Sleepy kitty

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by Harleygirl, Jan 4, 2018.

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  1. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    It has been about a week and half since we started the Vetsulin injections. Her numbers are getting lower and it seems she is extra tired in the evenings. First thing in the morning she is happy, purring, hungry and playing. Which is new since before she was just not feeling well. But is it normal to just completely be pooped in the evening about 2 hours after her injection? We checked her before bed and she was at 75, is that too low?
     
  2. Noah & me (GA)

    Noah & me (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Anything else going on in her life? Other meds, previous medical conditions, new additions to the home. Is she feeling so much better now that she's playing more during the day with someone/something? Others will comment on the numbers, going shopping.
     
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  3. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    Harley seems to be getting big drops in glucose readings. On Jan 3 she went from AMPS of 415 to AMPS of 169. "Usually" with Vetsulin the nadir (lowest reading) will occur between +4-+7 then start to climb pack up before the next shot. This of course can vary with different kitties and is only an average response time. If this was the case with Harley she may have gone down even lower during the day time cycle. Big swings in glucose levels can be draining for people or for kitties. If you get a chance try to do some more in between readings or better yet when you have a day off do a curve..testing every 2 hours for a 12 hour cycle to get a good feel for how she is responding to the Vetsulin.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018
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  4. FurBabiesMama

    FurBabiesMama Well-Known Member

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    With the AlphaTrak, that is not too low but getting close. It is possible she went even lower after that. There are no other mid-cycle tests yet, so you have no way of knowing when her nadir (lowest point in the cycle) usually occurs.
     
  5. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Yeah, it is hard for us to get mid day numbers. We both work during the day and are planning to do a every 2-3 hr curve this weekend as long as life doesn't pull us away again. Should we run the solution through the alphatrak?
     
  6. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    She is not on any other meds and is the only cat in the house. This weekend we had company and I think that wore her out this weekend. Wondering if we should not give her any insulin at a certain number during the week? If so what number? Probably no insulin if she is in the low 100s until we can determine the curve. Also read that it takes a bit for her body to get used to the insulin, so her numbers won't be regular, anyone know if that is true?
     
  7. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    What is too low with AlphaTrak?
     
  8. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    Since you are new to insulin it would be a good idea to read over this sticky:

    http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/threads/beginners-guide-to-caninsulin-vetsulin.186099/

    "
    Q. Is my cat’s BG high enough for insulin?

    For those NEW to treating feline diabetes, and/or those who don’t have much data about how their cat responds to insulin, we generally recommend that a shot isn’t given if the pre-shot BG, is below 200 mg/dL [11 mmol/L] on a human meter.
    If you use a pet meter, such as AlphaTrak2, you may want to raise the initial ‘no shoot’ threshold. This gives an added margin of safety when using a pet meter. (If in doubt seek advice from your vet.)"

    The more data you are able to get the better you will be able to gauge Harley's response to Vetsulin. It is a faster acting insulin than some others and can bring numbers done quickly in the early hours after shooting, so having a safe "no shoot" number is important. Also with Vetsulin it is better to test, then feed, then wait 20-30 minutes after eating before shooting so that there is food 'on board' before the insulin starts acting.

    The information in the link I provided is excellent and the more you understand how the insulin works and how YOUR kitty responds to it the safer you will keep your kitty. You can also post on the caninsulin/vetsulin forum to get experienced people replying:

    http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/forums/caninsulin-vetsulin-and-n-nph.19/
     
  9. FurBabiesMama

    FurBabiesMama Well-Known Member

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    The AlphaTrak documentation says the hypo range begins at 65. (The spreadsheet we use has 68 as the beginning of the bright greens.)
     
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  10. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Thank you
     
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  11. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

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    You are welcome. The only time that a person would not want to skip a shot completely would be if the kitty had ever had DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis) A small token shot would be better than skipping in that case unless of course the number was far too low to shoot. You would know if your kitty had ever had DKA as it would have involved several (expensive) days at the vets on IVs and rapid insulin with intensive care. I am only putting this here for anyone who may read the postings so that a petparent with a kitty with a history of DKA would ask for advice either on the forum or from their vet, before skipping a shot with any type of insulin.
     
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  12. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    I'm really hoping everything I've read on the insulin is right. A lot are saying I shouldn't get too worried this early, She's only about 10 days in. She will get better, she's always been a lazy cat anyway. She prefers cuddles to play time...lol
     
  13. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Vetsulin dose onset is early in the cycle. It typically starts to really kick in around the +1 mark and can start lowering the BG fast and hard. This (often very steep) drop in BG can make some cats feel a bit lousy and 'wiped out'.

    We have received reports here from various members that their cats became very sleepy/lethargic/withdrawn during the peak period of effect when being treated with Vetsulin (aka Caninsulin), my own cat included. When being treated with Caninsulin, Saoirse would be fairly bright in the first hour or so of each cycle, became very lethargic and withdrawn for most of the rest of the cycle, only brightening up again in the couple of hours before the next dose was due. As I recorded in her journal and discussed with my vet at the time it was like having two different cats. Also, in general, different insulins can have different effects on cats' moods/behaviours (insulin being a hormone).

    While it is sometimes observed that cats can become a bit groggy/lethargic in the very early stages of treatment on any insulin (their bodies may need a little time to become acclimatised to the insulin in use and also maybe spending time in a lower BG range than the body has seen in a while), if Harley's sleepiness/lethargy persists or if it becomes more pronounced then it may be that the action of the particular insulin being used just does not agree with the individual cat. Whatever the potential reason, let your vets know ASAP about the current clinical signs you're observing and regularly keep them up to date with Harley's progress thereafter.

    Not all insulins agree with all cats, and if a particular insulin isn't a good 'fit' then there are other insulins available to try. Finding the right one can make the world of difference to a kitty's health and happiness. (A lot of members here have reported that their cats seem much happier after switching to Levemir, for example. My Saoirse was much happier and brighter when I switched her to Lantus.)

    Going back to Vetsulin/Caninsulin for a moment, a key sign to watch for is if Harley starts to show avoidance/hiding behaviour when she knows her next insulin dose is due, or if she starts to really struggle or shows aggressive behaviour when you're trying to administer the injection. It may be her way of trying to tell you that the Vetsulin's effects are making her feel unwell.

    I suggest recording brief notes of these lethargic spells, including the time in the cycle when they're observed (e.g. from +2 to +9) in the Remarks section of Harley's spreadsheet. It will help you to better spot Harley's individual pattern of response and to track trends more easily (may be positive or negative changes). If the lethargy persists then you will have built up a very useful record of clinical signs alongside the BG data to discuss with your vet. Should this prove to be the case for Harley, your vet should then have the information needed to help them select a different insulin to better suit Harley's body. Always err on the side of caution: when in doubt, call your vet.

    SAFETY NOTE I: With a cat who shows signs of sleepiness/lethargy while the insulin dose is active in the system it is even more important to do mid-cycle checks. Lethargy can be a symptom of hypoglycaemia. Home BG testing is the only way that you'll be able to safely distinguish whether the low energy is due to 'insulin grogginess' or whether you need to intervene with food/carbs to raise your cat's blood glucose back up to safe levels. (I speak from personal experience.) I can't recommend strongly enough the value of getting a 'before bed' BG check every evening to help keep a kitty safe.

    SAFETY NOTE II: Some cats metabolise insulin a little faster than others and, while on average Vetsulin cats have nadir between +4 and +7, Vetsulin can produce a nadir much earlier in the cycle. With Harley getting so sleepy at +2 hours after the dose was given I'd recommend testing her at +2 and +3 to check her BG levels to make sure they're in the safe range. If there's a substantial drop by +2 in the cycle, then closer monitoring may be needed for the next few hours. Also, nadir time can move around. A useful sign to watch for is an 'appetite uptick': if Harley goes to look for some food a little while after the injection was given, say, at about 60-90 minutes after dose admin then this can help you spot the time of dose onset (i.e. when the insulin really starts getting to work to lower BG). If dose onset starts happening earlier, it may be an early warning sign to expect an earlier nadir.


    Mogs
    .
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018
  14. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    Thank you all so much...I think one thing we will change up a bit is the feeding. We will test her BG, then feed her a bit, wait 20 min then do injection and see if that helps. Along with testing her BG after the injection at 2, 3 and right before bed tonight. I did go home at lunch today and she was sleeping, but quickly woke up, stretched and wanted some food. So I gave her a bite to eat and some love before I came back to work.
     
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  15. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2014
    Vetsulin comprises an amorphous fraction which kicks in early after dose admin and which does most of the 'heavy lifting' in the early part of the cycle (hence the fairly steep drops typical of this insulin). It also contains a crystalline fraction which kicks in later in the cycle (typically between +7 and +10) but its effect is much weaker than that of the amorphous fraction. Ergo, with Vetsulin you need to allow 20-30 minutes after food before giving the injection. This bit of a delay helps make sure that the kitty's system is 'primed' with carbs, ready for the stronger amorphous insulin to go to work on.

    Awwww! :cat:


    Mogs
    .
     
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  16. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    Harley girl was at 148 last night, so no injection. This morning she was running and happy and tested 378. We did the test this morning, fed her then 30 min later I gave her 1 unit and gave her a bit more food since she was still hungry. Unlike yesterday, I left for work and she played with the mouse instead of passing out. Fingers crossed the simple change in food and injection timing will help my little girl. Going to check on her at lunch time and make sure she is still functioning...lol
     
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  17. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    Fingers and paws crossed over here. Let us know how she's doing after you get back from lunch.


    Mogs
    .
     
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  18. Harleygirl

    Harleygirl New Member

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    Dec 27, 2017
    Great lunch date!! She ran to the door to greet me instead of me having to wake her up.
     
  19. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

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    That sounds much better! :D


    Mogs
    .
     
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