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Diabetic shots for an old cat w/ kidney trouble
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Diabetic shots for an old cat w/ kidney trouble

In this last year, our cat Waldo has fallen apart. We are treating him for hyperthyroidism for about a year now.  Recently his kidneys have started to give way.  I switched his diet to something for kidney health.  He was still not improving, so we scheduled another appointment earlier than the three months they advised to check his levels.

Now he's developed diabetes. His other levels seem to be stable. We're given two options on what type of shots we want to give him. One is designed for cats, but costs a lot more. The other is designed for human but can be used on cats.  I'm not sure what option would be better.  I'm also left with a decision, if this doesn't work how long I should give it before deciding to let him go.
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242912_tn?1402547092
Glad you posted here, MJ.  I didn't check the forum before I commented on your journal.  I hope someone posts before you leave...

We are all struggling with finances and if I were in your shoes, I'd go with the human one since less expensive.  

Good luck!  I hope the shot, whichever you choose, will help Waldo to feel better right away!
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I went with the cat one as it sounds like it worked better with most of the cats the vet knew.  Thankfully I have my grandma to help back me with some of the expenses. We're starting off with the vets directions, to give him just a tiny bit for the first week, then see them in another week and then see where to go from there.  Let's hope he only needs a little bit of insulin to regulate him.

Grandma seemed to think he looked better already, but I'm not so excited until I see more time pass.  How he looked these last few weeks was really sad.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
My 11 year old kitty was diagnosed with diabetes mellitus just this past January, and the Vet put her on Lantus insulin.  It's a human insulin and was an excellent choice for my kitty.  Maggie is now in remission since July 12 and taking no insulin.  I did home testing and took her blood glucose myself.  I check her blood glucose every so often to make sure she's okay.  

Good luck with the insulin; what is the name of this insulin?  It sounds like you have a good Vet  who will work with you.  Starting out on a small dose is the best thing to see how your kitty reacts.  It sounds like it was caught early, too.  Keep us posted.
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874521_tn?1375890587
Oh to look after a diabetic cat requires alot of love and commitment you are both very dedicated ppl. I'm sorry I can't offer any suggestions MJ, I'm happy you have a good Vet that has treated this before and knows what to advise...I do wish Waldo all our love and wishes that he may soon feel so much better once again...

I did find this website that has Q&A on diabetic cats....perhaps it will give you both some info.
www.yourdiabeticcat.com

Maddie, isn't that great news that Maggie is in remission, didn't know that was possible with diabetes?....
Does she allow you to ***** her (where) to get a small dab of blood for testing?
You'll have to tell us more.

all the best to you both and to your kitties, please keep us posted

♥Opus
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242912_tn?1402547092
How's Waldo looking to you today, MJ?  Any better?  As ill as he was, I would think the insulin would help immediately or you would at least see some improvement.  

I'm happy to hear Grandma will help you with the financial aspect.  

Oh look at that - Opus cussing again LOL
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874521_tn?1375890587
OMG....It wasn't meant as a cuss word!! so sorry, the word I was using there I guess got **** out, I guess it could be confused with a cuss word(?)

I'll reword it....does Waldo allow you to PIERCE him to get a dab of blood???
there see if that's acceptable..-(    lol.
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242912_tn?1402547092
Opus...oh no no no...I was just teasing...and now it's gonna bug me, trying to imagine what word you used. I can't come up with anything that would be considered a cuss word to fit that sentence.  
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996946_tn?1385991151
I think it rhymes with stick....I'm getting ready to PM you ;)
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874521_tn?1375890587
LOL.....you got it Linda!!!
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242912_tn?1402547092
OOOOHH, right, LOL!

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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Opus,
Ha, ha, yes, Maggie allowed me to *****her ear vein to get a drop of blood.  You are so funny!  You're right as it was a lot of time and dedication, but I loved her so much I wanted to do everything I could to help her.  It's amazing how they kitties will let you ***** the tip of the ear to get a blood sample.  I would reward her with 1/2 teaspoon of stage 2 Gerber chicken baby food.  She would even jump up onto the sofa where I tested her when I called her.  Yes, it is possible for them to go into remission.  The Vet said sometimes it doesn't last and to watch for symptoms like drinking excessive water, urinating a lot, etc.  A good website is www.felinediabetes.com where other owners of pets with diabetes can offer help.  I really learned alot from this message forum on home testing and how the Lantus works, also other insulins.

MJIthewriter, how is your kitty doing today?
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874521_tn?1375890587
well now that we got all that *** business figured out..ha ha.
I understand how much we can love an animal Maddie, I too had my Opus, he fought so hard for 3 long years with CRF and high BP, medicated him 2x a day....so for 3 yrs I went NO where. One time he got into problems with dehydration and I worked night shifts coming home every 3 hrs (quickly) to give him more fluids............ah those were tough times. But I'd do it all over again.
We learn and they adapt, I think they instinctively know we are doing this to save them....than therefore they abide, sometimes reluctantly!!...My Opus was such a grump, a darling grump....I still miss him after 5 yrs.
So I do understand your commitment Maddie, and I hope your dear sweet Maggie stays healthy for a long long time.

Yes please let us know how Waldo is doing MJ, I hope you are managing alright, don't get stressed out..it will get easier...

♥Opus
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Hi Opus,
My post did the second**** on its own.  I think I said I poked the ear, but must have used another word.  I'm so sorry about your beloved Opus who passed on.  I can understand after fice years you still miss him, as they leave a big hole in our hearts.  CRF must have been hard to watch with Opus as it eventually takes over. I admire that you were able to give fluids.  I had a difficult time doing it for one of my kitties that crossed the Rainbow Bridge.  I don't know why our kitties have to get all these illnesses; we seem to have them just for such a short time.
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365714_tn?1292202708
I've been waiting to make conclusions until I know for sure.  Personally I think he will need a higher dose than what he is receiving.  Grandma seemed to think he is doing better on the first day we gave the shot, but today didn't seem positive. He threw up by his litter box and it still sounds like he is peeing a lot.  He goes through litter so fast, we both are concerned. His mood seemed to be slightly better overall this last week. He's enjoyed more petting than he did earlier.  It could be the weather too. It has cooled down now that summer is past.
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Hi,
My cat still did urinate a lot even after the insulin in the beginning.  It takes a while for them to get stable at first.  Did your Vet mention anything about home testing to find out what Waldo's blood glucose is before administering the insulin.  It's a lot to take in and learn at first, but then it becomes easier once learning how to get a drop of blood.  When my kitty was first diagnosed with diabetes, I was taking her weekly to the Vet for a glucose check, but it's not a true test because some of the kitties get so stressed at the Vet, and it reads a high blood glucose just from the stress.   I may not be suitable for you, but thought I'd mention it to you.  Some Vets discourage the home testing, as they feel it's too difficult for the Owner, and other Vets are pro home testing.  How is Waldo doing today?  
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I'll try to bring up the home testing question to the vet. If I can't be there at the appointment, then I'll suggest to grandma if she can ask.  I wonder if it would be cheaper and easier on the cat and grandma in the long run.  He is pretty calm at the vet, but it is a little bit hard to get him in the carrier at home, then when he is there to get him out. He was trying to hide under the bench one of the times we took him.

Today I caught him on our kitchen table cleaning a bowl I forgot to put in the sink. We thought that may be a sign he is feeling better. He jumped down as soon I saw him and I removed the bowl. Later I picked him up and put him on the couch and pet him. He really enjoyed it and purred.

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Hi,
It sure looks like a good sign that he is feeling better.  It is cheaper and much better and easier on the cat if you can home test  There is a good website called www.felinediabetes.com that gives good information about home testing.  It's a message board, and they are very helpful with questions on home testing.  

If it's hard to get Waldo in the carrier, he is probably feeling pretty stressed once he gets to the Vet, so his blood glucose would be high.  Good luck to you; I can see how much you and your Grandma love Waldo.  He's a lucky kitty.
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Anyways an update from the vet. We will be upping his dose a tiny bit. I brought up about home testing kits and they do have them available and plan to discuss about that later with Waldo's treatment.
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242912_tn?1402547092
I'm happy to see Waldo has slightly improved.  That's something.  I think with the additional insulin, you'll see even more improvement.  While the home testing might seem overwhelming at first, once you get the hang of it, it'll be simple for you, MJ, and Waldo will get used to it, too.  

You're doing a great job, hon!!!

Oh and MJ, if you implement treats into the session afterwards, this will help Waldo to see what you're doing as a good thing.  We give Jade a treat (it's not a *real* treat, just Fancy Feast hard food she likes, but normally doesn't get unless she's endured a medical procedure :)
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Hi MJlthewriter and Jade,
Adding a treat after a procedure is definitely a great idea.  After I pricked Maggie's ear,  I would give her just a little of the Stage 2 Gerber chicken baby food on a spoon, and she licked it off after the ear thingy to get a drop of blood.  She even seemed to look forward to it and would jump onto the sofa t times when I called her name.  Now that she's in remission, I still give her a treat.  I still have to test her.
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I don't have the home testing kit yet. So far, Waldo seems okay with the shots, except he must think there's food because he tries to get his mouth up there, sometimes begs when getting ready.  I wonder if his previous owners bottle fed him as a kitten or something.

I haven't seen much difference other than he seems to look happier laying down. He still does a lot laying around but that may me typical for his age.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm glad Waldo is okay with the shots.  Maybe you could try giving him a treat after his insulin shot.  How old is Waldo?  You're doing a good job with him.  I know cats do sleep and lay around a lot, and sometimes I wonder if Maggie is okay with so much sleeping, but they are cats!!  :)  It is typical.
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To Waldo the shot is a treat. No seriously, he meows at me like crazy when I get the shot set up.  I just have to laugh wondering how many people are afraid of shots and would have the opposite reaction to this cat.

That said we do usually give him a little something, either a little bit of wet food or some dry, just to keep his enthusiasm up.
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That is so cute to hear how Waldo looks forward to the shot!  They really don't feel a thing with the shot going thru the scruff.  They do like the reward, too.
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242912_tn?1402547092
Hey MJ,

So how's Waldo doing here at 9 days post treatment?

And btw, honey, I care :)
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So far, I still think he drinks a lot of water and may still pee a lot. He's back to sleeping on my grandma's chair, which is something he usually does, but was doing less these last few weeks. At his worst, Waldo didn't seem to want to jump or climb. He just stayed on the floor spread out on his side looking like roadkill unless there was something he really wanted on the table.  I was at work most of the day these last three days, so I can't say much about his energy. When I come home he is usually laying around.  To see him up on grandma's chair was nice though. Much better than looking like roadkill on the floor.
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587315_tn?1333556383
It sounds like the insulin shots are working, which is awesome!  And, maybe some of his kidney function will improve?  Not sure if it's possible, but it's worth calling and asking the vet about this!  But, it sounds like Waldo is really feeling better, thanks to your devotion and being a good, responsible pet owner.  I sure wish more of them visited this forum!  =(
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365714_tn?1292202708
Well I heard back from the vet. Increasing his dose to three units. At least so far what they said, it seems the shots are lowering his blood sugar levels, so there is measurable improvement.  They want to talk to me about the home testing kit, but so far they haven't been able to yet.  I'm guessing they want to see his blood sugar leveled.  When I was there yesterday I saw they were getting a new blood testing machine. I don't know if it would be better than what they were using, but it was interesting to know.

So far Waldo has improved a little in some ways, but in other ways is still pretty much the same. We still go through a lot of litter.  His appetite is still very high.  At least the good news is he gained a little weight. When we first took him in we found he dropped a pound which was a surprise. He seems to be a little happier, but still lays around a lot looking worn out like roadkill.
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Avatar_f_tn
Glad to hear Waldo is doing better and gaining back the weight.  Maggie also used a lot of litter after being diagnosed until she got more regulated.  Did the Vet mention what his blood glucose was when tested?  I know what you mean about looking like a roadkill.  In the early days of Maggie's diagnosis when she was looking like a roadkill, I would wake her up just to make sure she was okay, lol!   I hope Waldo continues doing well.
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The test from this Tuesday put him at a blood sugar level of somewhere in the 300 range.  We're moving up to four units.  He's still urinating a lot and very hungry.  He still begs for his shots when I get the needle out.
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Hi,
Waldo's bg of 300 is high.  It shows he needs more insulin, especially with the urinating and hunger.  Has the Vet recommended any low carb wet food, such as Wellness and some of the Fancy Feast canned?  Low carb food can help regulate them, along with the insulin.    Good luck with the four units. You're doing good.  It takes a while to find the dose.   I know; it's amazing they don't mind the shots, especially if there is a treat following.  Keep in touch and hugs to Waldo.
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365714_tn?1292202708
Well today's vet test didn't go so well.  His level was somewhere in the 400 or 500 range... The next step is to take him in to the vet to have a curve test done...  I'm planning to get that done next Monday.

It could be stress related, I'm not sure. A stray cat adopted us last week. I contacted a nearby animal rescue group and put a posting online to see if the owners would claim their missing cat. So far no one has.  I took her in to have a vet appointment as well. The new cat's results were positive. FIV and Feliv negative.  The only concerns with her is a small infection around her eye and some kind of thing that could cause diarrhea, but hasn't shown it so far.
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242912_tn?1402547092
Hi MJ, wow, sorry to see Waldo's level is so high.  Lucky for you, Maddie6 knows a lot about this, huh.  I have no idea if the high level could have anything to do with stress, but maybe.  

Aren't you great for taking the stray kitty in for the check up!  I hope her owners find her otherwise maybe you have a new kitty? :)

Best of luck on Monday with the curve test!  Do let us know, honey.
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365714_tn?1292202708
Whoever had the stray took care of her at one point. She's very affectionate and not afraid of people. She wasn't afraid of the vet either. She was already spayed. That saves us having a lot to worry about. Otherwise I would have had to get it done and pay for it.  Unfortunately whoever had her also had her front declawed. I'm not happy about it, but what has been done there's not much I can do now.

Whatever happened, I imagine she has been lost for quite a while.  She isn't starving, but we need to get her weight up.  Waldo is right now laying on the ground.  If I bring the other cat down near him he won't move. He just lays there and hisses a few times. Poor guy.  The female cat takes it very serious and is terrified. She won't go anywhere close.  When I found her she had a couple scabs on her face. I imagine she got in a fight with another cat.  I'll keep checking for lost cat ads. If someone does come for their cat, I will suggest they keep her indoors only or at least put a tag or microchip on her. (she came with neither of those). In the mean time I believe it is better to keep her in one place rather than let her loose to get further lost.

I'm keeping the new cat mostly upstairs and Waldo down on the main floor and basement. I want to work towards getting the other cat comfortable to be downstairs as well.
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Hi,
I'm sorry to see Waldo's bg so high.  Unfortunately, when they are at the Vet and stressed, it raises their bg, and so this is not a true test of how they are really doing.  The new kitty could also raise Waldo's bg with added stress.  How much insulin is Waldo on presently.  Oh I see above he is on 4 units.  Maggie was on Lantus insulin, and it was a dose every 12 hours.  The best thing is to home test, but I know this is not always easy for pet owners, and  Vets realize this, too.  The curve will help determine how Waldo is doing different times of the day.  

It's nice of you to help the stray kitty, as that is how I found Maggie.   I hope someone places an ad looking for her.  With her being declawed, she cannot defend herself outdoors, so it's great she found you.
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587315_tn?1333556383
OMG.....I can imagine how frustrating it is for the sugar to be so high again, after you've been trying so hard to get him back to normal.  I KNOW you've been trying, too.  I'm sorry to see that his sugar is so high.  What in the world caused his sugar to get so high again? From what I know about human blood sugar(best friend was diabetic), stress, infection, eating more than usual can cause the sugar to go up.  I have a feeling that blood sugar is similar in both humans and cats.  Do you think maybe he ate more than usual?  I imagine you're already giving him a very specific amount of food each day to get his sugar under control?

My heart goes out to you, and I hope that you'll be able to get control of his sugar soon!!  With all the BS you've been going through lately, you deserve some good luck!

BTW, that's awesome that new kitty has been spayed.  I had a feeling that she was, since the owners went through the trouble and expense of declawing.  I do have to say, though, that I'm very worried about her being positive for FIV and worry that Waldo will be exposed to it.  What are the vet's thoughts on this?
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She was FIV negative, so no concerns there, unless she got exposed right before we found her.  We could do another test in 30 days and see.  I'm not sure about Waldo if he will be living much longer. That is my worry if we can't get his blood sugar sorted out.

I measure out his food, half cup a day.  Grandma usually feeds him an additional small amount at night.  We are feeding Waldo royal canin dry and wet food for kidney health. We're feeding the female innova senior food. (not ideal, but it was what we were feeding Waldo before his health went downhill.)
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587315_tn?1333556383
That's good!  I must've misread what you wrote.  At least, that's positive and you don't have to worry about that.

Hang in there w/ Waldo, w/ some patience you'll be able to get control of his sugar.  You've got him on some very good quality food!!!  If I were you, I'd ask your Grandma if she fed him a little more than usual before your vet visit.  And, I'd ask her to cut out the evening snack.  If you're giving Waldo a "set" amount of food every day, and he's getting a "set" amount of insulin every day.....you'll have more control.  That evening snack, probably flooded Waldo's blood w/ extra energy and he didn't have enough insulin to take care of it......so his sugar got too high.
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365714_tn?1292202708
Well the curve test didn't go over so well. His levels stayed flat-lined at 500 something and they quit the test realizing there wasn't any change. They didn't charge me for the test figuring that he may not have gotten his insulin this morning. It may not have gone in right when I gave him the shot. I'm trying again tomorrow and will have the vet give him the shot.
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587315_tn?1333556383
I'm sorry to hear that the curve test didn't go well!  I know you're disappointed....I am disappointed, too.  =(

If I were you, I would make absolutely sure that I were following the vet's instructions to a "T".  I would also make sure he's on the right diet w/ the right amounts of food.  I am also curious about Waldo's kidney diet.  I think they're made w/ low proteins.  So, that being the case, then the diet would be very high in carbs and fat.  Carbs are what needs to be controlled w/ the insulin.  I'm wondering if that diet would make his sugar harder to control, and I'd be interested to know whether a diet w/ very high quality protein would actually be better for him.  When you have a diet w/ high quality protein in it, the kidneys don't have to do as much work to get rid of the wastes in the blood.

Ask your vet about diet, and let me know what he says.

Hang in there, MJ.  You'll get Waldo straightened out soon!!!!
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The vet seems to think the kidney diet is the way to go.  For the other cat we are giving her blue buffalo adult food.  I would set the feeder out for both cats if I knew it would help, but I am not sure.  Before Waldo had kidney issues I had him on wellness core, which is supposed to be high protein.  He didn't have the kidney issue before or diabetes. I wouldn't know if the wellness diet or his age was a factor. I don't know what led up to his diabetes. It seemed to develop suddenly, right after switching over to the kidney health diet.

Anyways the retest was better. They saw a difference and have us up to five units twice a day.  I wish I would have gotten his levels, but I was distracted, because our new cat got out while I was away. I thought she was gone, but she did come back eventually.  I'm going to have to get her a collar, rabies shot and an id tag or something... I found out from the neighbors it appears the stray who adopted us has been straying around for some time and it appears she has no intent to stop...
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587315_tn?1333556383
MJ, glad ya got your kitty back!  

Anyway, Wellness Core is supposed to be an awesome brand.  I don't think the Wellness caused Waldo's kidney or diabetes issues.  I really don't.  I think that diabetes just develops in some cats, and it can cause kidney problems......but, w/ age many cats develop kidney disease too.

BTW, did your vet tell you specifically to give Waldo 1/2 cup of day of dry food?  
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I'm Glad the retest went better for Waldo. I've been thinking about you.   I agree with Zodiacqueen; it's hard to reason why some cats develop diabetes.  Maggie was 11 years old when she developed diabetes.  My Rainbow Kitty was 16 and overweight but never developed diabetes or kidney disease.  He passed away from intestinal lymphoma.  I'm wondering, too, about the dry food with Waldo?  Hang in there MJthewriter and Waldo and keep us posted.  He is one lucky kitty to have you taking care of him.
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The vet never specifically told us how much to feed Waldo. I've been going by what his old vet, the one supposedly his previous owners took him to. They told me he was overweight and to give him only half a cup a day.

That was some years ago, but until this last few weeks he seemed to maintain his weight at that amount so we kept him on that diet, except the extra my grandma gave at night.  Even so his weight stayed about the same. We have to divide his feeding and give it to him in set amounts. Unfortunately if we try to free feed him, he will have it all in one meal. As far as whether we should feed him dry food at all, the vet hasn't told us.  I remember with Sahib, they told us not to give him dry food and gave him a special diet. Unfortunately he didn't live long enough to see if it would have helped.
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Anyways an update:  The vet said the new test, his levels were where they wanted, so we are to keep him at five units and then come back in two weeks for another test.
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Hi,
I'm glad to hear rhe Vet is satisfied with his levels.  Does he seem to be eating and feeling better, too?  Take care.
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So far I can't say for sure.  I'm tempted to try changing his diet to a raw diet, but for the life of me, I cannot find any help online whether it is even possible to feed a CRF + diabetic cat such a diet and if it would help my cat's condition.

I'm terribly upset after searching for nearly an hour and only coming up with results that suggest it for diabetic cats (and mention about great recovery stories) but mention nothing about CRF...  Or I get results for CRF mentioning low protein diets, which once again are a bad thing for diabetic cats.

Help!  For this reason, I've been hesitant to get more dry food for Waldo, but I'm coming to the end of the bag, so I'd like to get something this week.  

Our new cat is struggling to put on weight it seems, very picky about moist food, and seems prone to vomiting.
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Hi MJ,
I feed my diabetic kitty Wellness Chicken and another one called Sophisticat Supreme Chopped Grill.  They are both high protein and low carb.  I'm slowly trying to get her on all Wellness wet canned food.  Wellness Turkey is another good one, and these can be found at Petco or Petsmart.  The dry kibble food, unfortunately, will raise kitty's blood glucose.  The diet for diabetic kitties it has to be high protein, low carbsm, but I hesitated to recommend foods for Waldo as I know he also has kidney issues.  

I've never tried a raw diet for my kitty, but maybe if you start another thread entitled raw diet for cats, you may get more feedback.  I do remember PrettyKitty was feeding her cats a raw diet.  Here is a good website on nutrition for diabetic kitties where you can get some good info.  What kind of insulin is Waldo using?  Maggie was on Lantus Insuulin.  

www.catinfo.org
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Maddie has given you some good advice, I will also add the link to prettykitty's info on the BARF diet (bones and raw food) thats the one she fed her kitty Abby.

http://www.medhelp.org/health_pages/Pets/Cat-Nutrition-BARF-Diet/show/557?cid=2

Chicken/turkey are high in protein that kitties need and poultry is the lowest in phosphorus therefore easier on the kidneys.

I don't feed raw, my Nemo just wouldn't eat, but I do feed him a homemade cooked diet, however he doesn't have CRF or diabetes, so you'll need to do your home work to find out what is safest for those conditions.

Like Maddie said. Wellness canned is a very good food. I wouldn't ever feed a CRF kitty a dry diet!!!

♥Opus
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Thanks Opus for providing that link on the raw diet to MJ.  I had just joined this forum when I remembered PrettyKitty feeding her cat the raw diet and her cat loving it.  PK's ears must be ringing by now.  My Maggie kitty is looking so good since I've changed her diet to low carb wet, and she's loving the Wellness chicken and turkey.    I hope all this helps MJ.  I've sure had an education on what to feed cats since Maggie having diabetes (now in remission 4 months).    MJ, hang in there, and I hope Waldo is doing okay today.
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874521_tn?1375890587
hi Maddie, I agree diet can make a huge difference on the health of our kitties.
changing Nemo's diet to a homemade one(tried all the commercial ones) has completely disolved the urinary crystals he had and lowered his PH, not as good as it should be yet but coming.....the added fluid intake makes a huge difference.
Wellness is an excellent brand, my Nemo wouldn't eat that one either...I tried many before being forced into the homemade route.
Soooo happy to hear how well Maggie is doing, good for you mommy!..........yes PKs ears must be ringin...sure miss her here!

♥Opus
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Hi Opus,
Hey, that is great the homemade diet made a difference in Nemo's dissolving the urinary crystals.  I'm impressed with the homemade diet for Nemo - one very lucky kitty.  It is hard to get them to drink water, so the canned helps and the diet you are feeding Nemo, too.  I'm glad Nemo is doing so well.  
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365714_tn?1292202708
Yeah I've been feeding Waldo mostly dry food. I tried to get the better quality brands, Nutro, wellness, and blue buffalo to name a few. It is convenient,and that is about the only good to it. That may have also led to Sahib's dimise as well.  We would give them moist (grandma insisted upon special kitty)  (Waldo's previous owners, who had him the first 9 years, fed him alley cat and those moist packet cat foods.)

I'm nearing the end of his Royal Canin dry food and the moist cans aren't meant to be fed as the only meal for an extended time.  Would raw or home cooked meals work for kidney problems as well?  The kidney health requires low protein, but the diabetes, seems to require something higher...

The next challenge will be dealing with my grandma, as she flat out refused before (concerned about disease and space in the fridge), but perhaps it will be better I order a sample first and then deal with grandma later.

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About the other cat:
So far the only food she really eats is dry... She seemed to like the LID Natural balance can I tried last, but that was what she threw up. It could be she eats too much. I'm giving her smaller portions of food throughout the day. I think she's grown longer since we found her.
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sorry hon but I have to disagree with much of your post....ANY canned food is better than dry especially for a CRF cat...and nutro and blue buffalo aren't good brand names they are no different than store bought one. Wellness is good and so is EVO by INNOVA...so is TIKKI to name a few.
Its now understood that protein is alright for CRF cats as long as its good quality protein and not the by products like you find in the store bought brands.....and as long as you feed chicken or turkey as the protein because they are lower in phosphorus.!!!!
Raw or cooked diet has many many challanges, safety for one and also getting just the right supplements otherwise you can cause more problems than what you are trying to correct!!!
It took me weeks of research to learn the correct balance of nutrients and supplements such as tauine, calcium, vitamin A&D&E, trace minerals etc etc......and not only how much to give but which brand name of each is SAFE for use for cats.....
Honey I recommend you stick to a GOOD brand of commercial food, cans NOT dry.
I see NO reason why you cannot feed the Royal Canin for an extended time, although there are much better choices in foods.
When changing a cat from dry to wet you have to do the transition slowly.....the change alone will cause vomiting or diarrhea, do it slow add 50/50 to begin with....smaller meals thoughout the day is a good way to feed.
good luck.♥
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I asked the vet about the idea, and they would like me to stick on the royal canon diet I have him on.  I'm phasing out the dry food and going to continue with the cans.

I just feel it is so darn expensive and wondering if it is doing any good for him.  I'm trying a can of evo for the other cat (gave her a couple spoonfulls), but she scorned it at first.
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I forgot to ask, why blue buffalo cat food is considered a bad brand? I gave up on nutro as soon as they had all the recalls. In my last post I was listing the stuff we've fed Waldo over the years we had him.
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hi...just going on the fact they had recalls too just a few weeks ago, just the dog food I think? you can read about it on the dog forum
EVO is good, just transition slowly and it won't be such a problem.
I remember a member donnayav with a CRF cat feeding TIKKI brand and it had excellent ingredients, she said it was sold at petco and the price was resonable.
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I think it is the dog food that is being recalled.  Will keep an eye out on the cat dry food as well.  So far it is only the female cat that I'm feeding the Blue Buffalo spa select dry to. Waldo is still on the royal canon dry and wet food.  I don't like that pork byproducts are RC's main meat source.  I'll look into Tikki, if I go to Petco. If not I'll check them out online.

The raw food I was looking at was on a website, Natures variety or some similar brand. There was a site offering samples for about $20. I would not prepare my own, because I don't feel confident enough, plus having to keep track of all the needed vitamins. I had to reboot my computer, so I lost the links I had up.  The vet was against the idea of changing Waldo's diet when I brought up the idea.  They want to stabilize his blood sugar first before changing his diet, but I'm getting frustrated because it doesn't seem to be stabilizing.  Their last test was encouraging, but Waldo is still rather lethargic and just doesn't seem happy.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi MJ,
If Waldo is lethargic and not feeling well, he could be getting too much insulin and he could get low blood sugar.  They get low blood sugar when too much insulin is given.  Here is a link explaining what can happen and how to treat the symptoms.  

http://www.felinediabetes.com/hypogly.htm

I don't know how to get the links to work so you can click on them.

The only way to tell what's going on is to get his  blood glucose.  I believe you are using a different insulin than the one I was using (Lantus Insulin), so I had a different protocol.  Has the Vet mentioned any more about home testing so you will know what his blood glucose is before giving insulin.  I think a lot of Vets don't recommend home testing because they might feel it to be too difficult for the owner, but it's the only way to know how the kitty is doing.   I don't want to bombard you with too much info or interfere with what your Vet is doing, but this is a good link just to learn more about feline diabetes.  

www.feline diabetes.com

I would place a call to your Vet and mention Waldo's symptoms if you feel he's not getting any better.  Let us know how Waldo is doing.  I can see how much you love Waldo and tthe other cat and you're trying to do everything to help them.  Take care.
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The vet wanted to get his levels stabilized first before considering the home testing kit.  They weren't willing to sell it right away.  It would cost $200, and I might have to get one from the pharmacy geared towards people.  I will bring it up again the next time I see them.  They wanted to wait two weeks from the last visit, so I'll be planning to take him next Tuesday.  I did ask them yesterday when I stopped to pick up the syringes. They seem to think it is because he may need more insulin.

I didn't make it out to petco tonight (to say the weather is terrible is a huge understatement) but I did find a closer place. I can't remember the name, whether it was "Happy Dog" or something that is geared towards holistic pet health food.  The people at the shop claimed their shop kitty has the same exact problems Waldo has, so I took their recommendations.  They recommended Merrick's Grammy's pot pie (canned food) and when I asked them they also found some dehydrated food named Prowl to be helpful.  If this diet is any good, it is cheaper than the Royal Canon, I believe.
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Something I'm noticing, yesterday and today, Waldo seems to be very bloated.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi MJ.
I'm glad you got some help on food from the pet store for Waldo.  You really don't need to buy the Vet's meter, as you're right, it's about $200.00 for the kit and can get very expensive with testing.  You can use a human meter, and the numbers will just be in a different range than with the Vet meter.  If I were you, I would call the Vet anyway and mention the bloating and other symptoms of lethargy.  It can't hurt, and your Vet should call return your call.  Or ask for one of the Vet Techs you feel comfortable with and and give her the info to relay to the Vet.    Is Waldo urinating normally, as diabetic kitties are prone to urinary tract infections, and this can make them ill and lack of appetite.
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I'll have to wait until tomorrow.  I'm not calling the after hours emergency vet if I can avoid it.  The last time we did that with Sahib, I left with an empty carrier. :( I fear the bloating may be a serious concern, but when I looked up possible causes, the most serious causes would also come with loss of appetitive, which I haven't seen with Waldo, at least not yet.  It could be he is constipated again and needing an enema.  I hope not...  We've been giving him miralax along with all the other stuff we have to do around his meal time.
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Avatar_f_tn
Oh  sorry I meant to call your regular Vet; I forget about the different time changes as I live in southern California.   I, too,  use Miralax on Maggie as she gets constipated, and it works every time.  I hope Waldo is feeling better.  Have a nice day.
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Sorry for the late post. Not much has changed. He is still on 5 units. Physically about the same.  He may be peeing less and using the litter box a little less.

As far as feeding them, I am trying to switch them both to an all wet diet, but my grandma insists they get their dry food too, so she feeds them dry food whenever I am away. I'm not sure how to approach her on that.
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Long belated update. After a recent emergency this week we had to take him to the vet. His body temperature was as low as 97 degrees and his blood sugar dropped to somewhere in the 30's.  Because of other circumstances we ended up having to leave him at the vet for a couple days. They claimed that his blood sugar levels were only slightly elevated without insulin.

We are taking him off insulin for the weekend and then having his levels rechecked. It could be possible his diabetes has gone into remission, though I'm more a realist than an optimist. If he can get by with less than the 5 units we've been giving him for the last few months all the better.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi - It sounds like he had hypoglycemia (too much insulin).  Five units is a lot of insulin, but your Vet must have felt he needed this dose,  Eventually once the cat starts getting regulated, the dose is is rediced.  If we don't know what the cat's glucose is before giving insulin, it  is like shooting blind.  My kitty has come out of remission and I am now giving her insulin again.  Fortunately, I had someone come over to the house and instruct me.  Not all Vets encourage home testing, as it's a complicated process.  That is great if the Vet feels he may be going into remission and no longer will need insulin.  Here is a link explaining feline hypoglycemia.

http://www.type2diabetesguide.com/hypoglycemia-in-cats.shtml
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It was hypoglycemia no doubt about it. He was requiring five units because his levels were through the roof when we started. At some point recently something changed.  Well anyways the test today on his blood sugar levels came out normal. This is without giving him insulin this week.

It appears Waldo's diabetes has gone into remission so far. I don't know how long. I guess we just have to keep an eye on him.  I think it helped switching his diet to all wet food and keeping dry food out of his diet.
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Great news, MJ!  I don't know for sure if the wet food has anything to do with the diabetes remission, but it will definitely keep Waldo from getting crystals again.  Will help that situation immensely!  What a relief you no longer have to give those shots.  Keep us posted on his progress.  You must continue to test him to make sure his levels are where they should be?  
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