Shelby was born on October 21, 1995 in Sioux City, Iowa.
She will be eight years old this October and was diagnosed
with diabetes on July 28, 2003. She is on 6 units of Humulin
and we think she is nearly regulated. Her food consists of Eukanuba
Optimum with a little low sodium chicken broth poured over it along
a biscuit treat twice a day of glucosamine & condroitin as well
a frozen pumpkin treat or two.
My younger son, Eric, and I were living in Sioux City, Iowa in 1995
when I decided
it was time for a dog. One of the gals with whom I worked
had a dog who was
pregnant and due in late October. I asked if I might have
a female puppy
when she gave birth. "Absolutely" was the reply!
I picked Shelby up the Friday before Thanksgiving. She was
only five weeks old
and almost fit in the palm of my hand. It was so cold out
that she rode home
inside the sleeve of my winter coat under my left arm (her choice).
What a joy she has been for the past nearly eight years. I
moved from Iowa to
New York in 1997. Shelby was too big to put under the seat
on the airplane, so we
had to crate her and ship her. Now she is NOT a good car traveler,
and I expected her
to have problems on the flight. We flew from Sioux City, Iowa
to Minneapolis and then
on to New York City. When we got to New York, I waited for
her to come out of the
baggage room. When she did, and I took her out of her crate
thinking she would be
glad to see me as she always was when I came home from work.
Not Shelby -- she just
pranced out into the airport and greeted everyone else she could
My husband, Ivan, and I were in Europe for about three weeks this
summer. I have a
wonderful lady who keeps Shelby when we travel. When I picked
Shelby up after we
returned in early July, she seemed fine. I noticed, however,
that she was drinking huge
amounts of water and was peeing all over the carpets. She
sleeps in her bed or our
bed in our bedroom, and she would get me up at three in the morning
to get her water
and take her outside. I knew something was wrong and hoped
it was a UTI,
but I think in my heart I knew it was diabetes.
After a week of this, we went to our great vet who did all the blood
work and the
urinalysis all the while telling me that it was probably diabetes.
The phone call came
the next day. Shelby was a diabetic and had a UTI. Antibiotics
took care of the UTI,
but insulin was called for to control the diabetes. I was
devastated and scared. I began
to read all I could find on the Internet on canine diabetes and
"Rainbow Bridge" with all the wonderful caring and supportive members.
I could not have survived the first month without all of you!
Shelby and I went back to Dr. Ness on Wednesday, July 30th to learn
how to give
insulin injections. I was so surprised to find it was easy!
I think my worry had been
that they would be painful for Shelby which they are not.
She was started out on
five units of Humulin N twice a day and a new diet. Shelby
had always been a free
eater ... I would put a bowl of food out in the morning and she
would eat some then
(sometimes all of it) and then finish it later in the day.
She had been on Flint River dog
food since she came home with me in Iowa, but Dr. Ness wanted her
Optimum. Well, Shelby wanted NO part of it ... what to do?
After reading and writing
to the Rainbow Bridge list, I put warmed low sodium chicken broth
over it, and she loves
it. She doesn't even mind the twice a day feedings of less
food. I also give her
glucosamine and condroitin biscuit treats after each feeding as
she has disc problems
in her back, and a frozen pumpkin treat in the middle of the afternoon.
Shelby is now regulated. Actually, she appeared regulated after
the first week on
insulin, but a later fructosamine test showed that she needed more
insulin. We went
from five units to six units last week, and she is doing just fine.
Shelby is the love of this family's life,
and I am so thankful that we will have her with us for more years!
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