Feline Diabetes: Part Six Using Disposable Syringes

Jerry WalchStarred Page By Jerry Walch, 5th Mar 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Pets>Cats

Giving insulin injections does not require a degree in veterinarian medicine but you need to know how to choose the proper syringe for the type of insulin and insulin dosage being used.

Not all Syringes and Insulin are Created Equal.

Human insulin and syringes are designated as “U-100”, indicating that there are 100 units of insulin in every cubic centimeter or millilitre of insulin. Most veterinarian insulin is designated as “U-40” indicating that there is 40 units/cc. Syringes are designed to be used with either U-40 or U-100 insulin. You can use a U-100 syringe with a U-40 insulin, but you must make the conversions using a conversion factor of 2.5. If the U-40 syringes are not available and you must use the U-100 syringes, use this Conversion Chart to do the conversion.

The “Ouch” Factor

Needles have come a long way over the years, and the ultra-fine, extra-short 30 gauge needle will cause your cat little pain. Most cats hardly notice the pricking sensation when the injection is given in the ear.

Use Disposable Syringes Once and Then Dispose of Them.

Disposable, plastic syringes are relatively inexpensive, especially if you buy them in cartons of 100. Use disposable syringes once and then throw them away. You may reuse them once if you must, but never use them more than twice.

Never allow the needle to make contact with anything other than the insulin vial's rubber stopper. If it makes contact with your fingers, the table top, or anything else, throw it away and use an uncontaminated one. Do not attempt to clean the needle, the Teflon coating on the needle is easily damaged.

Giving an Injections

The proper way to give the injection is subcutaneously (“Sub-Q” or “SQ”) or just under the skin. You do not want to inject it directly into the blood stream because that will result in an almost instantaneoud overdose—a very bad thing. You do not want to inject it into a slab of fat because it will take too long to enter your cats system. You can make the injection anywhere on the cat's body that is convenient but avoid the scuff of the neck because of poor blood supply. The ear is the ideal site because of an ample blood supply, ease of access and least sensitive to pain. After giving the injection rub the area with your fingers to test for wetness. Any signs of wetness means that you lost some of the insulin. Do not give additional insulin unless you are going to be able to observe your cat for any signs of hypoglycemia.
I'll finish up this series by talking about hypoglycemia and other side effects in part 7 of this series.

Links

Related articles:
Feline Diabetes: Part One
Feline Diabetes: Part Two
Feline Diabetes: Part Three
Feline Diabetes: Part Four
Feline Diabetes: Part Five

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Tags

Cat, Cat Care, Cat Health, Cats, Disposable Syringes, Feline, Feline Diabetes, Hypoglycemia, Insulin, Insulin For Diabetes, Overdose, Syringes

Meet the author

author avatar Jerry Walch
Jerry Walch is a 71 year old freelance writer for hire living in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He has been writing since the late 1970s, and writes for both the print and online media. He specializes in

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Comments

author avatar Carol
5th Mar 2011 (#)

Than you Jerry, you certainly have a great knowledge about this subject. As always, thanks for sharing

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author avatar Songbird B
5th Mar 2011 (#)

This is so informative, Jerry, thanks for a great share...

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author avatar Retired
5th Mar 2011 (#)

wow I am always amazed at your knowledge. Sent this to a friend.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
5th Mar 2011 (#)

wow, my wife is in charge of giving needles to the pets, I just cannot imagine injecting into the ear - the ear is so thin!

Great information for cat owners.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
5th Mar 2011 (#)

Thank you one and all for your wonderful comments.

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author avatar James R. Coffey
6th Mar 2011 (#)

Wow, there is soooo much to know about this! And waaaaay beyond the scope of my expertise!

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author avatar Greenfaol
7th Mar 2011 (#)

This is another fantastic article, well worth the star. As mentioned above, there is so much on this subject, i had no idea it was this complicated. You're doing a real service to cat owners everywhere.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
7th Mar 2011 (#)

Thank you James, Norma.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
8th Mar 2011 (#)

Jerry - forgive me but we dont have a message system -
my link is not saying eggs are chicken's abortions rather it is saying they are NOT

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author avatar Jerry Walch
8th Mar 2011 (#)

I owe you an apology then Mark, I must have misread your article.

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author avatar Artur Victoria
9th Mar 2011 (#)

Hi Jerry
always learning with you. Cheers

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author avatar Jerry Walch
19th Mar 2011 (#)

Thank you Artur. I feel the same way, always learning. I learn something new every day.

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author avatar TNT_Brian
19th Mar 2011 (#)

Hi Jerry, just read all 6 parts of this series, I had no idea that so much was involved in looking after furry friends with diabetes. I was fairly ignorant and thought it would simply be a case of mixing medication with food. I have learned a lot of valuable information from this series which hopefully I will never need to call upon but if I do it will be with confidence thanks to your work :)

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author avatar Jerry Walch
19th Mar 2011 (#)

Thank you Brian. Hopefully you will never be called upon to use this information. Unfortunately feline and canine diabetes is far more common than what most people think. I will be posting the last part of this series sometime this coming week.

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