Diabetes in Pets
Female Calico
Born Apr-1989
Dx Jul-2003
Oral meds :
Regulated May-2004

Regulated between 100 and 250

Remission Not-yet
Insulin Humulin U

Alex was born in April 1989. She had always been a large cat (as high as 14 lb) and very sedentary. When she started drinking and peeing alot and lost weight, I suspected diabetes. She was officially dx on 7/14/03.

Our first week was a disaster. The vet gave her a 8u dose of Novolin R on day 4 and sent her into a hypoglycemic episode at +2.5. (for what it is worth - the first vet never sent us a bill for this first week of treatment) She was not symptomatic but luckily I started hometesting and my very first test came back at 46. I repeated and got a 42!! After some karo and tuna (she has been snubbing her dry food since coming back from the first vet) her numbers came back up. The next morning we found a different vet. The new vet recommended 2u Humulin U BID which sounded much more reasonable based on the information felinediabetes.com recommends.

We slowly raised the dosage Alex received to 4u, home-testing before every shot and doing 12 hour curves before each .5u dosage increase. Alex refused to change to an all canned food diet, she would not give up her crunchies. We comprmised on a 50/50 mix of Hills Prescription M/D and Iams Hairball dry food. This extra carbohydrate intake is probably responsible for her higher than typical insulin dosage. Alex was never prone to ketones, even at the time of diagnosis when her blood glucose numbers were in the 500 range.

We were verly lucky that Alex was an extremely easy to manage diabetic and never objected to the home testing nor the insulin injections. Alex esentially regulated on a 4u dosage, with Pre-Shot BG in the 300-350 range. Later she started giving us lower numbers on occasion so we changed to a sliding dosage scale depending on the PS BG, below 115 - no insulin, 115 to 140 - 1u, 140 to 200 - 2u, 200 to 270 - 3u, over 270 - 4u.

In November of 2005, we noticed that Alex's appetite was off. The vet took blood and tested for hypothyroidism but that came back fine. Two weeks later, a x-ray showed a mass in her chest. She was 16.5 years old and I could not put her through surgery or chemotherapy. We tried to improve her breathing and appetite by Prednesone injections. The steroids did not affect her BG levels but it also did not seem to have any benefits.

We made the decision to have Alex put to sleep 12/26/05. She was having trouble breathing, not much interest in eating, and not getting much sleep because she would relax and put too much weight on her chest to be able to breathe. In the end, we had another 2.5 years with Alex after her diagnosis with diabetes and it was not the diabetes that took her life in the end.