From the dirt to our plate; the trials and realities of first-time farm ownership

Feline Diabetes

Milo

It is official, our big kitty has finally been diagnosed with feline diabetes.  After a couple weeks of having extreme thirst and filling the littler box almost daily we couldn’t ignore the signs any longer.  The vet was able to run a blood test to confirm our suspicion of high blood sugar, now the work begins.

Per the direction of the vet his treatment will include a special low-carbohydrate diet, regular blood sugar testing and insulin shots.  Being the bull-dog that I am, I’ve been scouring the internet for a little more insight on ways to treat our kitty.

One of the most surprising factoids I found concerns the food we feed our cat.  Crunchy kibble contains the highest level of carbs due to the fillers and grains it is made with.   Even wet or canned cat food is significantly lower in carbohydrates than kibble!  In a perfect world, a cat would normally eat rodents and birds.  A natural diet of raw ingredients such as meat would have a lower carb load and be better suited for our cat.

For much of the time Milo has been on a high-protein kibble which is better than many leading store bought brands.  A kibble with higher protein content typically results in lower carbohydrates.  The ironic part of this entire situation?  Out of convenience we had temporarily switched foods to  Purina Cat Chow Indoor Formula which is well over 35% carbs according to an online source (I no longer have the bag).  Yikes!  Not long after the change in cat foods we started noticing an increase in thirst and urination, we promptly switched back to his original food.

Most of the literature I’ve read on feline diabetes says to aim for a total carbohydrate percentage below 10%.   The vet has prescribed Purina Pro Plan DM cat food which still notes 15% of its calories from carbohydrates. So, I dug deeper for more info on kibble diets with super low carbs and I found Young Again Zero Premium High Protien Cat Food.  Zero guarantees  a carb load of less than 1% per serving!

Special diets are expensive and Young Again brand foods are no exception to this rule.  I believe I spent nearly $45 for 8 pounds and that is with a 10% coupon and free shipping.  The upside?  I can mix the remainder of my high-protein cat food with this and still keep the carbs low.  Until my shipment is received this poor kitty will be enjoying a raw diet of venison and turkey.  It might be tough going but I’m sure he will be up for the job.

Now on to glucose monitors and insulin…this will be an education in and of itself.  I will post a blog on this after we officially start treatment!

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3 Responses to “Feline Diabetes”

  1. Krystal

    We feed our animals Natural Balance. You might look at it. While it is more exprensitve the Purina it has a lot more meat in it and no potatos. It is one of the lowest carb food that I know of and while it is more expesive it is not as bad as the special diets.

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    • Krislee

      Thank you for the recommendation! We are currently using Young Again Zero which guarantees less than 1% carbohydrates per serving (crunchy kibble). Between that and a few low-carb wet varieties such as Fancy Feast Flaked Fish & Shrimp, I hope we can really make a difference is Milo’s health.

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