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  1. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Hi, I am Rustys' Mom now, as my folks passed on. He is 14 and just diagnosed with diabetes. I am not healthy myself, and don't know if I can do all this! Help!:(
     
  2. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    Welcome to FDMB, the best place you never wanted to be. We're glad you found us.

    There are 4 things you'll need to manage your kitty's diabetes:
    - You - without your commitment, the following won't work.
    - Low carb over the counter canned or raw diet, such as many Friskies pates. See Cat Info for more info. If already on insulin, you must be home testing before changing the diet.
    - A long-lasting insulin such as ProZinc, Lantus, BCP PZI, or Levemir.
    - And home blood glucose monitoring with an inexpensive human glucometer such as the WalMart Relion Confirm or Target Up and Up (the pet ones will break your budget!).
     
  3. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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  4. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Thanx for the info. Rusty already eats Friskies Mixed Grill Pate, so we're off to a good start. We go to the Vet tomorrow to learn everything, how to give the shots (twice a day ) and keeping records, blood testing at home, or the Vet, etc. So afraid I won't succeed, and he's 14, so I am troubled about what to do.
     
  5. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    You can do this! It'll become routine pretty quickly.
    Many of us find it helpful to give a low carb treat after testing or injecting. A piece of plain meat, poultry, or cheese (if dairy tolerant) works well.
    If you'd like to share the approximate city, and state where you live, we may have a member near you who might be able to provide some support.
     
  6. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Thanks for your support, BJM. I will try to get thru this, with all your help on this site. Did you guys have your cats first blood-draw, after a week of insulin, at the Vet? Cause this is gonna get expensive for a non-working Mom. But it is just Rusty and me. He was my folks cat, but they passed. Had to put MY 15 y. o. down, 2 years ago from cancer. Now I have Rus.
     
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  7. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 2, 2014
    If you are able to do home-testing, then you will not need to go to the vet for blood tests. You can do the same tests at home for much less than regular vet visits. Also some cats get stressed out at the vets and the glucose readings may show higher than they would if the test was done at home. Doing the tests yourself is not that hard to learn and you can keep a better track of how your kitty is responding to the insulin.

    I am sorry to hear about your folks, but it is wonderful that you were there to take Rusty in.
     
  8. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Thank you. Can I still treat Rusty with his Frontline TriTak flra medicine? He hasn't started insulin yet, as you know, but it's time for his monthly flea tx.
     
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  9. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 2, 2014
    That I don't know about since I don't use the product myself...you could post that question in the Health section:

    http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/forums/feline-health-the-main-forum.28/

    or you could ask you vet tomorrow when you go. I don't see a reason why not, but it is always best to ask someone who has more information than I do. Sorry I couldn't be of more help with this question, but I am sure others can help.
     
  10. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    No a
     
  11. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    Hi and Welcome to you and Rusty. :)

    As far as I know it is safe to treat diabetic cats with any of the spot-on flea treatments (or so I've been told by both our regular vet and the vet we use for boarding when we're out of town). The only thing you might want to do once he is on insulin is give his shots into his flank for a day or so after using the Frontline instead of into the scruff just to avoid getting the flea treatment pushed under his skin by the needle.
     
  12. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    No apologies. I will ask tomorrow. I'm beat! Talk more after appt, maybe. Thanx again sooo much! o_O
     
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  13. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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  14. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 2, 2014
    You are most welcome Manxcat posted just above your last post about the flea treatment. She made some good points in her post.

    Have a good night and please come back and post after your vet visit.
     
  15. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Thanks for sharing. Especially the part regarding injection sites - good call, manxcat.
     
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  16. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Someone help! Please! Rusty is walking funny, and almost fell over. When first diagnosed with diabetes, that is why I took him in to the Vet in the first place. He had a'seizure' type thing, same, but worse. That was a couple weeks ago. But he even circled and couldn't stand. After about 2 min. he was totally back to normal. The Vet said she didn't know if it had anything to do with the diabetes. Not as bad today, but my appt isn't until tomorrow to get insulin, education, etc.!
     
  17. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    Can you get some ketodiastix and test his urine for ketones? I'm struggling to come up with a reason for him being disoriented due to high blood glucose - seizures and confusion are more usually associated with hypoglycemia. Testing for ketones would rule out one possibility at least though it might, of course, not be related to his diabetes at all.
     
  18. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Don't know. I'm new to all this. As said, learning appt tomorrow at Vet. He is fine, now! My Vet said he could have other issues too, as he is 14.
     
  19. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    You can get them at any of the major pharmacies - Walmart, Walgreens, CVS (and most likely at any local pharmacy too). It's just something to rule out just in case - they can develop quickly and if he does have ketones, you really don't want to wait until tomorrow to deal with them.
     
  20. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    OK. I will go get some. Thanx again!
     
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  21. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    If there's any way you can persuade him to only eat the wet food, that is much better for helping to manage his diabetes - almost all dry food (with the exceptions of Young Again Zero Carb and Evo) is really too high in carbs for diabetic cats and also tends to dehydrate them when diabetic cats tend to be dehydrated anyway.

    It's fine to just put wet food out twice a day though - I do exactly that and let the cats free-feed on it all day. Adding a little water helps to stop the food drying out too badly during the day. :)
     
  22. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    You are so kind to me! Can you tell I'm scared to death?! Anyway, I will start putting his wet food out twice a day, as you suggested, but a whole can then? Half early and half evening -ish? These are 5.5 oz cans. (Purina pate)
     
  23. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    You're actually coming across as fairly calm, though I understand only too well the scared to death feeling. It's only a few months ago I was feeling exactly that every day with Rosa after she was diagnosed in January. It does get better - I promise. You never stop worrying completely, but it does all become much more routine and easier to cope with. :bighug:

    If he's getting half a can as half of his food now then, yes, half a can every 12 hours should work fine for him. Though as time goes on you might have to adjust the amount slightly - if he seems to be losing weight (and he doesn't need to) you can give a little more, or a little less if he's gaining weight when he doesn't need to or if he needs to lose a little. I put out 2 5.5oz cans of Friskies pate twice a day for about 4 cats (it's difficult to tell exactly because our housemate still feeds his 2 dry food plus they take some of the wet, one of my 2 and both of my husband's 2 take a little of the dry because our housemate thinks they're "deprived" by only getting the wet and takes them into his room and feeds them treats and dry food no matter how many times I ask him not to, so only Rosa is purely on wet food). We usually find there's a little bit left by the next feeding time and none of them are losing weight so, based on that I think about a can a day should work fine. :)
     
  24. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Got ya. I will put some out now, then when we get home from the Vet. Thanx, once again, manxcat! Right now you're a God send! Don't want to go today, cause poor Rusty has to be there for about an hour, while I get educated on everything. Oh well, another chance to learn something new, and hopefully, save his life!
     
  25. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    I just got back from the vet - my 2 needed their nails trimmed. Right now I'm rocking 3 band-aids thanks to Regan deciding she was NOT going in the carrier. :rolleyes: If it's anything like the appointment I had when Rosa was diagnosed, she didn't have to be out of the carrier for all that long - they talked me through most of what was needed first which did reduce the stress for her. I hope your appointment is similar and Rusty doesn't finish up too stressed out by it all, though do remember that his numbers could be anywhere between 100 and 200 points higher at the vet than they will be at home, so if he reads higher than you're expecting, it's not a cause for panic. :bighug:

    It sounds as though you're all set up to get him onto just wet food which is great - again, taking dry food out of his diet completely can make a big difference to his numbers. :) And you're very welcome to as much help as I can give you - we've all been in the situation of not knowing what we're meant to do next or how to get everything under control so please, just keep asking whenever you need to. :)
     
  26. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Thanx. I will ask alot, I'm sure! How does your cat do with the pricking of the ear? I think Rusty might freak! He's old, but scared of Everything! People, plastic bags (when I change the trash), the vacuum, dishwasher running - anything, really, and he runs and hides in my bedroom! Probably cause he lost his home of 13 years, and both my parents (His parents) and my kitty, Sammy, that lived there, too, as I was taking care of my folks. Lots of changes for him, and me, in the last year! My Mom had him strictly on dry food all his life til I introduced him to wet food a few years ago. Anyway, probably talk to you after the appt. :confused:
     
  27. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    Rosa and her twin were feral as kittens and the blood-testing was the thing that worried me the most. Regan just gets terrified, but Rosa tends to fight when she's scared and I really thought she'd be a nightmare. Shockingly, she took to it really very well indeed - even the click from the pen didn't bother her after the first time. She has her moments where she'll grumble at me, and sometimes she wants me to test her paw pad not her ear, but overall she's been fine as long as I do it (she won't let anyone else test her at all - my husband was able to do it for a couple of weeks, then she decided she wasn't putting up with that any more). Rusty's had a lot to deal with recently with a change of home, losing "his" people and a change of diet. I'm sure he'll come around once he realizes that he's feeling better with you taking control of the situation for him and helping him to keep his BG levels down. Rosa certainly seemed to know that everything I was doing was helping her - she was really very amenable to treatment (grumbling is just one of her things). I just made sure I always offered her a treat at test time - to begin with I'd give her 2 or 3 freeze dried shrimp while I was doing the test as it kept her occupied. Later on I was able to just show her the bag of treats and she knew she'd get one as soon as I was done. I'm sure the treats made it easier for both of us!! You do have the option of freehanding the lancet for testing if the click from the pen scares him too much as well. Oh, and I found talking to Rosa the whole time, or even singing to her, helped to keep her calm. :)

    Good luck with the vet appointment - I really hope it goes well for you and that your vet is willing and able to get Rusty on to the best treatment plan possible. And please do let us know how you get on at the vet and ask any questions you might have afterwards. :)
     
  28. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Also, how long can a 14 year old cat live with untreated diabetes? You see, I have slight agoraphobia, and it's really difficult for me to leave my home, along with a host of other things - depression, anxiety, insomnia, just to name a few. I'm also in Recovery, I was an IV heroin addict! But the syringes won't bother me as it's been 7 years. But, just wanted to know which would be easier on Rusty since he's older. I'm afraid I'll start all this, and he will not make it long cause of the 2 recent seizures he had. (Looked more like a 'stroke' to me). I think I already told you the Vet said it's probably unrelated to the diabetes. What are your thoughts on just letting nature take its course, for BOTH of us?? Plus, I don't work now, so money is tight. I hate to say all this, but I'm still not sure if I can do this.
     
  29. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    I don't think there is a firm prognosis on how long a cat can live untreated - eventually the high sugar levels damage their internal organs and they may go into kidney failure or similar. But most of what you need to do, you can do from home. Insulin, syringes and test supplies are all available on the internet and can be delivered right to your door. And as long as you're home-testing you really shouldn't need a lot of vet appointments. However, if you choose not to treat, then you will need to be very aware of how he's feeling so that you can make the right decision for him when the time comes. Treated, he can have a normal life-span. Many of the cats here who are either OTJ or well regulated and have Gone Ahead have done so due to causes that weren't related at all to their diabetes.

    I had a cat who had several strokes over her lifetime - she always recovered really well from them without vet intervention. After the first one, they said there was little they could do anyway (that may have changed since then of course) and to see whether or not she recovered on her own. She did recover every time and in the end she was PTS a week short of her 20th birthday due to (we think) intestinal cancer - we never had exploratory surgery or any great number of tests done because at 19 we didn't feel it was fair to her to do more than keep her comfortable for as long as possible.

    Depending on what insulin is prescribed, there are ways you can buy insulin cheaper than your local pharmacy. You can order from Marks Marine in Canada which, for Lantus and Levemir, reduces the cost to about 1/3 of what you'll pay in the US. You might also be able to find some insulin and other supplies in this sub-forum http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/forums/supply-closet-for-sale-or-free.15/ as a lot of people here will send supplies that they are not able to use to other members. :) This website often has deals on multi-packs of test strips and has a selection of syringes http://www.adwdiabetes.com/?gclid=CKLrr_PJl8YCFQlafgodCIoA2w

    Oh, and many congratulations on 7 years in Recovery - that is a really great achievement! :D :bighug:

    I truly believe you can help Rusty and you will be able to cope with his treatment too - and you have support here any time you need it...all you have to do is ask. :)
     
  30. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Are you becoming my new BFF?!:) I KNOW I should, and could do it, yet it's not only my comfort zone I'm concerned about, it's Rustys' too. He isnt drinking an abnormal amount of water, he eats good, (14 pounds +) and isn't urinating excessively. I was giving him about 10 to 12 treats a day, but the Vet said 1 or 2 is fine! The injections twice a day and the glucose testing will NOT be fun. I know him well. I guess I'm trying to talk myself out of it cause I know it will be a burden on both of us. I sleep til the afternoon at times, and other times I'm up at 9 am. I'm just so confused. I cancel, and move alot of MY appts, cause of the agoraphobia, and I feel like that today! Then I think about how selfish I'm being...my sis had a lab that had diabetes, and they went through all the hoops, then lost her because of a tumor! She kinda thinks I should just let him be. : (
     
  31. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    I genuinely do enjoy helping people! :) And I find it much easier in a lot of ways to do that on the internet - I have social phobia which can make some real life situations extremely difficult simply because I find it terrifying to be in a large group of people or to have to talk face to face with people I don't know (although I love going to see live bands, which of course as with most phobias makes no sense at all)! :rolleyes:

    I do have a few thoughts for you about Rusty's treatment. If he's not losing weight, doesn't have obvious diabetic symptoms and his blood glucose isn't too far off normal, you could try just the wet food without insulin for a week or so to see if that will be enough to bring him down into reasonable numbers. So many cats who are diagnosed have very obvious symptoms and their quality of life is suffering, that insulin then is often the only option. But it is possible for some cats to be diet controlled from the start - if Rusty isn't too badly affected right now, maybe he could be one of those. :)

    If it does end up with him needing insulin then you need to choose an insulin that works with your lifestyle and schedule as well as helping him. If you don't have a regular schedule, then the depot insulins (Lantus and Levemir) aren't going to be ideal for you as they do require regular dosing every 12 hours. I had to force my schedule into a regular pattern for Rosa because my vet was convinced that Lantus was the only insulin I should even consider but there are other options out there that work too. If you need something more flexible, and it sounds as though you do, then either ProZinc or PZI would work better for you - they don't have a depot so you can have more flexibility with your shot times with those. And both of those are still effective in cats. :)

    I think keeping today's vet appointment if you possibly can is definitely worthwhile. You do need to know what Rusty's numbers are at without insulin so that you can make informed decisions on what (if anything) to do next. And you might find that his numbers aren't really all that bad (remember vet stress can easily add 100 or more points to his reading) and that trying to control things for him with diet alone could be a reasonable option for you - if that's the case then there would be a lot less for you to worry about. :bighug:
     
  32. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    Didn't have to think about it! After back and forth, twice each with Vet and Pharmacy, they forgot to call in his insulin script! (..."it's been a real busy day") was her excuse, yet THEY called me this morning and said that I needed to bring it to the appt! Judt called Pharmacy again to make sure, and nothing. I called the Vet and they said, (after being on hold over 5 minutes ) that the note was on Dr's desk, but she's at lunch right now! They moved him to Friday. How pissed am I, after getting ready and making the decision to go!??:arghh: Also, last time we were there, I think his number was at about 400, if I remember correctly. Don't know what that means, tho. That was when he was getting all the treats and hard food, too.
     
  33. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    That's a real shame - after you were ready to go and get it all done too. How disappointing that you've had to reschedule for a phone call that someone didn't make. :(

    On the positive side, if he was up by 100 points because of vet stress and maybe another 100 from dry food, it is possible that you might actually be able to control him well enough with diet. Those are only very rough numbers, but it's certainly possible for each of those 2 things to raise his level by 100 or more points. It might be interesting to see if he is any lower on Friday from taking the dry food out of his diet altogether - it would still be early days to see the full effect, but if he's lower at that point then you could certainly think about holding off on insulin and seeing where his levels settle at home when he's not so stressed. :)
     
  34. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    True. He hasn't been in the truck, or traveled anywhere for over a year, and that was just a short drive to my place, after we sold my parents house (that my Dad built - he built all the homes on the street we lived!) Union Carpenter. So it was really sad to sell the family home. Anyway, and my Mom was quite sick fot a couple years before she passed, so Rusty hadn't been to the Vet since 2010. I'm certain he was very scared! We will see Friday...Thanx again for all of your knowledge! :)
     
  35. manxcat419

    manxcat419 Well-Known Member

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    Jan 14, 2015
    Awww - poor Rusty. And you too having to deal with all of this on top of your Mom passing. :bighug: He must feel that his whole life has been turned upside down, though he will come around in time I'm sure with you there to care for him and make him see he's still loved. :) Paws crossed that it was the stress of the vet visit on top of everything else that raised his levels up to 400 and that you can manage him just with diet once everything calms down for him. :)
     
  36. Rusty14

    Rusty14 Member

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    Jun 14, 2015
    I doubt it. He's always been on Purina Mixed Grill Pate' for at least 3 years. Accept, as I told the Vet, in the last couple weeks before his appt, my Doc had changed one of my meds, and I was real bad. Had a friend bring me things I needed, and she brought all different types of wet food for Rus. I am back on my other med, for about a week now, so he's back on the pate' , which I was told is an acceptable wet food for diabetic cats. I guess I just continue to march, and we'll find out, eh?;)
     
  37. Capoo

    Capoo Member

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    Jan 15, 2016
    The post you answered is dated from last year ;)
     
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