What to feed my diabetic cat in the UK

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by ClaudiaThompson, Jan 9, 2013.

  1. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Hello,

    I want to find out if Whiska's wet cat food in pouches is a good food to give to my diabetic cat. I cannot afford anything expensive. This is what I had been giving to him:

    Whiska's Simply Grilled Pouches: Chicken, Turkey, Salmon, Trout

    But it has been sort of a "new" thing to give him wet food, I had mostly been just giving him dry food, Go Cat from Purina. But I noticed he kept wanting wet food.

    When I found out he has diabetes, a couple of days ago, I started looking online and it seems that canned food is the best thing to give him.

    I want to ask you, do I feed him like 2 pouches of wet food a day, like one in the morning and another at night? Then perhaps leave out the dry kibbles for him to munch on the rest of the day? Also, is it good to give him a liquid cat food called Liquivite once in a while, to make sure he is getting enough liquids? and if so, how much?

    I live in the UK and so some of the cat foods that used to be available to me when I lived in the United States are no longer available.

    I read online that there is a cat food called PetGuard that is supposed to be good for diabetic cats but I can only find that online in the USA.

    I cannot afford at all the insulin treatments, I will not go into detail why, but my income is extremely limited. So the best I can do is try and feed my cat the best diet.
     
  2. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Re: What to feed my diabetic cat

    You may want to edit the title of your thread to add...in UK so you get the right eyes...I know we have a bunch of UK members...in the mean time I will see if I can round up a couple that can help you out with the food question.

    I can tell you that you want to ditch all the dry food...and honestly caring for a diabetic kitty even on insulin isn't that bad and we have a ton of tricks to keep as much cash in your pocket as possible.

    One of the best ways is to test at home, that way all you are really paying for is the insulin, syringes and test strips..and well food but he has to eat anyhow..I personally have 14 cats 2 of which are diabetics that I adopted as diabetics. My husband and I also live on a single income and not a large one. Simply getting rid of the dry food sent one of our diabetics into remission and off insulin and our newest girl is just about off insulin.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  3. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Mommaofmuse,

    Wow, I keep reading that online, about dry food! You see, what happened with my cat was that he had developed polyps in his ears and had to have an ear operation, and after the operation he had to take antibiotic pills. Right after the operation, he started having diarhea. I tried getting some stuff to make him have the right flora he needed (not sure what all that means but anyway)... it only worked for a day or so, then he went right back to the diarhea.

    Since then, it has been just me trying to make him keep stablized I guess you'd call it, with using dry food, wet food and this stuff called Liquivite. I had NO idea he had diabetes. This has been going on for quite some time now. I was scared to take him back to the Vet because to me, it seemed like they caused it in the first place. Not intentionally of course, but I was afraid to give him even MORE medicines because I thought it would make it worse.

    But anyway the problem was that IF I tried using wet food, it seemed to have the effect of causing his diarhea to get worse. But THEN suddenly one day and sort of ever since then, when I give him wet food it would have the opposite effect and seem to make him constipated, and I noticed he would drink alot. He would hang around his water bowl all the time. But now for some reason the wet food doesnt seem to do that any longer.

    So that was why I kept on giving him the dry food, it seemed he would do "okay" with it, as long as I threw in some wet food once in awhile to make his poo either drier or moister... and I would throw in some Liquivite too... to balance it all out.

    Then suddenly I find out he's got diabetes and now I am just unsure what to feed him, how much to feed him etc. The Vet said it doesnt matter, and I have a hard time believing that.

    But anyway hopefully perhaps someone will be able to give me some guidance on this.

    You see, I may as well tell you this... I was in an abusive marriage and the police got me out of it. I was determined to keep my Cat, Moses, because I love him so much. I went through so much and was able to keep him, only to find this out about the diabetes. And I have a disability myself so I cannot work. I have been classed recently as being as a "Couple" with the friend I am living with, though we are actually in no way a couple, but in this way they dont have to pay me benefits, just him. He is just letting me stay with him till I can manage to get my life sorted out. So He gets all the benefits money and I just get a bit from him. The problem is soon they are going to probably take that away from him and he will have to get a job. So I will be making nothing, unless I can manage to get on Employment Support Allowance. So I am really scared of starting any sort of program with Insulin, then finding out I cannot make a real committment to it. I read stuff online about how you can hurt your cat with the insulin if you dont know what you are doing, etc.

    This is why I figured the best thing for me to do is just try to feed him the best way possible, keep him from being stressed, etc. The vet said possibly stress sent him over the edge. I have moved 6 times in the last 6 years, from place to place... and he had to ride on an airplane from the USA to the UK twice, etc... have all the vaccinations, and so on. He is a real scaredy cat and absolutely hates going to the Vet. Then when I told all this to the Vet he said, yes he understands completely, and that even if we did get his diabetes under control his ear polyps would be back again because they are starting to come back already, and he would have to have ANOTHER operation with MORE antibiotics. Its just awful. He is 13 years old.

    Claudia
     
  4. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    ((((((Claudia))))))

    Oh Honey I am so sorry you and Moses are going through all this. I can really feel for you for 10 years I was in an abusive marriage myself, so sweetie I completely understand about just how precious your furbaby can be when the rest of your life seems upside down.

    Yes insulin can be dangerous if you aren't watching what you are doing but that is where testing at home comes into play because you know immediately where Moses blood sugar is and if it is safe to give him insulin in the first place or not. And there is a very good chance after living through that kind of hell that you and him went through that he is stress induced.

    One thing I can tell you is that not treating him at all is a slow painful way for him to die...Autumn my recent adoptee was allowed to go 10+ months before I adopted her without being treated at all for her diabetes. When I got her, her poor little ears didn't even feel like kitty ears they felt like very thin leather, she was so matted because she didn't feel good enough to groom herself that she could barely walk, and she was painfully thin. In fact she didn't even weigh 6lbs and she is a BIG tall girl probably a Maine Coon mix. Her healthy weight is 14lbs, so that tells you just what kind of a walking skeleton she was back then.

    If you were still in the States and anywhere close to me I would be there in a heartbeat with meter, insulin and test strips in hand...But let's do the next best thing lets round up our UK members and see what we can throw together for you and your dear sweet Moses. Okay?

    Now while I don't know what you have available to you in the UK here is what I do with all 14 of my kitties...I feed them canned food 4 times a day with water mixed into the canned food, its about half a can of water to a can of food. I mash it all up so that it makes a nice oatmeal type mush they love it that way and it makes sure they get plenty of water to keep things moving along if you know what I mean.

    What you are looking for is a good wet food is just the old fashioned pate style stuff..nothing in gravy and you will want to read the labels you don't want anything with grain in it..as those are a big source of carbs. I believe on of the foods that I have seen other UKers use is called Felix and you want the stuff in jelly not gravy.

    Can you tell me a general location for you?...nothing specific just a general area so I know which of our members might be the closest to you...You never know we might have someone local enough to even help you get all set up with a meter, strips and even insulin. Trust me hon, we are going to worry about you and Moses just like you were family...because that is what you are now. From the first time you post here you become family and the FDMB family is awesome I have been here a little over 2 years now and have seen this group pull off some pretty unbelieveable miracles.

    Hang in there...
    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  5. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    ((((MommaofMuse))))

    You have made me feel so much better already. Thank you so much for your sympathy and understanding. This just happened like day before yesterday so its such a shock to me, really. I was just hoping it was going to be where the Vet would tell me all Moses needed was some pills or something, and that would be it.

    I am in the Neath/Port Talbot area of Wales. I was in Meltom Mowbray in England but this friend I met over the internet is in Wales, so thats how I ended up here.

    When you say that you feed your cats 4 times a day, like let's say we are talking about the amount in Whiskas pouches... since thats what I have been using, and that would give me a general idea how much food I have to give my cat. Would it be 1 pouch a day or 2 and just divide it up into 4 meals? Or should it be even more than that?

    Does it have to be the Pate kind? I am not sure I have ever seen the Whiskas in Pate, I do all my shopping at Tescos online, so I will have a look. I have seen that Felix cat food though too. I give him the in jelly kind. I can do the Pate kind, if it isnt really expensive.

    I almost forgot to explain. When I said that I am afraid of not being able to make a committment to the insulin thing... what I meant is that I am so afraid I would be going along giving him the insulin and then suddenly just be left with no money at all, and I have no idea what that would do to my cat if he were on it then suddenly I couldnt give him any.

    I wont be able to answer any more tonight since its past midnight now here.

    But once again, I appreciate so much for your help, it makes me feel lots better. I turned 55 this last year in August and this is too much for me to handle. And my poor kitty, I just want to do whats best for him. I dont remember if I said this already but Moses still does things like he purrs alot, he plays with me now and then and basically acts pretty normal except for the peeing and drinking and wanting to eat all the time. So if I could possibly fix this before it gets worse that would be wonderful. But the vet said his urine has massive amounts of sugar in it, so it worries me.

    Claudia
     
  6. squeem3

    squeem3 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
  7. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Awww hon,

    Perhaps you won't have to worry about him being on insulin for very long if you caught this pretty early...I'm gonna tell you a story about my guy Maxwell...Maxwell was a real fighter with an incredible will to live...how do I know this since I've only had him a little over 2 years? Because he survived hurricane Katrina, then he spent 3 years in a rescue, then travelled to the Boston area where he went to another rescue and finally got adopted, but his new mom got sick and had to go into a nursing home and at the same time Maxwell was diagnoised with diabetes...his mom's family didn't want to treat him and took him to a vet to be put to sleep. Well that is where the angels on this board came into play there is a group here called DCIN (diabetic cats in need) they contacted me and I said yes to adopting Maxwell.

    Well Maxwell as in Boston and I am in Nebraska..so he couldn't just walk here...lol So a nice lady from this board went and sprung him from the vet's office where he was waiting to die, she took him home and started him on insulin while changing his diet to all canned food. He stayed with her for 2 weeks while we pulled together a transport to get him out here to me. I got him on Oct 14th....I gave him 2 yes 2 shots of insulin and tested his blood sugar at home...and guess what....after those 2 weeks of insulin at his foster mom's house and the 2 shots here at my house his blood sugar was back to normal and he hasn't had any insulin now for 2 years!!! And he doesn't seem to have any plans on going back on it anytime soon.

    Mz Autumn the one that was such a wreck when I got her that I was telling you about....well she started out on 1.5u of insulin 7 months ago, and as bad off as she was she is now down to just a mere .1u of insulin and I think once I get her teeth cleaned and the bad ones pulled she is going to be off insulin altogether too. We see lots and lots of kitties here go off insulin and stay that way. Oh yeah when Maxwell was dxed his BG was 485 (normal is between 40-120) and Autumn's was 535...now if my two sugarcats can come off insulin there is a good possiblity if we can get things straightened out for dear sweet Moses you just might get him off insulin too. It doesn't happen for all kitties but a lot of them do go off insulin. They are still diabetic but they are diet controlled diabetics.

    I have sent some messages out to some folks I know here are in the UK so hopefully tomorrow they will be stopping by and giving you all the tips and tricks they know to help you help Moses.

    Oh and with food..I use Friskies canned and feed the 5.5oz cans it is about 1 can per cat and I divide that can into fourths and they get a 4th of a can at each meal. Now that is with a diet controlled diabetic and a well regulated one...with Moses he is still unregulated so he is going to be hungry all the time because insulin is the hormone that allows his body to use the food he is eating properly. So he is literally starving, so let him eat as much as he wants right now, or if you need to give him things like plain meat (chicken, tuna, beef) as in-between meal snacks. Once his blood sugar is regulated he won't be so hungry and start eating like a kitty again instead of a small horse.

    It does sound like if he is still acting fairly normal then you have caught it early enough to where he might just need a diet change and maybe just a short time on insulin if at all.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  8. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hello Claudia,

    I'm in Surrey, and my cat has been diabetic for 6 years.

    Many foods 'in jelly' are fine for diabetic cats. Some in the UK feed 'Whiskas' or 'Felix', and 'Butcher's Classic' used to be quite a favourite here. These are all available from supermarkets. But if you're willing to shop further afield you can get 'Bozita' which is a similar price to the supermarket foods but is deemed to be better quality, so you're getting more for your money! Bozita tetrapacks are sold in some pet food stores and garden centres that have pet depts. And it is also available online from 'Zooplus' along with a canned version of Bozita (which is slightly higher protein than the tetrapacks). Delivery from Zooplus is free for orders over £19.

    Given that your cat is not yet on insulin this is the perfect time to remove the dry food from his diet. That alone could reduce his blood glucose levels quite a bit.

    Quite a number of cats go into remission (become diet-controlled) after a change of diet and a short time on insulin.

    I do understand that you have concerns over the cost of treating your cat's diabetes, but there are ways to save money on treatment, and one of those is by learning to test your cat's blood glucose at home. This sounds scary but is not at all hard to learn and it won't hurt your cat. In fact, many of us here find that the bond between us and our cats grows much stronger as a result of all that increased attention! cat_pet_icon

    I have to go out shortly, but will pop back here later with more info.

    Best wishes,

    Elizabeth
     
  9. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay Everyone, I have a question.

    I am just going to have to come out and tell you that I am only getting £105 every two weeks from this person I am staying with.

    Now a couple of days ago when the Vet called, he said something about doing a bunch of tests and then having Moses stay there all day, for a day. I cant remember exactly what he said about how much this was going to cost but I think it was around £300. Does this sound right to you? I might have to call there and ask if they would have him call me again and find out exactly.

    Then after that... how much money does it cost to maintain this whole thing? Like injections, and testing at home? Does this sound like I could be able to afford it? I do not have to pay rent or bills, just groceries for myself. Plus all the cat food and cat litter, of course.

    I cannot get a loan because not long ago I had to get a £358 loan from the Benefits office and am paying that back still now. Plus I am not technically on Benefits now, since they classed us as a Couple. My friend couldnt be able to get a loan either, because he had other loans taken out and did not pay them back, he thought they were taking the money out already,but they didnt.

    Do you know if normally a Vet place will let you get the initial tests done and just put it on a bill and allow you to make payments? Or do they make you pay all at once?

    To be honest, I just about faint when I see needles, but I am willing to do whatever I need to do for Moses, I love him so much. I just dont want to get started with something and then if he is forced to get a job and I have no money at all, not be able to keep getting him the injections. I have no clue about what would happen to Moses then. But if you think I can somehow be able to pull this off, then I am willing to try.
     
  10. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I removed Moses' dry food last night and he seemed to get through the night alright with just water. I gave him a couple of pouches of Whiskas wet food this morning, and he was all happy and "purry" so I guess this will work.

    I am sort of shocked really, I had the idea that it was the dry food that was probably good for him and the wet food that was bad for him.

    But he will be okay without something to constantly nibble on? the dry food I mean? Just completely remove it and alot of the time he will just have water? Just making sure. I am so used to always making sure he has his dry food. He did survive through the night though without it last night :)
     
  11. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    MommaofMuse and Elizabeth and Bertie,

    thank you both SO MUCH for your help and concern. I have read every bit of what you said. I am just trying to process all this information ... this all happened so fast.

    My poor little baby, I just moved into a 3 bedroom place, and its a Council house, with upstairs bedrooms. They are paying for the rent and everything. But where I lived before, I was just sleeping on the floor on a mattress downstairs, because my friend only had a one bedroom place. We moved into this new place December 10th just a couple of weeks ago. And I was trying to deal with all the moving stuff, and now this.

    I am so worried, I want to get a used sofa bed and sleep in the living room in this new place so I can be with Moses at night. He stays in the kitchen alot of the time, under the kitchen table ...I have a bed, towels and stuff down there for him. He likes staying close to his food and water and cat litter box. I worry and wish I could be down here with him at night, especially since I know he has diabetes. It was awful how the Vet told me over the phone that when he goes it will be sudden, and his legs would give out, he would vomit violently, and etc. But he said in my case it seems like a good idea to just let him go on as he is, since he seems happy right now.

    But just hearing that if I could somehow manage to do all of this stuff, that he could possibly go into remission. WOW! I am willing to do anything, as long as doing it wouldnt put him in worse danger and make him even more uncomfortable for all the stress.
     
  12. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I just want to ask, is Liquivite good or bad for a diabetic cat?

    Also, do I HAVE TO take Moses to have all these tests done at the Vet? He said he was 95% sure Moses has diabetes.

    I mean, are all these other tests that would cost me a whole lot of money I do not have... necessary? and will they not give me the insulin unless I take him to do these tests? he said something about checking to see if Moses has liver damage and keeping him there for a whole day to monitor him to see how he does on the insulin etc.
     
  13. Diana&Tom

    Diana&Tom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Hi Claudia, I'm also in the UK so just adding a little to what others have said. First, this is absolutely the best place to come for help and advice on treating Moses - I'm glad you've found this board, do keep coming here and asking questions, we all understand how overwhelming it is.

    OK, ref the food - Whiskas pouches in jelly is absolutely fine, same for the Felix brand, so both you can buy in the shops. There are other excellent foods as Elizabeth has mentioned - she's the expert there, and can help more. It's good that Moses already likes the pouches so I'd carry on with those for now at least. Most cats would probably eat 2 or 3 pouches a day, and an unregulated diabetic cat can be very hungry and want more. We don't want him to feel too hungry, but try if at all possible to avoid dry food - Go Cat would not be top of the list, although I know it's economical. Do you eat chicken or ham yourself? - you could save a little in the fridge and give it to Moses to top up his mealtimes.

    Ref the vet bills and ongoing costs of treating a diabetic cat - I understand that bills can seem sky-high when you're worried about money and I wonder if you have a Blue Cross animal centre or similar near you, who would give you advice and help on this side of things? I know there are places around the country, run by animal charities, who help people in real financial need. Worth looking at perhaps? If you do have to stay with your current vet, there may not be a way round paying for the tests they suggest, as knowledge is power and it is only when the vet knows exactly what he's looking at that he will be able to recommend the best type of treatment for Moses. Having said that, some of his recommendations may not be strictly necessary, so if you do go down that road you may like to report back here and people can offer advice. Ongoing supplies can often be bought on line much more cheaply than the vet's prices.

    I know it's tough, it's a real challenge at the best of times, but if you love Moses and want the best for him you should be able to find a way to manage this, and people here will do their very best to help.

    Wishing you the best of luck.

    Diana (in Surrey)
     
  14. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    So far I tried calling the Blue Cross Animal place and they said they cannot help with anything like this.

    The next thing I am going to do this morning is see if I can get my Vet to give me a call soon and I am going to ask him if they are willing to do the tests and then just let me pay them in installment payments.

    Moses has had 3 pouches of Whiskas wet food this morning and it isnt even noon yet. He keeps going over to the cabinet trying to get me to give him something else, either Liquivite or Dry food. I am no longer going to give him the dry food. I wrote to the Liquivite guy and asked him about is it good for diabetic cats. Here is what he said:

    "Dear Claudia

    I am not a vet, but the advice I have is that the diabetic cat needs "high quality protein", and this is the case with Liquivite - the "chicken" in the recipe is the main ingredient, and this is chicken meat rather than the rt of the carcase. I have googled "diabetes in cats" and the emphasis is rather on the drug treatments rather than diet. Maybe your vet is right and that the diet is less important. Certainly, iquivite supplies the liquid, and your cat seems to like the product."

    so I guess for now, unless I find out its bad for Moses, I will get him some Liquivite and keep giving him that now and then till I get this financial thing all sorted out. It makes me feel like he isnt so thirsty then.

    Claudia
     
  15. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi again, Claudia,

    I used to have an absolute horror of syringes. And when my cat was diagnosed I thought I would never be able to give him an insulin shot. But I got used to handling syringes by practising my injecting technique on oranges! (See the link in my 'signature' below this message for more on our story...) So, if a real 'scaredy cat' like me can do it I think you probably can too! ;-)

    As to saving money with feline diabetes, well, I think the single most important thing you can do is to learn to test your cat's blood glucose at home. (And if you can give an insulin shot you can certainly learn do blood test (hometesting)). If you can learn to hometest then that will mean far fewer vet visits (so, less stressfull for your cat and less stressful on your purse); also it will give you a sense of control over the situation. Here are some pics and info on how it's done; and people here will be able to help you too. http://www.sugarpet.net/bloodtst.html

    If you're willing to have a try at hometesting I'd be very happy to send you a glucose testing kit and some test strips to get you started. Ongoingly you'd need to buy test strips but you can get these on Ebay for usually half of what they'd cost you at a pharmacy. If you'd like me to send you a kit just PM me your address.

    It is likely that your cat would be prescribed an insulin called 'Caninsulin'. This comes in both vials (requiring syringes) and a penlet form (which doesn't require separate syringes). I've not used the penlet form and so don't know how the price of those two types compare (but I'll PM Juliet, who has used both, I think, and ask her about that...). If you use vials then you can get syringes a lot cheaper online (from vetuk.co.uk) than you can from your vet. And yes, to answer another question, it is possible that your vet will let you pay for your cat's treatment in installments.

    Re; Liquivite - yes it can be beneficial for cats. But not all cats like it, and it contains milk. So, if your cat can't tolerate milk then he may not tolerate Liquivite. And some people have found that they can't get through a whole tin before it 'goes off': (A solution to this is to freeze it in something like ice cube trays and then thaw as needed. It'll thaw out a bit curdled, but a quick flick with a fork should recombine it.) However, once your cat is on a diet of wet food he will get the vast majority of his water from that...

    Sorry, gotta dash out again. Be back here later!

    Eliz
     
  16. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Elizabeth,

    Oh No! I was looking at those cat testing picture and it looks like everything is done on the cats ear.

    What about the fact that my cat has polyps in his ears which make him scratch his ears all the time? He had an ear operation 2 years ago and the vat said they WOULD come back and they are now. Would that still be ok to do all that on his ears?
     
  17. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Claudia

    Here is a post in our Supply Closet...if you send this nice man Steve a private message the PM button under his name when you get to this post...here is your first box of syringes. :D http://felinediabetes.com/FDMB/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=86477

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  18. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    MommaofMuse

    wow! Thank you SO MUCH!!

    I just sent Steve a Message.

    I am waiting to get a phone call from my Vet to see if he could maybe work out some sort of payment installment plan for the tests to be done on Moses.

    I called the Blue Cross place but they said that they dont help with things like that.

    -Claudia
     
  19. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Well most of us use their ears because they have very few nerve endings there and it is quick and easy to test on the ear....Does Moses let you hold and play with his feet? The reason I ask is because while it isn't the most common way to test you can use the big pad on their feet...the big one they don't put weight on. Let me see if I can find you a video on testing on the paw pad.

    Being in the States I can't really help you with judging what is reasonable for the vet costs, but I can tell you that with both of my diabetic kitties that once they were confirmed diabetic and I had a script for their insulin in hand they have never seen a vet since except for just normal kitty stuff (shots, dentals, kitty colds etc). I do all their diabetic care myself...I monitor their blood sugar, I raise and lower their doses etc just like a mom to a diabetic human child would, and I learned to do it all with the help of the wonderful folks here.

    The all day monitoring sounds like what is called a curve, it is pretty normal for the vet to keep them the first day on insulin just so they can make sure there is no reaction to the insulin and that they don't dip too low. Unfortunately most cats are completely stressed out at the vet's even the most laid back kitties so those curves aren't very helpful when it comes to getting the dose correct. That is better done at home where Moses can be all relaxed and feeling safe and secure.

    What I do here is as you can see in my signature I have spreadsheets for my diabetic cats, I test them at home, record the data and then share the link to those spreadsheets with my vet so she can check in on them whenever she likes. Although now she calls me when she has a diabetic patient so I can talk to their parent and guide them. You might say I trained my vet to care for her diabetic patients lol.

    Once Moses gets to feeling better he won't want to hang so close to his food, water, and litter box. When I first adopted Autumn all she did was eat, drink and potty...7 months later she is playing, purring and beating up my younger cats when they annoy her...lol. She jumps on my desk, gets in the windows to swear at the birds and generally if you didn't know that Maxwell and Autumn were diabetics you couldn't tell them from any of my 12 other nondiabetic cats except for the fact that they are the seniors in the household. Diabetes in cats is not a death sentence and is best treated at home just like it is in humans. I guess I had kind of a jump start when my first girl was dxed because my own mother was a life long diabetic so I already knew about how much diet, exercise and insulin played a part in managing this disease.

    I do want to share with you a couple of pictures that hopefully will ease your mind a little, because as they say a picture is worth a thousand words. I want you to see just how much a cat can turn around with just a little insulin and a proper diet.

    This is my Autumn the day she arrived at my home, this is before she had any form of treatment, she had been still eating dry food and not treated with insulin yet and was literally starving to death because her body couldn't process her food correctly. (weight less than 6lbs)

    This is the same girl 7 months later, on insulin and eating an all wet diet (weight 14lbs) Healthy, Happy and a diabetic.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     

    Attached Files:

  20. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
  21. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Polyps IN the ear should not affect BG testing ON the edge of the ear.
     
  22. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    My friend has blood glucose monitors, since he is a diabetic. Can you use those for a cat or do I have to buy a new one? He says he also has test strips. Can I use those on Moses?
     
  23. MaryB & Chester

    MaryB & Chester Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2012
    Yes, you can use a human BG meter just fine. I think most of the people here do (I do). They are a lot cheaper than pet meters and the strips seem to be cheaper, too.
     
  24. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Yes, Claudia! If he has a spare meter he could let you have that would be great, and maybe he could get test strips cheaply for you too....?

    Whereabouts are the polyps on Moses' ears? If they're not on the edge then testing should be fine.

    Eliz

    PS. I've got a cat called 'Moses' too. :smile:
     
  25. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    You most certainly can in fact most of us use a human meter for our kitties. Does your friend also take insulin? If so what kind?...both Lantus and Levemir are human insulins and can be used in cats. In fact my mother was a diabetic and when she passed away this November she willed her unused insulin to my Autumn because they both used that same kind. So if your friend is on either Lantus or Levemir he might be able to share that with Moses as well, if he is willing. Kitties take very small doses and often when my mom was alive she would give me what was left in her pens for Autumn.

    See we are already figuring out ways for you to help Moses and keep money in your pocket. :D Just take it in baby steps every small change you make will be one step closer to getting your precious Moses back to health. You don't have to get it all down perfect right away, its a lot to take in all at once and Moses didn't become a diabetic over night so he isn't going to be "cured" overnight either...but you have now started on the journey to get him there.

    And just in being willing to try for him makes you the most wonderful momma bean he could ever ask for. We will be right here to hold your hand and his paw through it all.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  26. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I just asked him and he said the Insulin he uses is called Novomix 30.
     
  27. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Claudia, that's not a good insulin for cats unfortunately. So I think the cost of insulin from your vet is something that is going to be unavoidable...
     
  28. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Hmm not familiar with that one so sharing the insulin might not be an option but at least he can help you out with a meter and test strips and that is really the most expensive part aside from the purchase of the insulin and then because kitties take such small doses it lasts a very long time. A 3ml pen of what my Autumn takes lasts her about 2-3 months sometimes a little more and I get 5 pens at a time for $135.00 us. So those 5 pens lasts her a year or longer as long as I handle and store it correctly.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  29. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    MommaforMuse

    Are you saying that for an entire year's worth of Insulin it is $135?

    wow I imagined it would be alot worse than that! I know that in the UK $135 ends up converting to about £84 but of course that changes.

    This is seeming to be more "do-able" as I go along. Now if I can just get this Vet to allow me to make payments of some sort.

    Thinking about it. if you can buy Insulin a whole year in advance, then one of my worries would be overwith, because I was worried I would start doing this- giving him Insulin- then suddenly find that I am not receiving any more payments... and I worried what would happen if Moses were on Insulin then suddenly off of it. But if I can buy a whole year's worth in advance then that gets rid of that worry.

    My friend keeps his Insulin in the refrigerator. Would that be where I would keep it for my kitty? If so, how can it stay good for a whole year in the fridge?

    I am sorry I havent been saying much today but its just that today alot of stuff has been happening, like our Housing Officer coming by to see how we are doing since we are new Tenants, and etc... so I havent had much time to type.
     
  30. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I changed the avatar in my profile to a picture of Moses, when he was a couple of years younger, so you can see what he looks like :)

    His nick name is "Moses Hoses" LOL!
     
  31. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Yep we keep it in the fridge just like your friend does.

    Now with Autumn's insulin she is on Levemir which I don't think is an option for you in the UK...I think if I remember from others that have posted you do have a choice of Lantus and a form of PZI (BPH I think but don't quote me on that one) but might have to push your vet for that, since I think the popular one there is caninsulin which is great for dogs but not so hot for kitties. With Lantus and Levemir it comes in pens instead of vials and the pens have much less in them so you only open them one at a time and can normally use them all up before it goes bad.

    But that is something to worry about when we get to that bridge...for now lets get Moses off the dry food, and get you testing him at home, then when we get to the insulin bridge we will worry about crossing it...Okay...remember baby steps.

    I'm sure either Elizabeth or Diana will be much more enlightening on what is available in your area and the cost of it...but yep this is doable..

    Oh I'm also going to give you probably the best advise anyone every gave me here...BREATHE!!!! You have found absolutely the very best place in the world to help you help your precious Moses. We will be here day in and day out, we don't close for holidays or weekends, we have no office hours, we will be your shoulder to cry on, we will celebrate your victories and we cry with those that do loses their furbabies....and if the absolutely worst case scenerio happens and once Moses is on insulin he should drop to low we will walk you through that too even if that means we throw another pot of coffee on and stay up with you all night long. Moses is no longer just your cat he now as a place in all our hearts and we will be cheering him along even if all we can do sometimes is offer up a bunch of cyber hugs from across the pond.

    There is no silly or stupid question here, except for the one that goes unasked...we are all paying it forward for the help we received when we were right where you are now, confused and scared to death for our beloved baby, and everyone that is answering is or has been in the trenches caring for our own sugarcats. We eat, breathe, sleep and live with feline diabetes here.

    Hope you like to dance....because we call this new journey you and Moses are on the Sugar Dance, but just like learning any new dance in the beginning you are going to feel so clumsy, you fill trip, you will fall down you will step on your or your partners toes, but with practice just like dancing one day you will realize what was so frustrating when you began is now easy and you are gliding across the dance floor....The only problem with this dance is only Moses can hear the music you two are dancing to, but we can teach you the steps and he will guide you in the dance itself. And you and Moses have an advantage that I didn't have with either Maxwell or Autumn....Moses already knows and loves you...Poor Maxwell and Autumn didn't know me from Eve when we started to dance, yet today they both love me deeply in fact Maxwell is sleeping on my feet and Autumn is curled up on my lap as I type to you.

    One thing that will make Moses like his tests is if you give him a low carb treat before and after every test, here I use just plain old boiled chicken...Autumn would crawl over broken glass for chicken so I take a chicken breast, throw it in a pot of water, boil it up with no spices then chop it into tiny bite-size pieces and stick it in a plastic tub...one chicken breast lasts her several days depending on how often we test. But you should see her coming running to jump up on her testing spot now when she hears her meter turn on. :D For an old girl she really can move when she knows her treats are coming and for her a tiny poke in the ear is so worth it in exchange for those bites of her favorite food. Now with Maxwell it was a good brushing...he wasn't big on food treats so he got brushed before and after his tests...and the funny thing is still 2 years later he hears Autumn's meter come on and he is right beside her waiting to be brushed as well...only difference now is that he doesn't get his ear poked. :lol:

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  32. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Oh he is SO handsome!!!! I'm sure he has all the girl kitties swooning over him.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  33. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Claudia,

    It's likely that your vet will prescribe Caninsulin. It's now the only 'made for animals' insulin in the UK and I think vets here are obliged to prescribe a veterinary insulin before prescribing any other.

    Caninsulin varies a lot in price. I know of some people whose vets charge around £30 for a 10ml vial and others whose vets charge around £50 for the same thing! Caninsulin can also be bought in cartridges to use with an injecting penlet device, but I'm guessing (though I don't actually know) that they'd work out to be more expensive.

    It is possible though to buy insulin online from vet pharmacies, and it might be worth doing, but it does require a prescription from your vet; and now vets in the UK can charge a 'reasonable fee' (usually £15, I think) for the prescription. So, you'd need to tot up the cost of the insulin, prescription and postage. (But maybe the prescription charge would cover more than one vial of insulin..?)

    Our vet will only sell us one bottle of insulin at a time, and it may be that yours does too. Though in fact, at this stage, you may not actually want to stock up anyway just in case your cat doesn't need it all! He may surprise you and go into remission! (And believe me, we're all keeping our fingers crossed for you here about that....)

    Eliz
     
  34. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Elizabeth


    How long does a 10ml vial of it last?
     
  35. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    MommaforMuse

    Moses does like cooked chicked... I mean the human kind where its just plain and boiled... and he likes ham, like lunch meat, he is crazy over that. But I am afraid of giving him the ham because I think it has lots of salt in it, and would make him thirsty.

    He also likes a cat treat here called "Dreamies"... its little dry kibbles. But now that I know dry food isnt good, I am wondering if I could just give him one kibble when I do this testing and all of that?

    Maybe Chicken would do the trick though.

    Geesh I cant believe that I am going to be actually doing all of this. I wish the Vet would hurry and call me so I can see if he is willing to let me make payments.

    I read your post about "Dancing" etc... breathing is a good thing, and an accurate advice for you to give to me... now that I think of it, ever since I found out he has diabetes etc... I just have been so worried and sad and stressed out. I feel like I have a sigh of relief just being able to come here and have some hope for my baby. He is like my whole world to me. "My little Tiger" is what I have been calling him recently.
     
  36. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010

    Well, let me think..... Caninsulin is a '40iu insulin (40 'units' per ml) so a 10ml vial of '40iu' insulin will contain 400 units of insulin. So, if your cat needed 2 units twice a day (=4 units a day) that could potentially mean that you have 100 days worth of insulin. However, you might find that the insulin 'sparks out' (loses potency) before that 100 days is up. If your cat needs 3 units twice a day (=6 units a day) then it would last about 66 days, and if 4 units twice a day (=8 units a day), then it would be 50 days worth, and so on.

    The info that comes with the vial will probably say that the insulin should be discarded after 28 days from being opened. But If handled gently and stored well (in a drawer in the fridge) it can last considerably longer than that. If you're hometesting you will notice when the insulin is losing potency.
     
  37. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Hi Claudia,

    Welcome!

    Sounds like you're having a rough tiime of life & the moment, and the four-legged one is too.
    I'm a newbie from the UK on here & I use Caninsulin on my moggie, Milo, who is still unregulated & breaking my heart.

    I actually haven't done all the maths for how much I'm spending per shot on him, so I'll do rough breakdown....bear with me, Maths isn't my favourite subject. nailbite_smile

    I chose to buy a VetPen for him, because they're easier to handle (my other half has to inject him occasionally when I'm not back from work) & produce less waste than using 2 syringes a day and (eventually....I thought...) work out cheaper than having a large vial sitting in the fridge with a finite shelf-life.

    http://www.caninsulin.co.uk/vetpen/faq-vetpen.asp

    So, maths...um...the pen itself is the biggest outlay: £50 for a starter kit (pen plus 25 needles). Then one cartridge of insulin (or 88 units) is about £12 depending on your vet's prices. My cat started out on 2U twice a day, then we need to add another unit for both injections that 'prime' the pen...(I hate this waste)

    So that's 88/3 = 29 shots per cartridge. Therefore insulin is 41p a shot or 82p a day.
    And pen + needles is £2 a shot. Therefore for 2 shots, it's £4.82 a day. :eek:

    After that, it starts to get cheaper!

    You can buy the needles online or from your vet in boxes of 100. Obviously it's cheaper online....This site http://www.viovet.co.uk/Prescription_Dr ... egory.html is £26 per 100 needles. So 26p per needle is 52p per day. Add this to the insulin cost, and you are looking at £1.34 a day for your kittie's medication.

    If you go the syringe & vial way, it's about £10 per bottle I think (maybe more), which holds 100 units. So 10p per unit, or 40p a day. Individual syringes are £10 for a box of 30, or 66p per day, so £1.06 per day! There may be ways to reduce this further if you can convince your vet to give you a prescription that allows you to order the 'doggie juice' online.

    VetPen method is therefore more expensive in the long run, but is quicker, less fiddly, makes less waste & can be stored at room temperature. It's entirely up to you.

    With respect to the test strips, if you test Moses before you shoot him, then you're looking at 40p a day. You can buy the strips much cheaper on ebay/Amazon.

    All in all, less than £2 a day to have your kittie dosed up.

    Hope this helps, and I hope you manage to get him sorted.
     
  38. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Oh boy! After reading Dr Schrodinger's post, now I am a bit worried.

    Can anyone tell me what would happen if I am going along giving Moses his daily injections, and then suddenly I do not have any money at all and cannot give him any injections any longer?

    I mean, what would happen to him? would he go into some sort of diabetic shock?
     
  39. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I was just reading online about needles and someone said this:

    "If your bloodsugars in the normal range and your are taking a very low dose of insulin-maybe you should consult your doc about getting the pump. That way you are getting the insulin your body needs, but you don't have to give nasty shots."


    So I just want to ask the question, What is "the Pump"? and can kitties use that?

    It was on one of those Yahoo Answers pages.
     
  40. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    I know how you feel, but it is much worse to have too much insulin than to have too little.

    Over time, high blood sugar will do him damage, but it would take time, especially if you are keeping him on a low carb diet. If you control his diet properly, start him on insulin, you never know, he may go into remission & not need insulin anymore.
     
  41. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Dr Schrodinger

    So you would say then that even if I cannot be 100% sure that I could be able to continually afford to give my cat the Insulin injections, it would be the best thing for me to go ahead and start doing it?
     
  42. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I need some sort of a online job I could do so that I can have more money for this.

    I have a disability and so I cannot get a "real" job. If I had some sort of a stay at home job I could do then I wouldnt have to worry about it.
     
  43. Mary Jazz Katy Bushey(GAs)

    Mary Jazz Katy Bushey(GAs) Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2009
    Hi,
    I think that Elizabeth has covered most of the basics with regard of feeding. You may find that tins work out cheaper.
    I
    If you keep your insulin in a fridge it will keep for longer than you are told. My husband made one vial last six months with no ill effects, although I wouldn't recommend it

    Good luck
    Mary (Hastings UK)
     
  44. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Mary, long time no see - hope all is well with you! (Long time since those FDMB UK meet-ups, eh?)
    Sorry everyone - 'off topic', I know.... :roll:

    Eliz x
     
  45. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    As far as I know there is no pump yet for kitties sadly.

    But yes even if you aren't 100% sure that you can financially commit to his insulin for the long term right now I would go ahead and start him on it, because you never know he could go into remission and not need shots again. My Maxwell hasn't had a shot in 2 years his diabetes is controlled completely by his diet, while he doesn't take insulin anymore he can never have dry food again either to stay in remission.

    And really if something would happen and you can't continue the shots then he isn't going to be any worse off than he is right now without any to help bring down his blood sugar.

    One thing to remember...insulin isn't a drug, it is a hormone that our and their bodies produce naturally, just in a diabetic the body can't do that anymore so we have to help it out by giving it insulin from an outside source. But also with that help you take the stress off the pancreas (the organ that makes insulin) so it can rest and heal itself.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  46. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Claudia,

    None of us knows what the future holds. And sometimes we just have to take a step into the unknown with hope and faith that things will work out.

    OK, let's look at it this feline diabetes malarkey and how the future might pan out...
    Best case scenario: You give Moses insulin and in a short time from now he goes into remission.
    Worst case scenario: You don't give Moses insulin and his condition slowly deteriorates.
    Scenarios in between the 'best' and the 'worst' would include one where you opt to treat Moses with insulin but he doesn't go into remission (which is quite possible). So, at some point you may need to decide whether you continue to treat him, or not. If you decide - at a future point - that you really can no longer afford to treat him then at least you will have given him a longer period of life in good health.

    None of us here can make the decision for you. But if you asked me for my advice I'd suggest: a) You remove dry food from Moses' diet and replace it with canned food. b) You learn to test Moses' blood glucose at home. And c) You start Moses on insulin once you've removed dry food.

    "Nothing ventured, nothing gained..."

    (((Claudia))),

    Eliz x
     
  47. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    With Lantus/Levemir cartridges, one can use them without the pen/disposable needles and use the cartridge with a syringe. That might be less expensive with the Caninsulin cartridges, and produce more precisely measured doses.

    Caninsulin is a U40 insulin, but you can use a conversion method to use U100 syringes with a U40 insulin.
     
  48. Raggie Doll

    Raggie Doll Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2011
    I have been in contact :) but forgot to mention that i have some caninsulin syringes left over and some caninsulin now that one of mine is OTJ so we should sort out a way to get them to you would save some money
     
  49. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I am just concerned because all day yesterday I only fed my cat wet food, and this morning his poo was hard as a rock. I just do not understand this at all.

    Every time I feed him too much wet food, like more than once or twice a week, this happens, he gets constipated.

    You would think it would be the other way around... that if he had dry food, then he would get consipated... but it isnt that way.

    Also, my vet never called back yet. I am wondering if that means that they will not do a payment plan.


    P.S. I will answer the other posts today sometime, hopefully. Thanks so much everyone, for your help and concern.
     
  50. Venita

    Venita Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    It might help to add water to the wet food. Also, in the US one might use Miralax for a cat's constipation. http://www.miralax.com/miralax/home/index.jspa Do you have that product in Wales? If not, perhaps one of the UKers could let you know what s/he uses.
     
  51. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Yesterday I ordered some Liquivite and so they normally gets his poo back to normal if it is hard this way. I just cant understand why wet food would do this to him? Its so weird. I dont even have a blender right now, I guess I can try mashing it with a fork. I tried that last night but it didnt work too well. I have a whole case of 48 pouches of Whiskas wet food with the jelly. I guess for now I will have to keep mashing it till I finally can add water and mix it up.

    I am confused about something. I was reading online that if you take away all the dry food from your cat and he is on just wet food, it will quickly bring his BG (whatever that means) down low, to where if he isnt on insulin, it can cause hypoglycemia? is that true?

    This is one thing I am worried about, I feel like suddenly I have to become a Doctor and I dont want to kill Moses myself by trying to help him. LOL! Not even funny I know.. but I worry I could make things even worse.
     
  52. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    A change in diet always produces upset tummies. Same for us, same for our kitties.
    I gave Milo a teaspoon of olive oil because he hadn't had a poo in 3 days. I regret that now, as does my lounge rug & my kitchen floor! It certainly worked....a little too well...and it also made him sick. :cry: Turns out he had a MASSIVE hairball, which I stepped in at 2am this morning. :D

    As for BG (blood glucose), it won't lower it to hypoglycaemic levels. Only insulin will do that. It should bring it down to a much more comfortable level for Moses, though.

    It may take a week or 2 for a kitty to get used to a radical change in his diet. Stick at it & keep mashing!
     
  53. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay I took note of the last two posts and I do have some olive oil and will try that today.

    Speaking of hairballs...

    Also I just want to add that I have just about NO confidence in Doctors anymore. Years ago, for instance, I had this cat that came wandering up to the house and I named her Maggie Mae and started keeping her inside. One day she started being very ill and really quickly lost weight and looked like a walking skeleton. I took her to the vet and he said there was "nothing he could do for her and she would have to be put to sleep". So I said NO and took her home and started praying, since I believe in God. I asked God what to do, and just started doing some home remedy stuff on my own, just using common sense. Since she would not eat at all, I went and bought some veal baby food and an eye dropper and some powered charcoal. Every day I forced-fed her a jar of the baby food and forced a couple of eye droppers full of water down her throat, and in one of them put a little of the powdered charcoal. I knew charcoal absorbs poisons.

    Anyway, in about a week Maggie Mae coughed up a gigantic hairball and very quickly started gaining weight and got totally back to normal. The next time I took her to the vet he was totally in shock that she was normal again. So that, along with the fact that I believe this other Vet place messed up my cat Moses, it all just has caused me to completely lose confidence in Vets. And this is one reason it is SO HARD for me to want to take Moses BACK to the Vet to do all these tests then have them prescribe insulin etc. I do realize this is completely different than what was going on with Maggie Mae, if Moses is diabetic however, and thats why I am here, asking what to do.
     
  54. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Morning, Claudia,

    'BG' is FDMB-speak for 'blood glucose levels' . You will also see people refer to BG 'numbers'; (when we test the cats' blood on the glucose meter a 'number' indicating the glucose level will show on the little screen).

    Dry food can increase BG levels, so, removing dry food and switching to wet food can lower the BG levels (in some cats quite dramatically). So, for a cat already on insulin removing dry food has to be done with great care so as to avoid the BG dropping too low and causing hypoglycaemia. For a cat NOT on insulin removing dry food is a very good thing to do! A cat NOT on insulin is not at risk from 'hypo' and lower numbers are desirable.

    So, for cats not yet on insulin we always advise removing the dry food before insulin therapy begins. It's much easier that way.

    I'm sorry to hear the Moses is constipated. Digestive problems are always a possibility when the food is changed. It might take his little body a little while to adjust.

    In the US folks often use Miralax but we can't get that easily in the UK. We can buy it from the US but it takes a couple of weeks to get here. However, a lot of people here use ordinary 'liquid paraffin' for their pets' constipation. It's available quite cheaply from pharmacies. You can put a teensy drizzle of that on your cats food to ease it's passage through the system...so to speak.... Some people also add a tsp of mashed cooked pumpkin or squash when introducing a new food, as it has a calming effect on the gut and seems to help with both constipation and 'dire rear' (diarrhoea!). As Juliet ('Dr Schrodinger') says you can also add a little extra fat to the cats diet in the form of olive oil or a little bit of butter, but too much could cause dire-rear or make your cat puke....
     
  55. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    A furball! Well, thank goodness he got rid of that, Juliet. That's going to make Milo feel a whole lot better! You may even see some better BGs... (Shame about your floor, though... ;-) )
     
  56. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I tried to find a can of pumpkin online at Tescos (dont have a car so I have to buy everything online now) but they dont seem to have it. I sort of forgot about it, but thanks for reminding me. Maybe since I am now staying with this friend, he can go take a look in Morrisons or one of the other stores. He usually walks to the nearby stores to grocery shop.

    I had been using Johnson's hairball treatment stuff. But I read that some hairball treatment stuff can be harmful. It just says mineral oil though on the ingredients.
     
  57. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I HAVE SOME TESTING SUPPLIES NOW

    Okay, now my friend here that I am staying with, who is a diabetic, gave me some of his testing supplies. So please tell me if I have all the right stuff now? (except for the Insulin and the thing to inject that with, of course)

    1.8 boxes of Accu-Check Sterile Lancets --200+4 Lancets
    2.Accu-Chek Multiclix Pen to prick with
    3.Ascensia Contour Monitor
    4.3 containers of 50 -Contour Blood Glucose Test Strips

    So how am I doing now? is this all the correct stuff that I can use for testing a Cat?
     
  58. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Yes, Claudia, that looks like everything you need to test your cat's blood glucose!

    Here is a link to some info and good pics that show the process in detail:
    http://www.sugarpet.net/bloodtst.html

    How is Moses with having his ears touched? If he's not keen on that then you can get him used to it by giving the ear a little massage and then giving him a treat. Also, some cats are perturbed intially by the sound of the lancet device against their ear. So, again, you can accustom Moses to this by clicking it near him and then giving a little treat or a cuddle. If you have any vaseline handy a teesny smidge of this on the edge of the ear can help the blood to 'bead up' (and not disappear into the fur) to give you enough for a test.

    Edited to add; It's really helpful if the ear is warm (it bleeds more easily) so some people use a small pill bottle filled with warm water that they hold against the inside of the cats ear for a few moments (there is a pic of this on the link I posted above).
     
  59. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Yipee! thats good.

    Now I just want to get his poo back to normal before I do this testing, I think. Because I want to make sure I can keep him off the dry food first to get the right readings.

    (I dont have a clue what I am doing yet but it makes sense to me)

    Someone told me about Hi Life Pate that you can get from Morrisons, and so I am looking online now for cases of that for sale. I figure if I use mostly that, since someone told me it will bring his levels of whatever down... along with the Liquivite now and then, which is basically kitty cat chicken soup http://www.liquivite.co.uk/ --that I should be all set to maintain his diet without going back to the dry food.

    ...Then I can start with this testing, after I look again online about how to do it, and also ask my friend to show me how to do it.

    The only thing is that this site that tells how to test on the cats ear... it says to stick this thing in his ear to heat it up first, to get the blood flowing. But I am going to have to hope I can be able to skip the heating up his ear part since he has the polyps in his ear. I would rather do it on his ear rather than on the bottom of his foot, I think. I guess I will have to just try it when the time comes and see what happens.

    I havent got a clue about how often and when to do this testing, but I will read up on that too. From what I gather its like 2 times a day or up to 4 times daily, using this Dr Hodgkins Protocal Tight Regulation thing. I found it online and will have to read through it again. And I was looking at the attachment that MommaforMuse has on her posts, with the chart, so when it comes time I will probably be asking you how to make the chart etc.

    I know Ive been a pain but its just that I like to totally know what I am doing before I do it. Because honestly I think I have a learning disability or something, or else I am just dumb LOL! I feel like now I have to become a "Doctor" instantly... I mean I just about faint if a Nurse even does a blood test on ME... I hate needles. BUT I am going to have to forget about that and just bite the bullet so to speak and be brave for my kitty's sake. I ordered a case of Liquivite yesterday. Hopefully today I will be able to buy enough of the HiLife Pate to keep his diet consistent.
     
  60. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Claudia,

    Regarding how often to test, we recommend that as a minimum it's essential to test before giving each insulin shot. Then, especially initially, it's important to get other test results taken during the insulin cycle to see how the insulin is working in your cat. When you get used to how the insulin is working in your cat then you will probably be able to target your testing more effectively and may actually do fewer tests thoughout the cycle (though will always need to test before giving insulin). Regular testing will help to ensure that Moses is always getting an appropriate dose of insulin. And we can help you with that. :smile:

    At this stage, blood tests would be helpful just to ascertain how advanced Moses' diabetes is. Also, it would be useful to get him used to testing at this stage before he goes onto insulin.

    Regarding the 'Hodgkins Protocol', that is just one way of using insulin with cats and is used as the sole way of using insulin on sites such as 'Diabetic Cat Care' and 'Your Diabetic Cat'. We don't have a set protocol here on FDMB. People use a number of different techniques. Every cat is an individual and we aim to help each cat find a way of managing the diabetes that is specific to them.
     
  61. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Elizabeth

    okay, so what I'd like to ask is this then.... Should I WAIT to start doing this testing until I go take him to the Vet for the additional testing? since all they did so far was the urine test?

    OR is it better to do this testing on my own first, and THEN take the test results with me to the Vets so he can see it before they do the testing?

    Because I was reading online that at home, the cat will be more relaxed and that you can get more accurate tests that way.

    Also when they do this, like keep him all day, so they not give him anything to eat at all? like fasting all day?

    Another thing is, do I have to have a Vet prescription before I can even be able to GET any kind of insulin?

    The way it looks like now, the reality of it is, that I am going to have to save every bit of money I have for the next 6 weeks before I can take him to the Vet for these extra tests. Except I have to buy cat litter and food for my kitty, of course. But I can only do what I can and so this is what I am going to have to do. Since it doesnt seem like the Vet is going to call me back with any sort of a payment plan. But at least for now I could be able to get Moses on the all wet food and do testing at home.
     
  62. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Claudia,

    Switching to wet food and starting to test Moses' blood at home now would be a great plan! :smile:

    In fact, if you get comfortable with testing Moses' blood at home now it is possible that your vet will be OK with you doing the necessary tests (when Moses goes onto insulin) rather than have Moses spend the day at the vet clinic... If the vet was OK with that then it would save you a heap of money AND the results you get at home would almost certainly be more accurate than you'd get at the vets, because Moses would be acting normally in his home environment. However, you would need to be comfortable with testing Moses BGs though because you'd be doing a test about every 2 hours (or maybe even one hour apart in the middle of the cycle) to see how the insulin was working in Moses' body.

    Yes, you DO need a prescription from a vet to get insulin.
     
  63. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Gourmet Gold -Ocean Fish Pate

    Does anyone know if that is a good food for a diabetic cat to eat?

    I tried it a minute ago on Moses and he just loves it!

    It would help alot with his constipation problem with the wet food, since it is all ground up, I think. The only thing is that there isn't much of it in the little can.
     
  64. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    That looks fine, Claudia. :smile: I've just done a calculation using the analysis %'s on the label and it looks like about 5.1% of the calories come from carbs (for a diabetic we're looking for less than 10%).

    Have you tried to get a blood test from Moses yet? I'm really wondering what his blood glucose levels are like now that the dry food is out of his system.
     
  65. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Elizabeth,

    I havent yet done a blood test with Moses, I was actually thinking of doing that tonight when my friend gets home, since he is a diabetic and can show me how to use all of these gadgets for testing.

    But I am kind of worried about totally cutting out dry food from Mose's diet just yet because yesterday his poo was just rock hard and has stayed that way since then till even today.

    You see, because he has this wanting to drink all the time problem with thirst and I can see that his poo is so dry, almost like plastic on the outside with nothing in it... I am worried about dehydration. I know that laxatives and even something natural like olive oil, will help him go to the bathroom, but STILL it seems to me that it means that he isnt getting enough water. So I want to make good and sure that he is getting enough water before doing anything drastic.

    I did notice that his poo is slightly less dry this morning, but I am not sure whether that is due to the 1 tsp of olive oil I added to his wet food yesterday or whether it is due to giving him that more "wet" pate stuff last night, the Gourmet canned food, I mean. I would like to get a blender, but cant afford it right now... I went online at Tescos and the only was I saw was quite expensive for me. So I asked my friend if he knew of anyone who could give me a used one. I am hoping from a thrift store I could get one. I want to blend water in with his wet food. He has a pack of 48 Whiska's wet food pouches but it seems that the meat in it is so ... well, "meaty" that it makes Moses' poo get all dried out. Saying that, I just realized I can now try mixing some water WITH that Gourmet food stuff. Except my friend only got two of those yesterday and Moses liked those so much he already ate them. I gave him a can of Liquivite this morning to hopefully alleviate his drying out problem.

    But anyway I guess that tonight I could, in spite of all that... go ahead and just try and do one of these blood tests when my friend gets home. Then after he shows me how to do it, I will know how to, on my own after that. Also I was waiting on this guy who did the video of sticking the thing in the cat's ear to heat it up so that when you do a blood test, it will get the blood flowing-- I was waiting on him to answer me back about that, which he did just about an hour ago. He said I can try it without doing to heating and see if it works. (because Moses has polyps developing in his ears again).

    Moses does seem all purry and happy today. Of course he will probably be going, "Okay, WHY are you sticking needles in my ears?" later on tonight , though LOL! confused_cat
     
  66. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    also, I have been wondering if Moses may have ANOTHER problem besides the blood sugar problem. It just seems weird that the wet food causes such problems. It USED to make his poo even more diarhea- like... then suddenly one day it started making it rock hard dry instead, which seems pretty weird to me.
     
  67. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Changes of diet can cause tummy problems, both constipation and diarhhoea. But it should settle down...

    Claudia, what tests did the vet do to diagnoses Moses' diabetes?
    Was it a single blood test? Urine test? 'Fructosamine' test?
    And do you remember the vet telling you any blood glucose numbers at all?
     
  68. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    All they did at the Vets was give me a little packet thing to take home with me and I got a urine sample from Moses.

    Then the Vet called me on the phone and he said that Moses had a high amount of sugar in his urine.

    That's all that has happened so far, as far as tests go.
     
  69. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay, my friend and I did a blood test this morning on Moses' feet and this was his reading:

    21.9 mmol/L
     
  70. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Here is the information that I wrote down for today:


    Moses' blood test reading on feet:

    10:10 AM on Jan 13, 2012
    21.9 mmol/L

    Lancet device or pen setting at almost the deepest: Number 5
    (Number 6 is the deepest setting)

    Monitor was Contour XT and the Test Strips are Contour Next

    Using these devices makes it where you dont have to scoop up the blood, it draws it in itself. My friend let me use this monitor and test strips that he uses, today.

    The way that I did it was that I held Moses upside down in my lap with his head towards me... and my friend here drew the blood and put it in the Monitor. I tried it with putting him on an armchair upside down but he wiggled too much. At least for now though it gives me a way to do it... for starters.
     
  71. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay, I just looked this up online and it says:

    http://www.yourpetshealth.co.uk/page45.htm

    Normal animals will have blood sugar levels between 5-9mmol/l.

    Diabetic animals can have levels greater than 20mmol/l

    So obviously I have got a diabetic kitty.
     
  72. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Claudia, well done for getting that test! Great job! :smile:

    Yes, a BG number of 21.9 (394 in US numbers) means that Moses is certainly diabetic and will need insulin to get that blood glucose level down.

    The number may drop a little when the dry food is completely phased out. And it would be good to phase out the dry before Moses goes onto insulin. But he really should start insulin therapy as soon as is possible. Sorry about that...
     
  73. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay, I remember that when I had seen the vet with Moses the other day, he told me we had to do a urine test to start with, which I already did that and sent it in and the vet said the blood sugar levels were high and that we needed to do more tests.

    So I asked him how much that would cost, and he added it up on his computer monitor and he said £130.

    Now I have £34 in my account and on the 25th of January I will have £105 more, which would give me just enough for these tests plus the taxi ride to get there.

    But when he talked to me on the phone the other day to let me know about Moses' urine test results and that he was probably diabetic, I was sort of in shock, to be honest... and after he kept talking I sort of phased him out LOL! he mentioned something about £300 but now I cant remember what that was all about. Maybe he meant when I get all the insulin and test stuff and syringes etc... or maybe he was talking about something else entirely.

    But anyway so someone on the Private message board told me I need to get Moses in to the Vet ASAP ...

    SO I just called the Vet place which is open Sundays I found out,.. from 11:00-12. And I told the receptionist all this and that I wanted to have the additional tests done and that I would have the £130 on January 25. So she told me she was going to tell Del Barker, my cat's new vet, and he would call me back on this. (He should be Del Meow instead of Del Barker) LOL!

    Oh wow I just cant believe this is all happening! ahhh! I actually did a blood test on Moses.

    I am just going to worry about any additional expenses later, when I come to it. But if I have enough for these tests I am just going to go ahead an do it then.

    I hateeee having to stick Moses at the vets all day long like they said, but I guess I just have to do it. I will tell this Vet when he calls me, what the monitor reading was.

    Fortunately, because we were moving and were not going to have the internet for a whole month till BT connected us... I had bought extra food and cat food and litter from Tescos, just in case I wouldnt be able to get online to buy any, and so if I can go get these tests done, I will have enough food and what-not to get by for the time being.

    Wish me luck!
     
  74. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    OH man ! this really ticks me off. The Receptionist from the vets office called again, and not the Vet.

    She told me I will have to come in again now for another Consultation with the Vet, which is going to cost me £14.98. And I have got to bring Moses in with me AGAIN.
    And since I cant come in till after the 25th when I get some money, the earliest they have available is Jan 29th.

    I asked her WHY I have to do this and it just doesnt make any sense to me at all. She said its going to be a double appointment for 20 minutes. The vet is going to go over everything with me, she said. And IF they do the tests that day, then I pay the rest of it... like I am not sure if they mean the £14.98 PLUS the £130 or what?

    I do have a online web design site where I sell my home-made website templates, but I cannot do any web design anymore, until I get a back injection, because I have a degenerated disc and a pinched nerve in my back and ankles, and when I sit down too long it really bothers me. But MAYBE I can be able to manage to sell some templates and get the extra money that I might need for this.

    It just irks me be cause I had specifically asked the vet the other day if I would have to pay the additional £30 for another vet visit again if he had the tests done and he said NO.

    This is really frustrating and I am worried about Moses.
     
  75. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Oh, Claudia... (((Hugs)))

    This must be SO frustrating for you...

    OK, what comes to mind initally as an interim plan is:

    1. Phase out dry food completely and ensure it's replaced with low carb wet food.
    2. Get comfortable with hometesting, and especially in a way that you are able to test Moses BG on your own (because there won't always be someone around to help when you need to test). As I said in a previous message, if you become comfortable with hometesting then your vet may let Moses stay at home while the initial 'curve' is done (A 'curve' is a series of tests done throughout the day to see how the insulin is working in the cat).

    Did you try to test using Moses ear? Just wondering if you tried that and it was a 'no go'.
     
  76. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Elizabeth,

    that sounds like a good plan to me!

    No I have only tried the one test so far with his feet.

    I know he hates even having his ears touched and with the ear polyps problem I am not sure if I could even do that or not, since on the website I saw about it you are supposed to use something to "heat up" the inside of his ear.

    So I figured I'd try the feet first. I was afraid I might hurt him with the ear because it says the purpose of heating up the inside of the ear is to get the blood flowing. I know I will end up trying that though, eventually. I wish that I had something to strap Moses down with LOL!

    Although actually he wasnt as bad as I thought he would be. I just told him "Don't look", and held him snuggly on my lap and he was really good about it, surprisingly. Then I expected him to go run under the kitchen table afterwards but he instead went to lay down right on the floor where the kitchen and hallway join. I think he was just getting over it, but then later he DID go hide under the kitchen table.

    I guess maybe the Vet is wanting to see me first since I was so definite before on the phone about wanting to just "let Moses go" and not do anything about it. But that was before I met all of you and realized this is something that is actually possible for me to accomplish. So maybe after I talk to him on the 29th, I can convince him that I really mean it, that I want to go through with this.
     
  77. Mary Jazz Katy Bushey(GAs)

    Mary Jazz Katy Bushey(GAs) Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2009
    Hi, Elizabeth..

    I still have your cats phone number on my mobile (your husband answered, if you remember, but his no. would have been confused with our family members)
    Love to all

    Mary
     
  78. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Claudia,

    Are you still around?

    My kitty Milo has just switched over from Caninsulin to PZI, which means I have his Caninsulin kit left over.

    Do you want a VetPen & approximately 100 needles?

    I also have an almost untouched cartridge of caninsulin in the VetPen. About 80 units, I think. This would be enough to get you & Moses going, depending on what the Vet says.

    Let me know if you want it & I will post it off to you. Drop me a line?

    Juliet
     
  79. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Hi Juliet

    Yes Im still around :)

    Just waiting until January 29th to see the Vet and get Moses the rest of the tests.

    I will send you a PM
     
  80. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Claudia,

    Moses' present is in the mail. I have sent it First Class recorded delivery so you may get it tomorrow. More likely to be thursday, though, I would think, knowing what the Royal Mail is like.

    You have syringes as well as the VetPen & insulin, so you can try different ways of injecting him 'til you're both comfortable. Maybe go through the VetPen manual with your vet when you see them on the 29th?

    Good luck!

    Juliet

    cat_pet_icon
     
  81. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Okay thanks so much, Juliet, I really do appreciate your help so much! Ive told Moses about his present, so he will be waiting for it LOL!

    Claudia
     
  82. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Hello Everyone,

    I just wanted to update you on how Moses is doing.

    Because of my circumstances, I have not been able to get Moses to an appointment with the Vet. My friend who I am staying with, had to get changed from Employment Support Allowance to Job Seekers Allowance, and the payments were delayed for a long time. Tomorrow he should get his first payment from JSA. Then I too will have enough money, with his back payments as well, to be able to make another appointment with the Vet for Mose's tests, finally. All he has had so far was the initial urine test.

    If you might remember, back around January 10 or so (cant remember the exaxt date... about a month ago) I gave Moses a blood test and it was 21.9

    Well Juliet sent me a private email and told me I should test Moses again, and guess what? I did that a few minutes ago and now he tested at 12.2

    WOW! I can hardly believe this, and only with a change of diet from the dry food to the wet food!

    Anyway now I am thinking that perhaps it was a GOOD thing it took so long for me to be able to get Moses to the Vet because now his readings will be more fitting, for his change of diet. And we will be able to start out at 12.2 or thereabouts instead of way up at 21.9

    I dont know much about this but is this really good?

    I am hoping maybe they will just get Moses on insulin for a little while, enough to sort of kick start his body into producing insulin again? They he will hopefully go into remission?

    Or is this what usually happens? Do all cats so dramatically reduce the numbers just from eating the wet food and the change of diet?

    What I have been doing is leaving out the bowl of dry food at all times, but I give him like maybe two or three pouches of the Whiskas wet food, plus about 2 cans of the Gourmet Gold, and about half a can or a whole can of the Liquivite, to make sure he has enough liquids, because I am always afraid he might get dehydrated.

    Probably day after tomorrow I will make an appointment to do Mose's tests.

    Claudia
     
  83. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Yes many cats drop dramatically when switched from dry to wet, in fact if you would elimate the dry altogether he may drop even further and perhaps even become diet controlled. Some cats even one or two pieces of dry food will spike their gluclose.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  84. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013

    Okay thats it for me then, absolutely no more dry food for Moses!

    I cannot understand though, what is it about the dry food that makes their diabetes worse?

    Does it have sugar in it? or is it that its so over-processed and takes the nutrients out? or what?
     
  85. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    THANK YOU guys so much for telling me to switch Moses to the wet food! You were absolutely RIGHT!
     
  86. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Almost all dry foods contain some form of starch that raises BGs if you look at the label probably on of the first ingredients is either corn or wheat. Cats are obligated carnivorse, the only grain their bodies are meant to eat should have been processed by a mouse or a bird first...lol.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  87. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Hi Claudia,

    Dry food is typically very high in carbohydrates and cats simply can't process them. Cats are obligate carnivores and need meat. It is also thought that cat's bodies don't actually recognise carbs as food, and so even when they've eaten enough calories they keep on eating because it is the meat content in their diet that tells them when they've eaten enough. I think that is why dry food predisposes cats to obesity. Dry food also causes problems simply because it is, well, 'dry'! Cats have evolved to get most of their water from their food (which in the wild would be small prey animals) and they generally have a low thirst drive. Cats on dry diets could suffer from chronic low level dehydration.

    You may want to look at the following link for more info.
    http://www.catinfo.org/?link=felinediabetes

    You're seeing some great results there from reducing the dry food in your cat's diet. :smile:
     
  88. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Thanks so much for that information. WOW it is still so much of a surprise to me! I chucked my kitty's dry food in the garbage can for good, a few minutes ago!
     
  89. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Nice one, Claudia!

    This is really good news! dancing_cat

    Yep, kitties should be on the Atkins diet (or the Catkins diet!). As few carbs as possible, and high protein.

    Give him a few days to get used to not eating any dry food at all, and test him again to see if his blood glucose drops any further?

    Yay!

    Juliet
     
  90. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Juliet,

    dont you mean the CATkins Diet? :)
     
  91. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    aww you beat me to it, I just read read that and you already SAID the Catkins diet LOL!
     
  92. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    okay I will test him in a few days with NO dry food whatsoever?

    How do you know if and when he is in remission?

    More than likely, will he probably just have to have insulin for awhile at least? and then hopefully get off of it, by the looks of things?
     
  93. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    EMERGENCY QUESTION NOW


    wow! I was reading on that link the following:

    Many cats that are in a diabetic state no longer need any insulin when they are finally fed an appropriate low-carbohydrate diet.

    Others will always need some insulin but the amount necessary to maintain proper blood glucose levels is nearly always significantly reduced once the patient is on a low carbohydrate diet.

    Please re-read the previous two paragraphs carefully.

    If you change your diabetic cat's diet to one with lower carbohydrates, he will, in all probability, IMMEDIATELY (not days or weeks later) require a reduction in his insulin dosage. He may also immediately go into 'remission' and not need any insulin at all.

    If this warning is ignored, you may very well end up with a cat in a hypoglycemic crisis (dangerously low blood sugar) which can result in death, or brain damage.

    If you take only one point away from this page, it needs to be the understanding that if you stop pouring carbs into your cat by switching to a low-carb canned food diet (or even a dry food diet with lower carbs than you have been feeding), you MUST be aware of the probable immediate and significant impact on your cat's insulin needs.

    If I could shout this from the rooftops, I would.

    On a weekly basis, I hear of reports of cats that ended up near-death - or actually did die - from insulin overdoses because lay caregivers and veterinarians did not understand this basic concept.

    ---------------------

    So my question is this...

    since Moses has had his levels drop so dramatically, should I perhaps WAIT a while before even taking him to the Vet again?

    Because he didnt even seem to think it even would matter if I changed his diet, when I asked him... he said it wont matter!

    So should I just keep testing him with absolutely NO dry food for awhile and see if he drops down on his own to normal levels and perhaps I wont even NEED to take him to the vet again at all?

    I dont want the Vet giving him an overdose of insulin.

    and how exactly do I test him the right way? I mean is it like for 1 day? or more? and every 2 hours or what? I mean to be able to know if he really doesnt even need insulin, once I get him completely off the dry stuff for a week or so, I mean?
     
  94. Dr Schrodinger

    Dr Schrodinger Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Yes. Wait until he has 'settled in' to having NO DRY FOOD whatsoever. A few days to a week, maybe?

    Exactly. It may be that Moses doesn't need insulin at all, but we don't know this yet.

    Test him first thing in the morning before he has any food. That way you can see what his baseline blood glucose is like.

    One of the more experienced board members might be able to give you an idea of what numbers indicate remission...

    J
     
  95. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    okay so first thing in the morning before he has any food. Is it important that I should give him his food at the same times each day?

    I had just been giving him food any time he wanted it. Plus always leaving out the dry food, but he didnt seem to even touch that any more.

    Many times, he seems to have gotten the habit of, when I get up about 3:00 in the morning, he will stand down at the bottom of the stairs and meow at me, so that I will give him some food.

    So is it ok to give him food like that but just make sure to test him in the morning when I get up, before feeding him? I mean like when I actually get up at 7:00 or 8:00 in the morning.
     
  96. MommaOfMuse

    MommaOfMuse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2010
    Test him when you first get up before he has eaten, then test him again about an hour after eating and then again about 3 hrs after he has eaten...that will give you his baseline, how much the food brings him up and then if he drops on his own again how much his own pancreas is taking over and producing his own insulin again.

    Mel, Maxwell, Autumn & The Fur Gang
     
  97. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    okay, I will wait for about a week, when he has been completely off dry food. And then I will do this baseline testing thing and come back here and tell you what the results were.

    Yikes! My friend here told me a bit ago today that I was wrong, he is getting his first JSA payment tonight and so tomorrow I probably would have gone ahead and made a new Vet appointment if it were not for Juliet sending me a PM and suggesting I test Moses again today. Then I come to find out that you can overdose your cat on insulin and even cause their death.

    wow! I am really happy she emailed me.

    But anyway I will be back in about a week.

    It is funny, I have Moses lying on his back aagainst me with his head on my lap and my friend does the test on his foot pad. And I tell Moses to "look away, dont look" and he turns his head the other way. He is surprisingly good about it!

    just one last question and I am done. If I DO manage to brush Moses' teeth, since I might not even be taking him to the vet and I might end up having to brush his teeth... this tooth paste is the enzymatic kind where it says you do not have to rinse. Is THAT harmful for a diabetic cat if he swallows it?
     
  98. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    I just looked it up online on one of these ask your vet question things and this is what they said,

    Hey, Doc. I took my cat Potter to the vet and the told me he was diabetic. I now have him on a very low carb wet food diet. Since he has stopped eating dry food his teeth don't have anything abrasive enough to keep them free of plaque. I noticed that his breath has down hill too. So, I bought C.E.T enzymatic toothpaste for cats . I have been using it a few times a week for the last month but I noticed that one of the active ingredients is glucose oxidase. Wouldn't that be bad for a diabetic cat


    Thank you for your question, I'm Dr. Dan and I'll try to help you.

    It is true that through the name "glucose oxidase" it does contain glucose. How ever all food that is eaten will be broken down into glucose by the body for use in the cells so this is just starting out in it's pure form. If your cat ate the entire tube of the tooth paste then yes it could significantly affect his blood sugar. However, the minimal amount in an individual tooth brushing episode will have no effect at all in Potter's over all blood glucose. If you want to be on the safe side brush his teeth right after he eats and near the time he receives his insulin (assuming he is on insulin). This will cause any of the glucose in the paste to be dealt with appropriately by his body. That is being overly cautious in my opinion as I've never seen a diabetic cat have any significant blood sugar control issues from tooth paste. I'm glad you are taking this very seriously however! Keep up the good work.

    Dr. Dan
     
  99. ClaudiaThompson

    ClaudiaThompson Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Oh I cant believe it, I am so discouraged. Tonight my cat sudden was walking and his back legs were giving out on him, it appeared to me. So I took him to the vet just before they closed. It was a different vet there.

    He said it might be ketones or whatever you call it. And he wants me to bring in a urine sample tomorrow. He acted like they really dont want to do anything for Moses except put him to sleep. He told me it is going to be £300 pounds. I told him the other vet told me £130. But then he said well that was to just do the additional tests and if nothing was found to be wrong with him. Then he started in on saying they couldnt even guarantee they could cure Moses. Then they charged me £50 for the visit. So there went much of the $130 that I had saved back for the tests.

    He also told me using human tests strips are a bad idea because they dont give accurate readings.

    Moses seems so thirsty. I dont think I am going to be able to continue with this all wet food thing. Or I am at least going to have to get rid of the Whiskas. It just seems to make him more and more constipated.

    I was all happy, thinking that he was doing well. He said I need to become prepared for when I need to think about putting Moses to sleep. Tomorrow I am going to have to do a urine sample and turn it in. He is checking for the ketone things. When I took him in there the vet put him on the floor and he started walking pretty normally.
     
  100. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    (((Claudia))),

    OK... Take a couple of really deep breaths, and try to remain calm...

    Does your diabetic friend have 'Ketostix' or 'Ketodiastix'? These are little test strips that are used to dip into the urine to test for ketones. (Ketodiastix also test for glucose in the urine). If your friend doesn't have them then they can be bought from a pharmacy fairly cheaply. If you can get these then you can test Moses pee yourself first off to see if ketones are likely to be the problem. Does Moses use a litter tray? You need to dip the strip into fresh pee before it disappears. Some folks put a bit of cling film in the tray to try to catch the urine: Some use fine gravel so the urine doesn't get absorbed: And some catch it with a long handled spoon! Anything higher than a 'trace' reading is a reason to go to the vet ASAP.

    Claudia, I'm going out now, but will be back in a couple of hours and will talk about your other points then. Only quickly pausing to say: Human glucose meters have been used by people on this forum for donkey's years, and they work just fine. And have you tried adding a little liquid paraffin to Moses' food to help with the constipation? It is bought from pharmacies and is cheap.

    Back soon.
     

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