Monday, October 08, 2007

Another goodbye

It's past time I wrote this, but (as with all difficult things) I've been putting it off. Just over a month ago, we lost another of our ferrets, Doe.

Doe was one of two females (the other being Harriet, her sister) who we sort of adopted from a friend. The friend had decided to start raising and showing pomeranians, and while her male ferrets adapted to the newcomers just fine, the females did not. Doe and Harriet would hide behind things, and when the dogs walked by they would jump out and bite them in the butt or the back of the leg. Funny to imagine in your head, but not so much so for the poor pups, and not a behavior to tolerate or encourage.

So Chris and I have been caring for the girls for the past couple years, and I don't think I could have given them back to their original mom if she *could* have taken them back. I fell for them both, and they felt like they were ours very shortly after they moved in. And growing up having "play dates" with our crew, they fit in immediately.

Doe was always so tiny and dainty. She was the smallest of them all, and such a pretty little thing. As feisty as any ferret, and more so than many, and for a little while she still was a bit of a biter. Once she realized there were no dogs to resent, the habit went away and she was just my frisky, precious little Doe baby.

In January, we found out she had insulinoma. It's pretty common in ferrets, and we had already gone through it before. She had the surgery and recovered well. After a few months, though, her blood sugar started dropping again and we had to put her back on the steroids. Something happened once she was on them for a while, and her condition pretty much reversed itself and turned into diabetes. Ferret diabetes is almost nonexistent, and once we had stopped the steroids and run a workup, it became clear we would have to put her on insulin. As this is beyond rare, we had to check her into the vet to have her monitored while therapy was initiated. Unfortunately, either there was something else wrong with her or she had a very bad reaction to the insulin, because she passed away suddenly her second day in the clinic.

Although we knew she wasn't doing well, her passing was completely unexpected. I still can't believe she's actually gone, and I miss her every day. She was my Little Miss, and there will never be another like her.