Caninsulin and feeding time

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (Welcome & Main Forum)' started by Douglas_my ginger cat, Jul 27, 2020.

  1. Douglas_my ginger cat

    Douglas_my ginger cat Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2020
    Hi, I am hoping that this will be quick answer but how long after eating can I give the shot.

    I am finding it difficult to administer the shot whilst he is eating but have had some luck with a dummy run and some treats. The only thing is that today I tried to give him treats 10 mins after eating but he wasnt interested. Can I perhaps wait 30-40mins after his main meal to try to entice him with some treats and, hopefully, administer the shot.

    Also, how much food minimum should he eat before injecting insulin. I hear a lot about keeping to small meals throughout the day but my vet said that he should have two main meals round about the time he should have his shot. A) I dont feel this leaves enough for smaller meals and b) Douglas is not impressed with the food portions.

    Sorry, maybe not such a quick answer after all.

    Just so youknow, I am not hometesting at the moment. My main target at the moment is trying to create a routine for Douglas which we can both follow.
     
  2. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    As I understand it this insulin hits fast and hard:

    • Because this insulin can drop BG quickly, it is important to feed your cat 20 - 30 minutes before giving insulin. This ensures there is food on board for when the insulin starts to work. So, the sequence would be: (1) Test BG. (2) Feed. (3) Wait 20 - 30 mins. (4) Give the insulin shot. (If you are not yet home testing it is still advisable to feed and then wait before giving the shot).
    I hope this helps.
    j
     
  3. Panic

    Panic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2019
    Jeanne is correct! Try not to wait longer than 30 min but what you could do is take a few bites from what would be his breakfast and hang onto it to offer at shot-time. Here is the full guide to Caninsulin to help you better understand how it works in a cat!

    I will warn you, Caninsulin is a harsh-acting insulin. We don't recommend it for cats. It hits hard and fast and (usually) doesn't last long enough so cats struggle on it. I understand since you're in the UK, Caninsulin is kind of the go-to insulin and better insulin (Prozinc) is a little scarce over there right now. I'm going to tag @Elizabeth and Bertie who is an expert on the UK side of things. Just something to keep in mind.

    Another thing about Caninsulin is that since it hits hard and fast, you really want to give another mini meal 1-2 hours after the shot, because that's when it hits hard. Also I see Douglas is on 2 units of insulin ... that's a lot for a new diabetic, especially without testing yet. I'd knock it down to 1 unit if it were me. I see Ale in another post you made covered a lot of what I just said as well so I guess this is me saying "I second that!".

    Hope that helps! Welcome to FDMB! :)
     
  4. Panic

    Panic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2019
    Hm, let me tag @Deb & Wink and see if she has any thoughts on this. I've asked the same question myself when I was trying different insulins, never quite got a solid answer and I supposed maybe there isn't one. Some people say at least half or 3/4 of their meal but that can also be subjective. With longer-acting insulin such as Prozinc or Lantus it's not as big a deal because as long as they're showing an interest in food, they're likely to eat a little later long before the insulin hits. Caninsulin is different.

    Is Douglas a big eater? It would certainly help if he is. Diabetics DO need more food than the average cat, a lot more. My girl was eating more than double what she'd ate before diabetes hit. While you do want breakfast/dinner to be the "main" bigger meals, mini meals are extremely important. Even 1-2 tablespoons as a mini meal count. We break the meals up for two reasons: 1) smaller meals are easier on the pancreas, for ANY cat but especially a diabetic and 2) diabetics need lots of food access to keep their numbers from dropping too low from insulin. A cat with low blood sugar will naturally seek out food, so if we stick to the "two meals only" rule (which I think is intended for canine diabetics? don't quote me on that), you're putting kitty at risk. This also means putting food out during the night, when they drop even lower.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2020
  5. Douglas_my ginger cat

    Douglas_my ginger cat Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2020
    Hi both,

    Thank you, I am feeding him smaller meals throughout the day and a slightly larger one just before his shot. I am definitely getting the feeling that I should move to Prozinc. I am due to book him in for a glucose curve so may raise this with the vet, although it is a bit daunting to tell the vet what I think is best. But it looks like it is needed with a Sugar Cat.

    Thank you again!
     
  6. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Maybe take a screen shot or print out that page I posted and give it to the Vet???
     
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  7. Douglas_my ginger cat

    Douglas_my ginger cat Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2020
    Good idea, thanks!
     
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  8. Diana&Tom

    Diana&Tom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    Hi Anna, we do understand how daunting it is to appear to disagree with our vets. It’s very common, when starting to treat FD and reading up about it, to realise that the vets don’t always know as much as we’d like them to. Vets are of course like our GPs - they know a little about most things but are not necessarily expert in any one thing. Vets don’t get much training in FD and tend to just go by the “rules” for treatment without considering the very important fact that Every Cat Is Different (ECID) - a phrase you will see a lot of here. What that means is that different cats metabolise different insulins, doses of insulins, and different foods, in different ways...it can be frustrating but in time you identify how your cat responds, and that’s the basis of how you should be treating rather than what the vet stipulates. You don’t have to fall out over this, but establishing some healthy mutual respect is definitely a goal to work towards.

    So what you could do when you see the vet is explain that you’ve been researching from a very reputable source and feel that Prozinc could be a better insulin for Douglas. Caninsulin can and does work for some cats but it’s actually made for dogs who metabolise it in a different way and it not ideal for kitties. It does have a fast onset and can cause steep drops of bg which is not what you want. The aim is a gentle smile of a curve. I agree with Elizabeth above that 2u is a higher than normal starting dose, especially as you’re not testing bg at home. Ideally you’d start at 1u twice a day and see how that goes, increasing in small increments if necessary. So you may want to discuss dose with your vet as well.

    I understand how difficult it is to have these conversations with the vet - we have all been there! It’s a case of making yourself as well informed as you possibly can (by reading here), keeping a log of bg data (so you have the evidence you need to back up any changes) and remaining on tactful terms with the vet. It can be done!
     
  9. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Hello, Douglas' person.

    Caninsulin typically reaches peak effect 3-4 hours after dose administration. When my Saoirse was on Caninsulin I found the following helpful:

    1. Divide up daily food allocation in half.

    2. Feed the bulk of the allocated food for each cycle 20-30 minutes before administering the dose so that there are carbs 'loaded' and ready for the insulin to work on. (I fed half the allocated amount in the preshot feed. At the time the food the vet prescribed - Hill's w/d Dry - had an insane amount of carbs but the vet had set the dose to match the food.) It is vital that enough carbs have been consumed before each Caninsulin dose because it typically drops the BG level quite hard and fast in the early part of each cycle.

    3. Feed the remainder of the allocated food in small meals every three hours throughout the rest of each cycle (you can use a timed feeder to schedule overnight feeds if desired, but if not using a feeder I suggest leaving out the remainder of the allocated food amount for the cycle BEFORE going to bed).

    I suggest you discuss a similar feeding schedule above with your vet.

    NB: If at all possible, managing Douglas' diabetes can be much, much more effective if you can learn to home test.

    I'm a bit rusty so I don't know how things are with insulin prescriptions in the UK, but last time I looked (about 2 years ago) UK vets first need to treat with insulins approved for cats and at that time those were Caninsulin and Prozinc. (If neither of those help Douglas achieve good regulation the vet would then be free to explore other insulins, Lantus for example.)

    If you can learn to test you'll be able to provide your vet with really good data on how Douglas is responding to his treatment - and keep him safer into the bargain! It would help you and your vets to work together as a really effective team. :)


    Mogs
    .
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
  10. Douglas_my ginger cat

    Douglas_my ginger cat Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2020
    That's very helpful, thank you. Whilst the vet was helpful in terms of explaining what I need to do, it was more of the why do I need to do this. Understanding how particular insulins work is a big step to understanding how to regulate it. I am still so thankful I have found this forum.
     
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  11. Critter Mom

    Critter Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    I know that feeling so well. The vet practice I was with at the time of Saoirse's Dx was not the best when it came to cats (I'm being very polite here). If I had not found FDMB in time and learned enough to know what to insist on with the vet I could have lost her.

    WRT how Caninsulin works, and a real-world example of a cat's response to it, and some pointers on good times to test, here's an old post of mine that might give you a few pointers:

    https://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/threads/steep-caninsulin-drop-is-it-ok.155911/#post-1648503

    Also, here's a graph of Caninsulin's action profile in feline diabetics (idealised response):

    [​IMG]


    Mogs
    .
     
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