When Sparky was first diagnosed with diabetes, she was also suffering
from food allergies, and colitis. The colitis was under control (finally
after 6 years a friend of mine had a dog with colitis and their vet
prescribed a drug that worked 100% - and then my vet checked into it
prescribed it to Sparky). Any ways, her food allergies were that she
could not consume any animal protein. Her diet consisted of rice, chick
peas, dried cottage cheese, yogurt, fruit, and vegetables.
Then she became diabetic. She was started on Caninsulin and within a
month, the number of units started to increase and had to be increased
on a regular basis. After a year, her sugars never fell below 12 mmol/L
(Canadian measurements - high on US scale - should have been between
and 10 mmol/L), even with constant increases in the insulin. The dosage
was up to 30 units of Caninsulin which, on a people's scale of
measurement, is equal to 75 units. This is a miniature schnauzer taking
75 units of insulin and still her sugars were high. It wasn't until
sat down with my aunt (who is in the medical field) and discussed
diabetes in people. She told me that rice is something that is sparingly
rationed to people, because of it turning to instant sugar. So Sparky
was first switched to human insulin (NPH), then 3 months later, taken
off rice. Her sugars immediately started to drop. I learned about home
blood testing, and from there I have worked with her sometimes hour
hour just to see where she was at.
Her story becomes more complicated and confusing because this change
shocked the vets. They still never looked at her diet as being paramount
in her treatment - she was still eating the other foods and her sugars
were not stable - they were better, much better, but not stable. Because
of the animal protein in the insulin, I discovered that it also worked
as a "allergy shot" and allowed her to eat dog food. My homeopathic
was intrigued with this discovery and thought that she would then do
good on the "natural" diet, raw chicken, carrots, etc. so we started
on that. . . her sugars started to go wild again. I switched her to
Eukanuba Glucose Control diet - totally - 100%, and her sugars
immediately reflected positively. She still wasn't in control, so I
started making changes, going against the doctors and gave her the
times a day, plus she needed "Toronto" (instant insulin) to help
compensate for the extremes in her sugars. After 6 months of this
treatment, she now, very seldom, requires Toronto and is on 1 needle,
twice a day. . . :) She is doing wonderful. Now she gets 19 1/2 to
units twice a day (human measurements - that's 8 in Caninsulin
measurements) and her sugars run between 4.5 to 9. I'm exhausted, but
still have my little girl with me and that is all that counts. I'm
financially almost broke because it has cost me over 5,000.00 over
past year and a half for the blood testing, but it has all been worth
it. I love my dog. I've included a poem I wrote about her when she
first diagnosed. . . I didn't know that the ending was going to mean
that it was going to be so hard getting there.
This story's told with pain and glee,
the way Sparkles love happened on me.
Her allergies, sores, so painful, so deep,
the breeder thought best, put her to sleep.
I'd work on this both day and night,
food was the trick to make her all right.
The kennel agreed, send her my way,
like celestial Pluto, a strange home to stay.
So to begin with her new plight,
I talked to the vet for a doctor's insight.
With some pills, a new diet to start,
her eyes simply sparkling, thanks from her heart.
Time went by, our friendship grew,
Slowly, surely, her skin was anew.
She bounced and played, happy to be,
so alive, so healthy, and free.
Mid life years, diabetes set in,
and with some work, I know we'll win.
So as we go, round all the bends,
we'll cherish our time, till this story ends.
Thanks for your ear. You folks do a much needed service to people who
have a diabetic pet. Your web site has helped me out a lot and I
couldn't have done it without the advice you have on your site. Thanks