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Starting regulation with Vetsulin

When health status is known and diabetes mellitus confirmed:

  • Explain thoroughly what diabetes mellitus is, that achieving regulation may take time (up to 2 months), and what the implications are for the family. Make sure the cat owner understands the therapy involved, and that the cat should be able to live a happy, healthy life with consistent therapy. This is crucial, as complete cooperation of the owner is essential to management success.
  • Treat existing infections or other medical conditions. Many diseases will affect insulin metabolism.
  • Introduce appropriate diet.
  • Begin therapy with Vetsulin® (porcine insulin zinc suspension).

Starting Vetsulin

In-clinic:

  • Weigh the cat to obtain a benchmark for future weight gain or loss.
  • Start the cat on 1 to 2 IU injections of Vetsulin given twice daily at 12-hour intervals. Administer injections concurrently with or right after meals for cats fed twice daily. No change in feeding schedule is needed for cats fed ad libitum.
  • Hospitalize the cat for the day to verify that the starting dose does not cause hypoglycemia.
  • Instruct owner on:
    • How to administer injections
    • How to identify and treat hypoglycemia
    • Parameters to monitor at home
    • Preferred diet and frequency of meals
  • Discharge cat to owner’s care for 2 to 4 weeks. This allows the cat and owner to get used to the injection regimen.

At home, have the owner:

  • Monitor and record water and food consumption.
  • Monitor and record urine glucose and presence of ketone bodies.
  • Maintain starting dose and frequency of administration for 2 to 4 weeks, unless there’s evidence of hypoglycemia.
  • Bring the cat in for re-evaluation 2 to 4 weeks after starting Vetsulin treatment or earlier if clinical signs of hypoglycemia develop.
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