Thursday, June 6, 2024

Happy 2-Year Gotcha Day to Bear!


The picture above is Bear on the first day I got him.  I am so glad I took him in and made him part of our family.  He is a great companion, pretty much following me everywhere and laying on my lap when I read or watch TV.  I never once regretted getting him!  I am pleased to report that he and I have adjusted to our new routine to handle his Diabetes.  He is now eating all his new food within 1/2 an hour (or even less) and he lays nice for me to give him his Insulin.  He doesn't try to hide or run away when I pull out the needle and the bottle.  I am amazed at how cooperative he is.  I will go play pickleball this morning, but then will spend the rest of the day with Bear to celebrate his second gotcha day.  Unfortunately, he can't have treats extra food and is not big on toys so just being together is the best gift I can give him.  He is now 6 years old.

Now sooner had I finished writing this about how good a cat he is, I went upstairs and found a big hole in his window screen.  Must have tried to get at a bird or squirrel.  UGH!  Got it patched up right away with old reliable duck tape.  Never fear, I still love you, Bear!

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Ever Play Spots?

Last night I met up with four other game lovers at Panera Bread to play some games.  I play three different new games I never heard of.  My favorite was Spots.  It's a doggie game where you try to match numbers on the dog cards to numbers you roll on dice.  The winner is the first to complete six dog cards.  Each player also gets a backyard where you have to bury dice you can't play.  If you get a total of more than 7, you go bust and have to start over.  You can also acquire bones which are good for being able to reroll if you get a number you can't use and don't want to bury.  There are cards to choose from on your turn that give different options as to how many dice to roll or how to get more bones or dog cards.  It was easy to learn and fun to play.  I was so close to winning the first game but took a chance that got me stuck and didn't pay off.  The second game I played with a different strategy and won in one long last turn just before we had to quit!

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Bear is Eating but . . .


Well, I've got Bear on a schedule for eating and his Insulin but it requires me changing my normal routines.  In order to still feed him after my shower and my early pill, I need to get up 15 minutes earlier at 4:45 now.  Furthermore, to keep him on schedule so I can give him Insulin at 6:05 - 6:10, I need to watch him eat and cheer him on.  If I leave him to eat alone, he loses focus.  If I leave him to eat while I get dressed, pretty soon he's downstairs with me! 

 So, this morning I decided to just wait until he's all done eating to get dressed and pray and read my Bible as I hold up his dish for him and cheer him on.  The Insulin should be given every 12 hours so if I want to go anywhere in the evening, I need to be done giving him the Insulin early enough for me to leave to get there on time.  If left on his own, it takes him about an hour or more to eat but if I stay with him and cheer him on, he gets done in less time.  The good thing is he even ate most of his dinner yesterday without the appetite stimulant pill and finished all his breakfast this morning!  With the appetite stimulant pill, there were days he finished in just 30-43 minutes, but the vet says as long as he's eating (regardless of how long it takes), I shouldn't give him the pill.  If he should stop eating or starts just picking at his food, then I need to give it to him.    

I miss the evening walk with my dog though because I need to make sure Bear eats within the timeframe for the insulin.  I guess the nights I don't go anywhere, we could walk the dog later after the insulin is given.  Otherwise, my husband will be walking the dog without me until I can get Bear to eat on his own.  Don't know if that is going to happen.  I sure hope it does!  He has come a long way eating only the right food and only two flavors.  It sure would make things easier if he'd eat without me watching!

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Drumming Fun

My husband and I went to the drumming class at the Parma Heights Senior Center today.  I had gone before and liked it but it was his first time.  This is quite popular.  We arrived about 15 minutes early and there was only one space left so we alternated.  It's pretty good exercise, especially if you do it standing up but you can also do it sitting.  It's a great way to relieve some stress.  They played old familiar songs and everyone seemed to enjoy it.  It's just like follow the leader.  Sometimes you hit the top of the balance ball, sometimes the side, sometimes the bucket underneath, sometimes alternating arms, sometimes clicking the sticks together and sometimes "air" cymbals at the side.  It can be challenging to keep up, but if you make a mistake, it really doesn't matter.  If you have never tried this, you should!  It's actually fun!

Sunday, May 5, 2024

"Bear's Diabetes Journey Begins"

Bear's New Food Supply
It turns out I was right that something was going on with my cat when I went through two boxes of cat litter in just 1 and a half weeks!  It's been one week since I received the news that my cat, Bear, has Diabetes.  This was terrible news.  I knew it meant I would have to poke him everyday with a needle to give him Insulin and he'd have to eat only special food.  He had been eating dry Hill's Science diet and getting a half tablespoon twice a day of wet food as a snack (which is what he was getting at the shelter).  He is only 6 and I will have only had him a couple years coming up on June 6.

With a heavy heart and a lot of determination, I went last Saturday afternoon to learn how to give him the Insulin, praying that God would help me be able to do this.  To my relief, it was actually easier than I thought it would be.  Giving pills is way harder!  To my surprise, Bear didn't seem to mind it at all!  We even did 3 or 4 practice pokes with plain saline solution.  I assumed that switching to all wet food would not be a problem, but I was wrong.  Bear liked any flavor of Friskies, Sheba, and Fancy Feast none of which are on the approved food list the vet gave to me.  None of the approved brands are at Giant Eagle where we do our food shopping so have to go to either Petsmart, Petco or order from Chewy.  

The biggest thing that is very important is to give the Insulin every 12 hours, and only two meals a day, waiting at least 30 minutes after the meal.  Sounded easy enough, but here's the kicker--I never knew how fast or how slow he'd eat.