Before I go any further let
something about this site - This introduction was written by me, but I
let Bob (my "Dad") take care of all the other stuff. Really, as a cat I
should not be bothered with such things as HTML code, JPG files,
web page layouts and such. It's not that I don't know anything
them, it's just that is is quite beneath any Feline to perform such
After this introduction, Bob will
all the talking -- well, most of it anyway. Whenever I feel a comment
needed, I will jump right in. We all know that humans really don't
things the way a cat does. My comments will be in this Purple color -
color of Royalty, of course. I'll also sign most of my comments.
That said, here's the beginning of
I was diagnosed on Saturday,
February 26, 2000
at approximately 11:30 AM. (Bob refers to it now as Black
Saturday) We would know the exact
but when the vet said to Bob "He's Diabetic", Bob had better
to do than look at the clock.
Those "better things" were, quite
thoughts about my welfare. This is only proper and fitting
as every Feline knows, humans, or as some of my friends say "beans",
put on our planet for one purpose and one purpose only, to care for we
of the Feline species.
Well, yes, they have other
purposes, but all
of the myriad other purposes are. of course, secondary to and
of their primary duty of caring for, feeding, pampering, and
we of the cat persuasion.
Bob's first thought was "Did I hear
Diabetic?" This initial thought was quickly replaced by "Oh, we'll just
test him and keep him regulated!"
Had you asked him to expand upon
he would have replied "We will test his blood glucose levels at home
adjust his treatment as necessary. It's no big deal, human diabetics do
it all the time. We can apply the same principle to Simon's treatment.
Doesn't everyone with the diabetic cat do the same?"
Little did he know the strange
world we were
about to enter where many, if not most, vets don't suggest that their
humans home test the cat's Blood Glucose levels. There are even some
there who discourage it and even tell humans not to do it. Sadly there
are too many like this.
My Web Site is dedicated to
spreading the word
that the home testing of a cat's Blood Glucose level is easy, accurate,
and compared to vet bills, inexpensive AND IT CAN SAVE THE LIFE OF A
CAT by providing the human with a way of monitoring the effectiveness
the treatment and detecting trouble, such as Hypoglycemia,
before it becomes life threatening
I'll let Bob take over from here.
Up with Home Testing, down with Bad
Head Bumps and Purrs to all the Sugarcats and their human helpers.
Simon T. Novell
Hi there, I'm Bob Novell,
who as Simon
said, is one of the humans who lives with him. Then there are
Schuster, Marco, Rusty, Thomas, and Cleo (Dad,
don't forget Sharon) who are, as I was
to say before I was interrupted, Simon's feline siblings. Rounding out
the family is my wife Sharon.
Yes, you read that right, we have a
a Thomas. Tom moved in about 13 years ago and Thomas about 5 years ago.
Thomas was about 8 years old at the time, so we did not even suggest
he change his name. We are just very careful to call Tom "Tom" and
"Thomas", though it can be confusing at times.
But then my youngest
who's older than me, despite being my "youngest" sister (I have
sisters, all older than myself, but I've got the "looks" in the
believe him folks, if he were a cat, we'd put him in a paper a paper
and toss im in the river. Heck, we'd just throw him in the
river and play with the bag.)
I am a computer
of all trades, I've been doing battle with these things since 1972,
before we called them by size - Mini, Micro, Mainframe - it was just
Computer to us back then
Anyway, as I was saying - Pat
me Bobby - she's about the only person on the planet to do so - and her
husband's name is Bob and one of her son's name is Bob and his new baby
boy is named Bob, so when we call get together and she calls "Bob" or
there are at least three heads that jerk around in her direction - soon
to be four when the smallest Bobby gets old enough. So having a Tom and
a Thomas around here really is not all that confusing compared to the
(Dad, they did not come here to
your illustrious career in computers, get on with the important stuff;
you know, about diabetes, about home testing, about ME!)
I was a rocked back, at first, when
said those two words "He's Diabetic"
(Dad, actually isn't that one
one word?) Simon, please go
someone else and let me get on with it, okay?
(Okay, can I go pester the dog next
it is not nice to pick on someone who is so much bigger than you,
give him an inferiority complex.
(Inferiority complex? He's a dog.
Inferior!) Right Simon, now go out on the porch and lay
the window and let the passers-by see how handsome you are.
(Yeah, great idea! I'll go do
will always get rid of him, now were was I?
When the vet told me he was diabetic I was shocked, at
Simon's the first cat I've ever lived with and I'm quite attached to
- understatement of the century!
My shock did not last long because I know, or thought I
knew, a bit
about diabetes and how it is treatable and controlled.
One of my aunts had diabetes and
seemed to have it under control, she lived up into her late eighties,
I thought we'd just monitor Simon's Blood Glucose (I'm going to shorten
that to BG from now on) levels and adjust his insulin doses
I had no idea at the time that the home testing of BG
levels in diabetic
cats was not wide spread, was not a standard, everyday, normal, and
IT IS NOT!
When Simon and I returned from the vets on Black
Saturday, I first called Sharon at work and broke the news.
She reacted pretty much as I had, but perhaps not as
because she had a diabetic cat in high school who died shortly after
graduated and started working. Pyewacket apparently died of
of the diabetes. I go into on the page where I discuss Hypoglycemia.
After calling Sharon, I got on the net and did a Yahoo
"Feline Diabetes", I got hits on three sites and something over 300 web
As I began reading through the sites I realized that I
was not seeing
many references to home testing of BG levels.
Then I found Feline Diabetes Web Site and the Feline
Board (there's a link to the message board on the Feline
Diabetes Home Page We (the regular users of the message board)
to the Feline Diabetes Message Board as the FDMB. It saves a lot
It's a great message board with a lot of members who have
cats and a lot of information and advice to offer and shoulders to try
on or at least lean on when things get a bit rough.
I also found Harry's
Site about home testing and read it.
I had decided that we would be testing Simon at home from
I first found out he was diabetic. I had not discussed it with the vet
because she had me make an appointment for the following Monday evening
to come in and talk to her about Simon's treatment - I guess I assumed
we'd cover testing Simon's BG levels at that time.
After reading through the various web sites which I had
the Links Page)
I realized that the vet was probably not going to bring up home testing
and that I'd better learn all I could before the Monday evening
gave me a great start to learning about home testing and a start on the
search for an appropriate Glucometer (a device which measures the
of glucose in blood). The meter I chose and the reasons for the choice
can be found on the Home
By Sunday night I had decided on a meter and we ordered
it on Monday
morning and the drug store got it in on Tuesday.
We had a vet's appointment on Monday at 1800 (Folks,
I need to explain - Bob prefers to use a 2400 clock a lot of the time.
So, 1800 is 6:00 PM to we civilians and non computer folk. If it's over
1200, just subtract 1200 to get the PM time. Simon)
Ok Simon, I'll confine my use of a 2400 clock to data and
speaking english, I'll use a 12 hour clock as often as I can remember
do so. I thought you were out on
porch showing off??
(It started to rain and at least
one drop came
through the screen and hit me so I came in.) Wow,
a WHOLE Drop?? (Okay,
wise guy, I really came back in to make sure you were getting the
straight) Okay, but sit there and keep
just sit here and look handsome, an easy job for one such as myself.)
As I said before, after Simon's diagnosis on Black
Saturday the vet made an appointment for us on Monday evening at
6:00 PM to come back and "learn how to give injections and such". She
drew blood with which to have a full work-up done at an outside lab.
About 10:00 AM Monday, the vet called to tell us that the
had shown no other problems, his kidneys, in particular, looked find.
told us to get some Lilly Humulin Ultralente insulin for Simon and that
she'd see us that evening.
Simon, Sharon and I journeyed at the vet's that evening
and she went
over the blood work with us. I then asked her what she thought of Home
Her initial reaction made me think that maybe we would be
for a new vet. She folded her arms across her chest and leaned
away from me.
"Well, you see, the thing about home testing is... " she
"What is your target", she asked me.
I replied by asking what she meant by "target"
"Well, what number are you looking for?" was her answer.
I told her that we were not looking for any particular
we wanted to test Simon at home in order to provide the best possible
and that any "target" was in her area of expertise as the vet.
Sharon must have realized that I was beginning to react
her hesitance over the subject of Home Testing because she jumped in
said "We WILL be testing him at home!" You know, like a drill
tells a recruit "You WILL love the army"
The vet finally said "OK", but I could tell she was still
She then "taught" us how to give injections, using a
on which to demonstrate. Sharon, having had Pyewacket, already knew how
to do it and demonstrated that on the piece of coarse thick cloth
the vet had brought for us to practice on.
I also "practiced" on the cloth and then I got to give
Simon an injection
of Saline - no big deal (Dad, it is a Big Deal
some people, please bear that in mind.)
You're absolutely correct Simon, I
in mind that what is easy for one person may be hard for another and
Anyway, the vet told us to start
Simon on 3
units of the insulin on Tuesday morning. Sharon asked if he could have
some tonight (Monday) and the vet said to give him one unit. We did so
when we got home.
Tuesday Sharon picked up the
I read the instructions and tried it on myself a couple of times to
Sharon tested herself and then I
The reading was 457 mg/dl - that's 457 milligrams per deciliter of
I had already learned that the
was between 100 and 250 (or 300) so I was alarmed at the high reading.
I did another test on him to make sure I'd done it correctly and it
out as 442 (the 15 point difference is well within the acceptable range
for testing accuracy, in this case the 15 points is only 3.337% of the
average of the two readings/ Bayer, the maker of the Elite XL
we use, says that a 10% difference in tests done one after another is
the acceptable range of accuracy.)
I panicked because the two readings
high. I called the vet's night number and left a message to have them
me. I then got on the Feline Diabetes Message Board (a link to the FDMB
can be found in the Link List to the left of all pages on this site)
if I should give him some more insulin.
Before the vet returned the call
it was returned by an other vet in the office), I received
to my inquiry on the FDMB.
Here are some of them, as examples
of the type
of support you'll find on the FDMB.