Monitoring of Type 2 diabetes mellitus in cats with Felaqua: Comparison to Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM)

The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine is currently recruiting cats with diabetes for a clinical trial to evaluate the efficiency of water intake as a monitoring tool for glucose control in cats with diabetes.

  • Inclusion Criteria: Your cat has been diagnosed with diabetes mellitus within the past 1-2 months or has unregulated diabetes, will soon be or already is undergoing treatment with insulin, and weighs at least 4.4 lbs.
  • Exclusion Criteria: Your cat will not be eligible for the study if he/she has other diseases that might affect water intake (eg. advanced renal disease, liver disease, cancer, other endocrine disease), if they have received oral or topical steroid therapy within 3 months of the study (6 months for long-acting injectable steroids), or if your cat goes outdoors or has access to other unmonitored water bowls.
  • Treatment: Your cat will be screened for study enrollment with a history, physical exam, and with blood and urine tests to measure overall health and screen for other endocrine diseases (including hyperthyroidism and acromegaly) and pancreatitis. A microchip or RFID collar tag is required for this study. If your cat qualifies, you will be given a Felaqua Connect water dispenser to use at home. Felaqua Connect measures the amount of water that your cat drinks, records the measurement and reports it to a cloud-based app. Felaqua Connect identifies specific cats by their ID tag or microchip and reports water intake for the specific cat. A continuous glucose monitor (Freestyle Libre) will be placed on your cat at 3 different time periods. We will collect glucose readings using the sensor for at least 48 hours during 3 different time periods. The first time period will be “poor control” (e.g. when just starting insulin therapy or when switching to a new insulin formulation). This time period will occur after screening and is the baseline time period. The second time period will be “moderate control” during the process of insulin dose adjustment. A recheck visit will be scheduled for placement of a Freestyle libre sensor as well as a physical exam and collection of blood for monitoring glucose control. The third time period will be “excellent control” when insulin dose adjustments are no longer needed and/or remission occurs. A recheck visit will be scheduled for placement of a Freestyle libre sensor as well as a physical exam and collection of blood for monitoring glucose control. You will be asked to monitor daily clinical signs, record insulin dose and record any out of the ordinary behavioral events throughout each time period. You will also be asked to estimate food intake daily. To help with that, the study will provide (free of charge) a SureFeed Connect pet feeder that similarly to the Felaqua connect, identifies your cat’s microchip (or ID tag), measures how much they eat with each feeding and transmits the data to the same cloud-based app. If you or your cat prefer not to use this feeder, this would not exclude your cat from the study.
  • Costs: The study will cover the cost of the first visit, the 2 rechecks, and all blood and urine tests that are performed as part of the study. The study will cover a total of 3 Libre2 sensors. The study will also provide complementary SureFeed Connect pet feeder and the Felaqua Connect water dispenser which you will get to keep at the end of the study. Merck Animal Health will also supply Vetsulin free of charge for a full year (starting on enrolment) for any cat that participates in the study and is treated with Vetsulin. If your cat is treated with a different insulin, you can choose to switch them to Vetsulin at the beginning of the study if you would like to receive the year supply.
  • Contact: If you are interested in our study, please fill out our Study Interest Form to see if your cat qualifies.
  • Study Investigators: Dr. Chen Gilor

Background:

One of the clinical signs of uncontrolled diabetes in cats is increased water intake. Since monitoring water intake is simple and non-stressful, it has the potential to be used as a monitoring tool for diabetes. The goal of this study is to determine whether monitoring water intake using a Felaqua smart water dispenser is useful in the monitoring of glucose control in cats with diabetes. Cats will be treated and monitored for diabetes using standard clinical protocols, including continuous glucose monitors. These standard clinical protocols will be compared with water intake using Felaqua to determine if measurement of water intake may reduce or eliminate the need for more intensive monitoring.

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