A Canine with Diabetes Mellitus
What Could Be Sweeter Then a Diabetic Pet?

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MJ
 
MJ is a handsome salt and pepper mini schnauzer. MJ's story started approximately
3 years ago.  I had MJ neutered at about 4 years old because I knew I wasn't going
to have him mated.  He started gradually gaining weight.  At his annual vet visit in 2002,
I asked the vet didn't he think MJ was getting too fat and shouldn't he lose some weight.
 He said, "well, he is husky, but as long as he doesn't gain any more weight, he should 
be fine."  MJ was a hefty 26 pounds.
 
The next year about 2-3 months before his annual vet visit and when MJ turned 9 years
old, I noticed when I would take him out, he would urinate a long time.  He's always 
been a ravenous eater but I knew something was wrong when he started having 
accidents in the house. Also, he started losing weight.
 
When I took him to the vet a month after his annual, MJ had lost 2 1/2 pounds and the urine 
sample I brought in showed glucose (sugar).  A blood test confirmed diabetes.  MJ's blood
sugar was 432!  Thank God I'm a nurse because the vet went over everything so fast, it still 
made my head spin. During the first year, I became increasingly disgusted with the vet 
because he acted like he didn't know what to do and wasn't answering my questions.  
 
The last straw was on February 7, 2005 when 2 hours after eating,  MJ started stumbling 
and acting somewhat confused. I immediately gave him some honey and rushed him to the
emergency vet.  His blood sugar was 32!  They kept him over night and did a glucose curve. 
It was shown that the Humulin insulin (6 units 2x's a day) kicked in about 2 hours after 
injection peaked about 4-5 hours and then started losing its effectiveness. Well, to make 
a long story short, I switched vets. MJ sees a wonderful holistic vet now.  She made 
some minor adjustments to the homemade diet I was feeding him added a few 
supplements and changed the insulin to Humalin L, 5 units 2x's a day. MJ goes for
a glucose curve in 1 week.  This vet actually listens to my concerns, asks questions 
and answers my questions.  MJ has starting developing cataracts, but he can still see. 
I'm still learning how to do the home testing. He's a wonderful companion and I'm
going to do what I can to make his life here as comfortable as possible.
 
Angela W.
And Mister says, "me too"

Update - Mon, 25 Apr 2005 
MJ is doing as well as can be expected.  His blood sugars are still up and down 
(100 to 250) but now I've got the knack of testing his blood sugar.  We (I and his 
wonderful, new, holistic vet) just discovered that he is sensitive to white turnips.  Thank 
God I got the knack of testing his blood sugar.  I would have kept feeding him the white 
turnips and wouldn't have known that his glucose would go as high as 400 after eating 
turnips for a few days.I keep a daily log over 2 weeks at a time and fax the log to his vet
.  Since the weather is warmer in Chicago, MJ able to run in the backyard, which he and
his Dad, Mister Knabe just love.  This excercise also keeps the blood sugar under 200. 
MJ is on a sliding scale (3-5 units) of Humulin L insulin twice a day.
 
Judy, I don't know if you want to add this, but MJ had a bout of pancreatitis back in 
February.  I had to give him subcutaneous IV fluids  3 times a day for about 5 days.  
I would give the fluids right where his shoulder blade is, right under the skin.  He would 
reabsorb the 100cc lactated ringers in about 1-3 hours.  He had a little Quasi Moto 
hump  :-).  He would bleed a little after I removed the needle.  That's when I realized I 
could prick him in this spot to test his blood glucose.  The nail bed, ears and mouth were 
out of the question.  He's very cooperative and he gets praise for doing so.  Also, I just 
purchased the Free Style glucose monitor and I love it!  You only need a pin head size
of blood.  I use the lancet pen and get blood sugar results in 15 seconds.  I tested it on
my forearm first to get the knack. It's very easy.
 
I hope this is enough info.  MJ is lying beside me right now taking a after dinner nap.
 
Thanks!   Angela
 

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