Jump to content
BC Boards
Traneman

Just found out our buddy has diabetes help !

Recommended Posts

Our 11 yo male Bam Bam was diagnosed with diabetes today. He may also be anemic, the blood test will be back in a couple of days.

 

We are supposed to go back to the Vet Wednesday to get all the details on how to take care of him.

 

My wife and I are so scared of all the unknowns that are coming our way.Searching Google has made it worse.

 

I was just wondering if anyone else has a buddy with diabetes and could enlighten us on what we may expect.

 

I just hate the idea of giving him shots twice a day and pricking his ear to get blood tests.

 

Is it possible for him to have a quality rest of his life? How would we know if his Blood sugar is too low etc.

 

Any help would be much appreciated at this time as we want nothing but the best for Bam Bam.

 

Thanks Everyone

 

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Frank,

First of all, don't panic. Diabetes in our pets is very manageable. Have you ever seen an insulin syringe and needle? They are tiny, which makes it easier to give the insulin (you don't have to be particularly skilled with injections). Ear pricking may be a little harder to do, but once you get the hang of it, it will become second nature.

 

A dog with well-controlled diabetes can certainly have a great quality of life. Diabetes is NOT a death sentence by any means. Observation will provide you with most of what you need to know once you have been traveling this road a bit. Ask your vet to give you very specific examples of signs to look for. A well-managed diet will also help tremendously in keeping his blood sugar at a constant or near-constant level and help avoid spikes or valleys in his blood sugar.

 

When you go back to the vet, ask if there's another client (or two) local to you who might be willing to mentor you. Once you get past the scary part, it's really not that complicated and having a little local support might be all you need to get you past your initial fears/concerns.

 

Best wishes and keep us posted!

 

J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for the encouragement,his blood sugar was 450 fasting so the vet wants us to start the insulin tomorrow. He is just waiting for the anemia test to come back to see if its treatable or not.

 

I guess its all the unknown that is scary but we are committed to giving him the best care we can.

 

My wife has diabetes which she manages very well,the difference is that she can tell when her Blood sugar is getting low and then has to eat something and all is well.So we will need to learn the signs on how Bam Bam reacts.

 

Will keep you posted and I am sure we will have tons more questions.

 

Thank you

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My neighbor's 10-year-old was diagnosed with diabetes about 9 months ago. She's done very well with the insulin and blood tests.

 

Coincidentally, she has also developed a condition (collapsing trachea?) that causes her to wheeze and cough constantly. I think that may do her in - but the diabetes management has been pretty straightforward, I think.

 

(I was also myself diagnosed type 2 diabetic in December. It was scary and upsetting the first month or so... but then I adjusted and just absorbed the new picture and got on with life.)

 

Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Frank,

First of all, don't panic. Diabetes in our pets is very manageable. Have you ever seen an insulin syringe and needle? They are tiny, which makes it easier to give the insulin (you don't have to be particularly skilled with injections). Ear pricking may be a little harder to do, but once you get the hang of it, it will become second nature.

 

A dog with well-controlled diabetes can certainly have a great quality of life. Diabetes is NOT a death sentence by any means. Observation will provide you with most of what you need to know once you have been traveling this road a bit. Ask your vet to give you very specific examples of signs to look for. A well-managed diet will also help tremendously in keeping his blood sugar at a constant or near-constant level and help avoid spikes or valleys in his blood sugar.

 

When you go back to the vet, ask if there's another client (or two) local to you who might be willing to mentor you. Once you get past the scary part, it's really not that complicated and having a little local support might be all you need to get you past your initial fears/concerns.

 

Best wishes and keep us posted!

 

J.

I think Julie is spot on, as usual.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The AlphaTrak looks pretty much like the testers I've seen. I imagine it would be okay. I don't have any diabetics in my life, so can't really advise on the exact products to use.

 

J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I work as a Vet Tech and we have an AlphaTrak monitor. It is awesome! Very easy to use and takes only a teeny, tiny, drop of blood.

We see new diabetics (have one hospitalized today) on a regular basis. Diet is a huge part of the control. Feed whatever diabetic dog food your vet recommends. If your dog has always been meal fed twice a day and is a good eater your transition will be easier. Once he gets set on a certain feeding program, don't change things. Some dogs are harder than others to get regulated in the beginning. Don't get discouraged.

Once he is regulated if you think his weight has changed stop in at your vet to weigh him.

What I've seen is the most observent (anal retentive) owners end up with the best results. These are the owners that, in the beginning, call our office on a daily basis with really good questions. The insulin needle is so tiny dogs rarely seem to mind it (cats on the other hand . . . . ) And a Border Collie is a good sized dog so there is plenty of areas to poke and less chance they'll become needle sore.

One thing though, dogs do develop cataracts over time. Usually the closer they are regulated the longer it takes to develop cataracts. They eventually become blind. But cataracts can be surgically removed. The diabetic monitoring needs adjusted during that time (they are on steroids for a while and steroids affects blood sugar levels.)

Have Karo syrup on hand in case of a hypoglycemic (too low blood sugar) episode. Usually they appear slugish, may vomit or seizure. Insulin is given after the pet eats. If he doesn't eat, don't give insulin.

It's very overwhelming in the beginning but once your guy is regulated and you have his feeding schedule in place things will calm down and everyone will adjust. His quality of life can be just fine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone,our vet had an emergency today so we had to reschedule to see him tomorrow.

 

I have already made a list of questions,my biggest one is this.

 

We usually feed Bam Bam at 6:30 am and around 5:20 to 6:00pm.We leave for work at 7am.

Should I change my schedule for a few days to be able to be home with him in case the insulin drops his blood sugar to much.

Thank you for the advice to have Karo syrup on hand, my wife has a couple of packets of sugar in her purse just in case she needs it.

 

Thanks all for the reassurance that everything will be fine.

 

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While you are getting him regulated, I sure would consider it. That's when you are most likely to have issues.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well all went way better then I had imagined at the vets office. Bam Bam did not even flinch.

 

The vet is starting him off with a lower dose to begin with just to be safe and I need to prick his ear and do a test tomorrow

.

With his Blood sugar at 450 he said there is no way he would drop to low.And over the next 2 weeks depending on his numbers the vet will adjust the insulin.

 

I think in a week this will be old hat and just part of our daily routine,we just need to figure out what to do if we leave for a weekend and cant take him.

 

Thanks again everyone.

 

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm glad it went well and you're feeling confident now. Hopefully you'll be able to find a pet sitter, friend, or neighbor who would be comfortable taking care of Bam Bam when you travel. I do the insulin shots for my neighbor's diabetic cat (and also treat their hyperthyroid cat) when they travel.

 

J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ok ran into a road block today, I was trying to get a blood sample to do a BC test.

 

I was trying to prick the inside of his ear, I did it 2 times in one ear and once in the other ( he is such a good boy)

 

my problem was that I barely got any blood,not even a good drop for the tester.

 

The vet told us either his ear or his gums, I didnt like the gums part.

 

Is there any other place I can try and get a sample from?

 

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

perhaps you could smear a very small amount of petroleum jelly on his ear just prior to making the pin prick? It should help the blood 'bead,' into a proper drop. Also may help if the ear is warm.

 

Good luck and all the best for Bam Bam

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to take care of a friend's diabetic cat when she traveled. She always had me prick his ears. I seem to remember that holding the ear between my fingers for a few moments before pricking would help if it was cold, or maybe massaging it a little to get blood flowing, and if a drop of blood doesn't immediately appear you can gently squeeze a little and see if that helps. I think the reason she had me do his ear was that it was easy to see where a vein ran through and make sure I got a good spot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is not very helpful because it's second hand but a friend of mine had a dog develop diabetes. I don't know any of the fine points of how they cared for him, but I know that that dog lived for many years albeit with much effort put into diabetic control. He lived a happy and full life with the disease, well able to run and play and enjoy himself as much as possible.

 

 

So just to reassure you, there is hope!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I finally broke down this am and tried the inside of his lip, that worked and he didnt seem to mind it at all.

 

I am excited that the reading was 231 (fasting) a lot better then the last reading the vet had at 450.

 

​I will call the Vet tomorrow but does anyone know how often I should test him?

 

Thank you everyone,with everyone's help and encouragement this is not as big of a deal as I thought it would be.And its so great seeing him getting close to being his normal self.

 

Thanks again

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How often does your vet recommend that you check him? And when? Also, check online about glucose montioring for pets. I remember a really good website (can't remember the link, though) that had pictures and everything. I think they said to warm the ear first and apply petroleum jelly. If the gum is working for you though, go with that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He wants to check him every couple of weeks, I am a little worried about going that long until we get him regulated.

 

I do have another question,Wednesday we have an event we have to be at and wont be home for his normal feeding time which is around 530-600pm. We have someone to feed him at that time but I wont be able to give him his shot until 830 or 9pm. Would this be a problem or should I try and find someone who can give him his insulin shot.

 

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would either give him breakfast/insulin later Wednesday morning (6-7 a.m.) and then do his supper and shot when I got home 8-9pm.Or find someone to do both at his usual supper time and don't change his breakfast time. I would not have someone feed him and then give the insulin later. Insulin should be given directly after he eats.

Does your vet want you to check him at a certain time during the day and then update him to help get him regulated?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No he wants me to bring him in on the 19th of this month to check him. Iam just worried about his blood sugar getting too low.

 

We live in a small town and sometimes our Vet gets overwhelmed and kind of hard to get a hold of..I am actually getting most of my info from everyone here.

 

I have checked Bam Bam several times and so far his lowest reading has been 185 just before feeding.

 

Thanks for all the input.

 

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am just now seeing this, and my own experience with a diabetic dog was brief (although not because of her diabetes), but it sounds like you are off to a good start! My husband, who had never handled a syringe in his life, was even quickly able to adapt to giving Mildred her insulin.

 

Because I didn't have a "diabetes mentor" locally, I joined a Yahoo group for people with diabetic pets. Like any group of passionate people, it was helpful in some ways and not in others, but you might want to check it out for support and experienced perspectives. When I was a member there (a few years ago), folks were strongly advocating regularly doing your own curves at home to see how your animal's blood sugar was throughout the day.

 

Best wishes to you and Bam Bam!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the vet practice I work at, what we do is we have people drop their pets off (every six months-once they are controlled, every week or so when they are not controlled) for a glucose curve. We have the owners do their usual schedule of feeding and insulin and then drop the pet off around 8 a.m. I check the glucose (I'm a Vet Tech) every three hours. Usually we do four checks, then the owner comes and picks their pet up and Doctor tells them what changes to make in the insulin dosage. All pets differ but usually you don't want it higher than 250 mg/dl or lower than 60 mg/dl. Does your vet do glucose curves or just spot checks? If you do a glucose curve at home could you call them and relay the information to them? Maybe that would make things easier for them. Like I said, every pet is different and different vets have different ways of regulating diabetics. Just a thought.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have checked him several times before we feed him but nothing like every four hours.

 

Tomorrow I will be home all day and could do a curve. Would you suggest starting just before feeding him at 7am

them at 10am,1pm.4pm, then we usually feed him around 6.

 

Would that be a good curve.

 

Thanks, I cant wait until we get this under control and are comfortable with his diabetes.

 

Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like a plan! Then you'll know if he is dropping too low during the day and you can contact your vet with the results and see if they want to adjust his insulin. I'm guessing he seems himself throughout the day and doesn't have moments of lethargy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...