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Diabetes Discussion: Your Dog Anything related to your diabetic dog.

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Old 05-06-2019, 08:20 AM
marlana marlana is offline
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Join Date: May 2019
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Default Recent diagnoses...completely overwhelmed!

My "baby" is a 110 pound Rottweiler named Yoda. He was diagnosed 4 days ago after a lot of confusion at the vet. His regular vet was gone for two weeks to get married (how dare her) and he was seen a few days before she diagnosed him by another vet, because he had developed dry eye. It was very frustrating because he was extremely lethargic when I took him in and we had already called in to tell them he was urinating much more frequently. So why she didn't catch it then is really bothering me, but I have had to let that go to save his life. She sent him home with an eye gel and rushed us out of the office....138.00 later. By the time we got to see his regular vet he was in ketoacidosis (sp?) and pancreatitis with a BG of 540. He spent all day at the vet getting fluids pushed and all night at the emergency clinic getting fluids and insulin. Took him back to the vet the next day for an all day fluid push. Finally brought him home and he is improving daily. She put him on the Vetsulin, one syringe full twice a day for a starter to get him regulated.

Question 1 is are there people on here with large dogs? I see a lot of small dogs but only a few large ones. I am struggling with the food issue. He eats fine but I just can't afford that Hills canned food. His regular vet said that we could feed his normal limited ingredient food as long as he eats it. We have been mixing the Hills with a decreased portion of his dry food, the calories equal out and similar protein and fat. She also suggested no sodium chicken broth on his dry food or some boiled chicken to keep him interested when we run out of the Hills. I guess my main concern is if that will be enough nutrition.

Question 2 is about home testing. I feel a little out of control not testing him myself but he is a handful. He takes the injections fine but he does not like to hold still for much. I could see, maybe, testing in his ear. If he seems to be doing well and his vet is happy with his numbers is testing at home important? Yesterday at the vet he was 330, two hours after he ate and had insulin.

I guess that's all I have for now. Sorry it's rambling and thanks for listening.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:54 AM
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Raysaint Raysaint is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Toronto
Posts: 838
Default Re: Recent diagnoses...completely overwhelmed!

Take a deep breath. There are links on here to give you a basic education about managing dog diabetes. That's a good start.

Know that regulation takes time, sometimes lots of time, but that's OK. You'll need patience, and need to be methodical and consistent with food, insulin , etc.

How many units is a syringe full?

There is no mandatory diet. The usual diet is lower fat (to help prevent pancreatitis) with moderate carbs, fiber and protein.

As for home testing, most think it's the most important thing you can do. It gives you the control to know what is going on and how he's reacting to the regimen. And it saves you a lot of money and trips to the vet.
There many spots to lance to draw blood; ear vein, upper pad, etc. even near the base of the tail on either side.

In the early stages, the regimen is do a 12 hour sugar curve (test every 2 hours), see what the lowest number is (nadir) and if it's higher than normal then you are safe to increase the insulin by one unit. Give that a week (it takes at least a week for the dog to adjust and process the new dose properly), then do another curve. If nadir is still higher than you want, repeat.

Feed the dog every 12 hours, wait a couple minutes to ensure he doesn't vomit, then inject.
Riley, 8 yr. old maltipoo, 25 lbs., diagnosed Feb 2017, taking thyroid meds, had pancreatitis and DKA mid March, eating Wellness Senior formula can food. NPH dosage now at 9.0 units Humulin N. Adding either pumpkin, spinach, blueberries, yams, or green beans to his food. Also omega-3 oil.
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Old 05-06-2019, 12:50 PM
marlana marlana is offline
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Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 2
Default Re: Recent diagnoses...completely overwhelmed!

Thank you for replying. He gets 20 units each injection. They told us that was a little light for his size but a good starting point. Does that sound right? For the last day or so, he has been back to almost 100 percent. Still a little tired, but he is 8 years old and that is considered approaching geriatrics for a dog of his size and breed.
We love his regular vet and I trust her, but I am a big believer in doing my own research. Most of my questions have been answered on here. The only thing that I am still a bit unsure about is his nutrition. He has always eaten at his own discretion and would sometimes go a day or so just eating a little bit. I understand to not give the insulin if he doesn't eat, but I think that being so strict on timing is helping to make sure he is hungry when it is time. She has suggested some canned pumpkin to help with the fiber.

Thankfully, the injections are the easiest part of this whole thing. He is an easy going soul and my husband and I both have experience in giving injections. If they up his units, would it be better to go to two syringes or a bigger one to only stick him once?

Anyway, thank you so much for listening. It helps more than anything.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:20 PM
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LizE LizE is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Iowa
Posts: 144
Default Re: Recent diagnoses...completely overwhelmed!

Welcome to the forum. It sounds like you and Yoda are doing pretty good considering your world just turned upside down.

My dog was never a consistent eater until her diagnosis forced the issue. Breakfast was particularly challenging. Many people will give their dog 1/4 of a dose if their dog does not eat. Snickers did well with 1/2 a dose, but she was not very active. We home tested so we could tell how well partial doses worked. Initially we used an appetite stimulant to get her to eat but the downside is that then she was always hungry!

I'm convinced she figured out the connection food, insulin and feeling better and she adjusted to an eating schedule fairly well. I learned over time that if she started to resist breakfast then her overall food consumption was too high and I needed to feed her less. We did not change her food selection after she was diagnosed.

I can't encourage you enough to learn to test your dog. It takes a while to get it down but it is the only way to really know if what your doing is working like you think it is. I would encourage you to research the different spots to try to draw blood, experiment with a few locations and then focus in on one technique that seems the most workable. Use a larger gauge lancet and practice until you get it to work.
Snickers was an 18 year old Skye terrier mix. - Diagnosed 12-1-15. Angel status 4-21-19. She was a once in a lifetime dog that will always be in my heart.
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