13 yr old Male Cat just diagnosed with Diabetes and Cushings

Discussion in 'Acromegaly / IAA / Cushings Cats' started by cushingscat, Oct 19, 2010.

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  1. cushingscat

    cushingscat New Member

    Oct 19, 2010
    Im new. Last week my family cat was diagnosed with Diabetes and Cushings. Luckily we live in Davis and have the advantage of a wonderful Hospital here, so the Cushings is confirmed by both the dextamesthasone test and the ACTH test. Here are my questions:
    1. Does anyone else have experience with a Cushings Cat? What treatment have you used? Tigger will be starting Trilostane this week which is for Cushings dogs, but has been used for cats
    2. Tigger has little to no appetite. Part of this is that his 'person' my sister is away at college and he is very unhappy about this. Getting him to eat in order to give him his insulin injections has been a major challenge. He is currently 14lbs. What is the minimum he can eat before having his injection? I can normally get about a teaspoon in him by hand feeding him- but is that enough? Also what foods are the best when you are just trying to encourage the cat to eat? Our vet is not concerned about putting him on a special diet at this point. Later on if we can get him regulated on insulin and if he responds to the Trilostane then she said we can work on a diet. But at this point just getting him to eat is the key.

    By the way he is also pretty mad because he is very uncomfortable. All of this started when I went to scruff the cat and his skin came off in my hand. When the vet tried to sew up his wound it tore even more just shaving his hair. His entire back is covered in stitches. Thats how we knew we need to do some testing.
  2. Linda and Bear Man

    Linda and Bear Man Well-Known Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: 13 yr old Male Cat just diagnosed with Diabetes and Cush

    Hi Ashley,
    I'm so sorry that Tigger has been diagnosed with Cushings and Diabetes. I hope his skin heals from the tear. My cat, Bear Man, who recently passed away, had Cushings as a result of steroid use, but we never used any drug treatments, so I'm afraid that I can't be of any use to you there. If you haven't seen this link, it has some helpful info about Cushings:

    http://veterinarycalendar.dvm360.com/av ... ail/567292

    I would encourage you to also go over to the main "Health" forum and introduce yourself over there. There is quite a bit more traffic over there, and people will be able to give you a lot of good tips about feeding, insulins, home BG testing, and a lot of the stuff that will be helpful for you to know. When you introduce yourself, let people know a bit about what sort of insulin you are using, what dose he is on, whether or not you home test, etc. While a good quality canned food (many here use Fancy Feast or Wellness) is ideal, I think your vet is right in saying that the important thing right now is just getting some food in him. I would be very conservative with the insulin dosage if he is not eating reliably, and especially if you are not home testing his blood glucose yet. Some tricks that people use to help stimulate a cat's appetite include sprinking food with parmesan cheese, sprinkling it with FortiFlora (available from your vet), topping it with freeze dried chicken, such as Liv a Littles, or offering warmed baby food. I might also try offering some dry foods, if he will take them, if none of these tricks work, and he is just not eating. I know that it is very tough to deal with an inappetant cat, and dealing with Cushings presents huge challenges. I hope to see you post over on Health, and hope that you get some good tips over there, too.

  3. Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA

    Phoebe_TiggyGA_NortonGA Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2009
    Re: 13 yr old Male Cat just diagnosed with Diabetes and Cush

    Hi Ashley, and welcome to FDMB -- so sorry that Tigger has been diagnosed with Cushings. The fragile skin is just heartbreaking.

    Good that you live in Davis -- you should have a great medical team available.

    We have only had a few Cushings cats here at FDMB, but the fragile skin -- just makes me sad to think about it.

    Are you treating with insulin yet? We recommend Levemir for the insulin resistant conditions because Lantus is said to sting when cold / in large doses.

    A spoonful or so should be ok as long as they have food available for snacking later, and are willing and able to eat on their own if they need to.

    My kitties have a big breakfast, then snack the rest of the time -- so with evening shot, they may not eat much. We use Levemir. (DH - dear husband and I adopted two diabetic cats through DCIN here after our sweet Norton with acromegaly passed away from cancer)
  4. Blue

    Blue Well-Known Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: 13 yr old Male Cat just diagnosed with Diabetes and Cush

    Hi Ashley,
    Welcome to the site. I wish I could be more of a help on the Cushings aspect, but I think Linda is the best person for that help; my two cats have acromegaly, and I give them both Levemir due to the reasons mentioned already.

    Ok, you asked about foods - please see the below links for a site with many foods listed and food info
    Binky’s Food Lists
    Feeding Your Cat: Know The Basics of Feline Nutrition

    The forti flora that was already suggested is great stuff and many cats love it. My Shadoe is picky with foods and I sprinkle it on her food ... she literally gobbles the food with it on top.

    In Binky's list, you can try some different kinds, just stick to below 10% carbs.

    Home testing, once you are giving insulin is important to let you know how the insulin is working.

    I never hold back or delay their insulin shots as Levemir needs to stick to the every 12 hours schedule. I normally give shots while the cats are eating. My two porkers seldom don't eat and I don't know how much food must be eaten before giving shots, but maybe others will have that info for you.

    The type of insulin you are using and the dose will be info needed to know how to advise .

    Hopefully the stitches will heal nicely and you will start to see good improvement as the insulin begins to help. I am pretty sure that high blood glucose numbers must be making Tigger feel horrible.

    Please ask any questions you have; someone will have the answers for you.
  5. Patti and Merlin

    Patti and Merlin Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Re: 13 yr old Male Cat just diagnosed with Diabetes and Cush

    Hi Ashley
    I'm so sorry to be so late to welcome you and your Tigger. Linda is your best asset here as her BearMan had Cushings. Many of us deal/dealt with acromegaly. But we all support one another here. You've gotten so much great advice already. The only thing I rakky had to offer was some extra foods to offer when kitties don't want to eat.

    My Merlin loved boiled chicken breasts in their broth. Another of our kitties likes the new Purina appetizers that are out now. they come in some different flavors - not cheap but when you are desperate to get them to eat - you'll buy anything! :? Mine also like canned tuna in water. Some people say their kitties prefer sliced lunch meat like roast beef and yet some swear by Kentucky fried chicken! IF nothing is working - their is an appetite stimulant that canbe given - Mirtazapine. The dose is usually 1/4th tab every 72 hours.

    I don't know if you've had a chance at all but there is a "sticky" at the top of this page titled 'HI dose conditions what we know" - and there are some links to more info on cushings in that that may help you a little. Please keep us updated.
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