Overwhelmed

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by Peppersmom72, Nov 23, 2017.

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  1. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

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    Nov 20, 2017
    Pepper (14 yrs old) was diagnosed 5 days ago with Diabetes. The vet said she also had crystals in her urine. She prescribed Novolin-N, 1 unit 2x a day.

    A little background about my girl:

    At approx. 5 weeks old Pepper showed up in my driveway with a flea collar on, infested with fleas and cold. It was love at first sight with this little fluff ball. I immediately took her in and took her flea collar off, knowing a kitten that young should not have a flea collar on. I bathed her, fed her a tuna fish sandwich and took her to the vet the next day.

    At the vet visit, I was told approx how old she was. They gave her another bath and we returned a couple weeks later for shots and was told Pepper had worms.

    About 6 months later, Pepper was spayed.

    Pepper started getting sick and could not hold down food. She started losing weight. I rushed her to Emergency Vet Clinic in the middle of the night. Pepper had a 5 in long hairball lodged in her small intestine and needed emergency surgery. She recovered great. But, because of the surgery, Pepper could only eat wet food. (Which was fine with me).

    Pepper has always been on Friskies, wet can food. She usually does well with it. Sometimes she eats too fast and throws it up. She eats a 1/4 of a can 5-6 times a day.

    Recently, Pepper started drinking alot of water, urinated ALOT! and just laying around like she was sad. She started distancing herself from me, which is NOT like her. She started losing weight too..

    I took her to the vet and Diabetes was diagnosed with crystals in her urine. She also has an enzyme in her pancreas that is elevated and a high WBC. They said it could be a parasite or an allergy causing that. She's down to 9 lbs now from 13 lbs.

    They started her on the insulin and she seems to be doing fine for part of the day. I test her myself with an AlphaTrak meter before her shots. Her BG is high!

    I did a curve today and was told by another person that I shouldn't be doing one this soon, that I need to wait for her body to get used to the insulin. But, our vet knows I did it today, and said to call her on Monday with the results.

    6am BG - 572, fed 1/4 can Friskies Turkey & Giblets Dinner, made sure she didn't throw up and gave 1 unit Novolin-N

    8am BG - 398

    10am BG - 316, fed 1/4 can Friskies Turkey & Giblets Dinner

    Noon BG - 410

    2 pm BG - 502, fed 1/4 can Friskies Turkey & Giblets Dinner

    4 pm BG - 566

    6 pm BG - 578, fed 1/4 can Friskies Turkey & Giblets Dinner, made sure she didn't throw up and gave 1 unit Novolin - N.

    This is so overwhelming, I feel like she is suffering.
     
  2. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Welcome to the FDMB Missy and Pepper!! This really is the best place you never wanted to be!! I know you've gotten a lot of advice from the Facebook group, but just wanted to welcome you here too and assure you that there's every reason to be hopeful!! It will take a little time, but you're doing so much right already that you just need to take some deep breaths and give yourself some time to learn how insulin works and let us help you learn what you need to know.

    That's actually a pretty normal curve for Novolin....it tends to hit hard and fast but wear off before the next shot time.....and actually, Pepper came down quite a bit on only 1U!!

    As you know, there are some longer acting insulins that are gentler, but we've had some people who've had success with the shorter acting insulins too, so for now, let's work with what you have!

    If money is a problem, please reach out to DCIN (Diabetic Cats In Need) ....I'm one of the case managers and the whole reason DCIN exists is to help people keep their cats in their homes when finances are the only reason they may consider surrendering to a shelter or rehoming (or euthanizing :()

    The fact that you're already home testing and feeding a low carb diet all say that you love your baby very much and want to do the best for her....that's what we all want!!

    I posted the pictures in "China's Profile" on Facebook....I hope you'll take a look at them again. She went from less than 8lbs to about 14 in 4-5 months after we started treatment.

    Where there's life, there's always hope!! Pepper is lucky to have such a caring mamabean!!
     
    Barbara & Uncle likes this.
  3. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

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    Nov 20, 2017
    Thank you, it really means a lot.

    The vet said that Novolin-N was long lasting like Humulin-N. Was that incorrect information given to me? I have to call the vet on Monday with her curve results, was it too soon to do a curve? She's only been on the prescribed dose of insulin for 2 days. (Long story short, the vet tech told me the wrong line on the syringe and I wasn't giving her anything but a tiny drop for 3 days).
     
  4. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

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    Nov 20, 2017
    Am I feeding her too much?
     
  5. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    All the N insulins are the same....Novolin N is the exact same insulin as Humulin N, it's just cheaper.

    No, it wasn't too soon to do a curve since Novolin does work so quickly....it's a lot better to test too much than not enough!!

    What you should try to do is test before EVERY shot and then (if you can) get a test about 4 hours after the morning shot and then at least 1 "before bed" test on the PM cycle.

    Most cats go lower at night, so it's important to get a test before bed so IF they're dropping too quickly or too much, you can set an alarm and test again later (or help yourself to a cup of strong coffee!! :coffee: )

    As you get more data on Pepper, you'll start to learn when she usually starts to drop, at what point she nadir's (nadir is the lowest point in the cycle) and when the insulin starts to wear off. The more data you have, the easier it will be for you to see what kind of pattern Pepper is going to have!
     
  6. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    No....until she's better regulated, she'll need more food anyway!!

    Think of insulin like it's a "key".....on every cell in the body there's a "lock"....without enough "keys", the glucose that's in the bloodstream can't get into the cells to feed them, so the body is actually starving. That's why our diabetics lose so much weight even though most of them eat huge amounts of food!

    As her numbers come down, her appetite should decrease because she'll actually be able to use the glucose from her food to nourish her cells

    Also, we have a great spreadsheet we all use here to help you to see those "patterns" we're looking for. Here are Instructions on getting the FDMB spreadsheet
    If you have any problems getting it started, feel free to send me a private message by clicking on my name and choosing "Start Conversation"....it takes me about 30 seconds so it's no bother at all.
     
  7. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2017
    I did test yesterday before her shots and again today with the curve. I am unable to test 4 hours after her morning dose, because I am at work. Hubby is here for a crisis and knows to rub Kayro Syrup on her gums and get her to the vet if she is not right. I call throughout the day like a mad woman to check on her, and he will call me at work if somethings not right. But, he is not comfortable at all with doing a BG on her. She will freak out if its not me, and he knows it.
     
  8. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    You don't have to do a full curve every day, and if you can't get DH comfortable testing during the day, you just do the best you can!

    Get tests on the PM cycle and on weekends/days off on the AM cycle

    We've had lots of DH's who weren't real cool about testing at first.....most of them come around. I hope yours is one of them!!

    Here's something I wrote up for others that needed help with testing...maybe it'll help you too! (substitute "her" for "him"...LOL)

    It can be really helpful to establish a routine with testing. Pick one spot that you want your "testing spot" to be (I like the kitchen counter because it's got good light and it's at a good height....it also already blocked 2 escape routes due to the wall and the backsplash) It can be anywhere though...a rug on the floor, a table, a particular spot on the couch...wherever is good for you. Take him there as many times a day as you can and just give his ears a quick rub and then he gets a yummy (low carb) treat. Most cats aren't objecting so much with the poking..it's the fooling with their ears they don't like, but once they're desensitized to it and learn to associate a certain place with the treats, they usually start to come when they're called! Or even when they hear us opening the test kit!

    You also have to remember...you're not poking him to hurt him...you're testing him to keep him safe and understand what's going on inside his body. There's just nothing better than truly understanding what's going on inside your kitty's body and with this disease, the more knowledge you have, the more power you have against it. The edges of the ears have very few pain receptors, so it really doesn't hurt them. Also, if you're nervous and tense, it's going to make your kitty nervous and tense too. As silly as it might seem, try singing! It forces you to use a different part of your brain!

    It's also important to make sure his ear is warm. A small sock filled with a little rice and microwaved or a small pill bottle filled with warm water (check temp against your wrist like you would a baby bottle) works well.

    When you're first starting, it's also important to use a lower gauge lancet, like 25-28 gauge. Most of the "lancet devices" come with 33 gauge lancets and they are just too tiny to start with. The bigger lancets (that are lower numbers) make a bigger "hole". As you poke more and more, the ears will grow new capillaries and will be easier and easier to get blood from...we call it "learning to bleed"

    Finding the right "treat" will be a great help too! Freeze dried chicken, bonito flakes, little pieces of baked chicken...whatever low carb treat you can find that he really enjoys will help him to associate the testing with the treat! China's Achilles heel was baked chicken, so I'd bake a piece, chop it into bite sized pieces, put some in the refrigerator and freeze the rest to use as needed. It didn't take long for her to come any time I picked up the meter! Her current favorite treat is the Orijen Wild Boar treats. I buy the dogs ones because they're cheaper than the cat ones and exactly the same thing, only a little bigger (but I crush them into a powder because that's how she likes it!)
     
    Barbara & Uncle likes this.
  9. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

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    Nov 20, 2017
    Whats DH mean?
     
  10. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2013
    Dear Husband

    Here's a post that has a lot of the slang we use in here

    It says it's for the Lantus/Levemir insulin support group (Lantus Land) but the slang is used all over the board
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2017
  11. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    If she's underweight please feed her as much as she wants. 1 1/2 cans a day is not excessive, and unregulated diabetics often need extra food to maintain weight. Instead of 1/4 can pet meal, maybe do a 1/2 can 4-5 times per day. If she eats too fast, spread it out on a paper plate so it takes longer to eat.


    Most cats take weeks to months to get regulated, so remember is marathon. My cat took 3 months before I got good numbers.

    If after a few months you find you don't get long enough results from Novolin, you could always switch to ProZinc, lantus or levemir.

    My cat is on a shorter acting insulin similar to Novolin called vetsulin and does very well on it. Every cat is different.
     
  12. Peppersmom72

    Peppersmom72 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2017
    I can try and feed her more. I will start with 1/3 can 4-5 times a day.. I will see if she will hold that down.
     
    JanetNJ likes this.
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