Diabetic cats’ stories

Gorgeous rescue cat Aggi - by Steph

Aggie the diabetic cat that just wouldn't regulate

Steph writes: “Key facts as follows in case they are of use:

  • I’ve had Ags since 2004 - she’s a rescue cat who is very nervous and mistrustful of people; evidently very badly treated. Took six months of hand feeding behind the settee to gain her trust, but she’s now my little shadow.
  • Collapsed end of April 2008
  • Diagnosed ‘spectacularly’ diabetic at the beginning of May 2008.
  • Started on PZI - no response. Six weeks later switched to Caninsulin (with ever increasing doses)
  • Blood glucose curves were hopeless at the vets - Aggi would sit in the cage with her engine running and never dropped below 27 mmol/l
  • After a while of this (and having to rely on fructosamine testing, which is way too vague for my liking), I started investigating home testing and, thank goodness found this website, which gave me the confidence to try it.
  • Many happy hours spent jabbing away at Ags’ ear, but eventually I got the hang of it and Ags tolerated it (reluctantly). A veritable plethora of useful information followed!
  • October 2008 - Aggi on 4.5 units twice a day of Caninsulin, and was regulated! But she was also throwing up a lot and not at all happy and active - signs I should have taken more notice of, but my delight that we’d achieved regulation over-rode common sense
  • 11 October 2008 - Ags given antibiotics for bladder infection
  • 9pm October 13 2008 - worst nightmare. Massive hypoglycaemic episode - blood glucose reading of 0.9mmol. Thankfully (and please, please make sure you post this on the website) I could diagnose it at home with the glucose monitor, and this saved Ags’ life. This enabled me to begin administering honey, and get her to the emergency vet, who managed to save her. The sight of her being held down by 2 vets while having a seizure will, unfortunately, live with me for the rest of my life. I have summarised this incident as it would be impossible to describe how awful that night was.
  • 8am October 14 2008 - Ags dropped off at home by emergency vet (bless her!), and immediately emptied the contents of her toy box and kicked seven bells out of her favourite catnip banana! Became less happy later in the day when she was dragged to the vet for further tests… back to two units Caninsulin twice a day
  • Late October 2008 - bladder infection confirmed as e-coli (sigh) following a cystocentesis (much righteous indignation over this indignity - with accompanying dirty protest - followed). More antibiotics.
  • Mid November 2008 - another Cysto - e-coli gone! Hooray!
  • Early December 2008 - up to 2.5 units of Caninsulin twice a day. Test showed this was not enough to regulate her, but we were where we were…
  • 22 December 2008 - come home to Ags throwing up and disorientated. Test result 5.9mmol (this is evidently too low for her to cope with). Sigh, again dosage reduced to 1.5 units twice a day.
  • 23 December 2008 - sick again. 6.8mmol - gave lots of lovely, carb- laden ‘in gravy’ food and managed to stabilise her
  • Christmas/New Year 2008 - No major problems, and Ags survived the festivities. She loves the Christmas tree so I left it up till mid-February because I thought she wouldn’t see it again.
  • Mid January 2009 - painful decision in conjunction with the vets. She wasn’t going to regulate and it was fruitless to try. I would concentrate on her quality of life, not the duration of it. Heartbreaking for me, but best for Ags

Now, Ags is on two units of Caninsulin twice a day and has perked up, is much more active, is eating well, has not thrown up once in the last six months, is not at all bothered by being hyperglycaemic (after all she doesn’t know what it’s doing to her in the long term) and we are both under a much less pressure. The moral of the story - sometimes you just have to admit defeat, and that is sometimes the right thing to do. You can’t put your own feelings ahead of the wellbeing of your feline companion. ”

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