Diabetes in Cats
- By Anand Srinivasan
Its scary when you first know your cat has diabetis
but once you start understanding the disease and get
more used to the monitoring it becomes easier for you
and your kitty.
Informing yourself of the disease is crucial, its not
the same as human diabetis and its a complex disease
that you need to inform yourself about.Don't feel
overwhelemed by the amount of information. Get all
the info printed and make it a point to read them
every night until you basically have learned the info
First of all, Feline diabetes is extremely difficult
to regulate. Feline metabolism is simply not designed
to be diabetes friendly. By "regulate," we
mean finding the correct insulin dosage for steady,
healthy blood sugar levels.Feline metabolism is built
specifically for short, fast bursts of power and
speed, not long chases, unlike dogs. It can take a
very long time to find the right dose of insulin, and
the "right" dose can change on you with
little or no notice. Stress, even things that don't
appear to us
to be stressful, can set off sugar spikes in cats.
Thus, you MUST monitor your cat at all times. At any
sign of trouble,at least call your vet. You'll get
better over time at recognizing what needs immediate
Signs of trouble (over-insulin) include:
Balance loss, unsteady walking (they'll act drunk
Sudden craziness - this is different from the regular
feline nightly run around and be active craziness.
Sometimes, the cat might let out a horrible witchy
yowl at top voice, spin madly around chasing its own
tail 4-5 times, jump in the air, fall on the sides,
pant and ultimately even lose consciousness.
So, in such instances have a light corn syrup handy.
If you over-insulin (which is all too
easily done) you will need to get come easy sugar
into your cat FAST.
The insulin is given subcutaneaously, that is,
directly under the top layer of skin, and NOT into
the blood. What you'll do is lift your cat's skin somewhere around the scruff
or near that area, just as you would do to check
hydration (something you'll want to do daily, by the way ...) You'll then have a
little tent of skin lifted off from the body. You'll
insert the the needle along the long line of the tent (think of a long pole
supporting the tent like a roof line) rather than
from side to side of the tent.
Inject and you're done. You'll get to where you can
do it easily.
Never give another shot if you think you missed the
shot (sometimes you can make a mistake and give the
shot to the fur.. which isn't helpful at all!) but
its always best for your kitty to skip a dose than
have a double shot.
Eating is crucial - and it is equally crucial that
your cat eats something immediately before or after
the insulin shot (just like human diabetics). This
can be difficult, as cats often don't eat when they
don't feel well, so start finding all the creative
treats you can find that will entice your cat.You can
probably try home-made (no salt or spices) chicken
broth, which gels when cold; baby food (all meat, NO
spices, particularly onion powder, which is poisonous
to cats); wet food (from the vet, particularly made
for kidney problems); TUNA (the special favorite.)
Experiment, but don't go overboard, and remember that
however 'underboard' is more dangerous.
As the diabetes progresses, be on the watch for other
complications; Joint problems , need for heat,
need to make environmental changes to accommodate
such things as they develop. Some cats can come down
with renal failure as a secondary condition to the
diabetes. These are all treatable, but it will add to
the adjustments you and your cat will need to make.
Find out where your nearest emergency animal
hospital/clinic is NOW before you need that
information. Because you will need it.Unless you are
extremely blessed, there will be at least once or
twice that you will need to rush your cat for
immediate care, because he goes into diabetic coma
(the warnings I mentioned above.) Keep the number
someplace where you can find it at a moment's notice.
Towels are your friend. They can be used to wrap a
cat who struggles when given shots; they can be used
to put under a cat who is retching to catch the vomit
(towels, unlike rugs and floors, are easily thrown
into a washing machine!);they can make emergency beds
as the cat's ability to navigate the environment
changes. They can be used with plastic to catch
extraneous urine around the litterbox (again -
Periodically, talk to your vet about cat's diet. He
may already be on lower-protein food. If not, it may
be time to introduce it. Kidney problems necessitate
lower protein foods than normal
This can be a harsh statement, but to be realistic,
Diabetes in cats is fatal -- you may have weeks or
years, depending on how well your cat's blood levels
regulate. Now is the time for the two of you to come
to an agreement about what constitutes a
quality-of-life threshold. Only you and your cat can
decide when that is for the two of you. But it is a
conversation you should start, now,while you can
still enjoy yourselves together as you have it.
Anand Srinivasan is the author of http://XooXonline.info a website of
varied themes and topics for the internet surfer who
wants to surf but does not know what to!
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Anand_Srinivasan
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