Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Skruffy Getting Better – But . . .

Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, Day 2

Now if this isn’t the look of, “Hey Dad, I want to get the Heck out of Here”, then I am missing something.  It is hard to give a dog back who does not want to go…especially a dog who will start wondering, “What did I do wrong to deserve this…”

Skruffy on the way to Soldotna Animal Hospital

The drive over from Seward to Soldotna yesterday was 90 miles, 2 hours, and the poor girl just struggled during most of it.  We stopped twice for her to pee, to upchuck, and to be put back in Marcia’s lap again.  She did sleep for nearly 20 minutes, but she was not comfortable at all.  For the last 45 minutes she was down on the ground, sitting by the water dish…but we decided water was out of the question, and the Vet reaffirmed our decision when we got there.  (She did get about a tablespoon of water to wet her mouth once)

Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, morning after 1st night there

This morning we were there promptly at 8:30, and they finally brought her out.  She was a little better, but a bit groggy.  I took her out for a short walk, where she did her business, the first poop she had done in 48 hours…but not much. 

Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, morning after 1st night there

Back inside she just felt sleepy in Marcia’s arms.  We had little reaction out of her, but we saw that she was a bit better.  The Vet, Meezi Hermansen, told us that her blood sugar had dropped from high 700’s to the low 400’s.  “We can drop it faster, but that is not good for her,” she said.  We need to get more poop out of her, but it was good that she did get what she did out of her.  And we need to run some more blood tests later.

So we said our good byes, and left her there…and frankly, she did not seem to care because she was still not feeling that well.  We went off to breakfast, and back to the motorhome.

Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, Day 2     Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, Day 2

At 2:15 we returned for nearly a 2 hour stay.  Gotta say…at first the little girl felt stronger, but a bit out of it.  Then I took her outside for another walk, and she got on the grass and did her lady-like squat, and we walked a bit, and she even ran…but the IV bothered her too much for that, and then we heard a dog, and I said, “Go ahead, give them a holler…”  And she did, numerous times…the old Skruffy was coming back.   We go back inside and she is held by mom, and held by dad, and she held by mom, and held by dad.  Other dogs come in and she gives them a few barks.  And then this Bull Dog and her mom come up to the counter…and this was a huge Bull Dog.  Well, it starts talking to Skruffy, and Skruffy talks back, and they are both making a bunch of racket.  And we ask her to settle down as the Bull Dog’s mom is asking her to calm down…and the Bull Dog lets out one more, so Skruffy lets out one more.  I say, “She a girl, they always want the final word…”  The Bull Dog lets out another, and the lady says, “Both females want the last word…don’t know how long this will go on.”

Diabetes Testing Kit for Dogs

They did another blood test on her around 3:00.  Meezie the Vet comes to see us around 3:45 and has the results.  She said she was able to manipulate her poop out, did not give her an enema, and she went out and emptied the rest on her own. (glad I did not have to pick that on up!)  I asked her about us ordering a Blood Glucose Monitoring System from Amazon and having it delivered to the Animal Hospital in care of her, and readily agrees…the AlphaTrak is what they use, and she is glad that we are taking the testing serious.  We will have the ability to download software which will track the results, hooking the monitor up to the computer.  This can be easily shared with Vets when we need to see one. (Got it ordered before I did the blog, will be in early next later than the 30th)  The medicine will probably be over-the-counter at Walgreens.

Skruffy at Soldotna Animal Hospital, Day 2

Dr. Meezie goes over the test results…many things are looking good, a few of the results shift the wrong way, but she feels that this is the result of the IV fluids.  So she wants to keep Skruffy for another night, run the test again tomorrow afternoon.  The one that worries her the most, but not too much of a worry, is that her White Blood count had climbed slightly…probably because we took Skruffy off her antibiotics with her condition deteriorating…as we should she adds.  She is going to try a different medication, and she is fairly certain Skruffy can go home tomorrow evening.  In the meantime, both Marcia and I are learning more and more about dogs with diabetes.  It is something we will be living with for a long time…we hope.  There is no cure, it is going to be maintenance.  It will not be easy, but we will do it.  I only hope that she doesn’t get tired of me poking her every day…

Thanks to all for their prayers and concern.  It was a close one.  Here are the signs to look for with a dog who is headed down the Diabetes pathway, and information about Doggie Diabetes:  (From

What Type of Diabetes Do Most Dogs Get?
Diabetes can be classified as either Type 1 (lack of insulin production) or Type II (impaired insulin production along with an inadequate response to the hormone.)
The most common form of the disease in dogs is Type 1, insulin-dependent diabetes, which occurs when the pancreas is incapable of producing or secreting adequate levels of insulin. Dogs who have Type I require insulin therapy to survive. Type II diabetes is found in cats and is a lack of normal response to insulin.

What Are the Symptoms of Diabetes in Dogs?
The following symptoms should be investigated as they could be indicators that your dog has diabetes:
  • Change in appetite
  • Excessive thirst/increase in water consumption
  • Weight loss
  • Increased urination
  • Unusually sweet-smelling or fruity breath
  • Lethargy
  • Dehydration
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Vomiting
  • Cataract formation, blindness
  • Chronic skin infections

What Causes Diabetes in Dogs?
The exact cause of diabetes is unknown. However, autoimmune disease, genetics, obesity, chronic pancreatitis, certain medications and abnormal protein deposits in the pancreas can play a major role in the development of the disease.

Which Dogs Are Prone to Diabetes?
It is thought that obese dogs and female dogs may run a greater risk of developing diabetes later in life (6-9 years of age). Some breeds may also run a greater risk, including Australian terriers, standard and miniature schnauzers, dachshunds, poodles, keeshonds and samoyeds. Juvenile diabetes can also be seen and is particularly prevalent in golden retrievers and keeshonds.
NOTE:  Before her anal gland problem, Skruffy had exhibited:  a) Excessive thirst/increase in water consumption, b) Weight loss (but our Vet asked us to get her down to under 14 pounds, so we thought this was us), c) Increased urination, d) Unusually sweet-smelling or fruity breath (actually Marcia thought her breath smelled like fish for a few days).   After her anal gland problem, she started to exhibit other symptoms, but we thought it was the result of the medication...we were so wrong.


  1. Poor little Scruffy, she looks so sad and sick. :-( But it looks like you have a good vet and she's well on the road to recovery. The daily requirements will be difficult for both of you but it's great to be able to give her what she needs to keep her healthy and happy.

    1. It is going to be a change, that is for sure...but the little girl is well worth it all. Hard knowing she is in that hospital all alone, but it will all be ok after she gets out...I just know she is wondering what she did wrong to be all alone.

  2. So good to read some good news on Skruffy:) Sure hope she can go home tomorrow:) She is going to be in great hands with you two.

    1. We are pretty confident that she will be able to come home tomorrow, thanks for your comments.

  3. Those looks just kill your heart. I have friends with diabetic cats who have all the same symptoms, but are doing well on medication. We'll keep praying for her!!

    1. Thank you Nancy. Hope you are enjoying your time in prison...I mean, enjoying your visit to the old Idaho State Penitentiary (and other things in Idaho).

  4. I haven't read blogs for several days so I missed the terrible scare but I'm glad she's responding to treatment. I know what you mean about her thoughts. She'll be so happy to get back with you. She's a sweetheart, to be sure.

    1. Today's (Thursday's) good news is that we have her home for a trail has been three hours now. She has eaten some food (1/3 of a small can) and 1/4 cup or more of water, has kept it all down, has calmed down considerably, and we go back at 5 for insulin shot and if all goes well, she stays the night with us, then back tomorrow for full blood test again and more insulin, and then they teach us how to give insulin. :)


We love to hear comments from our readers. All comments are moderated by Dave before added to the website. Spam, advertisers and rude comments are deleted, and due to high spam attempts, Anonymous Users cannot post, sorry....register for a Google ID, it is free and it is easy. Go to: Get Google ID