My name is Bonifacia,
but my family calls me "Bony". I’m an 11 year old Maltese and live in
Querétaro, México, with a large family whose members are my dog-husband Chess
and our only son Tootsie, both Maltese too; my human mom Gaby; my grandparents
Rosita and Francisco and their deutchland dog Pimienta; my mom’s cousin Lolita
and her mixed dog Anastasia.
I got sick from diabetes about one year ago, but my mom was not certain until February 1999, when she noticed I was thirsty and hungry all the time, and my urine seemed to have sugar in it. So she took me to the vet, who sent my blood and urine to a lab for testing.
According to the tests I had diabetes, but I was the first case for my vet, so he told us to let him research a good treatment for me. Two days later he decided that I had to take a quarter of a pill called Euglucon every day before breakfast. One of the fist days of treatment I got very sick - I was cold and shaking. My mom had bought a blood glucose meter and found that my blood glucose was high, so she decided to give me an additional quarter of pill at midnight and I got better.
Afterwards I become stable, and I kept the original dose for almost 9 months. However I became thinner, blind, and I got infections in my feet and vulva. The vet put me on an antibiotic, which I took for 4 months, vitamins B12 and K, Karsivan for blood circulation. My mom washed my feet and vulva every day and applied antibacterial and antifungal medications on my feet and vulva. The infection in my vulva is gone, but not in my feet.
My mom realized that my feet were getting wet with urine, so she covered my feet with cotton and a plastic bags to keep my feet dry. The bags didn't work well because I would break the bag and the cotton would get damp, and the bags would put pressure on my feet. Sometimes my feet are so bad, that I can’t walk. My mom learned that there are dog boots for snow, so she told my vet to get 2 pairs for me and we will try to use those to protect my feet.
Now, instead of Euglucon my mom injects me with 2 units of insulin before breakfast. Some of my other medications have been changed, and I take them twice a day. My grandmom tries to hide my pills in chicken livers and rice, but sometimes I discover the bad taste and I reject that part of the food. The whole day I can eat dog food and drink plenty of water.
My mom thinks I got sick because I was very sweet-toothed and my grandmom used to prepare my favorite fruit water every day. Also, the diabetes may have started when I got stressed because we had some fighting in the house between the dogs and my mom got bitten. Some of us had to be separated into different parts of the house, and this was a very difficult time because we are all used to being together.
When I was healthy, I used to sleep with my mom, my husband and son, all together; but now I sleep alone under a table that I choose, because I can’t jump to the bed. My mom prepared my bed with blankets and pillows, close to my dog food and water. My son sleeps in the same bedroom I do, and most of the times my mom sleeps with him, the rest of the time she sleeps with my husband in another bedroom because he cries so much.
The vet says my health will continue to get worse, but right now only my feet are bad. Otherwise, I'm healthy and happy because my family loves me, takes care of me with patience, feeds me when I’m hungry and defends my life from euthanasia. My mom and I are ready if God decides to take me, because we are satisfied with our life together. My life has been beautiful, and my mom has given me the best life a dog can have: a warm and clean bed, hot food, clothes, medical attention, fun, trips, a great family, a beautiful husband, a lovely son and most importantly a lot of love.
May 2000: Bony's condition has improved. Her diabetes is better controlled and her feet have healed.
Contributed May 2000