Oreo Has Diabetes

ruthm

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Hang in there---did your vet say anything about using Pain Relief Neosporin on Oreo's ear after the testing with the lancet? I learned this trick on FDMB- you just need a tiny bit on a bit of cotton and gently pinch the ear to stop the blood flow. It will take a short time for Oreo's ear to build up more tiny blood vessels, then the poking will get easier because you will have more of a blood flow through his ears. also, I have to say, I did not hesitate to let my Tiger eat out of her bowl right there on the kitchen counter as I was testing and giving the shots. :crazy: Then pretty soon, I got more confident and I could test and get the shot done in a few minutes. If you find yourself getting too frustrated, give it a rest, but continue giving the treats and hugs to Oreo. On the FDMB board, we learned to sing while learning to test and give shots, it sounds crazy, but it helped to relieve stress. Big hugs to you, keep up the great work.

Regarding the high numbers, all I can say is Patience!! He does most certainly recognize that you are helping him. Don't stress out about the high numbers at this point, you just started giving insulin and remember, insulin is a hormone and won't have the exact same reaction every time. someone on the forum explained to me that if you have a headache, you can take an asprin, but insulin doesn't have that same predictible reaction. It will work, have patience!!

Please let us know how you're doing!

This morning his bg was 393 and tonight 422. I gave 2 units Pzi this morning and 3 units just now. His number can't keep going up like this - it's got to get under control! I'm really worried. His poor ears look butchered. Only the first time did I only stick once. Ever since then it's taken 5 sticks to get blood. And I have to hang on for dear life to him because if he gets down off the counter I may not get him back. He seems calmer and seems to know I'm doing something FOR him to help, espeically with those bonito flakes. Monday mornign I will take him i'll take him in to be admitted if need be, this can't continue. What am I doing wrong? No dry food since 2 whole mornings ago and only less than 10% carb wet food since. I'm really stressed.
 
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ginny

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Special test strips are so not necessary. Also the name brand glucose meters have stupid expensive strips; the best route is to go to a pharmacy like RiteAid or CVS and get the store brand meter. The store brand meters are just as accurate, and you would be paying roughly $25 instead of $125-$160 for a 100 count box of test strips. The only downside is that you are tied to that pharmacy chain for the strips.

When counting carbs, remember to subtract out fiber. Fiber doesn't count when figuring out the carb content.

How do you determine the carb count? Why don't they just put % carbs on the label? We have a Riteaid down the street. That sounds GREAT to pay only $25 for 100! Thanks!
 
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ginny

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Are you using Vaseline on the edge of the ear prior to sticking it? If not, try that since it allows the blood to bead rather than get absorbed into the fur.

No, he won't even let me clean him up after I let go of him to apply the blood but thanks for the tip. I hadn't even thought of that one.
 
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ginny

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Good luck with all of this - I know its stressful. I went through the same with my cat a few years ago. I was able to get her off of insulin after 4 months or so. She was kibble cat and so the transition to wet wasn't easy. Definitely sprinkling food with crushed kibble, bonita flakes, freeze-dried chicken, FortiFlora etc was necessary.

My vet definitely wanted fructosamine tested as well because of stress can cause an elevated BS reading at the vet.

At home, the vet encouraged me to test her blood, and demonstrated how to "free-hand" with a lancet. Well - forget that!! I was nervous, my cat was a hyper-scaredy cat so it was a complete failure and my cat was starting to hide from me. I had instant and continued success with the warm rice-sock (my cat LOVED having that stroked against her ears) and then a quick dart with an automatic lancet and I swear, she NEVER ever noticed. I could test her blood several times a day with nary a whisker twitch. giving the insulin was not well received however......

I used the AlphaTrak blood glucose tester, test strips, auto lancet. I know that cat-specific gear definitely is not necessary and most people I know recommend generic store-brand kits. I used AlphaTrak's downloadable graph/food diary which was gratifying when her BG starting remaining in the normal zone. I felt very accomplished!

I do know that I was in an absolute panic after reading some diabetic cat boards. I think they were too intense for me with lots of warnings and strong advice. I honestly thought that my cat's life was in danger and that I would never be able to leave the house again! I know everyone means well, but it just got me really scared. I took a deep breath and did the best I could and it all worked out in the end.

Good luck with everything - it sounds like everything will go well for you and Oreo.
 
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ginny

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Oreo ate up the Bonito flakes tonight but when it came time to put him up on the counter for testing, he ran from me. So, great, I'm teaching him to avoid me :( Tonight was the absolute worst! After two long 12 hour days at work it took me TEN STICKS to actually get enough blood that got a result. I got a little blood once, the machine said "not enough" and then it turned off before I could get more on there. Then I kept sticking and the machine turned off two more times because it was taking me too long. It took all in all TEN TIMES!!! I cursed and almost threw the damn machine. Honey and Nat haven't been well here lately either. Vet bills, new meds, etc... Don't ever have 5 kitties all the same age.

Anyway tonights glucose was 478. I'm pretty sure mine is up there too. And I feel another migraine coming on. That makes the 3rd one this week. Lack of sleep is one of my triggers. Anyway, the other site said to ask the vet for levemir or lantus. I wish I had not ever tried the Prozinc. What a waste of time this has been. That would have saved me a lot of time to just use the Lantus that the first vet recommended. I only started on Prozinc because that's what the vet who invented TR recommends. Lantus and levemir work better for someone like me who works 12 hr shifts. Back when I worked in the hospital which was over 13 years ago, we had Regular, NPH and Lente. I haven't kept up since then with these newer ones.

That's so great that you got your kitty off insulin. That's my goal too, but i swear I hope I don't end up in the nut house before that happens. As I nurse I understand how damaging it is to have continual high blood sugars. That's why I'm stressing out.
 
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ginny

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Hang in there---did your vet say anything about using Pain Relief Neosporin on Oreo's ear after the testing with the lancet? I learned this trick on FDMB- you just need a tiny bit on a bit of cotton and gently pinch the ear to stop the blood flow. It will take a short time for Oreo's ear to build up more tiny blood vessels, then the poking will get easier because you will have more of a blood flow through his ears. also, I have to say, I did not hesitate to let my Tiger eat out of her bowl right there on the kitchen counter as I was testing and giving the shots. :crazy: Then pretty soon, I got more confident and I could test and get the shot done in a few minutes. If you find yourself getting too frustrated, give it a rest, but continue giving the treats and hugs to Oreo. On the FDMB board, we learned to sing while learning to test and give shots, it sounds crazy, but it helped to relieve stress. Big hugs to you, keep up the great work.

Regarding the high numbers, all I can say is Patience!! He does most certainly recognize that you are helping him. Don't stress out about the high numbers at this point, you just started giving insulin and remember, insulin is a hormone and won't have the exact same reaction every time. someone on the forum explained to me that if you have a headache, you can take an asprin, but insulin doesn't have that same predictible reaction. It will work, have patience!!

Please let us know how you're doing!
No the vet didn't tell me much of anything. Not even change his food!

This was a very bad night. Right now Oreo is sitting in front of me wanting more food. I got the 2.5 units in him but had to scruff him because he wanted to run from the maniac that cursed a little machine a while ago. If it weren't for hunger he'd be running from me. I am frustrated. It wouldn't be quite so bad but I've had a number of worries/concerns about several of my kitties over the past 6 months now. Harry, Honey, then Nat. Now Oreo. It's gettng to me. I need a break. Something needs to work for a change. So I'm not doing a good job handling things that go wrong. But maybe some sleep will help. Thanks Ruth for the encouragement, thanks every body.
 

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How is Oreo this morning? Sending good luck vibes. :crossfingers::vibes::crossfingers::vibes::crossfingers::vibes::crossfingers::vibes::crossfingers::vibes::crossfingers::vibes:
 
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ginny

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He seems ok for now. Thanks for asking! Will be switching over on Thursday to Lantus insulin for better 24 hr coverage. This vet hopes to get him under control and hopefully off the insulin one day. He says that's more possible with the lantus than the prozinc.
 

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Hi Ginny . . . I'm so sorry you're going through this with Oreo. He's so lucky to have you!
 

ruthm

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I'm so sorry to hear you've had some hard times with Oreo, I cannot imagine having 4 cats with special needs...big hugs to you. If you are not successful after say, 3 attempts to draw blood, just give Oreo his treats, praise him and let it go. Honestly, just let it go that time. And yeah, definitely, you have to get some sleep! I also suffer from migraines, sleep and dehydration are definite triggers for me as well. You're doing a great job, hang in there.

One other thought, if you do manage to draw blood, you might try just collecting the blood on the wrong end of the test strip, or your fingernail at first. Then you don't have the stress of pricking Oreo's ear and collecting blood into the test strip before the glucometer turns itself off.

Not sure if you have seen Dr. Lisa's Food Chart, which was recently updated:
http://catinfo.org/docs/CatFoodProteinFatCarbPhosphorusChart.pdf

Get some sleep and good luck with the switch to Lantus, that was my vet's top choice of insulin as well.
 
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ginny

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Here's Oreo!


As you see here, he's more cream than cookie but he's definitely an alpha kitty. He's showing the printer who's boss.
 
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ginny

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I'm so sorry to hear you've had some hard times with Oreo, I cannot imagine having 4 cats with special needs...big hugs to you. If you are not successful after say, 3 attempts to draw blood, just give Oreo his treats, praise him and let it go. Honestly, just let it go that time. And yeah, definitely, you have to get some sleep! I also suffer from migraines, sleep and dehydration are definite triggers for me as well. You're doing a great job, hang in there.

One other thought, if you do manage to draw blood, you might try just collecting the blood on the wrong end of the test strip, or your fingernail at first. Then you don't have the stress of pricking Oreo's ear and collecting blood into the test strip before the glucometer turns itself off.

Not sure if you have seen Dr. Lisa's Food Chart, which was recently updated:
http://catinfo.org/docs/CatFoodProteinFatCarbPhosphorusChart.pdf

Get some sleep and good luck with the switch to Lantus, that was my vet's top choice of insulin as well.

Yes I decided a break from testing would be good. I can only handle so much.

The first vet who ordered Lantus spoke to me on the phone and set up a time to bring him in next week after he's been on Lantus for a whole week. Last night I picked up his Lantus from Walgreen's ($174 - and that's WITH a discount!) and gave it to him.

I can already tell a difference. He's less hungry today. I hope that's a good thing and not pancreatitis symptoms. I'd like to test him at Lantus' peak.

Thank you for that link. I've been to Dr. Lisa's site many times but haven't seen that. Someone asked her why she didn't just write a book. She said "because a book can't be updated like a website with any new information". How brilliant of her!

I've heard the Levemir is better than Lantus. Well, for now I'll stick with the Lantus and see how things go! Next Thursday he's due for his curve testing.
 
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ginny

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ruthm ruthm I had heard at least one vet say NOT to use Neosporin with pain relief. I'm sure I could use plain Neo.
 
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ginny

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So he's been on Lantus since Wednesday night. The other forum thinks 4 units is too much and he might risk a hypo. They said they'd go with 2 units, so this morning I did. He was hungrier today.

I had planned to test him at 4 pm this afternoon. I've dreaded it all day long. I got together his emergency pack with Neo (plain), honey, two cans of high carb canned food with gravy. Watched a number of videos today on how to test, one said there's a sweet spot.

And then tested him at 6pm just a bit ago. Not enough blood. It seems his vascular system restricts the blood flow to the periphery when stressed, and yes this testing at home does stress him.

But he did seem calmer although he almost scratched the fire out of me before I got him up on the bathroom counter. I petted him on the head and told him he was a good boy. (He was!) And offered a treat he wanted NOTHING to do with. And let him go.

This is frustrating to say the least.
 

ruthm

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What a wonderful picture of your handsome guy!! Sorry to hear that, big hugs to you and Oreo. Calmer is definitely better, honestly, breathe deeply and try singing to Oreo when you're getting ready to test and shoot. He will look at you funny and he may think you are nuts, but if this makes you smile, all so much for the better. How is his appetite?

I may have missed it in this thread, but are you using a heated rice sock or warm rag to warm the ear before testing? I made a little rice sock, but my Tiger hated it, so I got her to let me gently warm her ears(I had to first make sure my hands were warm though!)

There is a definite sweet spot, I was, and still am particularly fond of the video made by the owner of the cat, Buddy-the diabetic cat- it is the first on the pictures of the videos:
Hometesting Links and Tips | Feline Diabetes Message Board - FDMB

They don't show in the videos, but I found it easier to place a piece of cotton behind Tiger's ear after it was warmed up. Then I pricked the upper outer corner and used that cotten to tamp down on the wound. I used neosporin, just a tiny bit. I had also heard some were opposed to the pain relief. To tell you the truth, I learned at my last physical that I had a fasting of 100 for the first time ever, so I now test myself every few days. I do find that the pain relief neosporin works, but it is a personal choice, but I was glad I still had Tiger's supplies still on hand. Glad to hear you have the hypo kit ready, Lantus is a long lasting insulin and there could be some times when Oreo may run low. Thanks for the update and please keep us posted.
 
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ginny

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Thank you! I think he's awfully cute!

Oreo doesn't like his ears touched and so I haven't tried the rice sock yet ,but did use cotton. That does help.

I watched Buddy's video the other day and several different ones today. I know I got the sweet spot, and blood came up with a little priming, just not enough. I am just going to have to try something different. He has to have his curve done, and at this point I see no other option than to take him in and let the vet do it every few weeks. But maybe by then he will be used to me testing him and give more blood. Gosh, the very first time I stuck him, the best little drop of blood just appeared on its own! But not anymore :(

I meant to mention I also still have some dry kibble in the refrigerator which is part of the hypo kit. The only thing I don't have is rectal glucose, and not even sure if this vet would give me that. At one point I had to give Nat rectal valium after a seizure, but it was a different vet who could not find a reason for his seizures. Anyway, rectal administration is not as easy as it would seem!
 
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ginny

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I just now looked at Oreo's ear where I stuck him. He wouldn't let me staunch the bleeding with the cotton, and so now of course there's this nice sized little bleb of dried blood there where I stuck him. So frustrating! :livid::fuming::argh:

So, if he'd just sit there for 15 minutes after I stick him, I'd get the sample I need.
 
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ginny

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Tried to stick him again tonight before supper. Honestly, if he weren't so hungry, I'd never be able to catch him, but he only gives me one chance and that's it. Tonight, he was calmer and so was I, he even stood still and bled a teensy bit better for me, but still not enough. Meter asked for more blood, Oreo got away from me and it didn't happen. I'll have to go to Walmart to get the ReliOn glucometer which requires HALF the amount of blood that this meter requires. He's been doing better after switching to Lantus. Less hungry overall.
 

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Does it seem like his ears are cold to the touch?
Glad to hear he is doing better on Lantus. This will get better for you, you're doing a great job!
 
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