What could be sweeter then a Pet with Diabetes!

Birth March 20, 1996
Rainbow Bridge September 13, 2007

This is my  "Ginger Bear Focht"  story........ 
I finally went to the Humane Society after the third week in a row I told myself I
was going.That was three and a half years after loosing our Chihuahua Penny.
Her wind pipe collasped and they couldn't save her.I got her at the Humane Society
also.She was a loving little girl also and it took me that long to bring myself to look
for another one.They are like kids ..one can never replace the other and I felt there 
was no one that could ever come close to being a loving companion like her.
Of course I was wrong.I went to the Humane Society in the afternoon of Aug. 2nd 
1996.I went down the rows and rows of poor little ones all anxious to be taken
home and some were barking trying to get attention and the one that caught me
eye was this little floppy eared, short legged puppy on the bottom row of the 
3 rows stacked.She didn't bark or carry on and she just kept following me with
those big sad eyes of hers.Finally I asked if the could take her out so I could 
see her..of course I didn't gender at this point.Lisa came over and took her out 
and handed her to me and when I looked into those big brown eyes of hers 
I knew she was going home with me.She was such a little thing weighing 16 pounds.
I asked what they knew about her as lots of the little dogs were brough in as strays
They said she belonged to a elderly lady that was diagnosed with cancer and she had
no one to give her to and that she was worried about her care.She did go and take
her home again then a week later took her to the Humane Society.Then I felt real
bad that she was there and home then back there.And that her name was Bear.
I said maybe a Ginger Bear ..and that was her name from then on.

 I paid for her and bought her a new collar,leash and her license and I walked her out
to my blazer.I sat her up on the drivers seat and she walked right across the console
and curled up on the passenger seat and we were on our way home.She never
moved accept whenever I slowed down or turned she would stand up on the arm 
rest to see where we were.I also had three cats at the time.. Casper,Willie & Garfield 
who are gone now. and I was thinking all the way home..what if she doesn't like cats.
I pushed that thought out of my mind and figured she was young enough she would 
adjust. Well..I carried her in and set her down right inside the kitchen door...she 
looked around and saw the couch..and I had the coffee table that was a foot stool
on each end with the table in the middle.She took one look at it and went running in
jumped up on the foor stool ,over on the couch and streached out ..like "I'm Home".
As for the cats..they never phased her.She was focused on the couch and a nice nap.
The 4 of them were good friend til they crossed over the bridge !

So if I had gone the first two weeks I had thought about going I would have missed
her.She was on that couch most of the day.My husband Dave didn't know I was
going for sure so he wasn't expecting to see the little pest when he came home from
work.I met him on the sidewalk and told him to close his eys that I had a surprise... 
I came in and got Ginger and when he opened his eyes all he saw was that beautiful 
face of hers, the wagging tail and I told Ginger to say hi to Dad. She just starting 
licking his face like she knew him.It was such a meting of souls ... I was just meant 
to find her and for her to be part of us.And she isn't partial to me or Dave.She splits
her affection so to speak.Shes' my girl in the daytime and Daves' in the evening...... 
mine at night when we go to bed as she sleeps on my side because she knows if 
she gets cold Mom will cover her up.I might add that she is the only one that can 
out snore her Daddy ! I to this day get awake at night and I have to think before 
I tell dave to turn over or nudge Ginger to move so she stops !!! 

There are so many ,many stories to tell on her that I wouldn't know where to begin.
I have many,many memoreis to hold dear and loads of pictures.She loves the 
Cartoon Network,her favorite pastime if not with one of us is taking a good nap 
and loves to be outside with her nose to the ground....  nothing gets past that 
Dashund/Bassett nose of hers !!! And all I have to say is Dads home and shes to
the door standing at the top of the steps to greet hin with lots of kisses and her 
whole body wagging.She walks up and lays on his chest til I clean up the dishes 
and sit down for the evening and then shes over with me.... 

 Our life had been changed for the better the day I brought her home.This Aug will
be 8 years and we celebrate her birthday the first day of Spring since we don't actually 
know when she was born I thought this would be a nice day to celebrate the beauty of
her .We have both have felt so lucky to have her and when she was diagnosed on Aug 
28th 2003 with diabetes that we would do whatever it took to keep her with us.

Here are a few more pictures of Ginger Bear Focht .......

                                                          Love,Mom & Dad

  Ginger is our Precious Angel now and whenever she crosses over that RBB 

Aug 2nd 1996
The day I brought her home from the Humane Society

Sent: Tuesday, August 10, 2004 7:39 AM
Subject: Ginger Update 

Hi Everyone..... just wanted to update you on Ginger.As of Aug 28th,2004 it will be 1 year
since she has been diagnosed (she actually started on insulin Sept 2nd ) and believe me it seems 
like it has been a long year and has been quite a struggle.But then again as some of you know 
quitting is not in my vocabulary.Ginger has come a long way since then.She has been through so
much and has been quite a good patient.She was so very hard to get regulated.It seemed as 
though soon as I thought she was ...well she wasn't...I know that does make sense to those that
have been there.I had her on regular pet foods to start with and after I found the Rainbow Bridge
I started to home cook and that just didn't work either.So I switched her to Flint River all
natural foods and she ate those for a while ....actually she didn't finish the second 20 lb bag.
I went from there to the Hills Perscription dry & canned dog foods and her numbers have 
been good since then .... that has been the middle of June.I heat 1/4th c. of the canned food 
& mix 1 c. of dry and thats what she gets twice a day along with 16 units of N 
& 6 units of R insulins.

  In this year we have also conquered her foot biting problem, her ear problem ,and the black 
skin in her ears.... the foot problem was solved after I acculumated a box of anything you can
think of for an itch  ...the vet suggested that I try Genesis Tropical Spray and to my amazement
it actually worked ...that was in April...the  first night I sprayed her feet she stopped biting...so 
no more Elizabethan collar after that.As for Gingers ear problem.. the vet called it 
Ceruminous Otitis ( otitis externa) which they gave me an Ear Wash .... Epi-Otic that I put in
her ears ...massage her ears and clean them and put 3 drops of each of these drops in her ears
twice a week ( indefinately but it solves the pawing at her ears & throwing herself on her side 
and sliding her head over the carpet ) the ear drops are Synotic & Baytril Otic.All of the black
skin that was in her ears has gone away and she has nice looking ears again.So right now
I am feeling Ginger has come along way from 1 year ago....from not getting her regulated, 
biting her feet,ear problems and the many nights her and I slept on her couch because if she 
didn't sleep neither did I to. I also know that tomorrow can bring new problems for her but
as for now I just enjoy her daily and thank everyone on the Rainbow Bridge for all the help
and support you have given us.I also know that we can only do so much .... 
I'm also adding a few pictures of my little girl....

                 Thanks again,
                    Ginger & Nanc

on the deck May 2004

Breakfast Aug 2004

Gingers' Workout May 2004

Ginger " Moms' Baby "

Sent: Sunday, February 27, 2005 7:03 PM
Subject: GingerBears' Update & Pictures

Hi Everyone...just wanted to let you all know what has been going on with Ginger.....on Feb 28th i
ts 18 months since she was diagnosed.She has been doing well and there has been many trying days 
since Aug. 28 2003.Since last time I updated her story I put her on the Hills Perscription W/D canned
and dry foods and so far this has been the only thing that she didn't get bored with and will eat on her own.
( I have tried many times but today she surprised me and started to eat broccoli .... so thats new )
She never did get regulated on the home cooking and she was on that for 6 months.She started out 
with N insulin .... later I added the R and eventually went to the Lente ...she didn't get duration on that 
so right now she is back to the N with the R added as needed.She gets 18 units of N ..twice a day 
with R where its needed.I have also discovered that the black skin is associated with diabetes ..
at least in her case.... she also needs to have ear meds twice a week to prevent her ear infection 
back....ceruminous otitis is what they called it. And I have also learned that from aug through feb 
she bit her feet like crazy and when the heat gets here her feet will swell and brake open.... that means
she will be in here in central air...lucky girl !!! As I have always said I'm learning as I go any evey day 
is a new experience...I treasure every day I have with Ginger....time with her is so very precious....

  So I just wanted to share with all of you what has been going on with Ginger.,
and share a few pictures with you also....
                                                   Nanc & GingerBear

Nice and comfy on the afghan

Life is so precious!

Update! Update! Update!
It is a Sugarversary!

Miss Ginger has had diabetes for two years!

Hi Everyone...
 Just wanted to pass on Gingers update as of Aug 28th, 2005 it will be 2 years since she was diagnosed with diabetes..... she is doing well right now accept for her having another UTI as of yesterday and will be on her antibiotics for the next two weeks ...other that that she has been doing pretty good .... she has been on her Hills Perscription  dry & canned foods for a year as of June 26th and it has been working for her..she does get snacks of boiled chicken & frozen veggies once in a while for  her treats....
 We are still doing her ear cleaning maintenance twice a week and also doing the foot spray for that pesty foot biting problem....GingerBear looks healthy & happy right now and I'm doing my best to keep her that way.... tomorrow is another day.... but we will keep battling this disease to the end.....hugs to all of you for your help and your support 
                                               GingerBear & Nanc
2005 Pictures

Mama I just love you so much!

Time for a nap!

Update! Update! Update!
Happy Birthday Ginger!
Sent: Saturday, March 18, 2006 2:09 PM
Subject: Gingers' Update 3-18-2006
Hi Everyone,
 It  was 2 & 1/2 years as of Feb 28,2006 that Ginger was diagnosed and on Mar. 20th GingerBear will be 10 years old.... I can't believe she will be 10 !!!! Time sure has flown by for us.Ginger is doing well considering the the disease she has. She dropped from 34 pounds to 32.... and I might add she looks great !! We are still dealing with her continual ear infectionotitis externia.... inflamation of the ear canal....I still clean her ears twice a week.With ear wash and her two ear meds.She is also still doing the biting her feet/ scratching her ears/ scooting her butt routine ...no relief in site......and lets see what else can I tell you about her ....she is still on her W/D canned and dry dog foods with boiled chicken and veggies ...thats the only diet she hasn't grown tired. ...her values have been in line acept for the 4 UTIs she has had from late in the fall til a few weeks ago.....it seems they have been coming closer together.Last two times they have been spinng the urine out and checking for crystals and so far none have shown up.... they said that could mean a possibility of kidney stones....I'm hoping that one doesn't happen.Also her cateracs have gotten a little worse....they said her vision is good yet.....her favorite things to do are still being a couch potatoe on HER couch of course,sleeping in and walking to her hill where she sits and looks so beautiful on the sunny days...nose to the wind of course.... only time she doesn't like to go out there is on the rainy days...I have to pry her off the couch then....and since she has a box full of toys and her dog bed turned into a toy box to....so what do you buy a "Pest" that has everything ??? I thought since she can only get up on her couch by herself that a pair of Pet Steps would be a good idea... we'll see on that since I just ordered them....
  So all in all I have no complaints and I'm so very happy that GingerBear is still with us ....I have so many special memories of Ginger and would like to share a few with you....
2 are of her on her hill 

and two from christmas 2005......

Thanks again for all the help I we have received over the years from all of you....
                                                           Love to all.....
                                                           Nanc & GingerBear

Update! Update! Update!
Date: Tue, 29 Aug 2006 

Thought I would put a little update on since its' Gingers' 3rd Sugarversary
& add a few new pictures of my girl.

Ginger has been diagnosed with Cushings after what her regular vet was assuming were UTIs' never cleared up I took Ginger to Metzlers Animal Clinic in State Colledge,Pa.They did ultrasounds of her stomach,kidneys & liver and found nothing.Since she was still on antibiotics they couldn't do further tests at that point but scheduled her for the following for thyroid & cushings....and it turned out to be cushings.They started her on 3/4th tablet of Lysodren twice a day.... that took 10 days to load...took her back down for a stem cell test and Dr. Rider said it was time for the maintence...that was 3/4th tab. once a week.... that didn't work out so Ginger was down for another stem cell test and he said she wasn't where she should be and right now she is on 3/4th of a tablet twice a week til the first monday of oct and she goes back down ..... Dr. Rider says Gingers' cushings should soon be under control....I pray she soon will be. I can see a big change in her since she is on this medication and thats for the better..... she is bright eyed and truley looks happier..... her numbers for glucose readings are much better ....  and I have my fingers crossed next time to the vets she will be where she should be and we'll be back to the maintence dose....I hope.....

 I have added a few new photos...so hope you'll check them out.....

and again I must add I feel I owe so much to all at the RBB for all the help Ginger & I have received......Thanks so much,
                                                         Love,GingerBear & Nanc

Update Update Update
Date: Tues, 28 Aug 2007 
Hello Everyone,
      I just wanted to share with you that "August 28,2007 is GingerBears 4th Sugarversary " !! I can hardly believe how fast the time has gone by...when this all started back in 2003 this was a dream to come this far with her... it makes her even more  special to me to have been through so much and to be where we are today... this has been such a rough road at times but I would have taken it no matter what to have had her another 4 years....we are still dealing with her diabetes & cushings on a daily basis....she takes her Lysodren every third day .....she gets her ears cleaned daily with Malaseb Ear Flush & her feet cleaned with Malaseb Medicated Pads... they both seem to be working well at this point...when I took her to Metzgers' Animal Hospitol May 5th to have her checked for a possible UTI they did an ultrasound of her bladder ... they found a growth and put her on Piroxicam.... and I was to bring her back for a recheck in two months ..that was July 5th... they did another ultrasound and he said he wasn't sure what it was but it was gone....and to be safe he would leave her on the piroxicam for 6 months and she goes back for another recheck Sept.5th....as for her diet she is eating Simmered Beef & Roasted Chicken Entree Beneful ...so far so good with that too... she gets bored with food so fast...so Ginger and I enjoy our morning on "Her" couch ..our morning walks and our time together....almost forgot to mention that  March 20th was Gingers' 11th birthday !!

I'm adding some more pictures of Ginger so I hope you enjoy them ...

I am short but so adorable.

All comfy in my bed!

Honest I didn't do it!

I am so cute there is nothing I can possibly say.

So again many thanks to all that have helped me with all the tips and personal advice I know we wouldn't have had the sucess we did...I will always be grateful !!!
                                                                Nanc & GingerBear


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