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What If My Dog Misses His Insulin Shot

Guidelines For Insulin Shots For Diabetic Pets

Guidelines For Insulin Shots For Diabetic Pets

I can’t think of a disease that causes more owner anxiety than diabetes. Something about having to give a shot twice a day, every day, to an animal you love is very daunting. Then you do it a couple times and suddenly, it’s a breeze! I’ll try to help you get “breezy” fast! I’ll also answer the common question of “how far apart can I give the insulin?” Insulin is kept in the refrigerator. Some pens made for humans can be left out for periods of time, but for the most part, plan on refrigerating the insulin. If you have a decent drive to the pharmacy or vet office, bring a little cooler to bring the insulin home. It needs to be gently mixed before each dose. Vetsulin, an insulin made specifically for dogs and cats, can be shaken like a polaroid picture. Other insulins need to be gently inverted in a rocking motion, not shaken like orange juice. Your veterinarian will show you how to give shots, and make sure you get some practice with saline solution! Here’s some pointers (hoping to have a video soon!): We generally aim for the back, between the shoulder, but insulin can be given under the skin anywhere! Try not to hit the exact same place over and over. Some owners move it in a little circle on the back, some do a 4-corners approach. Do what works for you. You basically want a spot that has skin you can easily pinch. Pinch the skin with your thumb and middle finger. That leaves your index finger free. If you’re right handed, do this with your left hand. Feel the “tent” of skin that forms from your pinching. That’s where the shot goes. After drawing up the insulin and getting the bubbles out, hold the syringe with your thumb and middle finger, leaving your index finger free to depress the plunger. Insert the needle completely into the skin. You c Continue reading >>

Handling A Diabetes Emergency

Handling A Diabetes Emergency

Emergencies can happen at any time, so it's best to be prepared and know what to do if an emergency occurs. Talking with your veterinarian is a crucial part of being informed and prepared to handle emergencies. Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) The most common side effect experienced with insulin therapy is hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia can be caused by: Missing or delaying food. Change in food, diet, or amount fed. Infection or illness. Change in the body's need for insulin. Diseases of the adrenal, pituitary, or thyroid glands, or progression of liver or kidney disease. Interaction with other drugs (such as steroids). Change (increase) in exercise. Signs of hypoglycemia may occur suddenly and can include: Weakness Depression Behavioral changes Muscle twitching Anxiety Seizures Coma Death See below for a list of other side effects. What to do If your pet is conscious, rub a tablespoon of corn syrup on his or her gums. When your pet is able to swallow, feed him or her a usual meal and contact your veterinarian. If your pet is unconscious or having a seizure, this is a medical emergency. CONTACT YOUR VETERINARIAN. In the meantime, you should immediately treat your pet rather than delaying management. Pour a small amount of a sugar solution (eg, corn syrup) onto your finger and then rub the sugar solution onto your pet's gums. The sugar is absorbed very quickly and your pet should respond in 1 to 2 minutes. The sugar solution should never be poured directly into your pet's mouth since there is a risk that the solution will be inhaled into the lungs. Once your pet has responded to the sugar administration and is sitting up, it can be fed a small amount of its regular food. Once the pet has stabilized, it should be transported to your veterinarian for evaluation. Your pet's diet Continue reading >>

Insulin

Insulin

Drug Name: Insulin Common Name: Vetsulin®, Humulin®, PZI Vet®, Novolin®, Iletin®, Velosulin® Drug Type: Synthetic hormone Used For: Diabetes mellitus Species: Dogs, Cats Administered: 40units/ml, 100units/ml, and 500units/ml Injectable How Dispensed: Prescription only FDA Approved: Yes General Description Insulin is used in the treatment of diabetes mellitus in dogs and cats. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that helps convert your pet’s food into energy by allowing the uptake of sugar by cells. By allowing this uptake and use of sugar, insulin decreases the blood glucose concentrations in the body. When you pet does not produce insulin, sugar can’t enter cells, your pet’s body cannot create fat, sugar, or protein. This also results in a dangerously high blood glucose level. How It Works Insulin replaces the insulin that your pet’s body does not produce. The type of insulin you give to your pet is a synthetic hormone derived from pigs or cows. Storage Information Some forms of insulin need to be refrigerated, pay close attention to the manufacturer’s label. DO NOT FREEZE. Protect from heat and sunlight. Do not use if past the expiration date. Insulin must be given to your pet by an injection 1 to 2 times a day. Because it is a protein, the acids in the stomach would digest it if you were to administer it orally. The proper dose of insulin is determined by your veterinarian through a series of glucose level tests. It is best to give this drug to a pet with a full stomach. It is best to give insulin right after a meal. DO NOT SHAKE THE BOTTLE OF INSULIN Proper handling of insulin: Be sure you have the appropriate size syringe for the concentration of insulin you are using. Variations include: U-40, U-100, and U-500 syringes which go to their c Continue reading >>

Insulin Shock In Dogs

Insulin Shock In Dogs

An insulin shock is due to high levels of insulin in the blood, which also cause extremely low blood sugar. The condition may occur in dogs that suffer from diabetes and are under insulin treatment, but may also be seen in dogs that have a pancreas disorder. An insulin shock may be extremely dangerous and even fatal, so it’s important to prevent it or notice its symptoms, so that the dog can get help. Causes of Insulin Shock An insulin shock is often seen in dogs with diabetes. Diabetes in dogs is caused by a deficiency of insulin in the body. The treatment is made up of insulin shots that are administered either daily or several times per week. If the dose is too high or the dog receives more insulin than the vet prescribed, this can lead to an insulin shock. This is often a result of human error. Other possible causes of an insulin shock may include: A pancreatic disorder A tumor affecting the pancreas A genetic disorder Symptoms of Dog Insulin Shock The insulin shock will cause low blood glucose and a decreased body temperature. The dog will display a few symptoms such as: Shaking and tremors Slow heart rate Pale gums Cold limbs Lethargy Drooling Seizures Coma, only in severe cases Diagnosing an Insulin Shock in a Dog Since the insulin shock requires emergency treatment, there is no time for a diagnosis procedure, so the vet will establish if the dog has an insulin shock judging by his symptoms. A quick blood test may be performed to detect if there are low levels of blood sugar. If your dog is diabetic, you can detect hypoglycemia with your blood glucose testing kit. Insulin Shock Emergency Treatment A dog with insulin shock should receive emergency treatment, which you can administer at home. The dog should receive sugar, corn syrup, honey or maple syrup. Rob the Continue reading >>

Dealing With A Diabetic Dog That Refuses Food Or Won’t Eat Enough

Dealing With A Diabetic Dog That Refuses Food Or Won’t Eat Enough

A diagnosis of diabetes in your dog will have profound effects on how you care for them, as you will need to continually monitor them in order to keep the balance between their food intake and their insulin levels appropriate, to keep them healthy and well. For dogs that require the supplemental administration of insulin, this necessitates injections of insulin usually twice a day, which is required in order to permit the dog to process their food properly, and to avoid spikes and dips in blood sugar, which can be dangerous and potentially life threatening. Unlike the insulin prescribed for people, which is usually self-administered as needed, allowing people to vary when, what and how much they eat, insulin for dogs is generally given at set times each day in a longer acting, slower release format. This is generally the easiest and most effective way to manage insulin-dependent diabetes in the dog, and of course relies on the dog’s diet being stable in terms of feeding times, amount of food given, and how much the dog actually eats. This means that if your diabetic dog misses a meal, it can have a profound effect on their health and lead to ever-more acute problems the longer that they go without food, as this will throw their entire blood: glucose balance out of whack. For this reason, it is important to supervise your diabetic dog’s meals, to ensure that they eat what they are supposed to and in the right quantities, and so that if you have another dog to feed, you can be sure of what the diabetic dog has eaten. If a diabetic dog won’t eat enough food to match their insulin dosage or if they are refusing to eat at all, this can become an acute problem very quickly, which may ultimately necessitate a trip to the vet. In this article we will look at how to deal w Continue reading >>

Is It Okay If My Dog Misses One Of His Insulin Shots?

Is It Okay If My Dog Misses One Of His Insulin Shots?

Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? I gave my diabetic Jack Russell Terrier his insulin shot, or I thought I did. When I gave it to him, his fur was wet in the spot I gave him the shot. My vet told me that if I'm not sure if he got it or not, its better for him not to get a second dose Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? I gave my diabetic Jack Russell Terrier his insulin shot, or I thought I did. When I gave it to him, his fur was wet in the spot I gave him the shot. My vet told me that if I'm not sure if he got it or not, its better for him not to get a second dose... General Dog Discussions : Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots?... Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? General Dog Discussions I gave my diabetic Jack Russell Terrier his insulin shot, or I thought I did. When I gave it to him, his fur was wet in the spot I gave him the shot. My vet told me that if I'm not sure if he got it or not, its better for him not to get a second dose than to over dose. What I want to know is, Is my dog going to be okay until morning when he has to get it again? Or will his system crash? Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? Is it okay if my dog misses one of his insulin shots? General Dog Discussions Continue reading >>

Missing Insulin Injections

Missing Insulin Injections

Tweet Missed insulin injections are much more of a pain than the injections themselves and can cause a headache as to what effect a late injection will have and what dose should be administered. We look at this common problem and provide some guidance. Always remember that if you are at all unsure what to do, you should contact your health team for advice rather than risk making a mistake. In this article, when it says contact your health team, note that you may need to contact your out of hours service if your health team is not available. Common causes of missed injections Commonly cited reasons for missed injections include: Forgetting to take insulin Oversleeping Not having your injection kit with you Running out of insulin Having a fear of needles Deliberately missing insulin If you have problems with forgetting injections, see our forgetting injections guide dedicated to help prevent problems with forgetting to inject and if you forget whether you have injected or not. What to do if an insulin injection is missed There is not a set rule of what to do if an injection is missed as it can depend on how long ago the injection was meant to be administered and what type of insulin was to be taken. We provide some general tips but if you are in doubt, it is best to consult your health team and follow their advice. If long term/basal insulin was forgotten If you forget to take your long term insulin (basal insulin) and you realise relatively soon, it should usually be fine to inject your usual dose if the dose is given within 2 hours of when it should have been done. In this case, you’ll need to be aware that the injection was taken later and so the insulin will also be active in your body later than it would usually be. In some cases this could increase the chance of h Continue reading >>

Diabetes Mellitus - Insulin Treatment In Dogs

Diabetes Mellitus - Insulin Treatment In Dogs

By Ernest Ward, DVM & Robin Downing, DVM, DAAPM, DACVSMR, CVPP Emergency Situations, Medical Conditions This handout provides detailed information on insulin administration. For more information about diabetes mellitus, see the fact sheets "Diabetes Mellitus - General Information", and "Diabetes Mellitus - Principles of Treatment". What is diabetes mellitus? In dogs, diabetes mellitus is caused by the failure of the pancreas to produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar. This is Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (also called Type 1 Diabetes). This type of diabetes usually results from destruction of most or all of the beta-cells that produce insulin in the pancreas. As the name implies, dogs with this type of diabetes require insulin injections to stabilize blood sugar levels. What do I need to know about insulin treatment for diabetes mellitus? In diabetic dogs, the main treatment for regulating blood glucose is giving insulin by injection. Dogs with diabetes mellitus typically require two daily insulin injections as well as a dietary change. Although the dog can go a day or so without insulin and not have a crisis, this should not be a regular occurrence; treatment should be looked upon as part of the dog's daily routine. This means that you, as the dog's owner, must make both a financial commitment and a personal commitment to treat your dog. If are out of town or go on vacation, your dog must receive proper treatment in your absence. Initially, your dog may be hospitalized for a few days to deal with any immediate crisis and to begin the insulin regulation process. For instance, if your dog is so sick that he has quit eating and drinking for several days, he may be experiencing “diabetic ketoacidosis,” which may require a several days of intensive care. On Continue reading >>

Animal Medical Clinic On Georgia

Animal Medical Clinic On Georgia

Canine diabetes Diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes) is a disease of the pancreas. This is a small but vital organ that is located near the stomach. It has two significant populations of cells. One group of cells produces the enzymes necessary for proper digestion. The other group, called beta-cells, produces the hormone called insulin. Diabetes is a failure of the pancreas to produce adequate insulin, or a failure of the body cells to respond to insulin. In humans, two types of diabetes mellitus have been discovered. Both types are similar in that there is a failure to regulate blood sugar, but the basic mechanisms of disease differ somewhat between the two groups. Type I, or Insulin Dependent Diabetes, results from total or near-complete destruction of the beta-cells. This is the only type of diabetes known in dogs. As the name implies, dogs with this type of diabetes require insulin injections to stabilize blood sugar. Type II, or Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus, is different because some insulin-producing cells remain. However, the amount produced is insufficient, there is a delayed response in secreting it, and the tissues of the dog's body are relatively resistant to it. People with this form may be treated with an oral drug that stimulates the remaining cells to produce insulin in an adequate amount to normalize blood sugar. Because Type II diabetes does not occur in dogs, oral medications are not appropriate for treating diabetic dogs. Why is insulin so important? Glucose is a small sugar produced by metabolism of carbohydrates and proteins. Glucose is the main source of energy used by our body cells. Insulin is a protein messenger, or hormone, that acts like a gatekeeper. It stands at the surface of body cells and opens the door, allowing glucose to leave Continue reading >>

Missed Dose - What Do I Do? - Diabetes In Dogs: The K9diabetes.com Forum

Missed Dose - What Do I Do? - Diabetes In Dogs: The K9diabetes.com Forum

Diabetes Discussion: Your Dog Anything related to your diabetic dog. Sometimes I feed Lexi (dog) then I am interrupted and forget to administer her Insulin. This happens at least once every two weeks. This is what I have been doing: If I remember within the hour, I give her the Insulin without extra food, if I remember 1-4 hrs later, I give her 1 cup of food (vet said do not give on empty stomach). If I remember about 6 hrs later, I give her half the dose with food. And if it is 1-3 hrs before her next scheduled dose, I do nothing). Sometimes I can't even remember if I gave her the Insulin, so I set up a system where I stick (put) the evening needle out the lid of syringe box if no needle exists = I didnt give her the morning shot. If needle exists = I did give her the morning. If it is night, and no needle, then I gave her the evening needle (I havent missed a whole day yet - evening less busy, so I remember better). I missed a dose a week ago but not because I forgot but because I actually physically missed with the syringe. Chase has very thick fur and the needle gets buried. I pinched and made the "tent" and the needle went in one side and out the other. Needle must have been on an angle. I noticed all the insulin on him. However, I didn't know how much he did receive so I played it safe and gave him no more. His BG at the next fast was high but after 24 hours his BG came back down to normal levels. So all in all, I don't think it's a big deal if you miss. Dunno ... When O misses a dose, it's because he won't eat. Depends if, and when, he eats as to how much, if any, insulin he gets. Missing a dose isn't the end of the world. Sure beats the heck out of too much. Otis Farrell dx'd 12/10, best friend to his dad, Bill, for over 14 years. Left this world while in his d Continue reading >>

Timing Is Everything | Pet Diabetes Care

Timing Is Everything | Pet Diabetes Care

A friend recently told me that she always comes up with the perfect comeback. Her problem is that she thinks of it 20 minutes too late. Yep, sometimes timing is everything. When it comes to diabetes care of our pets, timing can make the difference between a well regulated diabetic pet and a “mostly” regulated diabetic pet. Routines may not be exciting, but routines make for a well-regulated diabetic pet! After two plus decades practicing veterinary medicine, I sometimes think I have heard it all. Then a client comes along and proves me wrong. Recently one of my own veterinary clients told me he routinely gave his cat the insulin then waited an hour before feeding his pet. I don’t know where this client got this notion as I had told him what I tell all my clients, to feed and give insulin at the same time every 12 hours. Now, whether one waits to see if Fluffy is eating before giving the injection is another story. For folks who have a pet with a hearty appetite that couldn’t imagine missing a meal, they may give the injection as the pet dives into dinner. A feeding frenzy is definitely a distraction to the quick poke of an insulin needle. For folks who have a finicky eater, they might watch to make sure the pet truly eats before giving the injection. Nonetheless, I would feed the pet essentially at the same time as the injection rather than waiting any length of time. The insulin needs something to work with. If food is not given with the insulin the pet could become hypoglycemic. How about the timing of meals? Does it matter if a pet eats in between insulin injections? Yes. Just as giving insulin without food can cause a low blood glucose reading, giving food without insulin will cause an elevated blood glucose test result. If you give a snack in the middle of Continue reading >>

Take It From A Vet: Your Dog’s Meds Aren’t Optional

Take It From A Vet: Your Dog’s Meds Aren’t Optional

Does it matter if you miss a dose of your dog’s antibiotic? Probably not. OK, there’s a risk of inducing antibiotic resistance with a skipped dose, but that doesn’t mean your dog’s life is in danger. But how about if a diabetic dog skips a dose of insulin? Again, far from ideal, but a one-off oversight isn’t usually life-threatening. But several missed injections? That’s a different story. This leads to ketosis — a condition where the body poisons itself. Work-Life Balance Unfortunately, the diabetic dog scenario is one I encountered a few days ago. Late Saturday afternoon, I heard the receptionist booking an emergency appointment (or, rather, begging the person to bring her dog in). From the receptionist’s strained tone, I gathered she was worried. Turns out, several days earlier, the dog’s caretaker had dropped her dog’s bottle of insulin. She’d been busy and this was her first chance to phone. In the meantime, the dog’s diabetes ran out of control. Indeed, despite the fact that her dog was vomiting and not himself, the person wasn’t especially worried. In fact, she complained how inconvenient this all was and wanted to wait for the following week. At the risk of sounding preachy, that person should be thankful the receptionist insisted that the dog came down straight away — no matter how inconvenient. Quite possibly, that staff member saved the dog’s life because he arrived ketotic, vomiting, dehydrated and within a whisker of life-threatening deterioration. Unintended Consequences Regularly missing doses of any medication has consequences, some more serious than others. A simple thing like giving prescribed medications on time can make a material difference to your pet’s health. So let’s look at why it’s important to follow direct Continue reading >>

Can Dogs With Diabetes Be Treated Without Insulin Injections?

Can Dogs With Diabetes Be Treated Without Insulin Injections?

In almost all cases of canine diabetes, insulin is the recommended treatment. Insulin must be injected and often needs to be given twice daily. However, many dog owners are less than enthusiastic about the thought of giving their dog insulin injections. If you are one of those people who do not like the thought of administering insulin to your dog, you may be wondering if there are other options available for treating your diabetic dog. Are Options Other than Insulin Available for Dogs with Diabetes? Unfortunately, other options for treating diabetes in dogs have proven to be less than successful. At one time, there was hope that the oral hyperglycemic agents that act to lower blood glucose when given by mouth would be useful in treating diabetic dogs. That has not proven to be the case in most instances. Reasons Why Insulin Is the Best Treatment for Diabetic Dogs The primary reason that insulin is the best treatment for canine diabetes is the fact that dogs with diabetes almost always suffer from insulin-dependent diabetes. This means that the cells in the pancreas that normally secrete insulin are no longer functional and the pancreas can no longer secrete insulin in quantities sufficient to regulate your diabetic dog's blood glucose levels. This differs from feline diabetes because, especially early in the disease, cats may suffer from non-insulin dependent diabetes, meaning that their pancreas still retains some ability to secrete insulin. Because some insulin-secreting ability exists for these cats, oral hypoglycemic products may (or may not) be effective. However, in dogs, these products do not work well because the canine diabetic pancreas simply cannot rally to secrete insulin. So, in most cases of canine diabetes, insulin is a necessary part of treatment. In fa Continue reading >>

Avoiding Hypos

Avoiding Hypos

Successfully treating diabetes while avoiding hypoglycemia is the goal of every living creature suffering from the disease. Though Drs. Fleeman and Rand wrote the article focusing on diabetic dogs, much of the advice applies to all pets with diabetes. When in doubt, DON'T! If there's ever any confusion about whether or not insulin was administered, the injection should be omitted. Missing one shot will not harm your pet[1], while hypoglycemia can kill[2][3]. If you have only administered a portion of the insulin injection, do not try giving more. You are not certain actually how much insulin really went where it was meant to. Trying to draw more to make up for the error may result in a total of too much insulin being given--the result being hypoglycemia. Even if every last drop from the syringe went into the fur and not under the skin, the safest thing to do is to leave it at that, not giving any insulin until the next scheduled dose is due. Missing one shot will not result in permanent damage nor will it mean that your regulated pet will become un-regulated and you will have to begin all over again. It may mean some higher than usual blood glucose values for possibly 2-3 days which can be handled by staying with your usual dosage & insulin schedule[4]. This is far better than treating a hypo or having the pet wind up at the vets or ER trying to overcome the effects of too much insulin[5]. People with diabetes sometimes have similar mishaps and handle them much like this. If you are using more than one insulin to manage your pet's diabetes, you likely have a faster-acting one and a slower-acting one. Mistaking either of them for the other can result in hypoglycemia if the wrong insulin is given. Keep them in separate places in the refrigerator, put large labels on each Continue reading >>

Diabetes, Insulin Administration Tips

Diabetes, Insulin Administration Tips

If your pet has diabetes, your veterinarian may have prescribed insulin for her. Some pet owners balk at the idea of giving their pet a regular injection, but the types of syringes used, the small amount injected, and the ease of injecting subcutaneously ensure that most pet owners can quickly learn to give the most comfortable injection possible. Insulin measurement: The concentration of insulin is measured in units. Insulin syringes are marked in units, and may also be marked in milliliters. Be sure to use the unit scale. Also, be sure you are using the appropriate insulin syringe for the concentration of insulin you are using. Insulin is available in concentrations of 40 and 100 units/ml. There are corresponding syringes to use for the measurement of the two concentrations of insulin. Pharmacy Note: Insulin comes in a glass vial with a rubber stopper, and must be stored in the refrigerator. Do not use the insulin beyond its expiration date. Different insulin types require different syringes: It is imperative to measure and administer the correct dose of insulin using the correct syringe. For instance, if you use insulin with 40 U/ml, you must measure and administer it with a U-40 syringe; if you used a U-100 syringe, it would result in the wrong amount of insulin being given, with perhaps a fatal outcome. Find out from your veterinarian (or pharmacist) what syringes are available for you to use with the concentration of insulin your pet is receiving. Pharmacy Note: An insulin syringe has 4 basic parts: the barrel, plunger, needle, and needle guard. Many brands of syringes have the needle permanently attached to the syringe barrel so it cannot be removed. How to draw up insulin for your pet: Prior to removing a dose of insulin from the vial, mix the contents by gently Continue reading >>

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