Sunday, October 2, 2016

2017 Extra-Sweet Kitties Calendar Contest!

DCIN is pleased to announce its third annual Extra-Sweet Kitties Calendar Contest!  Head on over to our site on GoGo to enter.  If you didn't enter a kitty into last year's contest, you'll need to create an account to enter this year.  If you registered last year, your account should still work.

The contest runs from October 1st through October 30th at 11:59:59 PM EDT.  Each entry costs $5, and each vote is $1.  You can also reserve a calendar day for $5 each - first-come, first-served, and please keep your caption request as short as possible (remember that it has to fit legibly on a date square).  Reserving a day is separate from the contest; if you want to see your kitty both on one of the main calendar pages AND on a special date, you need to enter the contest and reserve a date separately. All the contests rules are on the contest site under "Rules".

And of course - there are prizes! The Top Cat gets his/her photo on the cover of the DCIN 2017 Calendar, a comfy and attractive handmade cat mat, a free copy of the calendar, and a cat food mat and keyring set.  The five Runners-Up get a prominent spot in the DCIN 2016 Calendar, a free copy of the calendar, and a cat food mat and keyring set.

This year, we're also offering the option to pre-order a calendar through GoGo for $25 including shipping to all locations. You can find this option under the "Participate" button in the top menu bar.  We'll offer a calendar-ordering option through DCIN later on, as well, including an option to send a calendar to your vet or a shelter at a reduced cost.  More details on that later in October!

We're hoping this year's contest is just as fun as it has been the last two years.  Happy voting!


Saturday, September 3, 2016

DCIN's Annual Mismatched Socks Fundraiser - 9/3 - 10/2

Many DCIN Friends LOVE socks - the crazier the better.  What could be better than SolMate's Mismatched Socks to pad around in?

So we bring you our fifth annual mismatched socks fundraiser for DCIN. Through October 2, 2016, DCIN is taking orders for these socks - and more!  That's right - now you can order ANYTHING the Sock Lady offers!

You can choose from adult crew socks, adult ankle socks, adult knee socks, kids' socks (one pair and a spare), and baby socks (two pair and a spare).  And this year, you can also choose from adult hats, baby aviator hats, fingerless mittens, scarves, and fleece-lined mittens.  (Sorry, the boot cuffs are no longer available.)  You can check this brochure for the styles, patterns, and sizes available (the baby hats aren't pictured, but they are available, and you can see them on the website). The items are made from 62% Cotton, 22% Polyester, 15% Nylon, and 1% Lycra.  They are machine washable and dryable.

DCIN will bulk order the socks and mail them to you in the US by mid- to late October. (We'll have a later delivery date for Canada and other international locations, but we'll ship those as soon as possible.)  All shipping will be done by 1st class US Postal Service if possible. (Do not order directly from SolMate; with shipping, it may cost you more - and DCIN won't get a portion of the sale.)

To order, please PayPal the appropriate amount (see list below) to by choosing the "pay or send money" option, then selecting "send money to friends and family".  Next, type in the total amount (including shipping if you're outside the US - see below) for your order.  If you fund your payment with a credit card, please also pay the credit card fee on the final PayPal screen. (If you don't, DCIN will have to make that payment, which takes away from your donation amount.)  In the Write a note (optional) section please indicate:
  • Number of items being ordered
  • Style (ankle, kids, scarf, etc.), pattern, and size of each pair/set of socks (other items are one-size)
  • Your mailing address 
  • Your email address (as PayPal no longer provides this)
If you don't use PayPal, you can mail a check along with the order information listed above to

Diabetic Cats in Need
P.O. Box 21
Minot, ME  04258-0021

If you care to take orders from your workmates/friends, there is a bulk order form as the last page of the brochure. You will have to submit this payment with your order by October 2. If you have questions about this, please email

Pricing information:

Adult crew socks      
Adult ankle socks     
Adult knee socks      
Child & baby socks  
Adult hats                   
Baby aviator hats      
Fleece-lined mittens  
Fingerless mittens      

Please add an additional $5 per order for Canadian mailings and an extra $10 per order for mailings to other international locations.  Please make all payments in US $!

Now the only question is...which patterns and how many pairs are you going to order?!  ~Amy

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Trials and Triumphs of Saving Extra-Sweet Kitties

I am writing this mostly for my non-rescue friends, to essentially beg them to consider making a tax-deductible donation to Diabetic Cats In Need. Here's the link, and my story follows.

Doing rescue is hard under any circumstances. For those of you who don't rescue, it's really difficult to describe how hard it is. In the overwhelming vast majority of cases, you are working against the clock. And when time's up, the cat dies. Dead. No do-overs. That life is gone. So the first thing I want my non-rescue friends to understand is the enormous amount of stress involved in rescue.

Now - take the date-with-death cat in question and make her older (even harder) and give her a special medical need (harder still). this brings us to today's story, which is about Mittie (pictured).

Because I'm known to do senior and special needs rescue, I immediately get the plea when an older diabetic cat turns up at a public shelter. The first thing you need to know is that from the moment that plea goes out to the rescue community, that cat typically has 48-72 hours to get out of the shelter. Not a lot of time. So the clock is ticking, and there's a short time horizon. That's how it was for Mittie. She was surrendered to the shelter for peeing outside of the box (common with untreated diabetics, but yet another strike against finding rescue). She was diagnosed as diabetic on urinalysis at the shelter. And she was 12 years old at the time of surrender. Strike, strike, strike.

There are a few things that are needed in short order to get a cat like Mittie rescued:

1. A local foster who can pull and hold the cat.
2. A sponsoring rescue to act as a safety net under the cat.
3. A sponsoring rescue who can commit to whatever medical needs the cat encounters - and with an older cat with special needs, this is no small commitment.
4. An adopter, who is often out of state.
5. Transport to the adopter, who is often out of state.

And remember - all of this has to happen in a short time window.

In Mittie's case, she was blessed with #1 and #4 within 24 hours of the plea going out. Kris Northrup, despite having no diabetic experience, agreed to foster her provided she had rescue under her and could be trained to test her and care for her. I committed to the training and supplies needed to care for a diabetic cat, and went over to Kris' and brought her what she needed and showed her what she needed to do two days after Mittie was rescued. Cathy Woods had already stepped up to adopt Mittie (she is out of state, FYI). So our immediate concern was #2 and #3, all while #5 needed to be assembled and addressed.

That's where Diabetic Cats in Need (DCIN) came in. Knowing that we had both a foster and an adopter (and that transport could be worked out one way or another), I messaged Jenna Marie Watts and Amy Sikes of DCIN and asked if they could be the sponsoring rescue and commit to Mittie's veterinary needs until she could be transported to the adopter. Without hesitation, Jenna agreed.

Now let me digress here for a moment. When DCIN committed to Mittie, they did so sight unseen. Remember - Mittie is a senior with an unknown health status who showed glucose in her urine. The point here is that most of these shelter diabetics come in without having received proper or appropriate veterinary care for a lengthy period of time. Committing to their veterinary needs financially is a total leap of faith, and one that can get expensive. Yet DCIN didn't hesitate. They knew Mittie's time was short and we had to get her out of the shelter ASAP.

And so, Kris picked her up and I taught her how to test blood glucose. Mittie's blood sugar has been mildly elevated but not at the level where she needs insulin, though we were ready for that - DCIN provides not only veterinary care but also test kits and supplies and insulin, which is wildly expensive. DCIN also provided the funding for Mittie's vet visits once she was out of the shelter. Luckily, Mittie hasn't needed a lot of additional veterinary attention, but that is not always the case.

So on the list, we had items 1-4. Let's talk about #5, transport. In many cases, adopters are WAY out of the area the cat is in. In one example, a different diabetic (from the same shelter) had an adopter all the way in Denver CO. Awesome, right? Only the cat was in Northern Virginia. DCIN picked up the bill to fly that particular cat nonstop to Denver. In cases where ground transport is feasible, DCIN's transport folks will coordinate and monitor ground transportation to get a cat to his or her forever home.

In Mittie's case, we got lucky *again*. My friend Linda Cork - who had fostered Jules, the aforementioned kitty with a forever home in Denver - contacted me and told me she needed a vacation. Since Mittie needed to get up into the northeast to an area Linda loves, she volunteered to take Mittie along the whole way.

Mittie started her journey to her forever loving home this morning at about 9:45am.

So the reason for this lengthy explanation - which really is the anatomy of a special needs rescue - is to make the case for *why* DCIN is deserving of you making a donation. Sight unseen, they committed to Mittie's financial needs. All of them. Hundreds of dollars worth (sometimes thousands if the kitty is in bad shape). There would have been no way to pull Mittie - even though she had a local foster and a forever home lined up - without that crucial piece. DCIN would have further paid to fly Mittie to her forever home if we hadn't been lucky enough to have a single ground transporter who decided to take a vacation close to Mittie's adoptive forever home.

DCIN can't do this without financial support. They can't. Without donations, there's going to come a time when - being responsible - they are going to have to say "no". Look at Mittie's sweet face in the pictures. Imagine that we hadn't had what we needed to break her out. She would have been dead over two weeks ago. She was so worth the effort - but if DCIN can't provide financial commitment because they don't have the donations needed, other equally deserving cats aren't going to have the chance that Mittie did.

So please. It's tax deductible. It's a great cause. You can *SEE* for yourselves below the result. If you can, please donate so that DCIN can continue to save these special lives:

Thanks for reading.

~Rena Fagel

Editor's note: This was originally posted on Rena's Facebook page.  She graciously gave me permission to use it as a guest post here. ~Amy

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Introducing DCIN's New Logo! (Plus T-shirts and More Campaign)

Check it out! As a celebration of the roll-out of our purrfect new logo, we've launched a t-shirt campaign that is so much more than just t-shirts! We do have t-shirts in several colors, but we also have hoodies, crewneck sweatshirts, and tote bags! So you can sport DCIN's new logo while also supporting DCIN! I personally have already ordered 1 of everything, I'm so excited about this amazing new logo! (Thanks again to Dinah Strange for creating it!)

Shipping starts at $3.95, and residents of Wisconsin will have to pay sales tax (sorry). Your items will ship approximately two weeks after the end of the campaign, which is Sunday, June 5th.

Please help us spread the word about DCIN and the amazing work we do to help sugar kitties! And please share this post with your friends!

(Sorry about all the exclamation points. Can you tell I'm excited about this?! :D)

AND - Handsome Jack Abraham Resnick is making his Sue-mom pay up again! We'll be choosing TWO people in a random drawing to have the $22 cost of the basic white t-shirt refunded to them. Even if you've already bought, you're eligible for the drawing! Here's what you need to do to enter:

1) Make a purchase of a DCIN item from
2) Leave a comment ON THIS POST saying, "I purchased!"
3) Include the first name and last initial you made your purchase under.

For example, my comment would read: "I purchased! Amy S."

That's it! At the end of the t-shirt campaign, I'll roll out the RNG and choose two lucky winners! Good luck and happy shopping!  And thanks for supporting DCIN!


Saturday, April 23, 2016

How Can I Support DCIN?

There are many ways to support DCIN!

The easiest way is to interact with our Facebook posts - likes, shares, and comments can help the kitties we share find new forever homes or let people who have never heard of us know about a fundraising campaign we have going on.  The more you interact with our posts, the more they get out there - and the more lifesaving work DCIN can do!

People who would like to send us cash donations can do so via PayPal using the address If you choose the "Send money to friends or family" option and pay using your linked bank account, DCIN will get your full donation (no fees will come out).  If you want to use your credit card, please opt to pay the associated fees so DCIN doesn't have to pay them.  We also often have YouCaring fundraisers going on; you can donate to them via the process outlined above - in the optional message box, just let us know which campaign your donation is intended for.

We love to get in-kind donations!  If you have new syringes, lancets, Relion Confirm/Prime or Arkray Glucocard meters or unexpired test strips, we'd be happy to have them!  We also accept donations of long-expiration-dated insulin and medicines (Zobaline and liquid/injectible B-12 especially).  Email if you have in-kind donations to offer.

We also have a number of campaigns going on at all times where your purchases lead to a donation for DCIN!  Here are the current events:

Schwan's: When you shop at Schwan's, use our link. 20% of your purchase will come to DCIN. If you'd like to buy an eGift card, that will generate a $10 donation for DCIN.  Get tasty food and help DCIN at the same time - it's a win-win!

Amazon:  Whenever you shop at Amazon, start with our associate link. Your cart needs to be empty when you start, but then everything you add to it will generate a donation to DCIN.  The donation varies by item, but we get some pretty good money from this.  Get cool stuff from Amazon and help DCIN at the same time - it's a win-win!

Some people shop via Amazon Smile, and that's fine (we appreciate donations whatever the source!), but it generates a much smaller donation than does our Amazon Associate link. So we'd prefer it if you used that instead!

Avon: DCIN's Avon Lady Amy Sikes has agreed to provide donations to DCIN from the profits generated by her online store year-round. Simply start at her link, shop as normal, then email her at to let her know that you want your shopping to benefit DCIN!  She will also do a dedicated month or two each year for DCIN. This is also a win-win - get great stuff for yourself and your family and help DCIN at the same time!

iGive: For any other online shopping, please consider starting at iGive and shop to support DCIN! We get a different percentage based on the store you're shopping. If you don't have an account, you'll need to register with them, but it only takes a moment.

GoodShop: GoodShop is similar to iGive, so this is another great starting place for your online shopping!  You'll also have to have/create an account here.

GoodSearch is a search engine that generates a donation for DCIN each time you use it. You'll need to have an account for this site, too.

Finally, if you ever have extra diabetic supplies or learn of someone who does, please contact our supplies manager Amy at to discuss donating them to DCIN.  In-kind donations are just as precious to us as monetary donations are!

Thanks to all our amazing supporters for sticking with us!  We couldn't do our lifesaving work without you!


Saturday, March 5, 2016

So...where does all the money go?

We at DCIN are incredibly grateful for our supporters!  Without your help, we couldn't do our important work of assisting diabetic kitties in need, educating people about Feline Diabetes, and helping to rehome diabetic cats.  Your likes, comments, shares, and donations are what make DCIN's existence possible!

Some people may wonder where their money goes when they donate to our general fund, whether via monthly donations, one-time gifts, or participating in one of our fundraisers, such as the annual auction that just finished.  Our general fund is what pays for our daily operations, which usually consist of sending out "starter kits" and Lantus insulin.  Here's what we send in a starter kit:
  • 1 Arkray glucometer ($5)
  • 100 Arkray test strips ($25)
  • 100 lancets (~$5, sometimes free if they've been donated)
  • 20-30 syringes - sometimes more if the situation is dire ($3-4, sometimes free if they've been donated)
  • 1 rice sock - this helps get the blood flowing in a kitty's ear and makes testing much easier (~$1)
  • 1 catnip toy - because FD kitties deserve to have fun, too! (~$1 - we provide the catnip, and a wonderful woman makes the toys for us)
That's about $40 just for the basic testing kit that every diabetic kitty parent should have.  And that doesn't include shipping!  Even if we're sending just the kit, USPS postage can go up to about $10.  So we're talking $50 per new kitty client.  YOUR contributions make that possible!

If the kitty also needs Lantus or Levemir insulin, we will help with the costs, including shipping, for that.

We've already helped more than 20 kitties this year, and we're just two months in.  Think of all the cats your contributions have helped and will help!

The general fund also covers costs for insulins such as ProZinc and PZI, which we have to order directly from a company and have sent to the client.  ProZinc is about $125 per vial shipped, and PZI is about $60 for U-40 and about $100 for U-100 shipped.  Without YOUR contributions, we couldn't provide this additional insulin service to kitties in need.

Another service the general fund provides is assistance to clients with some vet costs.  When these are relatively small, we pull funds rather than doing a YouCaring fundraiser for them - we reserve those for the larger bills and especially the in-crisis kitties.  YOUR contributions allow us to do this!

When you donate to us in some way other than a YouCaring fundraiser, you're helping us provide these crucial daily items.  Many of the people we help would have to put their beloved kitties to sleep without our assistance.  A dollar to DCIN is a dollar that directly helps save a life!*

I and the rest of the DCIN Team salute ALL our fans - those who donate and who share, like, and comment on our posts.  You are all life-savers!  Thank you for your neverending support!


*No funds go to the people who volunteer for DCIN.  Every dollar we receive goes to support the cats in some way.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Schwan's eCard Naffle!

It's time for a naffle! Thanks to Jack Abraham Resnick and his mom Sue, DCIN has some $25 Schwan's eGift Cards! For $5 per entry, you can have a chance to win TWO $25 eGift Cards - a total of $50 to use at Schwan's online! Help DCIN out and maybe get yourself some tasty food in the bargain! But don't hesitate - this naffle is only open through Saturday, 1/23/16!  (We may keep it open long enough if we haven't gotten enough donations to make it worthwhile yet.)

Because we can no longer use YouCaring for naffles, you'll need to go directly to PayPal and use the send money to friends or family option using  If you use a credit card, please choose to pay the fee to maximize your donation to DCIN.  Be sure to leave us a note in the optional box telling us what your donation is for!

And if you'd just like to shop Schwan's to benefit DCIN, you can start here:
What's a naffle? It's not a raffle. Read our blog post for more details.

Best of luck, and thank you for caring! ~Amy