What could be sweeter then a pet with diabetes!
Who am I?
A weekly feature in the pet diabetes email support group.
Monday, April 14, 2008
Our Next Who Am I is Barb Warf . Barb and her Sister Dianne live in Ontario Canada.

1993 was a bad year. We lost our beloved Tinker of 21 years to old age in  the summer. Her antagonist, Tuffy, thought of her as a surrogate mom, and never got over her leaving. He passed in early December of the same year. When my friends heard we were cat less, they suggested I go to the pound as they had lots of cats. When I went there, there were only four, Herman, Rascal and two others. I was told that Herman was to be euthanized that weekend, and Rascal was missing her ear tips and tail end due to frost bite.  They thought she would never be adopted. I brought the two of them home the next day after discussing it with the family. Rascal had ear mites and worms, but recovered from them quickly without giving them to Herman. She also went into heat, and tried to get Herman to help with her condition, but he didn't know what to do!! She was spayed as soon as possible, and the house quieted down for awhile.


My sister wanted another Siamese; so, one time when I was at the pound retrieving Herman from beng sent in by the neighbors, I saw Snookums. She has the most beautiful wide spaced eyes, and sweet expression saying "What am I doing here?". I took my sister to see her, and Snookums came home. She and Herman never got along, but tolerated each other in the house.

Things went well for about four years; then, we noticed that Herman was losing weight very quickly, and urinating a lot. We took him to the vet, and he was diagnosed with diabetes. My sister and I had plans for a trip the next day; so, we left him at the vet's to be regulated. When we got home, we were sent from the vet's with a different insulin from what they had been giving him. The original one was being discontinued. Not knowing any better, we kept the same protocol as the one he had  been on. Unfortunately, it didn't work for him, and he developed bad neuropathy for five months while we tried to make the insulin work for him. It never did, and we changed to caninsulin/Vetsulin. Again, not knowing anything, we worked on getting him regulated, and he did improve with this insulin. 

Over the years that followed, he had a few hypos, and stomach problems from another medication, but trucked on without complaining. That in essence was our Herman. He took what came along, and kept going. He was a very laid back guy, and let us do all kinds of poking and medicating without complaint. It was wonderful to see him rolling in the grass in the summertime. He basked in the sun.

Barb's Sister Dianne
Unfortunately, his kidneys started giving out on him in November 2005. He lost weight, and we had to work to reduce his insulin dose to keep him from going hypo. In March of the next year, we had to make the decision to let him go. He hadn't eaten much for four days, and couldn't hold his urine. I'm not sure that he was ready to go as he was such a fighter, but I couldn't let him continue in the state he was in. We believe Herman was 18 when he left, and he was diabetic for almost 8 years.

In April, 2007, we adopted Allie because my sister couldn't resist the little sweetie. I felt she shouldn't be alone with the two old girls, Rascal and Snookums, so we also adopted Misty from the Humane Society. They got their shots, and Misty was spayed; then, started to urinate a lot. With that awful fear in my gut, we took her to be tested, and she was diabetic as well.

In August, we started her on Lantus, but the vet in charge didn't know the insulin, and I raised her dose too quickly. In September, we switched to PZI to see if that would help, but even after changing her diet to more protein and less carbs, we couldn't get it to work. In January, 2008, we changed to NPH, and raised her dose slowly. We managed to get some kind of response at 4.5 units, but she had too great a drop after shot because of the low carb diet.

Now, we're starting on Lantus, again, as the diet she is on now might work better with it. At the moment, she seems to be doing well, but I have yet to test her. She is perky and playful, and is urinating almost normally; so, I have my hopes up that we've made the right decision.

In June, 2007, we adopted Freddie as Misty wasn't playing with Allie as we'd hoped. I guess she was feeling ill even then. Freddie was abused by his previous people, and is afraid of strangers, and men in particular. With us, he can be quite loveable and sweet, and he's been an excellent brother for Allie.

In December, 2007, we brought KC home as my sister was looking for a lap cat that we hadn't found yet!! He's a sweet, playful boy, and all the cats have accepted him well. He and Freddie are especially close.

So, now we have 6 cats, and one is a sugar baby. Each is a wonderful individual, and life here is always interesting.






Herman's Information:

Diabetic Pet's Name: Herman 

Breed: North American short hair

Birth: He was adopted from the local pound in 1993 / Crossed over the Bridge March 2006

When Diagnosed: He was diagnosed in August 1999

Age Diagnosed: He was about 10 years old

Weight: At diagnosis, he was 18 pounds, but went down to 12 pounds when regulated

Kind of Insulin and Amount per Injection: He was on caninsulin and the amount varied over the years

Food: Fancy Feast and W/D

Do you home test? (Blood, urine and/or observation): Didn't at the time

Other Health Problems?: He eventually passed from kidney failure, but also had some stomach problems after being  given an NSAID. He had a stint into his stomach and was force fed for about 4 weeks.

How did the diagnosis of diabetes in your pet change your life?: We felt closer to all our pets after working with diabetes, but otherwise, it was just that we couldn't go out in the evening together as his dinner was at that time. 

Herman's Pages:http://www.caninediabetes.org/herman.html    http://www.caninediabetes.org/rbherman.html

Misty's Information:

Diabetic Pet's Name: Misty

Breed: North American medium hair

Birth: She was adopted from the humane society in April last year

When Diagnosed: July, 2007

Age Diagnosed: 2 years old

Weight: 10 pounds at diagnosis, 11 pounds now She went down to 8 pounds at one point

Kind of Insulin and Amount per Injection: We have tried Lantus, PZI and NPH on her. 4.5 units of NPH bid got her Bg down, but dropped it quickly due to her diet. We are now trying 1 unit Lantus bid, and just started today; so, that could change.

Food: Fancy Feast and Wellness CORE

Do you home test?: (Blood, urine and/or observation): Yes, we blood test and I'm sure glad that we do. When Herman was ill, the meters needed too much blood.

Other Health Problems?: None that we're aware of; although, she did have a UTI when diagnosed.  

How did the diagnosis of diabetes in your pet change your life?: Other than working around her shot times, she's made us aware that not all cats get diabetic for the usual reasons.

Misty's Page: http://www.caninediabetes.org/mitsy.html

Thank you Barb for taking time to be a part of this!!

If you would like to participate in the Who am I? emails
then contact one of the moderators listed at the bottom of this email
write an introduction, send a picture of your pet
The moderator will send you the blank questions to fill in
Then the moderator will post your email for you....One will be going out every Monday Morning....This way each pet is the star for a week.
Michael will take the email and turn it into a pdf file and upload it to the yahoo groups files and I will turn it into an html file for the website

Judy Dick
Email:  queenie@mnsi.net

Karen Baldassarre
Email:  kbal37@comcast.net

Michael Jay Smith
Email: smithmj@clearwire.net

Bonnie Iovine
Email: biovine@comcast.net

Email: curaduk@aapt.net.au

Jane, Lee and Margo have a lot on their plates right now so the above moderators are available to do the Who am I Email?

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