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Please...i Need Advice!!!! Diabetes

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Please forgive my obvious panic here....but I am so very upset. I think most of you know that I have 16 kitties...all old, as I rescused most of them from Hurrican Andrew in Miami.

I DO NOT take any more kitties in.

I have just recently been running into problems with the babies. It has been 5 years since any of them had to go to the vet b/c they were ill. Now all hell is breaking loose.

I have a vet (who I will NOT go to anymore) who is VERY, VERY EXPENSIVE...actually it is a sin what he charges.

Anyway....I took my litte 6 year old P.J. to the vet last week (to the tune of $175 b/c I was sure she had an upper respiratory infection. She did and of course I was prescribed the good ole Clavamox.

Then she started looking worse, so I took her in yesterday to the tune of $200. Doctor tested her for leukemia and FIV which I pretty much knew she did not have...having been vaccinated.

At any rate...he kept taking test after test and told me she needed fluids and to bring her back this morning for fluids. I was sooooo aggravated and did not understand why he did not give her fluids yesterday.

Last night I gave her 6 syringes with water...and this morning she was very perky. I called the doctor to say I think she is so much better and then he tells me she has DIABETES!!! And...she will need insulin for the rest of her life.

I am beside myself...I cannot afford to do that as much as I love her...b/c I am on social security.

MY QUESTION: Does anyone on the forum have a cat with diabetes...and...does anyone know of any home remedies that can be given??

Please help...I am sick to my stomach and my heart with this.

Thanks so much in advance.

Toomany
post #2 of 19
I don't know anything about Diabetes in cats.

But I am sending tons of hugs and prayers from Mississippi for you and your cats. You are an angel.
post #3 of 19
I am sorry to hear your news, and boy can I empathize...my crew is all getting to be senior catizens and several have chronic or terminal conditions.

I strongly recommend you visit http://www.gorbzilla.com. I know there are diet changes you can make that may help a great deal (you need to get the exact lab results - just what was the blood glucose level).

Others here have had or currently have a cat with diabetes, and I know they'll chime in soon.

best wishes to you,
post #4 of 19
First of all, let me say how sorry I am to learn your girl has diabetes. This is an absolutely hideous disease, but it can be controlled with diet, exercise and the right medications, including insulin.

I took care of 3 diabetic cats over a 6 year period, one at a time. After the initial diagnosis and urgent care required, the costs came down significantly. I was paying around $25 for a vial of insulin that lasted nearly a month and about the same for a case (case = 100) insulin syringes. A case lasted me two months as all of my "sweeties" required twice per day injections. They were all on a special veterinary diet (I used and really liked the Purina D/M Prescription dry food!!) which costs about $18 for an 8 pound bag. I didn't use a prescription wet food. Vet visits to check glucose levels were scheduled once per month and my vet charged me $15 to weigh my cat and check the blood sugar.

Caring for a diabetic cat does take a little more of a financial committment, but once you get past the initial vet costs, it isn't that much more than caring for a healthy cat. And the rewards of treating a "sugar cat" are numerous. You will find that you bond with that cat in ways you never dreamed were possible.

There are many good web sites on caring for diabetic kitties ... you can certainly go and check them out:

www.felinediabetes.com - More of a technical site, with a message forum and plenty of medical advice from those who care for a diabetic cat.

www.sugarcats.com - This is a support site for people caring for a diabetic cat. It was started by a friend of mine in Texas, Michael Knox. If you go and sign up, please tell him that "Guardian Angel SleezeMeeze" sent you. And tell him I was devastated to hear that "The Don" is now a GA.

If I can be of any assistance to you at all in any way, don't hesitate to let me know. Just remember to breathe and that diabetic cats can live a relatively normal, mostly healthy life with the proper care. Best of luck to you.
post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
I have the lab results....do you want me to tell you? Thanks...

Deb
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much....it is just that I don't think I could inject the baby with a needle....and I just don't have the money..... I have to get a grip here....P..J. is my youngest....only...and everybody's favorite (not mine, of course...they are ALL my favorites.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by toomany View Post
Thank you so much....it is just that I don't think I could inject the baby with a needle....and I just don't have the money..... I have to get a grip here....P..J. is my youngest....only...and everybody's favorite (not mine, of course...they are ALL my favorites.
Honestly, I hate needles coming at me...but the needle used is short, and thin..about the size of a cat whisker. I know you can do this!
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hi Pat/Alex...

Just went to Sugarcats...and delivered your message to "The Don"
Thanks....I will check it all out.
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by toomany View Post
Thank you so much....it is just that I don't think I could inject the baby with a needle....and I just don't have the money..... I have to get a grip here....P..J. is my youngest....only...and everybody's favorite (not mine, of course...they are ALL my favorites.

You can do it, I just know you can, You can do anything.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Sorry Gayef? I thanked Pat and Alex....thinking it was you...but...I thank all of you!!!!
post #11 of 19
first, I'm sorry to hear that P.J. has diabetes.

My Eric was also recently diagnosed with diabetes. The vet wanted to try controlling it with diet before resorting to insulin. He put Eric on Hills M/D dry food. I was not impressed with the ingredients in the Hills. I did a lot of on-line research about diet and diabetic cats including this one http://www.felinediabetes.com/that gayef mentioned. The key seems to be a high quality, high protein, low carbohydrate all wet food diet. After three weeks on such a diet Eric's blood glucose level dropped from 297 to 149. This worked for Eric but it may not work for P.J. I suspect that diet will work best for cats who have only recently developed diabetes. Even if diet doesn't eliminate the need for insulin it may reduce the amount of insulin that is needed.

Others here who have experience in giving insulin to cats have provided a lot of good advice. I'm sure you can do this. If you're unhappy with your vet now might be the time to make a change. Perhaps you can find someone who will be more cooperative and willing to help you find diabetic supplies at the lowest possible cost.

Hugs to you and P.J.
post #12 of 19
I am still sending prayers from Mississippi for you and for PJ, please keep us updated on how PJ is doing too.

post #13 of 19
I treated my sweet 17 year old boy for 2 years for diabetes until he crossed the bridge last week from a tumor.

It is not difficult to give insulin. I was very nervous at first, but after a few tries, it is so simple. The needle is very short and you can give it to them in the scruff and they do not even know that you are giving it to them. The insulin will last a long depending on how much they need. My bottles of insulin lasted almost a year because he was on such a small dose. The needles are about $24.00 for 100 of them. You can always call different pharmacies to compare prices.

If you need any help with treating diabetes, please feel free to give me a shout.
post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your advice...I am so sorry you lost your baby....I have 2 that are 17.

Debbie
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by sharper16 View Post
I treated my sweet 17 year old boy for 2 years for diabetes until he crossed the bridge last week from a tumor.
I am so sorry for your loss. It is never, ever easy to lose such a long-time companion.

Quote:
It is not difficult to give insulin. I was very nervous at first, but after a few tries, it is so simple. The needle is very short and you can give it to them in the scruff and they do not even know that you are giving it to them.
This is so true ... my one little girl would actually eat, then when finished, trot back to the bedroom where she jumped onto the bed, presented me with her backside and turned around as if to say, "Ok, I am ready for my shot now, please". It really does get to be a routine for them after a short while. I think they know it helps them to feel better.

Quote:
The insulin will last a long depending on how much they need. My bottles of insulin lasted almost a year because he was on such a small dose.
My cats were all on the Humulin U (now discontinued) and the storage instructions from Eli Lilly clearly stated that the insulin was good for approximately 30 days. Of course, I do not have experience with other types or brands so my advice is to read th patient information that comes with the vial to check on proper storage and usage guidelines.

Quote:
The needles are about $24.00 for 100 of them. You can always call different pharmacies to compare prices.
I used the BD Ultrafine II 3/10cc Short Needle syringes. I found them to be the most comfortable for my cat. They were approximately $25 to $28 per case of 100. At the time, Target and Walmart pharmacies had the best prices on them.
post #16 of 19
Just a word of support here -- I'm diabetic myself, and so is my father. I've given the shots to my father, and it's SO easy -- really, this is not going to be a problem for you at all. Promise. Nor will the kitty feel it much (if at all), once you develop confidence in giving it.

Now... yes, please, tell us what the blood-test results are! It's possible that a few months of insulin, plus a low-carb, high-protein diet, lots of fluids, and lots of exercise might bring her back to normal glucose readings that she can maintain without the insulin. (That's how I'm trying to treat my own diabetes.)

Don't panic -- you can handle this. I surely understand about the financial strain, but maybe you can find a diabetic rescue organization that can help... maybe with reduced-cost insulin bought in bulk or something.

My thoughts are with you and P.J.! Take care...
post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hi...and thanks...CarolPetunia...

I am going to go to the vet's office and get copies of all the results as I was only told on the phone. For reasons I have just learned, I am having doubts about this vet....taking many tests that were not needed....etc...and charging me $40 every time I walked in there for "visit"...and then all the tests, etc.

I could be wrong...but I am starting to wonder, as P.J. seems so perky now that she has gotten over the upper respiratory that I ORIGINALLY took her there for.

Will sure be back to post when I find out what is going on here.

Toomany
post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by toomany View Post
Hi...and thanks...CarolPetunia...

I am going to go to the vet's office and get copies of all the results as I was only told on the phone. For reasons I have just learned, I am having doubts about this vet....taking many tests that were not needed....etc...and charging me $40 every time I walked in there for "visit"...and then all the tests, etc.

I could be wrong...but I am starting to wonder, as P.J. seems so perky now that she has gotten over the upper respiratory that I ORIGINALLY took her there for.

Will sure be back to post when I find out what is going on here.

Toomany

I hope you are able to find out something.
post #19 of 19
Sounds like a second opinion would be a good idea. Good luck!
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