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How To Do A Glucose Curve On A Cat At Home

Doing A Blood Glucose Curve For Your Diabetic Dog

Doing A Blood Glucose Curve For Your Diabetic Dog

If your dog has diabetes mellitus, a blood glucose curve is an essential part of evaluating his progress and health. Your veterinarian may ask you to do a blood glucose sample for your pet at home for several reasons. Reasons To Do a Blood Glucose Curve at Home In many cases, when an animal visits the veterinary hospital, his or her behavior changes. Many petsbecome frightened and stressed. This stress can adversely affect the blood glucose levels, causing the levels to increase solely because of the physiological effects of stress on the body (this is especially true of cats). A blood glucose curve performed at home is done in a less stressful environment, and it's likely to produce a curve that is more representative of the actual blood glucose levels. In addition, blood glucose curves must be performed while feeding your pet as you normally would. In a hospital environment, many animals are reluctant to eat normally, which may also negatively affect the results of a blood glucose curve. Feed your dog or cat normally. Take the first blood sample just before giving the insulin injection, measure the blood glucose and record it. Give the insulin injection as you normally would. Be sure toconsult your veterinarian for specific instructions regarding how often to measure your pet's blood glucose. You should neverchange your pet's insulin dosage without consulting with your dog or cat's veterinarian first. In general, you should repeat taking blood samples at two-hour intervals and recording the blood glucose measurements until your pet's blood glucose level falls below 150 to 200 mg/dl. Once the blood glucose level falls below 150 to 200 mg/dl, take blood samples, measure and record the blood glucose every hour. Continue taking blood samples and measuring your pet's bloo Continue reading >>

Blood Glucose Curves In Diabetic Dogs And Cats

Blood Glucose Curves In Diabetic Dogs And Cats

Blood glucose curves are a a useful tool in the stabilisation and monitoring of diabetic animals.They give an accurate assessment on which to base changes in insulin therapy and are vital in investigating the unstable diabetic. They help to determine insulin effectiveness and the maximum and minimum blood glucose concentrations and when these occur. They are an ideal tool for differentiating the problems of short duration of action and the Somogyi effect. See Problems. Protocol for producing serial glucose curves Hospitalise the animal Follow the pet owner’s normal regime. This includes insulin injections, size, type and timing of meals and exercise routine. Take a blood sample prior to insulin injection. Administer the insulin. Take a blood sample every two (to four) hours, if possible for 24 hours but at least until the concentration has crossed back above the renal threshold. More frequent blood sampling (e.g. hourly) may be required if Somogyi effect is suspected and difficult to identify. Be careful not to take too many large blood samples from small dogs and cats. Blood glucose concentrations are measured and plotted against time to produce a blood glucose curve Spreadsheet to produce a blood glucose curve The spreadsheet below enables glucose curves (in mmol/l) to be drawn and viewed easily. The graph is on the second page of the spreadsheet and appears as a scatter plot as it is then less likely that a Somogyi effect may be missed. There is also a conversion table for mg/dl and g/L. Spreadsheet for serial glucose curve (mmol/l) Interpreting blood glucose curves The aim of treatment is to alleviate the clinical signs of diabetes mellitus. To achieve this, blood glucose concentrations must be kept below the renal threshold and hypoglycaemia must be avoided. Thus Continue reading >>

Glucose Curve In Cats

Glucose Curve In Cats

Diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes) is a common problem. Though diabetic cats may respond well to diet and medication, most cats require daily or twice daily injections of insulin. It can be difficult to determine optimal type, dosage, and frequency of insulin administration. As with diabetic people, each cat is a little different. Some cats will require more or less insulin than another cat. Inadequate dosing can lead to poorly controlled diabetes. Excessive doses can cause weakness, coma, and even death. One of the best ways to determine the optimal insulin dose in a cat is the glucose curve. In this test, a series of blood glucose (sugar) tests are done over a 12 to 24-hour period. The results of this test facilitate proper insulin dosage and time of insulin administration. There are no real contraindications to performing this test, but care must be taken if the cat resents the having blood drawn or becomes stressed during the procedure. Stress can increase the blood sugar level, resulting in inaccurate readings and an invalid glucose curve. For this reason, a small blood-sampling catheter may be placed in a vein to allow ready sampling of blood without the need for repeated needle sticks. What Does a Glucose Curve Reveal in Cats? Glucose levels are constantly fluctuating, depending on diet, exercise, underlying illness, and the cat’s individual glucose requirements. For diabetic cats, insulin works best when administered at times of highest blood sugar, which typically follows eating. A glucose curve will reveal at what time the cat’s glucose level is the highest and when it is lowest relative to diet and insulin administration. It also helps determine how long the insulin is lasting in your cat, the time of the peak effect and the degree of fluctuation in the b Continue reading >>

Diabetes In Cats - Testing And Monitoring

Diabetes In Cats - Testing And Monitoring

By Kristiina Ruotsalo, DVM, DVSc, Dip ACVP, Margo S. Tant BSc, DVM, DVSc & Robin Downing, DVM, DAAPM, DACVSMR, CVPP Diagnosis What tests are suggested for the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus in cats? Generally, the following screening tests are performed when diabetes mellitus is suspected: a complete blood count (CBC), a serum biochemistry profile, and a urinalysis. Why so many tests? Can't diabetes be diagnosed by an elevated blood sugar value alone? Elevated fasting blood and urine glucose (sugar) values are absolutely essential for the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus, but other screening tests provide additional information about the severity of the diabetes, any conditions that may be contributing to the diabetes, and any complications related to the diabetic state. Because diabetes mellitus is usually diagnosed in middle-aged to older cats, your cat may have other unrelated conditions that need to be managed along with diabetes. The screening tests will usually alert us to any such conditions. What might a CBC indicate if my cat has diabetes mellitus? The complete blood count evaluates the red blood cells, the white blood cells, and the platelet components of a blood sample. With uncomplicated diabetes mellitus, these components are often within the normal range, but changes may occasionally be seen in the red or white cell values. Despite drinking large quantities of water, diabetic cats lose body water because they produce such dilute urine. Therefore, your cat may actually be dehydrated. Dehydration can be indicated on the CBC by increases in the packed cell volume (PCV - the proportion of the blood volume that is actually occupied by red blood cells) as well as increases in the total red blood cell count. In some severe diabetic states, lysis (rupture) of red bl Continue reading >>

Feline Diabetes: Symptoms, Diagnosis, And Treatment | Petcoach

Feline Diabetes: Symptoms, Diagnosis, And Treatment | Petcoach

Middle-aged to older cats, and obese cats. Usually, the most noticeable early symptoms of diabetes in cats are drinking more water and urinating more than normal (also called polyuria/polydipsia, or PU/PD). You may notice larger-than-normal urine clumps in the litter box, or the litter box itself may feel heavier than usual. You may also need to fill your cats water bowl more often than normal. Some cats may also have urinary accidents outside the litter box. Many diabetic pets also have an increased appetite (polyphagia) along with weight loss. Peripheral neuropathy is a common side-effect of diabetes in many cats, which may be noticeable as a weak or wobbly gait in the rear legs, or difficulty climbing stairs or jumping on furniture. Urinary tract infections are also very common in diabetic pets, so straining or discomfort during urination can also be seen in some cases, as well as urinating outside of the litterbox. Since there are a number of different conditions that can cause increased drinking and urination, increased appetite, and weight loss in cats, some lab testing is needed in order to make a diagnosis. Blood work (normally a CBC, or complete blood count, and a chemistry panel) will show an abnormally high blood glucose level (generally greater than 400 mg/dL, or 22 mmol/L) and a urinalysis will show glucose in the urine. These two things, along with compatible history and clinical signs, are diagnostic for diabetes. Note that in some cases, cats in the veterinary clinic may experience something called stress hyperglycemia. In this condition, blood glucose levels measure abnormally high due to the stress of being at the veterinarians office. In some cases, this can result in glucose levels as high as 300-400 mg/dL. If your veterinarian has any doubts about Continue reading >>

Blood Glucose Curves: When, Why And How? - Wsava2013 - Vin

Blood Glucose Curves: When, Why And How? - Wsava2013 - Vin

World Small Animal Veterinary Association World Congress Proceedings, 2013 University of California-Davis, Davis, CA, USA Serial blood glucose curves are indicated during the initial regulation of the diabetic dog and cat, and when poor control of the diabetic state is suspected after reviewing the history, physical examination and body weight, not when the history, physical exam and body weight support good control. The serial blood glucose curve provides guidelines for making rational adjustments in insulin therapy. Lack of consistency in results of serial blood glucose curves creates frustration for many veterinarians. It is important to remember that this lack of consistency is a direct reflection of all the variables that affect the blood glucose concentration in diabetics. The purpose of serial blood glucose measurements is to obtain a glimpse at the actions of insulin in that diabetic animal, and hopefully identify a reason that could explain why the diabetic dog or cat is poorly controlled. Reliance on history, physical examination, body weight, and serum fructosamine concentration to determine when a blood glucose curve is needed, helps reduce the frequency of performing blood glucose curves, minimize the animal's aversion to these evaluations, and improve the chances of obtaining meaningful results when a blood glucose curve is needed. A serial blood glucose curve can be generated in the hospital (common for diabetic dogs) or in the home environment by the client (common for diabetic cats). Hyperglycemia induced by stress, aggression, or excitement is the single biggest problem affecting accuracy of the serial blood glucose curve, especially in cats. Once stress-induced hyperglycemia develops, it is a perpetual problem and blood glucose measurements can no lo Continue reading >>

What Does A Normal Glucose Curve Look Like?

What Does A Normal Glucose Curve Look Like?

Last week I received an email from one of our clients asking for me to explain what a normal glucose curve looks like. Ha! There are lots of factors that affect a pet’s blood glucose curve. There are pets that have great curves from the start and those (who like a baby who won’t sleep through the night) make pet owners want to pull out their hair. A “good” curve may take some time to achieve as we adjust the insulin dose after diagnosis and possibly down the road. Is there a “normal”? Assuming a diabetic pet is on a regimented feeding and insulin schedule, we can expect a curve to be mostly the same from day to day. However, if a pet is boarded at a vet clinic for that day the numbers might be higher than usual from stress. If a pet doesn’t eat well while at the clinic, the numbers might be lower than usual. And day to day fluctuations in exercise and activities also affect the numbers even if it is a “typical” day. In general, a blood glucose level before the feeding and insulin injection will be at some elevated number. That might be 250 mg/dl or it might be at 500 mg/dl. Getting other factors under control that cause insulin resistance and feeding an appropriate food for your diabetic help to have better starting numbers. Clearly the higher the glucose number the greater the clinical signs of diabetes will be. If most numbers were below 200 to 250 (the approximate renal threshold of dog and cat kidneys respectively), we’d not see any overt signs of diabetes in pets. As the insulin is absorbed and takes effect, the blood glucose number will decrease. Each pet will respond slightly differently to a given insulin. Some may absorb it quickly. Others may take longer. Just know that if a pet responds to the insulin selected, the blood glucose value will Continue reading >>

Day-to-day Variability Of Blood Glucose Concentration Curves Generated At Home In Cats With Diabetes Mellitus.

Day-to-day Variability Of Blood Glucose Concentration Curves Generated At Home In Cats With Diabetes Mellitus.

Day-to-day variability of blood glucose concentration curves generated at home in cats with diabetes mellitus. Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse-Faculty University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2007 Apr 1;230(7):1011-7. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate day-to-day variability in blood glucose curves (BGCs) generated at home and at the clinic for cats with diabetes mellitus. ANIMALS: 7 cats with diabetes mellitus. Procedures-BGCs generated at home on 2 consecutive days and within 1 week at the clinic were obtained twice. On each occasion, insulin dose, amount of food, and type of food were consistent for all 3 BGCs. Results of curves generated at home were compared with each other and with the corresponding clinic curve. RESULTS: Differences between blood glucose concentration determined after food was withheld (fasting), nadir concentration, time to nadir concentration, maximum concentration, and mean concentration during 12 hours had high coefficients of variation, as did the difference between fasting blood glucose and nadir concentrations and area under the curve of home curves. Differences between home curve variables were not smaller than those between home and clinic curves, indicating large day-to-day variability in both home and clinic curves. Evaluation of the paired home curves led to the same theoretical recommendation for adjustment of insulin dose on 6 of 14 occasions, and evaluation of home and clinic curves resulted in the same recommendation on 14 of 28 occasions. Four of the 6 paired home curves in cats with good glycemic control and 2 of the 8 paired home curves in cats with poor glycemic control led to the same recommendation. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Considerable day-to-day variability was detected in BG Continue reading >>

10 Good Things About Owning A Diabetic Cat

10 Good Things About Owning A Diabetic Cat

Many people hear the news their cat is a diabetic and they think it’s a death sentence. This is not true. Don’t panic. On the positive side: 1. It’s a treatable disease. A diagnosis of diabetes means your cat can get treatment. When an older cat is presented to me with the common symptoms of drinking lots of water, urinating tons and losing weight, a diagnosis of diabetes can actually be good news. It’s often better news than kidney or liver failure in many cases. If your cat seems very thirsty, this is not normal. Get the cat to the vet. Early intervention with diabetes, as with so many other diseases, gives your cat the best chance of a better life, and possible remission. 2. Sometimes diabetes is reversible; it goes away. With proper diet and the correct insulin therapy, a significant number of cats can go into remission, or have their diabetes reversed. We don’t completely understand this, but we are getting better treatment results with low-carb/high-protein diets and early insulin intervention. Diabetes is more common in male cats, and the statistics show that males have a slightly better chance of reversing their diabetes. 3. Better diets are helping diabetics live healthier lives. A poor diet may have brought on your cat’s diabetes in the first place. Now it’s time to get back on the right track. Most experts recommend a diet with about 7 percent carb content. Fancy Feast Chunky Chicken or Turkey is a good choice for a diabetic. Friskies and 9 Lives have some options too. Evo95 Duck or Venison is great protein, low in carbs. Some of these “regular” cat foods are probably better than the prescription diets, in my opinion. If your cat is addicted to dry foods, the Evo dry diets are probably the best. I still wish you could convert Mr. Mug to a we Continue reading >>

The Diabetic Cat (proceedings)

The Diabetic Cat (proceedings)

Is the feline diabetic patient every veterinarian's nightmare? Since diabetes mellitus is one of the most common endocrinopathies in cats, it is likely you will face this disease many times in your veterinary career. The focus of this presentation will be to discuss the problems you may encounter with your feline diabetic foes using case studies to illustrate how these feline diabetics can be your friends. What is good control? • Resolution of clinical signs • Decreased water consumption and urination • Normal appetite; Stable body weight • Normal activity level and grooming behavior • Decreased complications (infections, neuropathy) • Normal fructosamine level • Trace to 1+ urine glucose, no ketones • Acceptable blood glucose curve (no such thing as an "ideal" BG curve) or fasting blood glucose Monitoring At home • Water consumption, urination habits, appetite, activity, weight gain/loss, grooming behavior • Urine glucose monitoring – urine glucose test squares (Glucotest Feline Urinary Glucose • Detection System; Ralston Purina, St. Louis, MO) can be mixed in cat litter. Useful for non-insulin dependent patients to determine if glucosuria has recurred; persistent glucosuriasuggests inadequate control and the need for reevaluation. Do not have owners adjustinsulin levels based on urine glucose measurements. • Some clients are willing to follow blood glucose readings at home, which has its advantages and disadvantages. The personal blood glucometers are sufficiently accurate, though some meters are more accurate than others. I rely on my in-house readings to adjust insulin doses. In hospital • Weight loss/gain, blood glucose spot checks, curves, fructosamine levels • Blood glucose curves – useful to find nadir (low point), identify Somogy Continue reading >>

Sugar Cats: Home Testing And The Glucose Curve

Sugar Cats: Home Testing And The Glucose Curve

The Understanding and Treatment of Feline Diabetes An invaluable tool for the monitoring of feline diabetes is the glucometer. This is a device designed so that human diabetics can test their own blood. It is very useful for cats as well. Many people question the use of them as they are designed for human blood, but in reality, the devices cannot read DNA and tell that it is a cats blood :). Glucose is glucose. The technique involves pricking the cats ear and getting a blood droplet. This goes onto a test strip that gets drawn into a glucometer. There are many types of glucometers on the market. We are using the Accucheck Advantage. If you are considering a glucometer, I would recommend one that has sipping strips (although I don't know if you can even get the other type anymore). The ability to home test your cat's blood means that you will be able to do glucose curves at home. A glucose curve is when you give your cat his insulin and then check every 2-3 hours to see what the insulin is doing. The lowest number readings are the "nadir" and this is when the insulin is considered to "peak". Below is a glucose curve that we have done on Kitty (note the preshot is at the end of the previous 12 hour cycle) Continue reading >>

Diabetes Mellitus In Cats

Diabetes Mellitus In Cats

What is diabetes mellitus? Diabetes mellitus is a disease caused by failure of the pancreas to produce adequate amounts of insulin or of the body to respond to the insulin that is produced. Why is insulin so important? The role of insulin is much like that of a gatekeeper: It stands at the surface of body cells and opens the door, allowing glucose to leave the blood stream and pass inside the cells. Glucose, or blood sugar, is a vital substance that provides much of the energy needed for life and it must work inside the cells. Without an adequate amount of insulin, glucose is unable to get into the cells. It accumulates in the blood, setting in motion a series of events which can ultimately prove fatal. When insulin is deficient, the cells become starved for a source of energy. In response to this, the body starts breaking down stores of fat and protein to use as alternative energy sources. This causes the cat to eat more, but ultimately results in weight loss. The body tries to eliminate the excess glucose by excreting it in the urine. However, glucose attracts water, so the urine glucose that is excreted also contains large quantities of the body's fluids. This causes the cat to produce a large amount of urine. To avoid dehydration, the cat drinks more and more water. Not all of these signs are readily seen in every diabetic cat, but we expect that you will have seen at least two of them. How is diabetes mellitus diagnosed? Because the four classical signs of diabetes are also present in other feline diseases, clinical signs alone are not sufficient to make a diagnosis. We also look for a high level of glucose in the blood stream and the presence of glucose in the urine using laboratory tests. The normal blood glucose level for cats is 80 to 120 mg/dL, while diabetic Continue reading >>

Pet Health: Bg Curves - Pet Supplies

Pet Health: Bg Curves - Pet Supplies

A Rational Approach to Feline Blood Glucose Curves The glucose curve is the most effective way to monitor insulin therapy in diabetic cats. But curves are expensive, and many consider euthanasia because of the high cost. In such cases, here are some practical, less expensive alternatives. From the November 1995 issue of Veterinary Medicine (a peer-reviewed journal) Diabetes Mellitus in cats is one of the most frustrating diseases faced by veterinarians. Diabetic cats have certain peculiarities not seen in dogs, including the marked effect of stress on glucose concentrations. In addition, a cat's response to insulin is much less predictable than a dog's. We know, in general, what to expect from the different types of insulin. But the same type of insulin may be absorbed and metabolized differently from one cat to the next. Assumptions about peak times and duration of action in diabetic cats are often inaccurate. The only way to know how any given insulin works in an individual cat is to perform a glucose curve. The standard glucose curve and its alternative A glucose curve is a series of blood glucose determinations made after a dose of insulin is given. Typically, blood samples are taken every 1 1/2 to 2 hours until the effects of the insulin injection can be determined. For ease of understanding, they are often plotted on a graph (Figures 1 & 2). I use the term " mini-glucose curve " to describe blood glucose determinations made just before an insulin injection is given and at the previously determined peak time This two-point curve should identify the highest and lowest, or peak and trough, blood glucose concentrations. As described below, in certain situations, the mini-glucose curve is a useful substitute for the full glucose curve. Fig 1. This is an example of an Continue reading >>

Monitoring Diabetes

Monitoring Diabetes

Even after a long period of stability, your dog or cat's insulin requirements may change as a result of: Change in exercise regimen This is why it's important to continually monitor your pet's progress and consult your veterinarian if there are sudden changes or if anything unusual happens. Monitoring your dog's or cat's glucose level Monitoring your pet's glucose level is an important part of the overall therapy for diabetes and can be done in 2 ways: Checking your pet's urine for the presence of glucose and ketones (a chemical produced by the body when it burns fat for energy). This is not as accurate as measuring glucose in the blood, but can be done at home easily. Measuring glucose level in your pet's blood. This is the most accurate method and is done either by your veterinarian in the clinic or at home with a portable glucometer and blood test strips. If your pet has significant weight gain or loss, talk to your veterinarian about how this may affect diabetes treatment. Monitoring glucose and ketones in your pet's urine Immediately following diagnosis, your veterinarian may ask you to check your pet's urine glucose, 1 to 3 times a day: FOR DOGS Early in the morning, just prior to the time of the Vetsulin injection and first meal. Late in the afternoon, before the second meal. Late in the evening. As your pet's management progresses, less frequent testing will be needed. Regular examinations remain important though, because your pet's insulin needs can change. What you need Clean containers for collecting urine. Urine dipsticks from your veterinarian. A place to record results. Collecting urine For dogs: take your dog out for a walk on a leash. Keep your dog on a leash so that it will be within reach when it urinates. For cats: place your cat in its litter box.* H Continue reading >>

Managing Feline Diabetes

Managing Feline Diabetes

Managing Feline Diabetes at Home Diabetic cats are much harder to monitor than diabetic dogs. When a dog’s blood glucose is low, he does not want to chase the ball or go for a walk. Your cat will be relaxing on the sofa whether his blood glucose is high or low! And your cat is not going to give you a urine sample every time you walk him out on a leash. But you know your cat, and knowing what is normal for him will help you regulate his diabetes. We encourage you to keep a kitty diary and carefully record your observations. Check out for an online tracking log. CLINICAL SIGNS Diabetic cats urinate large volumes, because the sugar in the urine pulls extra fluid along with it. These cats have to drink extra amounts in order to replace that lost fluid. As the diabetes becomes controlled, the excessive drinking and urinating should decrease, so it is important to be aware of how much water your cat is taking in and how much he is urinating out (frequency and volume). A good appetite is crucial. Cats that feel good are eating well, and your cat must be eating in order to get insulin injections, so you need to know exactly how much your cat is eating. Your cat’s attitude says a lot about how he feels. He should be out and about, not hiding. He should be interactive with other members of the family. He should not be grumpy or act painful when handled. Healthy cats are always grooming, so watch your cat’s coat for spikey, oily hair or matting that would suggest that he is not cleaning himself. Also watch for loss of skin elasticity, which might mean dehydration. Poorly controlled diabetic cats can get weak, “rubber legs”, especially in the rear limbs. This is a reversible symptom, but it tells us that the cat is not regulated. MONITORING URINE GLUCOSE When your cat’s Continue reading >>

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