Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Diabetes.

The first surgery after the holidays and the vets waiting room was as crowded as a snowed in airport departure lounge. Christmas in this part of France is clearly a dangerous time for animals.

After an hour and a half we finally get to see the prim Parisienne . For some reason she just doesn't 'click' with either Wilf or myself. The other two vets are simply wonderful. They understand the overriding importance to the male patient of bisous, sweet talk and tickles . By contrast the northern vet is all furrowed brow and stern remonstrance - not the ideal bedside manner for a nervous sheepdog or owner. Wilf tried to control his bladder but the stress proved to be too much for him. Another first. The old fellow looked so, so miserable.

A battery of blood tests. Diabetes confirmed. A 90% certainty that it's Cortisone induced. The insulin had run out on Christmas eve and a new batch won't be delivered until later today. A second night of bi-hourly pit stops in the garden.

I'm hoping that one of the other vets will be there this afternoon to give advice. Is the tumour growing again ? Should we consider stopping or reducing the Cortisone to see if that cures the diabetes ? How will the Cortisone and Insulin interact ? Should we change his diet to a diabetic variety ? For the first time we have the feeling that our old family friend might know there's something wrong.

48 comments:

  1. Praying for dear Wilf, who we know will raly around...he has wonderful parents!
    Hugs, Nancy, Becky and G-dog

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  2. Oh Angus,
    I am sorry to hear about this turn of events. Let's hope your regular Vet will give you all some reassurance this afternoon. Hang in there, dear friend...this road is never easy.
    Sending lotsaluv
    MAXMOM IN SOUTH AFRICA

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  3. I'm sorry that you had to get this news from such a dour person. I hope that the other vets can give you some better advice.

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  4. Oh so sorry to hear that. I hope you can see one of the nice vet today, and find a way to make Wilf's life still a good one.

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  5. Oh.... A dilemna indeed.
    So many things to consider all round.
    A delicate balancing act ahead.
    My thoughts and heart go out to you all as I know you are attuned to dear Wilf's every nuance and will do all you can, as long as you can, as long as it is the right thing to do it.

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  6. Please sweet Wilf get better! We are pulling for you!
    Our 10.5 yr old, old english sheepdog has been diabetic since August 2008. Helpful info: shots 2x day, she used to get them 1x but got pancreatitus because the shots needed to be spread out. She was on the animal insulin vetsulin, which was recalled and was transitioned to human insulin Humulin N which is a much better insulin that has greatly improved her quality of life and she has also regained some muscle tone in her hip dysplastic backend. Insist on human insulin if you can. Here in the U.S. there are at least 2 kinds and our vet said humulin N most of her diabetic dogs did better on that than on the other kind. Our sheepie has many health problems but overcomes them all. She is on a high quality high protein wet dog food per her regular/holistic vet. She does really well on that. A different vet had wanted her on a diabetic dry diet that was very bad ingredients. We were open minded and tried it and she didn't do well on it at all. First ingredients were corn, peanut hulls just ridiculous non food ingredients. The wet food she gets now the first ingredient is real chicken. She gets a few small pieces of carrots for treats and she has to eat 3x a day for her blood sugar. We are really pulling for you guys to have more quality time together. Wilf is like our special girl, he has a lot going on but always overcomes it.

    Wilf is so precious and cute! He's lucky to have you! Wilf we would kiss your whole face if we could!
    Kindest regards,
    Two old english sheepdogs and their Mom

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  7. So sorry to hear this sad news. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Bisous and snuggles to Wilf.

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  8. So sorry too, to read your post today Angus, i was waiting for it. May be the informations given by the person "anonymous", are very interesting concerning diabetes and insulin.
    Just hope the other two vets will come back rapidly.
    All my thoughts are for you and the wonderful Wilfee. Please give him from me lots of bisous and cuddles.

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  9. I have a potato-like something in my throat and slightly weak knees, but, admittedly, this IS what is called "borrowed time", however, despite the potato and dodgy knees, somehow I feel that W. will manage a little longer - he looks a tough old boot :)) and don't forget to give him coconut iceream, no matter what :)

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  10. Angus, I wish I had some advice for you on this--But in all the dogs we've had, and all the illnesses, diabetes has not been one of them. I have been where you are with the vet, and know how you and Wilf feel to not have your trusted caretaker at a time when it's so needed. I will hope you will be able to speak with one of them today, and will be given the answers and the assurance that you're going in the best and right direction in treating Wilf. We continue to hope for the best and continue to keep you in our prayers for strength and for the return of good days together.

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  11. We echo the sentiments voiced above! This cranky Parissienne originally gave Wilf a handful of days, right? Let's hope and pray that she is woefully wrong yet again. How could she not want to kiss and cuddle that sweet-faced Teddy bear? (by that I mean Wilf, Angus, not you...)

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  12. oh Wilf....i'm sorry that you saw the grouchy Vet...you must be very specific next time to make your visit less stressful...hope you get some answers soon..
    xoxo

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  13. Dearest Wilf, maybe your dogparents will make you some coconut icecream with STEVIA instead of sugar - but just as sweet.
    Keep strong - your humans are wonderful - Love Susannae

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  14. Wilf and family - we are sorry for this turn of events, but know that our paws stay crossed for you and we think of you daily.

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  15. I'm sorry to hear about Wilf's recent news. I'm sure you're very resourceful and will find ways to help him through this next stage. Poor guy, it sounds like he was embarrassed to have an accident at the vets. I would be too!

    Teddy & mom

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  16. Dear Wilf
    Sending thoughts and prayers your way. Paws crossed from Neeli...

    Woofs
    Nadine & Neeli
    Angel doggie Apples (1994-2010)

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  17. Can you request another vet the next time you go? Less stress for everyone is a good thing. Continuing to pray for all of you...more hugs for Wilf.

    Blessings and Love,
    Maggie Mae

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  18. Oops!
    Blessings and Love from Janelle too

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  19. I hope that one of the vets who you like is there today. That makes such a difference to me - I have a specific vet with whom my dogs and I "click", and I hate seeing different ones.

    I've never dealt with diabetes with my dogs so I have no helpful hints. But, I am very much hoping that today's visit to the vet helps you.

    We're thinking of you and Wilf.

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  20. Poor Wilfie :( We are pulling for you in shivery Anchorage Alaska. I loved the comment from the Sheepdog Mom, much great advice there! Hoping you get some concrete direction today at the vet clinic.

    The construction team got started a bit late on Monday. They had equipment trouble earlier in the day. The sun had just barely gone down when I arrived upon the scene shown in the blog. But it is cold too. I don't know how they do it but my hat is off to them.

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  21. I'm hoping and praying for a good outcome to all of this.

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  22. Oh dear! Have been away for a couple of days and to read today's post is surprising. Hopefully another vet will be on hand to give you the options that will be the best for Wilf. Here's hoping all gets sorted and before you know it, Wilf's playing touch rugby and having a second helping of whatever is on the menu for the day. Keep going Wilf!

    With love from your Canadian pals,
    Dianna along with Tor, Willow and Tucker

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  23. Oh dear poor old Wilfy. Sorry we don't have any advice to offer, only lot's of hugs and seasonal goodwill from afar.
    Cheers, Gail and Bertie.

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  24. Oh dear I think the dreaded greengrocers' apostrophe crept into my last comment. How embarrassing!

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  25. awe geez, nothing worse than having unanswered questions. sure you know the diagnosis but that just opens up a whole new can of worms, with what to do next.

    i just read sheepdog's mom comment too... sounds like good advice.

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  26. Paws crossed for a more helpful visit to the vet's today.

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  27. I completely understand about the vet and wanting to hear things from someone that you have a rapport with. We have one in our vet's office, too. I'm hoping one of the better vets has time for you this afternoon! Hugs and hair tussles to Wilf!

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  28. wilf will be in our prayers...we have learned so much from his grace and attitude through this whole ordeal.

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  29. We're sorry to hear this news -- made all the worse by the lack of understanding on the part of the prim Parisienne.

    Hugs to dear Wlf in the meantime util you get to see the vet who does understand him -- and his concerned parents.

    xxx Joan

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  30. Hey Wilf,

    Did you get a nice vet this afternoon? What was the diagnosis? We are thinking of you.

    Love,
    Homer

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  31. Oh, definitely wait to see the other vets before worrying too, too much. Perhaps there are still some rabbits left to pull out of the hat. And by all means, spend the day cuddling Wilf. Bedside manners should be taught that mean old lady!

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  32. I wish we had advice for you! We will put Wilf in our prayers and I hope that you guys can figure this out the way it's supposed to be. I know diabetes is a possibility for Simba down the road because of all the steriod shots he gets monthly.. we are worried about the long term effects.. Anyway, we are thinking of you & Wilf!

    Paige & Simba

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  33. Thinking of you and Wilf at this difficult time and sending all our love..

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  34. Poor sweet Wilf. Not to feel well and then have a chilly vet. The meds will be balanced, love, and you will feel well again. It's all about balance, to be sure. And lots of things effect that delicate balance: undiscovered infection such as a UTI, large changes in activity levels and yes, stress. I know nothing about dogs, cat lady here. But I do know that cats glucose levels spike with stress. Forgive us, Angus, if we are grabbing at straws. We want so desperately for Wilf to be well. Our prayers continue.

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  35. Oh we were so hoping we wouldn't read about a set back.
    What a dreadful shame you had to see the awful vet. Surely she could offer words of reassurance to you, Wilf's owner, and at the very least a head rub for the patient.

    Molly, Taffy and Monty

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  36. I echo the sentiments about being able to see the more helpful vet this afternoon - hope to hear you did. I work with humans in healthcare. From that perspective, I would be careful about changing the Cortisone too much; I don't think it will stop the diabetes, you need to carefully taper it down and you will need to weigh the benefit (better control of DM) vx the potential decrease in good life left. Were he my dog, I would cont. to give him the food he enjoys. You know his time is limited; let him live it up, diabetes or no. When my mom realized she was truly dying, she told my sister "If I had known I was going this fast, I would not have ordered carrots for lunch." I do pray Wilf does NOT go fast but does go well, just as you and all have been helping him do.

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  37. poor Wilf. it's no fun getting old and having all of these ailments. we really hope that you can get in to see one of the other vets and get some answers to your questions. we're keeping you in our thoughts.

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  38. Continuing to keep Wilf in my prayers.

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  39. Holding good thoughts for Wilf that the second appointment scheduled for today included the kinder vet. We too have a lady vet that Buzzy McDuff does not click with at all - too stern for his taste. It's interesting that in our case, it too is the nice gentleman vet that gives him the snuggles and tickles he needs to relax and be properly examined. Keeping our paws crossed.

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  40. We are so sorry to hear this. Hopefully you will see one of the good Vets today.
    I wish we could help :(

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  41. Dear Angus - so sorry to hear your news. Have a look at this article that I found - it seems to be one of the most comprehensive on the subject of diabetes in Lowland Sheepdogs:

    http://www.dogchannel.com/dog-vet-library/diabetes/article_206.aspx.

    There are 5 pages - be sure to read to the end - on page 4 they refer to trials that they did at the Glasgow University in Scotland - who knows, it might be worthwhile contacting them for some advice on how to adjust his food.

    All the very best, our thoughts are with you and your beloved Wilf.

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  42. Oh horror! Does this mean the end of coconut ice cream?

    XXXOOO Daisy, Kendra & Bella

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  43. i wish i had advice to give, but i don't. in the meantime, i'm hoping wilf got to see one of the better vets this afternoon and that you got some resolution to your questions.

    *hugs*
    the booker man and asa's mama

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  44. Ohhhh Wilfie,keeping you in my prayers dear boy.
    Fay in N.Ca

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  45. One of my dear kitties was diabetic and for several years I gave him insulin shots twice a day, it was so easy after a while and he hardly ever knew I was giving them to him. The needle was very tiny, as was the amount of insulin...so it went fast.
    I would definitely watch Wilf's diet though...it will be so much easier to monitor him and he will be much happier and healthier.

    Best wishes in this next phase...hang in there.
    xo J~

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  46. Oh Wilf, this is a conundrum but we know your humans will work together with their favorite doctor and try to get you leveled out and still feeling good. Yes, the pred can bring on diabetes that is true, but he needed to to suppress his tumor growth. I would have done the same thing given the choices. But there may be another drug he can take, like budesonide maybe that will be ok with the diabetes? Our thoughts are with you

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  47. all prayers and good vibes sent your way
    Benny & Lily

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