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Newly diagnosed diabetic cat

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by JoannaMac, Mar 29, 2017.

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  1. JoannaMac

    JoannaMac PetForums Newbie

    Mar 29, 2017
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    EDIT - I have now posted this in the "Health and Nutrition" forum as I thought it was better placed in there. Sorry for the confusion; I'm new to forums.

    I'm new to this forum and this is my first post. My cat, Luna (14-yrs-old), was diagnosed with diabetes last week and consequently she is on twice-daily insulin injections. My husband was the one who took her to the vet for her second visit after all her blood tests were back (as I was working away). He said the vet briefly explained how to give the shot, but didn't give much advise otherwise.

    My husband seems to have no problem in administering the insulin, but I'm the opposite. I know what I'm doing wrong but I'm struggling so much and it's just making it worse each time. Unfortunately my husband works shifts, so there are times when I have to do it myself. I have a pretty bad needle/medical phobia, so I'm thrown straight into trying to overcome a fear I've had all my life. I keep trying to tell myself to pull myself together, but as soon as I pick up a syringe, my hands start to shake a lot, my heart rate soars, and I don't know how to control it. I like to think I'm quite a relaxed person, but this is a bit of a crippling phobia and prevents me from seeking medical help when I need it myself! Combined with the fact that I'm terrified of hurting the most precious thing in my life, it's just making it a nightmare.

    I've been reading a lot of advice on forums to try and improve the situation. We now have a routine. We try to wait until about 15 mins after she's eaten so she doesn't associate it with food, as we're worried she'll stop eating if she does (I've read that other people do this too). We wait until she's calm and comfortable. She always gets some of her favourite treats immediately after. We also let the insulin warm up to room temp once it's in the syringe, as I read that cold insulin can be painful. All this works fine for my husband, but she must be able to sense my stress. She squirms and tries to get away, which makes it much more difficult with my shaking hands.

    I've tried to practise on a cushion, but my hands were still shaky, and the cushion doesn't even try to escape!

    This morning was particularly difficult because she wouldn't eat. I eventually got her to eat a different food, left it the usual 15 minutes, but then she was sick soon after the insulin. I don't know if it was stress-induced... Anyway, I gave her some more food, as I was worried about hypo, which she ate and kept down. I'm now dreading this evening's shot.

    It's worth mentioning that Luna is a very nervous cat, hates change, hates travelling, hates strangers. But she is very affectionate with us, and doesn't like it when we're not there. Luckily I work from home and she spends all day by my side. It's also worth noting that we have been on holiday twice in 6 weeks recently, and had work done on the house. When we go away, a family member, who she knows, comes to stay for the week. This reduces her stress, but she still gets stress-induced dandruff when we're away. I'm wondering if she's just been massively stressed recently with all that's been going on, and this has brought on stress hyperglycaemia?

    Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated. Has anyone had to overcome a fear of needles to inject their pet? I just don't know what to do. I'm fairing worse than the cat, with sleepless nights, weight loss, and a rash from the stress!
    #1 JoannaMac, Mar 29, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
  2. ewelsh

    ewelsh PetForums VIP

    Jan 26, 2011
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    Hello JoannaMac

    I didn't want to read and run.

    I just wanted to say a big well done and sending you hugs (()) facing any fear is terrifying but you are being forced as you love your cat more than your fear!
    I can only guess that the worse has passed as you have made the first steps by doing these injections so things can only get better and easier! Breathing is a big thing and will help calm your mind and body!
    Give yourself a huge pat on your back as you've done so well and nothing bad has happened has it? Stay positive and focus on the bigger picture :D

    Good effort I say! Keep up the good work xx
    JoannaMac likes this.
  3. SusieRainbow

    SusieRainbow Administrator
    Staff Member

    Jan 21, 2013
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    Closing this thread, please respond to duplicate thread in Cat Health and Nutrition.
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