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Large Cancer in 10 and a half year old dog


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Hi All,

 

 

Just today it has been confirmed to me that my beloved male dog has a large cancer within the muscle wall near his hind left leg. We found the lump last week and immediately took him to be checked - the lump is huge and very hard. Prior to this he had been his normal bright self, not off his food, not losing weight so nothing to suggest he was poorly.

 

 

We have been told he can have surgery to remove it however they would have to also take a substantial amount away from around the tumour and then it would be major reconstructive surgery to close the wound. There is about a 25% success rate that it would be removed with additional complications due to the nature of the site of the tumour.

 

 

Has anyone else had to deal with this type of thing and if so did you / would you put your dog (or cat) through such a major surgery at this age or would you try to manage his pain as good as possible before putting him to sleep?

 

 

Thanks for reading.

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I'm so sorry you're facing such a miserable decision. Whatever I, or anyone else, would do isn't of any consequence as it's a very individual thing. There's no right or wrong. Go for the surgery and he may never have another good day or it may work wonders whereas the palliative route would give a relatively pain free and peaceful end with you forever wondering if you should have 'tried harder'. Bear in mind a human would understand they are going through surgery with the hope of a good outcome, a dog only knows what's happening right now - he's either in pain or not, either feels good or doesn't. Work it out with your vet on what's right for the dog, which option will give him the most pain free time.

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Thank you for your kind and wise words, much appreciated.

 

 

At this point I do not want him to endure surgery as he has had a couple of big procedures over the years due to an unrelated bladder problem. I think we are inclined to go down the palliative care route however we are not totally sure...

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Sorry to hear about your dog

My family dog (golden spaniel ) had a tumour by his bum which made it hard for him to do a no2

He could have been operated on but it was a risk 80/20 he would live throu ghe op and it wasn't guaranteed not to come back

In the end he lived for another 2 1/2 years before it was best to let him go to doggy heaven

My mum now has his ashes on the sideboard with his fav toy (stuffed monkey he found at the tip )

 

Omg I can't believe I have tears welling up as its now been 6 years since he went

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Depends on the life expectancy for the type of Dog. If any recovery is likely to take some time and there is a chance of more treatment being needed, then you would have to seriously think about it.

 

I had a Cat with cancer, but because it was near to major organs, we decided to have it put to sleep. The Cat was about 14 at the time, had a good life and with only a few years likely to be left. It would have been unfair to put her through it.

 

Sometimes better to celebrate the good life you have enjoyed with them and to not have a period of suffering, unless they could have at least a year or two of healthy life.

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If he still enjoys some quality of life and pain can be managed etc, keep going :)

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Very sorry to hear that your Canine friend is so very poorly.

 

Why not have a word with someone at the Cambridge Vetinary College. Ask them what the success rates are and perhaps ask them to explain what the after care/issues would be.

 

If your canine friend is insured, then your insurer should have available a help line to discuss this type of thing.

 

I think foremost, I would want to know of any suffering I might be putting my dog through if the operation went ahead.

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Thank you all so much for your comments and I am sorry that some of you have experienced illnesses with your pets also.

 

 

The vet said he could last for a few more months without surgery but he cannot say for sure - as with all things there is no definitive answer unfortunately.

 

 

He is a German Wire-Haired Pointer so quite a large dog - he is quite bright at the moment - follows me around the house like he has always done.

 

 

It is the potential suffering that he may go through which is concerning me as he has been (and still is) a wonderful dog with a brilliant character - he has the type of eyes that make you think he totally understands what you are saying if you know what I mean and knows when you are upset as I was trying not to be at the vets this morning!

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I have a Weimaraner and this breed suffer with fatty tumours, he has got quite a few recently and some of them are very large, took him to vets and was told if you can move them then it is fine, it is the ones you can not move you need to have looked at. My boy is 11 and I rescued him when he was 5, he has been the best dog ever, some of his lumps are getting bigger so looks like another vet trip, he does not have insurance as due to his age and problems I can not find anyone to insure him :(.

I nearly lost him last year as he scrounges ( it is the breed! ) and vet did not hold out much hope, he never learns!. Being a gun dog he thinks he is immune, this breed never grow up been told lol he has got arthritis so vet said in his back end.

Dreading the day he goes to Rainbow bridge :( I also have a rescue Dalmatian

R.I.P my beautiful grey ghost, gone but never forgotten, taken so suddenly, 04/07/2004 ~ ~ 02/03/2017

Gone but never forgotten,Little Miss Sunshine, Alisha Marie. 15/12/2005 ~ ~ 13/02/2006

Our  beloved Dalmatian Jazz,  gone to join Wal at Rainbow Bridge, hope you are now pain free .  20/9/2005 ~ ~ 24/3/2019

 

 

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Oh bless snowdragon - very similar breeds!

 

 

I have 3 German Pointers all rescued, the latest ate a sock about a month back and had to have surgery to remove it from his intestine! Now I have a strict sock policy in our house - do not leave them lying around at all!

 

 

The one who is poorly at the moment can be very stubborn and headstrong when he's outside - in the house he is the best behaved.

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same as mine then! he has actually caught a pheasant in mid flight and proudly bought it back to me! I do like big dogs, he is very loyal.

Weimys can be very dominant and headstrong so need firm but gentle handling :) have to show them you are pack leader not them lol.

Very good guard dogs and also known as velcro dogs, they steal your heart as well as your bed.

I send you a white light for your four legged friend

Sandy x

R.I.P my beautiful grey ghost, gone but never forgotten, taken so suddenly, 04/07/2004 ~ ~ 02/03/2017

Gone but never forgotten,Little Miss Sunshine, Alisha Marie. 15/12/2005 ~ ~ 13/02/2006

Our  beloved Dalmatian Jazz,  gone to join Wal at Rainbow Bridge, hope you are now pain free .  20/9/2005 ~ ~ 24/3/2019

 

 

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Thank you Sandy :)

 

 

I do like bigger dogs as well - especially Pointers - so loyal and loving and can be very good guard dogs - loud barks but only when someone knocks the door - not constantly barking which is good - brilliant dogs! Funnily enough we've always had gun dogs although never worked them.

 

 

Best wishes to you.

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I can only tell you about my first collie, at 12 he suffered a stroke. Off the the vets we went, and he made a full recovery. 6 weeks later it happened again. I really thought I was going to lose him, and was advised to put him to sleep as he had now developed a heart condition as well. but there he was looking at me and I knew he wanted to go back home with me. I expected him to go that night but no... He was 17 and a half when he passed away in his sleep, and he led a full and active life on one heart tablet a day until about 2 weeks before that. The only problem he had was a slight hang to his head. It took me six weeks to get him back to health and that included standing in the garden and allowing my leg to be used as a leaning post so he could have a pee!

 

Its a horrible situation to be in, I know. But if it helps you to decide, I think that dogs get over things a darn sight quicker than we do, and with a lot less fuss about it. I´m not going to try and tell you what to do, he´s your boy, you know him and his health, and the breed and their longevity.

 

Have you had a look to see if there are any web sites dealing with vet surgery? Where other people can talk about this to each other? Or, could your vet put you in touch with someone whose dog has come through the procedure, so you could have a chat perhaps?

 

I wish you all the best, and I am thinking of you.

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jackieandwayne,

 

 

Thank you so much for sharing your story of your beloved boy - 17 and a half is a fantastic age especially with what he went through.

 

 

I do agree that dogs are a lot more resilient and tend to get over things a lot quicker than humans - mine has had three bladder surgeries - the last one quite a 'make or breaker' but he came through as we looked after him really well at home and he seemed to want to 'get on with it'. I am going to have a chat with the specialist hospital who looked after him during those times as they specialise in cancer treatment as well to see what they think regarding the op itself, potential risks and the aftercare.

 

 

Thank you again and i'll keep you posted. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi,

 

 

Just thought i'd post an update..

 

 

After being referred to a specialist he had a CT Scan which revealed the extent of his cancer:

 

 

He has an adenocarcinoma on his left abdomen along with a mass on his bladder wall and an enlarged lymph node in his abdomen. He also has a large prostatic cyst.

Taking all this info into consideration and also where the actual main mass is located we will not be putting him through an operation and chemo will not help according to the oncologist so we are monitoring him and spoiling him until the time comes when he lets me know he's had enough.

 

 

He's eating well, still wants to go for walks, follows me everywhere so his quality of life at the moment is still good.

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Thank you so much for posting an update - I have been watching for it. I'd guess anyone who ventures into this section of the forum has been there and understands exactly what you're going through. Your dog is lucky to have such an owner and aren't you lucky to have had so many good years from him :)

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Oh he is indeed a handsome chap. My thoughts are with you both and I hope he still has some happy times ahead of him.

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Thank you Hightail and CitizenB - he is an absolutely brilliant dog and I adore him - all my dogs I have had and do have now are great but his character is one of a kind.

 

The specialist vet has prescribed pain killers for the next six weeks which I am surprised at giving the rate his tumour is growing - fingers crossed bless him xx

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi All,

 

 

Sadly my poor boy was PTS yesterday morning. His tumour had just got too big and we took the decision to let him go now before his condition deteriorated further. He was so brave and loving - I went in with him to reassure him and it was one of the hardest things I've done. Right up to the last minute I was still thinking 'is this right'! I feel so guilty but at the same time I know in my heart it was kinder for him - we had to think of him and not ourselves.

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so sorry CC, losing a pet is so awful, my thoughts are with you all at this difficult time. Your baby is now at Rainbow Bridge, I am dreading the day we have to say goodbye to our baby x

R.I.P my beautiful grey ghost, gone but never forgotten, taken so suddenly, 04/07/2004 ~ ~ 02/03/2017

Gone but never forgotten,Little Miss Sunshine, Alisha Marie. 15/12/2005 ~ ~ 13/02/2006

Our  beloved Dalmatian Jazz,  gone to join Wal at Rainbow Bridge, hope you are now pain free .  20/9/2005 ~ ~ 24/3/2019

 

 

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Hi All,

 

 

Sadly my poor boy was PTS yesterday morning. His tumour had just got too big and we took the decision to let him go now before his condition deteriorated further. He was so brave and loving - I went in with him to reassure him and it was one of the hardest things I've done. Right up to the last minute I was still thinking 'is this right'! I feel so guilty but at the same time I know in my heart it was kinder for him - we had to think of him and not ourselves.

 

Very sorry indeed to hear this sad news, C. IMHO, you did the right thing to let him go. You will have loads of fantastic memories, I am sure.

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Feel for you more than you can know. When I had to make the same decision for my 14 year old dog I was distraught and it took me nearly two years to face having another. It's a wonderful thing you have done, the ultimate kindness. It's you now who suffer the pain of grief but guilt - no way.

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