We were just diagnosed this week

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Nadja, May 14, 2015.

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  1. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    I'm brand new here because my handsome boy, Phillip, was diagnosed this week. For about a month, I noticed a disinterest in food, and weight loss, but he has gone through phases before (he's kind of picky). So I started gradually changing his food (we've done this before, and it got him eating again). When he still would not eat and began to looking like he was wasting away, and his beautiful coat was all ragged, I knew that it was more serious than fickle eating.

    I had no idea it would be diabetes. To be honest, I didn't even know that was a thing that cats could have. When my doctor asked me if I was comfortable giving shots, I was, at the same time, horrified that he would think there was something I wouldn't do to save my kitty, and terrified about what I was signing on for.

    Right now, we're doing 2 units of insulin, twice a day. We haven't begun a diet yet, because we're still working on getting ANY kind of food down. Right now, I'm feeding Phillip all the things he begs for from the kitchen, but never got before (tuna, turkey, lunch meat). My vet says that I can do this until he gets back to normal eating. My other cat, Rory, doesn't understand this, of course, and we're struggling to get her to not steal the "good stuff" from Phillip. She's a sweet girl, and if she understood English, I believe she could be reasoned with, but at this point, I feel like she's just really confused.

    My vet is wonderful and accessible 24/7. But there are still so many anxieties and fears I have that are constantly racing through my head. I'm so terrified of the hypoglycemic attacks. I'm pretty sure I've gotten to the point of annoying Phillip checking him ever 20 minutes for 4 hours after each shot. I'm even afraid to go to sleep at night after his evening shot and worried all day long while I'm at work and he's home alone.

    How crazy am I here? I suspect that I am a little crazy :) but I'm hoping someone here can ease some fears.

    I'm also worried about times when I can't be home at night, or when I need to go out of town. What then?

    I guess I just want to hear other stories of people getting through this. I'm confused and anxious and feeling slightly alone.

    Thanks.
     
  2. oscem

    oscem New Member

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    Apr 28, 2015
    Hi, Nadja,

    We're new at this, too (Malcolm was diagnosed just about 3 weeks ago), so I totally understand the fears (and checking on them constantly - I don't think Malcolm's slept more than 1/2 an hour at a time when I've been home because I keep checking on him!). I can't give the same kind of advice that you'll get from others here, as we're still so new that everything is a learning curve, but I will tell you that you're in the right place - I've read and asked questions and received some incredible advice that goes way beyond what my vet has been able to provide (not that she's not wonderful, but I can't call her constantly about the questions that I have every day).

    Good luck - you'll find lots of answers around here :).
     
  3. Larry and Kitties

    Larry and Kitties Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Welcome Phillip and his caretaker.
    What insulin are yo using?
    Are you home-testing Phillip's blood glucose using a human meter? That helps avoid hypoglycemia.
    Is Phillip maintain his weight?
    Did the vet do any bloodwork and urine analysis/ I ask because a diabetic cat not eating is bad. I can indicate diabetic acidosis which has ketones in the urine or pancreatitis.
    What insulin are you giving?
     
  4. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    My vet did bloodwork (I'm still learning how all this works, but I know that his sugar was over 300). He also did the urinalysis and did, in fact, find ketones. The plan was to take him home, get him to eat, and if he doesn't, admit him to the hospital. This is why he's been on the "any food you want" diet. He's been eating so much better the past two days and just today has started yelling at me for head scratches again. I know he's got a ways to go with the eating, but I feel like we're headed in the right direction.
    His insulin is:
    PZI U-100
    And the vet didn't talk to me about home testing, but I've read a lot on here about it. I have a monitor here at home I could probably use, but my vet hasn't said anything one way or another about it.
     
  5. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015

    Thank you thank you thank you! :)
     
  6. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    Welcome to FDMB, the best place you never wanted to be.

    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 Friskies pates. See Cat Info for more info,
    - 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!)
     
  7. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    Just an update -
    Phillip's normal appetite has returned! He's been playing, getting into mischief, grooming and cuddling! I feel like I have my boy back! I know we still have a long way to go in terms of regulating, but I'm starting to feel hopeful!

    We've been doing glucose monitoring, slowly introducing a wet food diet (something he would not eat before, and is now growing accustomed to). And his insulin dose increased this week from 1 unit to 1.5. His blood sugar is still pretty high most days, but his other symptoms are fading.

    What a weird couple of weeks it's been.
     
  8. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Can we get you started using our grid to record your glucose tests? It will help us give you better feedback. Instructions are here.

    Understanding the spreadsheet/grid:

    The colored headings at the top are the ranges of glucose values. They are color-coded to clue you in as to meaning.

    Each day is 1 row. Each column stores different data for the day.

    From left to right, you enter
    the Date in the first column
    the AMPS (morning pre-shot test) in the 2nd column
    the Units given (turquoise column)

    Then, there are 11 columns labeled +1 through +11
    If you test at +5 (5 hours after the shot), you enter the test number in the +5 column
    If you test at +7 (7 hours after the shot), you enter the test number in the +7 column
    and so on.

    Halfway across the page is the column for PMPS (evening pre-shot)
    To the right is another turquoise column for Units given at the evening shot.

    There is second set of columns labeled +1 through +11
    If you snag a before bed test at +3, you enter the test number in the +3 column.

    We separate day and night numbers like that because many cats go lower at night.

    It is merely a grid for storing the info; no math required.
     
  9. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    Okay, I think I got it all. I put in my numbers so far. I test when I can because of work, but hopefully it's beginning to paint a picture.

    Thanks!
     
  10. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Great job, with the spreadsheet and the testing. What kind of insulin are you using?
     
  11. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    Thanks! We're using PZI.
     
  12. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    I'd include that in your signature so people don't ask continually. (Dosing is different for different insulins). We put together a protocol for ProZinc. It is in blue type in my signature
     
  13. Sue and Oliver (GA)

    Sue and Oliver (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Your preshot numbers and a number in that 5-7 hour since the shot range are most helpful. The mid cycle numbers shows you how low the insulin takes him. (You don't want him below 40-50). We also suggest not shooting under 200 at first, until you have the data to know how low he might go. Instead, wait 20 minutes, without feeding and retest. You want to make sure he is rising, not falling, and that he is closer to 200.

    His numbers aren't bad considering he is new to the insulin. Is he eating wet low carb food?

    Now that you have your spreadsheet up and are testing, you might start posting on the Main Forum. Also, take a look at the ProZinc forum.
     
  14. Nadja

    Nadja New Member

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    May 14, 2015
    My vet doesn't want to switch him totally to a low carb diet yet, since he just started eating again, and he's a picky eater. I've been mixing half a serving of wet with half a serving of his preferred dry food. It has caused him to begin to eat the wet without me coaxing and sitting next to him while he eats.

    His sister, Rory, is also a problem because she wants to eat his new, cool food, and he'd be okay to sit back and let her. I guess I need to look around on the main forum to see what solutions people with two cats have come up with.

    Thank you so much for all the info. I'm so glad I found this forum.
     
  15. BJM

    BJM Well-Known Member

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    Oct 6, 2010
    I switched all of the cats over to the Friskies pates.
     
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