to a more acceptable amount...Thanks again!

    Alan
     
  69. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Maybe I can help with the oz.. this is a lot of information to take in at once so you must prioritize. IMO the order of priority should be:

    1. He must eat. Priority number one.

    2. Try to get him to accept no more dry. switch him to wet cold turkey. he may balk, and you may have to trick him by crushing some dry over the wet, but he's off insulin so now is the time. ***important*** if he refuses to eat ANY wet food, use Dr. Lisa's transitioning tips (on same site i gave you).. it IS important that he eat so if he goes even a short length of time refusing food, you'll have to go to plans b, c and d -- see priority 1. keep us apprised, we'll help.

    3. Mix as much water in the food as you can get away with, it will help with the full feeling and it will also help keep his system healthy coming off insulin.

    4. Diabetes. This is extremely important, and while it sounds absolutely wonderful that he may be off the juice, you must NEVER let your guard down. He must be tested regularly, which thankfully you can do at home. Every day at first, every week later. You see dandruff, you test. You see him drinking water, you test. You see him laying around looking too tired, you test. You see ANYTHING out of the ordinary, you test. It might not be gone, and if it is gone, there's a good likelihood it will be back.

    Now......... Maximum oz of food per day.. he is 26lbs. Current thinking is he needs 15-20 cals per lb per day at 26lbs = 520 +/- calories to maintain weight, which we do not want. (http://binkyspage.tripod.com/foodfaq.html) Soooo.. taking 1 can of Friskies (one of the least expensive commercial foods) Special Diet Ocean Whitefish Dinner and we find it has 184 calories in the 5.5oz can (http://binkyspage.tripod.com/CanFoodNew.html) That means a little under 3 cans per day will maintain that weight. You could start at say 2.5 cans per day, heavily diluted with water. Note: We can talk about cat food addictions later, when it comes to fish, ultimately you don't want to feed a lot of fish, but when moving a cat onto canned, sometimes it's helpful. Also do NOT buy any "in gravy" or "in sauce" foods or you'll never get him to eat the healthier pate varieties. ;) Remember: the mere switch to canned is gonna get that weight loss started for you.

    Hope this gets you off to a good start!
     
  70. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    This does help....NO drastic diets..just gradual stuff....problem with some of these other canned foods is that they are very LOW in fiber...maybe the Miralax will help Ben with that, but switching Ben to low fiber foods may make his constipation worse..I will see what the specialist says Tues... I will suggest what you said...

    Alan
     
  71. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Many/most of the cats that switch cold turkey from dry to all canned have diarrhea- NOT constipation.

    We end up suggesting a probiotic for a few days to solve this, which it does. (Fortiflora by purina, sold at vet, as an example)

    You will not have to worry about constipation, and on the REMOTE chance you do- add the miralax then.
     
  72. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Dr. Lisa's web site on basic feline nutrition and raw diets: http://catinfo.org/


    Several folks have suggested this link to you, but it obviously got lost in the onslaught of info.
    It is written by a veterinarian who frequents this site, and it will shatter your current thinking about feeding your cat and his GI issues.

    If you do not do anything else, PLEASE stop and read it now.



    You will thank me, and so will Ben and Jerry
     
  73. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Yep fiber is not as important as you think it is. :) Moisture is, remember cats are carnivores. That's meat, not fiber. There are cases where you will need to add bulk but so far he is not dx with any of those things. Like Nancy said, Dr. Lisa's site will shock you. She specializes in feline nutrition, and she writes in such a way that it's easy to understand. :)
     
  74. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Read it and saved it ! Thanks..no more DRY FOOD..just yelled at my wife...canned w/water!!!!
     
  75. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Saved and will read fully ( started to..)...do you guys give NO dry food at all, or just once in a blue moon?

    Alan
     
  76. dian and wheezer

    dian and wheezer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    no dry ever, never, nope, uh huh.
    one exception is if cat is sick and will eat nothing else then dry will be ok cause cat has to eat something. otherwise. more sever complications can happen but a a general rule, NO
     
  77. Nancy and Cody

    Nancy and Cody Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Absolutely none.

    Cody will sneak dry dog food on occasion, and the constipation that results causes me at least 1 week of serious constipation and resultant enemas. This is the only time I see blood sugars in the 400's. Dry food is poison for any feline, especially a diabetic.

    Many folks will tell you even a few dry kibble "treat" will make an OTJ (off insulin) cat, return to insulin use.

    For "treats", we feed freeze dried 100% chicken or 100% fish treats (available at pet stores) Carolyn feeds bits of rotisserie chicken (without the seasoned skin) as a special treat. NO carbs, no cereal, no wheat, etc just 100% protein for treats.


    The canned food is 100% complete nutrition - by law, all the vitamins and minerals he needs.

    oops - yes just realized the 1 exception to this rule is when a cat won't eat. Not eating even for a few days is a medical emergency for a feline. It causes "fatty liver" which can turn fatal quickly. Therefore in this case dry food is fine if its all they will eat.
     
  78. Blue

    Blue Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I have a big fellow, Oliver, 29lb, and he also ate a great deal before he was regulated.... maybe up to 30oz per day.
    Now, I think he is pretty happy with under 15oz. He gets two 5.5oz cans of friskies pate per day, and maybe a fancy feast 3oz can split into 2 snacks. Other snacks are chunks of raw chicken or maybe freeze dried 100% chicken.

    With all his foods, I put 1tsp RestoraLax and always lots of water; the water's important to fill him up and to work with the RestoraLax to keep him regular. I skipped adding it to his food in the past and we had a couple bouts of his having 'issues'.
    Now, it's added to every meal, even if it's a small snack and I put in only 1/4 tsp.
    He doesn't eat dry, never did, so I don't have an issue with dry food or snacks.

    My other acro, Shadoe, did eat only dry before her dx, but she took to wet well when it was removed from her menu. She did do alot of stealing the dry from my civie in the beginning, and when she did, her BG numbers would rise a great deal. The food makes a great difference. If she got even just a mouthful of a few pieces, I would see her BG shoot up into the 400s. Even some of the wet foods refer'd to as HC high carb like the ones with gravies or called 'grilled' will raise her BG very high.

    The only dry food I have is for one civie and it is covered when I go out, or go out of the room. Dry food is pretty much like poison to diabetics BG numbers, except under the dire circumstances mentioned by others. There have been cats who no longer need insulin once their food is switched, so that should pretty much be proof to the goodness of dry foods.
    I think of dry food as the same as a McDonalds Big Mac.
     
  79. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    In case of dire illness when the cat is off food I have.. my diabetic Oscar went into heart failure and was off his food... I fed him dry, but really he barely even ate that. Just something to change it up because when they are off their food you need to feed them anything they will eat, esp when they are sick.

    Other than that, I have 2 diabetics in my house and one non-diabetic. No dry food has crossed my threshold since Oscar was alive. It's too risky, they get addicted to it and then refuse the wet and then you have to start all over with the transition.
     
  80. mrmush

    mrmush New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Hi Alan, Just got back earlier today from my stepdaughter's wedding in Lakeland and a Red Sox spring training game at Mets Stadium. Unfortunately, I won't be able to meet with you Tuesday. Bob works at FPL in Juno Beach and previous years he's gone to work for 1/2 a day and I've met him at the stadium. My plan was to send him home after the game to walk our dogs and I would come to your house. Well, he's taking Tuesday off and we're going to the game together. We just can't leave the dogs for 5 hours without a walk (8 month old puppy, still working on housebreaking) so I have to head home. You said you're 30 minutes south of Jupiter so I just can't do it. I apologize; I tried to email you but the address bounced. Please send me a private message through this board and I will be happy to send you my phone number. Once you get used to testing, it will be extremely easy. Laurie
     
  81. janelle and Nomad

    janelle and Nomad Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    I am in the Boca area on Tues. and Thurs. West Palm is probably about twenty or thirty minute drive. I am willing to come by one of those evenings if you still want help learning to home test. By then you might know if could use the extra lantus I have.
     
  82. mrmush

    mrmush New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    There you go Alan, Janelle and Sophia (post from Saturday) live nearby and have offered to help you learn to home test. Thank you ladies, I was concerned and an glad to see others in the area. Laurie
     
  83. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    No problem Laurie..will let you know after I see the specialist Tuesday if I could use your help....Thanks again!
    Alan
     
  84. quo1

    quo1 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011

    Janelle- I will be seeing the specialist Tues at 11: 30 and will let you know..very nice of you and will be in touch!

    Alan
     

Share This Page