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Old 04-09-2010, 08:44 AM   #1
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Default OT - My Dog has Lymphoma

You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:50 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by cmhargrove View Post
You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
Sorry to hear that, man. How old is she? Sadly the prognosis for Lymphoma in dogs isn't very good.

Trust what your general vet says more than the oncologist. I work with an animal hospital and can tell you that a lot of specialists are more concerned with themselves than your dog.

My girlfriend's mother just lost a dog to lymphoma at 13.
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:51 AM   #3
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I'm not sure exactly how much the chemo would cost, but I do know that medical expenses for pets have been going through the roof for a while now. I had a friend recently who had some sort of replacement in the leg of one of their dogs and it cost the family roughly ~ $7,000 to have it done.

Here is a link that I found that could be useful to you.

I'm sorry to hear that this is going on. I lost my dog Sandy who was 15 years old right before I went off to college. I wrapped her in a blanket and she died in my arms on the living room floor early in the morning. Later that day, I dug a huge plot in my grandparents garden and laid her to rest with some of her favorite things she had in life. Our garden has been growing awesome ever since!

Pets are extremely significant to us, and in fact -- the loss of a pet is one of the first instances us humans ever encounter with death -- and greatly influence our lives. My advice to you is to be honest with your son on exactly what is going on. Don't put it to him in terms that relate to his age, but just portray what is going on in the realistic and correct manner. (Looks like you already told him, but I just thought I'd put this out there.)

I'm sorry to hear of this.

I hope that you, your son and your lab will be able to get through this. I can tell by you posting this how much she means to you. I hope everything goes well. Stay strong!
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:54 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by cmhargrove View Post
You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
Yes my half Lab had some sort of cancer in her mouth and I took her from Highland Ranch to the vet hospital at CSU in Fort Collins for chemo once a month

It did prolong her life for about 6 months but if I had to do it again unfortunately I would probably put her to sleep

Cost was around $1500 . I did it more for the family but for the last 3-4 weeks she was not herself and could barely move.

Every dog is different but that was my personal experience

Last edited by CEH; 04-09-2010 at 08:57 AM..
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:55 AM   #5
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Sorry to hear about that..from what I hear, any kind of chemo. is gonna cost ya. You are probably a lot like the rest of us when it comes to a family pet not having a price tag. You can't put a dollar amount on that unconditional love...
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmhargrove View Post
You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
This is just MHO, so take it for what it's worth:

This can be a great opportunity for you to teach you kids about death. I know that sounds harsh, but they are going to have to deal with death at some point and time in their lives.

Yah, it sucks. Yah, life ain't fair. "But we will all get through this together."

Life lessons are hard but unfortunately very necessary...
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:00 AM   #7
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Very well put Tombstone. I'm not sure about CM's life and his son's encounters with death, but pet loss is usually what we as humans first experience. It will be an important time in both of your life's to come to terms and an understanding of what is going on. Even though unfortunate -- it is a great opportunity.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:01 AM   #8
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Sorry abotu the bad news you received. I don't know much about the survivabilty with that pronosis, but we just lost our 5 year old german shepherd last year to a organ birth defect which din't manifest itself until he was 5. We spent a few grand on tests, x-rays and treatment, but after two weeks the Vet told us he wouldn't make it and the most humane thing to do was to put him "to sleep".
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:03 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by cmhargrove View Post
You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
Sorry to hear about your dog. To some of us, they can be just about as important to us as our kids are.
It can be treated but like most other cancers, catching it early is the key.

My 15 year old female is fading fast from old age and I know the day is coming soon when I have to make the decision to put her down.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:08 AM   #10
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I'm so sorry. I took my dog in to see what his problem was and was told an enlarged heart. The Dr said at least it wasn't cancer. So I'm assuming it doesn't have a good outcome. I'd find out what your options are and the effect it will have on your dog. My heart goes out to your son too. They are a big part of your family.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:10 AM   #11
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Go watch Marley and Me with your kids. It will be sad, but a great way to make you smile as well.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:14 AM   #12
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My condolences to you and your family. I would say enjoy what time you have left and when she gets in a lot pain put her to rest.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:17 AM   #13
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I'm so sorry. My aunt's dog had lymphoma at 4 years old.We took him to CSU and they told us that they could do chemo, but that he would have to spend alot of time there. We decided to just spoil him for this remaining months. My aunt was heartbroken.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:17 AM   #14
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Go watch Marley and Me with your kids. It will be sad, but a great way to make you smile as well.

That's a funny movie. Kinda reminds me of my current dog. (I should have named her "Destructo". All my other dogs have been laid back, this one only works at one speed (100MPH) all day.

I believe she's part rottie/part cheetah/ and part kangaroo.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:45 AM   #15
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I lost my first dog to cervical cancer, they were able to resect it but it had metastacized to the nodes and she died pretty quickly after the operation. I think the operation ran about 2000$.

In hindsight, she was an old dog, I would have not done the surgery, and just let her have a good time in the end and then have her put down. If your dog is an older dog I wouldn't recommend the chemo, it will be pretty misserable on your dog and your family and if you are not going to get several good years on the other side it won't be worth the emotional anguish of seeing your dog suffering through chemo.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:51 AM   #16
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I have had to put down three dogs in my life and it's one of the hardest things to do.

I would not do the chemo. A human understands all the discomfort of chemo is going to prolong life, a dog has no clue.

Ask your vet how long will the dog continue to have quality of life an then plan from there. Doesn't hurt to feed your dog hamburger meat at every meal in the mean time, and take pictures.

When te time has come I would not bring the kids in the room when they give the injection it's hard very hard for adults for kids I can only imagine.

Sorry about your dog. I would make it's remaining life the best it can be!
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:53 AM   #17
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Marley and Me is a horrible movie. I had a dog alot like Marley we had to put down in February of 2009. He was an awesome dog. Solid black, built like a greyhound but the weight of a lab. Awesome puppy. We got him when he was 6 months old and had him until he was 14. One day he just did not want to get up anymore, so we put him down.

Im sorry to hear about your pup, CMH. Its hard to watch a pet decline, but as others have said in the thread, it will be a good tool to use to teach kids about death, that its part of life. Id spoil that dog rotten for the time she has left, and kind of work the kids into the knowledge that she is very sick.

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Old 04-09-2010, 09:57 AM   #18
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Sorry to hear that man.

I'm not sure how effective chemo is on dogs but having watched my friend suffer through numerous chemo treatments he often wondered if the chemo was worse then the cancer he was dealing with.

I had to put a dog down I had for 16 years. It was difficult but it but I know it stopped any pain she was feeling and didn't regret it.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:00 AM   #19
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From the link I posted earlier...

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What is the long-term outlook for a dog with lymphoma?

Some owners choose not to treat dogs that develop lymphoma. The life expectancy of these untreated dogs averages 4 to 6 weeks. Oral prednisone therapy may reduce the swellings and discomfort, but probably will not appreciably extend their life span. It must also be noted that oral prednisone treatment prior to chemotherapy is not recommended and may actually reduce the effectiveness of the chemotherapy.

In dogs that do undergo one of the recommended chemotherapy protocols, life expectancy can extend out to a year and occasionally longer. However, even dogs that receive appropriate chemotherapy usually do not live longer than a year. If a dog tolerates chemotherapy (most dogs do) their quality of life can be quite good during the treatment period. Treatment for lymphoma in the dog is considered one of the more successful cancer treatments and can often be performed by a local veterinarian without the need to travel long distances to veterinary schools or specialty clinics. I often remind clients that one year can be almost 10% of a dog's expected life span, so the remission rate and increased life expectancy with lymphoma treatment is often well worth it.
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:20 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmhargrove View Post
You know, sometimes things hit you right out of the blue and you don't know how they will affect you. Just found out yesterday that my dog has Lymphoma. That sucks really bad, she is a very active lab - the kind that sleeps in my kid's bed at night.

So, I got online and started doing research. I had no idea how common this was. Anyway, it really sucked to tell my son that his dog was dying, but I thought I would ask the posters around here.

Has anyone been through this? Did you do chemo? Did it work? How much was it, and how long did your dog live?

I made an appointment with a vet. oncologist, but thought I would prepare myself (and my son).

Thanks in advance.
Sorry to hear about your bad news.

I have lost my last 2 dogs to a cancer in the bladder and the other to a tumor in his sinuses.

Personally I don't feel right operating on a dog for possibly terminal illinesses, they can't talk about their pain level.

We tried some meds which gave us an extra 9 months with the Bladder cancer dog. You just know when it is time to put them down though.

It is not an easy thing to do but we were with them to the end.

How old is your dog?

Best wishes!

Steve
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:23 AM   #21
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Thanks for all the considerate input and advice. I got an appointment this afternoon, and we'll find out how advanced her cancer is.

My dog is 7 years old, and otherwise is very healthy - you wouldn't know she was dying. She has also had a very high pain tolerance her whole life and is a very happy dog. I feel that if she can tolerate the meds without too much discomfort, then 6 months to a year would be worth the money.

Spoiling her for a few months sounds like a really good plan and would help my three boys say goodbye. I think I will set the ground rules with my boys and let them know that if/when she starts to suffer, we need to let her go.

Thanks again for the kind words, this sucks.
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Old 04-09-2010, 12:32 PM   #22
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Thanks for all the considerate input and advice. I got an appointment this afternoon, and we'll find out how advanced her cancer is.

My dog is 7 years old, and otherwise is very healthy - you wouldn't know she was dying. She has also had a very high pain tolerance her whole life and is a very happy dog. I feel that if she can tolerate the meds without too much discomfort, then 6 months to a year would be worth the money.

Spoiling her for a few months sounds like a really good plan and would help my three boys say goodbye. I think I will set the ground rules with my boys and let them know that if/when she starts to suffer, we need to let her go.

Thanks again for the kind words, this sucks.

It does, and the only thing I can add is to consider the suffering of the animal. Your boys will be able to deal with the loss after a bit of time and an eventual "replacement dog". (I always told myself "I'm never doing this again, but have never been without a dog for more than a few months)
I've had 5 dogs in my adult life and have lost them to various illnesses, injuries and old age and it's always tought to say "good bye", but I have usually listened to the advice of the vet. and could also tell if my dogs had lost their will.

Now I'm on my sixth, and althought she's the craziest of all of them, she be part of the family.
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Old 04-09-2010, 12:51 PM   #23
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sorry to hear this...
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:44 PM   #24
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It does, and the only thing I can add is to consider the suffering of the animal. Your boys will be able to deal with the loss after a bit of time and an eventual "replacement dog". (I always told myself "I'm never doing this again, but have never been without a dog for more than a few months)
I've had 5 dogs in my adult life and have lost them to various illnesses, injuries and old age and it's always tought to say "good bye", but I have usually listened to the advice of the vet. and could also tell if my dogs had lost their will.

Now I'm on my sixth, and althought she's the craziest of all of them, she be part of the family.
I lost one of mine in January and my daughter keeps trying to persuade me to get another. I've got two others but I'm just not there right now, I'm still in the "never again" stage. But I've always had dogs and probably always will. I don't think they are replacements, they are the "new dog". The pain is awful when it happens but I find being able to end their suffering helps to know you've done the right thing for them. When I die I hope all my dogs come to greet me in Heaven.
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:49 PM   #25
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I lost one of mine in January and my daughter keeps trying to persuade me to get another. I've got two others but I'm just not there right now, I'm still in the "never again" stage. But I've always had dogs and probably always will. I don't think they are replacements, they are the "new dog". The pain is awful when it happens but I find being able to end their suffering helps to know you've done the right thing for them. When I die I hope all my dogs come to greet me in Heaven.
Will we have to pick up dog poop in heaven too?
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