Sunday, January 18, 2009

Woe is Me

This weekend has been rough for all of us. Baby Moka had a hypoglycemic episode Saturday morning. These are the symptoms of a hypoglycemic episode in order of ascending severity:

complete disinterest in food
restlessness
weakness, lethargy
head tilting
shivering
staggering, uncoordinated movements
problems with eyesight
disorientation (yowling, walking in circles, hiding, etc.)
convulsions or seizures
coma

He had all but the last two, plus he had vomiting and wheezing.

We took him to the vet, where he decided to start eating again, which got him sort of back to normal. Then we took him home and it all happened all over again. Except he didn't start eating this time, and the symptoms seemed much worse.

So then we took him to the emergency night vet. This time they said he was having a hyperglycemic episode. In addition, he now had an upper respiratory infection (that makes 3 infections in the last 5 weeks). They wanted $1,000 to watch him overnight. They couldn't do anything to fix him. They could just watch him and maybe stabilize him if it got too bad. I opted for the $250 option (hydration and an anti-vomiting drug) and took him home. This is no less than 10 vet visits in the last 5 weeks. I don't even want to add up the cost.

Anyway, this feline diabetes thing sucks balls. Moka has to suffer through infections and crazy terrible symptoms and there's nothing anyone can do about it. We are now syringe-feeding him, which is a horrible, traumatic exercise for all involved. My emotions are on a roller coaster, controlled by how good or bad he is doing from one minute to the next.

I would put him down, but for the fact that he's supposed to be able to live a normal life after this first terrible part is over, and it makes me feel selfish and weak want to give up on him. The only thing I can do is try to be patient, I guess. It's just really hard having to watch an animal suffer like this.

20 comments:

Chrissy and Jack said...

I'm so sorry, Claudia. If you put him down, it's only because he's suffering; that isn't selfish or weak, that's compassion. Please give our love and well wishes to Moka.

Anonymous said...

I have two diabetic cats and can promise you that there is so much you can do that will help your cat and you.

First and so easy, go to www.felinediabetes.com, read the FAQs check out the message board.

Then get a human glucometer, I use and Accucheck Aviva, but other good ones are TruTrack, One Touch. Test your cats blood sugar each day, it takes only a few seconds once you learn.

Like a human, knowing the blood sugar will prevent the ups and downs that you've experienced.

You and your cat will have many many years together.

Also, look into diet. Some foods contribute to poor blood sugar. Just as in humans who need to eat less sugar, cats need to eat less carbs. Our cats eat canned food only, we transitioned away from dry food and all are healthier.

Please check FDMB, the felinediabetes.com message board. There are people there 24 hours a day to give advice, support and friendship.

-My own FDs are Tucker and Misty

Anonymous said...

Hi. I also am from the FDMB. I am known there as Venita and the Boyz. "Boyz" because I am on my second diabetic cat, Ennis. His diabetic littermate, Maxwell, passed in 2007 from a non-diabetes cause.

The important "five rules" to successfully regulate a feline diabetic (and perhaps even get the cat into remission) are:
1. Proper insulin and dosage
2. Proper food (wet, low-carb or raw)
3. Hometesting, recording, and evaluating blood sugar levels
4. Treating all infections (dental, upper respiratory, urinary tract)
5. Test urine frequently for ketones.

Oh, and one more important rule--Breathe!!

Do come join us on the feline diabetes message board (FDMB). There is also a great wikia about pet diabetes at http://petdiabetes.wikia.com/wiki/Main_Page.

Best of luck to you and Baby Moka!!

Venita

Anonymous said...

Please, Please, Please come over to felinediabetes.com.

We can help you!

My cat, Beau, has been diabetic for almost two years. He is managed at home with blood testing, diet and appropriate insulin dose (sounds like your kitty is getting too much insulin). He purrs when I test his blood and he gets a treat afterwards (boiled chicken). He is a happy kitty.

Please come over and read the FAQs, register and start asking questions. You do not have to do this by yourself any more.

Looking forward to meeting you on the feline diabetes message board.

Anonymous said...

hi there,
we help numerous cats every day at felinediabetes.com so please do check it out as soon as you can. if you are hesitant, just read at first. read the FAQ's section there and read thru a few pages of posts on the Health part of the board. and if you'd like, then post and introduce yourself and let us help you help your cat.

there are cats there that have come back from major overdoses and there are cats there that lived with diabetes for 14 years and there are cats there going into remission every week, so please don't give up hope.

we can teach you how to do this and keep your kitty safe.

thank you for listening to me and i hope to see you there soon.

Val said...

Please come visit the FDMB. I have been a member since Cream was DX in Sept 08.

I know things seem really bad right now, but there are many, many wonderful, kind, caring, and most importantly, experienced people there who can help you.

Before you make a 'final' decision regarding you presious baby, please visit us.

www.felinediabetes.com

Anonymous said...

Hi My name is Melissa...I am also a member of the feline diabetes board others have referred to before me.

One of our members was kind enogh to post your quandry to us and ask us to reach out to you.

I can tell you really care about your cat- sugarcat is what we call them! I know you want to help.

Please visit us and post your concerns on the health board- so many folks waiting to help you!

I have been treating my Paul-Kyle sugarboy on and off for almost a year. He was diagnosed in late January last year, I found the diabetes board in February and by late May Paul was diet controlled and didn't need insulin.

We moved recently and he has gone back on insulin, but I am hoping to get him diet controlled again soon.

PLEASE come visit us and let us help you help your sugarkitty!

Melissa and Paul-Kyle

edwin said...

Hello. My name is Edwin, and our Himalayan cat Caesar, is going to be 17 years old this spring.

He has been Type 1 Diabetic for the past 5 years. If it had not been for the fantastic support of the ladies at felinediabetes.com, we would not have our furball today!

It just takes a couple minutes each day to test his blood, give him the appropriate amount of insulin and carry on as if nothing else is happening. Caesar does not mind the blood testing - he jumps up to the same spot every time to wait for it, and he "knows" when he is low or high now, and expects his insulin as a result.

Please check in at FDMB to learn how to save both money and your Baby Moka!

Anonymous said...

Can you take another comment from someone who's been through this?

I had a hell of a time with my cat and was told that putting her down was an option... but was also told that it was treatable. And it was really scary. But the folks at felinediabetes.com taught me how to hometest in order to monitor and dose better as well as slowly getting my cat to eat the right food.

And she eventually was diet controlled. That doesn't happen to all, but it happens to about 30% of cats.

Anyway, before you make a decision that lasts forever, please come visit us at felinediabetes.com. We are a community that loves to help - because we've been helped before.

We hope you an Moka come for a visit just to see if we can ease your stress and help Moka feel better.

I'm Vic & Sundance.

Good luck to you.... Hugs.

Anonymous said...

I agree with what everyone else said about FDMB! I've had 2 diabetic cats who did very well on insulin, good food and lots of love. Please come see us - you'll be amazaed at what you can learn and at the support you can get!

Kimber said...

It is very obvious that you love your cat and are trying to do what is best.

Please visit
www.felinediabetes.com


I have had two diabetic cats--both adapted quite well...eventually. Bunny lived a VERY happy life for six years. The first couple months were a hellish nightmare, but the folks at the feline diabetes message board helped me help my cat. Bunny would come and find me when it was time for his shot and headbutt me. He WANTED his shot. You will get so it doesn't hurt your kitty and it will all become easier.

Annie, our second diabetic, has much of her story on my blog, just look at the feline diabetes or Annie tag. Annie only needed shots for six months. Cats CAN go into remission and IF that is possible for your kitty, the info you NEED is at felinediabetes.com.

Hometesting will help stop the hypos. It sounds like just One More HORROR at first, but, again, it gets easier.

HUGS...

Anonymous said...

I am an FDMB'r too. FDMB saved my sanity and managed to help my little Trouble become a diet controlled kitty. After a few months on insulin his little body recovered and he became the kitty he used to be. Please let us help you help Moka.

Anonymous said...

Please come over to FDMB we will help you.
I have two diabetic cats. They are both fine. One is on insulin the other is diet controlled. The first is scary ,but it can be dealt with. You can have a happy kitty.Linda and Mandy

Dawn I said...

I have 2 FD cats as well. One is 14yo and now diet-controlled after being on insulin for only about 6 weeks. The other is only 5yo and on insulin.

Hope to see you on FDMB! :)

Dawn with Mateo and Wiggles

Anonymous said...

I am also from FDMB. Please come and join our community. You will be most welcome and we will give you all the help and support you need. Love Simon (UK)

Shannon said...

Was all that spam or did news of your troubles spread to cat lovers of the world?

In any event, I am so sorry Moka (and by extension you) are suffering. I hope that this is only temporary and the diabetes gets under control.

Cladeedah said...

Thanks everyone.

No, Shannon, not spam. News of Moka's struggle has travelled far and wide. It's crossed oceans, time zones, and racial divides. The cat lovers of the world are banding together to try & help me save him. I bet dog people aren't this passionate. :-).

Yasmien said...

I love it! You have such a nice support system from people that only know that you're dealing with new hardships of your poor kitty cat. I hope with your new support system and that website, that you'll get through this with cute lil' Moka and you'll feel happier!!
xoxo! I may be coming to Vegas in a few weekends, I'll keep you posted :)

Randi said...

I am so sorry you have to go through this with your cat. I hope you all get better soon!!!

Vanessa said...

Wow! I'd say you've got a great deal of wonderful suggestions and a litany of support to help guide you through this difficult period with Moka. We'll help you through this as much as a couple of dog lovers can.