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How I wish there wasn't a need for this thread to keep going.

 

Good luck to you and to your pups as you deal with ths horrible disease. Below is information to help you make choices for yourself and your family, originally posted and collected by NeylasMom.

 

This is the third fourth in a series of threads. The original was started by a few people whose pups were diagnosed around the same time in July of 2010, but it appears it has grown into an ongoing thread that will provide both information and emotional support for anyone who has dealt with losing a pup to osteo, is currently caring for a pup diagnosed with osteo, has one that has been newly diagnosed, or worries they may have to deal with it in the future. You do not have to have a pup that currently has osteo to join in this thread - feel free to stop by if you've ever lost a pup to osteo or other cancer, would like to offer support to those currently dealing with this disease, would like to prepare yourself for the possibility of dealing with this, or if your pup has been diagnosed recently. We've even had a person or two join in whose pups were diagnosed with other forms of cancer. Basically, anyone is welcome although we'd prefer there be no reason to have to welcome anyone or for this thread to exist at all.

 

For those who have recently had a pup diagnosed with osteo, here is some information to hopefully get you started:

Bone Cancer Dogs site - An excellent place to start to get general information about osteo, treatment options, etc.

Journal article on pain mgt - Technically an article on using radiation for palliative (pain management) care, but includes a good overview of the

types of bone cancer pain and the various ways to treat it including medications, radiation, and IV pamidronate

Dog Cancer Blog - Blog from Dr. Dressler, a vet who has dedicated himself to cancer treatment in dogs - includes lots of useful information via blog posts, as well as a link

to purchase his book (which covers all aspects of cancer care, both holistic and traditional) in a downloadable format.

 

The previous osteo threads, the original and part II, with over 100 pages of useful information and support. This is a good place to get specifics if you are wondering about a specific holistic regimen one of us used, the decision making process for choosing amputation or palliative care, etc.

 

For inspiration and some laughs: Winslow's diary

 

For those considering amputation, BigOrangeDog's blog about what to expect.

 

Yahoo groups where you can go for information and support:

 

Dog Bone Cancer Group - not greyhound specific, but a good source of information and support specific to osteosarcoma

Circle of Grey - a greyhound specific support group for owners of pups dealing with all kinds of health issues

Artemisinin and Cancer - for those who would like to pursue artemisinin as part of their treatment regimen, neither greyhound nor osteo specific

 

For those interesting in contacting OSU for a consult, second opinion, appointment, or amputation:

 

Greyhound Health and Wellness Program

Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine

601 Vernon Tharp Street

Columbus, Ohio 43210

Phone: (614) 247-6757 or (614) 247-8490

Email: greyosu@osu.edu

Website: http://www.vet.ohio-state.edu/GHWP.htm (registration and fee now required to get full access to this site)

 

For a consultation, you must use the online consultation service found here. Do NOT contact Dr. Couto directly or you will not receive a timely response.

 

The consult is free but if you can afford to support the program please do so. You can sign up for full access to the website ($99 per calendar year) or donate through the giving page on the website. If you decide to donate, you can double your money by giving through the Greyhound Project. They will match the funds that you donate. Just go to this website and scroll down to the appropriate donation button: http://www.adopt-a-g...g/donate.shtml.

 

Keep in mind that OSU does 20 to 30 greyhound consults a day along with all of their "in canine" patients. Depending on their workload there may be a wait for the consultation. If you are contacting them on an emergency basis, please let them know.

 

If you want to make an appointment to be seen in person/canine, you can call the main number to set up a date/time. The main number for the veterinary hospital is 614-292-3551. This information is also on the consultation service page.

 

If you decide to visit OSU please contact Jane (joejoesmom). She may be able to put you up in a local home, provide moral support, or just help with logistics: Finewhipador-drool@yahoo.com[/i]

 

If you wish to help further osteosarcoma research, 2 labs that are collecting samples and have specifically requested greyhound samples:

 

Modiano Lab - Need tissue from a biopsy and blood; will send a collection kit and a prepaid return mailer; also accepting samples for hemangiosarcoma and lyphoma

Website: http://www.modianola...nfo_index.shtml

Contact person: Mitzi, 612-626-6890, lewel001@umn.edu

 

Broad Institute - Blood samples only, may be able to help with shipping costs, but they prefer you cover them

Website: http://www.broadinst...sending-samples

Contact info: dog-info@broadinstitute.org, FAX: (617) 324-2722

 

Both labs require signed consent forms and samples must be shipped overnight.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

35764734494_93de5b5963_b.jpg

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Marking :)

 

Pinky started back up barking at Ace outside again...that was the last thing in my mental list of Pinky's norms that I'd been waiting for her to start doing again. So, aside from the missing leg and a bald butt, she is exactly the same as she was before surgery :wub:

 

The vet also said that Pinky should be able to attend the Christmas party :yay

 

I posted about this in the last thread, but I think Pinky needs more in her diet to help her maintain her weight. Clearly she expends more energy getting around so I need to compensate for that. I've started giving her cottage cheese and hard boiled eggs in her meals...she is certainly not complaining :)

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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Thanks Chris. :) Can't believe we're on to a new thread already! Ugh.

 

Kristin - I would just make sure Pinky doesn't gain too much weight. Being on the thinner side will help her as a tripod, I'd assume. Berkeley lost 7 pounds after his amp! I remember thinking - that's one heavy leg. :blink::lol

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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Pinky weighed 56 lbs on surgery day, and 52 after the swelling went down. On Thursday she was 50.2 lbs. She is a little too light. I have always kept my kids lean and muscular, but this is a little too lean. She would be good at 52 lbs.

 

Dr. Less commented that her surgery took longer than most of his amputations because she had not lost any muscle in her thighs yet and it took him a while to separate all of it. Her remaining thigh has of course gotten even stronger now and Dr. Thomsen commented on how beautiful it is :lol

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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I loved the photo of Bauer. What a sweet boy. Good news about Pinky too. I hope all of your greys continue to kick osteos butt!

 

We're doing OK here. We miss Faye Oops, but feel at peace knowing that she is finally free from pain. She fought so hard right until the end. I will treasure the memories we made together.

Laura with Celeste (ICU Celeste) and Galgos Beatrix and Encarna
The Horse - Gracie (MD Grace E)
Bridge Angels Faye Oops (Santa Fe Oops), Bonny (
Bonny Drive), Darcy (D's Zipperfoot)

 

 

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Why do so many vets 'rule out' osteo without x-rays? My vet was SURE it wasn't osteo (even after the x- rays! ) because Berk wasn't limping badly enough -and we know how that ended up.

 

I feel like any time a dog has an unresolved or undiagnosed limp, you need to get x-rays before any determination on osteo can be made. A physical exam is just not enough. But that doesn't seem to happen...

 

Seems irresponsible to say it's not something before you so the diagnostics.

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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That wasn't my experience at all BauersMom. We brought Faye Oops in because she had an intermittent limp. It wasn't even bad at that point. The vet did a physical exam, but couldn't identify what it was. So, we then moved onto x-rays. They identified it as osteo when looking at the x-rays. OSU confirmed the diagnosis.

Laura with Celeste (ICU Celeste) and Galgos Beatrix and Encarna
The Horse - Gracie (MD Grace E)
Bridge Angels Faye Oops (Santa Fe Oops), Bonny (
Bonny Drive), Darcy (D's Zipperfoot)

 

 

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Agreed. With both Sutra and Pinky, the physical exam was pretty telling in itself. With many dogs, if you squeeze the bone in question, they'll let you know where it is. Sutra had been limping off and on. When I took him for X-rays, doc did a preliminary exam and when his humerus was squeezed, he cried out. At that moment I knew it was osteo.

 

When Pinky started limping I examined her myself and she cried when I squeezed her femur in the right spot. I knew it right away.

 

In both cases of course, X-rays were taken to confirm, and I went ahead with FNAs for both of them.

 

I would never ever let a vet tell me it's not osteo without them taking X-rays and without seeing those X-rays with my own eyes. Digital X-rays are almost a must now. The vet that diagnosed Sutra did not have digital xray, but Dr. Less's practice does, so when we went to him for the FNA, he took some digitals so we could manipulate the contrast to see things better.

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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I can think of at least several H&M posters dealing with dogs who are limping whose vets have ruled out osteo without x-rays just within the last few weeks! I don't understand this.

 

And I know there were a few of us who dealt with misdiagnoses or delayed diagnosis because the symptoms weren't typical.

 

Berkeley was not painful upon exam - he is very stoic - until the day of his amp. And even then, he had no limp. You just can't rule it out without x-rays, IMO. Obviously if there IS pain at the bone, then it's a clearer case.

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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I just re-read my post and I think it was a little bit wishy washy. What I meant to say is there is NO WAY I would rest when my dog is limping unless I had full X-rays done and the films showed nothing. I would never accept "we can't find a specific spot so we're not doing films" as "your dog doesn't have osteo."

 

Even if films were taken and showed nothing, if the limp continued I would likely have more X-rays done at a periodic interval. I am not interested in making a dog live with a mystery illness that I can't find a specific cause or treatment for. I know that often there ARE conditions that are a mystery, but I would keep working to SOLVE the mystery, not just accept it as such.

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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No, no - I knew what you were saying. :)

 

I certainly don't fault the owners in any way, it's more I wish vets were more proactive about getting the diagnostics and would hold off on the "almost definitely not osteo" verdict. I know not every limp is osteo, but if it goes on for any length of time or can't be attributed to something (corns, etc), do the x-rays!

 

The other thing is the "common" beliefs of what is or isn't osteo (vets and non-vets alike) also obscure the situation. Osteo is a tricky devil, and doesn't seem to like to play by the rules in greyhounds...

 

I think the whole thing bothers me because I was in *exactly* that spot in July. I see these posts and I know what it feels like to be confused about the whole thing. And it sucks when your vet points you in the wrong direction.

 

I love my vet, and I know that he took the standard approach to Berkeley's symptoms, so I know sometimes it is tough to figure it all out. The limp went away with NSAIDs and rest - and didn't reappear for MONTHS... and we did x-rays as soon as the limp came back. But because he was putting full weight on the leg still, and the limp was slight and intermittent, he just didn't think it could be osteo. If it wasn't for GT and Neylasmom and others suggesting that I not take a 'wait and see' approach, I would have wasted even more time before getting it all figured out.

 

I dunno, maybe I'm just rambling. :lol

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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I can think of at least several H&M posters dealing with dogs who are limping whose vets have ruled out osteo without x-rays just within the last few weeks! I don't understand this.

 

And I know there were a few of us who dealt with misdiagnoses or delayed diagnosis because the symptoms weren't typical.

 

Berkeley was not painful upon exam - he is very stoic - until the day of his amp. And even then, he had no limp. You just can't rule it out without x-rays, IMO. Obviously if there IS pain at the bone, then it's a clearer case.

I agree and of course you know it happened with me, except that I decided to follow up with my ortho, who caught it. Part of our problem was my vet doesn't have digital X-ray equipment, which is why I now harp on people who suspect osteo to get high quality digital x-rays that can be blown up. It also often helps to take one of the healthy leg for comparison.

 

But yes, bottom line is far too many "greyhound knowledgeable" vets dismiss osteo because the limp is intermittent.

 

Chris, thanks for starting the new thread. I kept meaning to but I'm actually in Texas! :)

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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And to make matters worse, there are always greyhounds like Dude who don't ever limp prior to a leg break. :dunno

 

Actally, Dude did limp, months before his break, but in his right front leg, NOT his left back leg. The ortho at that time was positive it wasn't cancer, and the limp did go away. My suspicion - and it's only a suspicion - is, given that his cancer metasticized in his spine, he actually DID have osteo 6 months before the break. But no one suspected it could be in his spine at all. VooDoo always had trouble walking post-surgery. He was constantly collapsing on his one back leg. I put it down to that one being weaker and less muscled from a previous toe-amp, but now I think the cancer was there all along.

 

No vet - even our great oncologist - ever suggested this, or investigated it. No xrays were taken of any place other than his legs and one front shoulder, and then his lungs/chest. I know they do this to contain costs and such, but if I have another osteo dog, I will think very hard about having a full body scan done to rule out cancer in unexpected places.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

35764734494_93de5b5963_b.jpg

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case, Chris. You just never know.

 

And you bring up another point that I worry about - they scan the lungs, but we know that osteo mets can (and do) show up just about anywhere, it's just less common... Berkeley first limped in March. Diagnosed in July, amp on the 21st of that month. It was at a minimum then of 5 full months of him having/living with osteo. Who knows where it might have micrometastasized to in that time? Ugh. This damn disease.

 

My only hope for others is that they can catch it as soon as possible. If that means I become a broken record of "get x-rays... send to OSU for a second opinion..." so be it. :P I don't want to be alarmist, but at the same time, I don't want folks to let an unknown limp linger without a dx.

 

In other news, Berkeley had a really rough night last night, post-chemo. He was up at least 5 times, crying, wanting to go out, wanting to drink.... so glad that chemo is over. My poor guy. :(

Edited by BauersMom

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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Aww, poor Berk. :( Hope tonight is better for him :goodluck

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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I will add my two cents:

 

I have known of more than one dog that went undiagnosed for far too long, simply because the vet didn't do x-rays. In one case, it was 5 months of limping before the vet suggested x-rays! Needless to say, this dog developed lung mets just months after amputation. What if an x-ray was done in the first few weeks? We'll never know, but this dog could have been one of the lucky ones if the vet had done his job. There is no question that this particular owner would have spent the money on x-rays if only the vet had suggested them. It is the vet's responsibility to know that greyhounds, and other long boned large breeds, are prone to osteo and that ALL unexplained limps should be investigated further.

 

While it would be great if all owner's were as well informed as those on GreyTalk, the reality is that many rely solely on their vets for health information. They should be able to count on their vet to at least know that bone cancer is common in greyhounds and similar breeds.

 

Obviously, you touched a nerve. I just get so angry when I help people who come to OSU and I find out that their vet didn't do what I consider the minimum of care. It is so hard for me to bite my tongue and not bad-mouth the vet. The last thing I want to do is to make the owner feel that they should have known that their vet wasn't doing a good job -- or worse, that if they had gotten a second opinion earlier that it might have prolonged (or improved the quality of) the dog's life.

 

Now that I am done with my ranting: I do have to say that most of the vets do a fine job. The majority do know that an unexplained limp in a greyhound should be investigated further and that it should be done quickly.

 

OK, I am done preaching. I'll get off the soap box.

 

Jane

 

I just re-read this and realized that I was quite harsh. I don't mean to say that all bone cancer would be caught in the early stages if "vets did their jobs". Obviously that is not the case, although it would be wonderful if all bone cancer could be caught early. I have just run across a few vets who didn't do x-rays because: a) they didn't think a little limp would be cancer; b ) it would be too soon for it to show up on x-rays if the dog just started limping; or c) if it is bone cancer there isn't anything that can be done anyway.

Edited by joejoesmom
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Jane, I didn't think your post was harsh and I agree with BauersMom. If your Greyhound is limping and you cannot find a definite cause and your vet is having trouble finding one, then x-ray. Yes it costs some dollars but it also helps view what may be going on with the bone besides Osteo. All I know is the e-mail I got from my wife that day stating Charlie is limping dropped my heart into my stomach. I didn't think of anything else but Osteo and took that route while DW thought we could wait. I insisted for an appointment at the best vet hospital around and #1 on the list was x-rays. Even after the Orthopaedic, Radiologist and Oncologist looked at the rays, they were not 100% certain it was Osteo. They were definitely leaning that way but could not be sure without an FNA that the Orthopaedic didn't feel would give conclusive results anyways. OSU did respond within a day that they felt it had some appears as Osteo but could not be sure either. That was plenty for me to make my decision, no waiting around as the odds are against Charlie at the point.

 

I'm sorry to hear Berk had a rough night. I hope he is doing better.

 

Forgot two other points I wanted to add:

 

Kristin, if you do visit DW's blog, you will notice that the food we give Charlie has practically zero fat and it's not a weight gainer by any means. We are lucky with Charlie that he is built like a bull and just keeps his weight steady so there has not been a need to adjust his diet. Now Jack on the other hand has a tendency to always look thin (multiple ribs showing) and we have only once been able to fatten him up enough to look more solid but he has lost that again. So he is a bit of a struggle however we feel his diet is good overall, just need to add 2-3lbs and he would be perfect. I believe the heart issue does not help either with his weight issues.

 

Wendy, you sound similar to me when it comes to having to know all the details, re. Palladia. This was the only thing that I did not research to death concerning Charlie. The reason was that we were coming off of Chemo and I wanted to know the next step as I could not accept there was nothing else I could do so I found out about it via OSU and had read Jane's Joejoe was going on it based on Dr. Coutu's recommendation. That was good enough for me as I know when I have read studies concerning Osteo/cancer, they can get a little depressing when they list the hard numbers and I did read some concerning Palladia but decided the odds were in favour. Every pup though is different and can react differently.

Edited by Charlies_Dad

Kyle with Stewie ('Super C Ledoux, Super C Sampson x Sing It Blondie) and forever missing my three angels, Jack ('Roy Jack', Greys Flambeau x Miss Cobblepot) and Charlie ('CTR Midas Touch', Leo's Midas x Hallo Argentina) and Shelby ('Shari's Hooty', Flying Viper x Shari Carusi) running free across the bridge.

Gus an coinnich sinn a'rithist my boys and little girl.

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I'm at the year anniversary since I lost Gypsy to osteo, so popped back in here just ... I don't know ...just to make myself more miserable perhaps. Perhaps hoping that the number of osteo dogs has gone down. Sadly, it seems like just as many - if not more - new cases are being diagnosed.

 

I love my vet; she always listens to me when I take one of the dogs in. Gypsy was first diagnosed w/ thyroid cancer and we had kept her pretty stabilized for over a year when one day, she yelped running across the yard in the morning. By that afternoon, I had her in to my vet for x-rays. There wasn't even a discussion as to whether to have x-rays or not'; I had called the vet's office and said "Gypsy has thyroid cancer, this morning she yipped when running, we need to come in today for x-rays. Done. And the vet showed me the x-rays and even I could see it. Even that quick diagnosis did no good, as we didn't think she was a good candidate for amp since she had been fighting the thyroid cancer for so long. And truthfully, I had been waiting for the other shoe to drop ever since the first diagnosis of thyroid cancer.

 

I'm rambling, but I guess what I'm trying to say is that even if you are pro-active in getting the x-rays and FNA, it doesn't necessarily mean you will have more treatment options. All it did in my case was make the guilt easier to live with that I DIDN'T delay in getting the diagnosis. But as far as Gypsy was concerned, that didn't matter. She had no idea I felt so guilty about the choices I made for her.

 

God, I hate cancer. angryfire.gif It is just so damn unfair and it hurts the innocents so very much. We can at least understand their pain and ours, but they can't. They just know they hurt and momma/daddy are NOT making it better. And that's the guilt I carry around every single day - the feeling that I failed Gypsy and disappointed her.

 

RIP Gypsy - I'll never forget your incredible sense of humor and your joy in teasing me. I miss you sweetheart, every single solitary day.

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even if you are pro-active in getting the x-rays and FNA, it doesn't necessarily mean you will have more treatment options.

 

Exactly. I'm a big advocate of getting that x-ray or ultrasound rather than waiting in most cases, but finding something early doesn't mean it hasn't already spread. Metastatic (spreading) cancers are ugly things. Cancer cells are sneaky, small, and very fast; the best detection techniques we have are slow and inaccurate by comparison.

 

 

And that's the guilt I carry around every single day - the feeling that I failed Gypsy and disappointed her.

 

Sounds like you gave your girl the best of care and have no reason at all to feel guilty. Big hugs.

 

 

 

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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God, I hate cancer. angryfire.gif It is just so damn unfair and it hurts the innocents so very much. We can at least understand their pain and ours, but they can't. They just know they hurt and momma/daddy are NOT making it better. And that's the guilt I carry around every single day - the feeling that I failed Gypsy and disappointed her.

 

Your post has me in tears.

 

Sam (lung cancer...and arthritis in his spine) is having a bad day, sometimes coughing and hacking as if he has something caught in his throat.

 

He eats fine. He jumps around and wants to play with Silver (who's still ignoring him). But in between those moments, he just lies on his bed--often not sleeping. (If he slept more, I'd feel better; a sleeping Sam is a normal Sam.) Or he coughs a tickle-in-the-throat kind of cough. He usually seems fine in the evenings when I get home from work, but I'm starting to suspect that he's just playing up to me. Lately, my days off work--when I can be home with him--have been Friday and Sunday, so at these times I'm seeing him in his new-normal mode. My vet is going to think I'm crazy. I keep taking Sam in on Monday or Tuesday, and Sam seems fine in the office...but I think he's just "up" for the visit.

 

We increased the methocarbamol last week. Today, he'll be betting an extra gabapentin (and I'll be watching to see if he's steady on his already-wobbly legs or if it's going to cause the same problems valium caused).

 

I'm feeling so guilty. I can't find the right combination of meds to make him feel consistently good (never mind meds that would actually make him well). If he seemed to feel consistently bad, I'd know what to do for him, but I hate feeling that he's hiding his discomfort from me. And is he hiding it because he's not ready to go, or because he's looking after me?

 

I think we're maybe okay for another week, anyway. And my days off are changing this week; I'll be home Tuesday and Sunday this next week, so we'll see how it goes.

 

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Sam in September, pre-diagnosis

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Kathy and Q (CRT Qadeer from Fuzzy's Cannon and CRT Bonnie) and
Jane (WW's Aunt Jane from Trent Lee and Aunt M); photos to come.

Missing Silver (5.19.2005-10.27.2016), Tigger (4.5.2007-3.18.2016),
darling Sam (5.10.2000-8.8.2013), Jacey-Kasey (5.19.2003-8.22.2011), and Oreo (1997-3.30.2006)

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Yes, of course, sometimes early still isn't early enough, bur waiting isn't going to make those odds any better. At least knowing it is a terminal, painful disease will allow for the necessary decisions to be made.

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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My heart jumped so far up my throat, I thought I might choke this morning as I watched Diamond limp in from the back yard. I actually laughed out loud with relief when I saw the bloody dew claw hanging at a weird angle. Messy and painful (I won't go near those things, so she's now at the e-vet with DH having it removed and bandaged), but SUCH a relief!

 

I've been SO paranoid about my other two since Gabe was diagnosed.

Valerie w/ Cash (CashforClunkers) & Lucy (Racing School Dropout)
Missing our gorgeous Miss
Diamond (Shorty's Diamond), sweet boy Gabe (Zared) and Holly (ByGollyItsHolly), who never made it home.

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Why do so many vets 'rule out' osteo without x-rays? My vet was SURE it wasn't osteo (even after the x- rays! ) because Berk wasn't limping badly enough -and we know how that ended up.

 

I feel like any time a dog has an unresolved or undiagnosed limp, you need to get x-rays before any determination on osteo can be made. A physical exam is just not enough. But that doesn't seem to happen...

 

Seems irresponsible to say it's not something before you so the diagnostics.

That's what my vet did. She ruled out osteo saying it was arthritis. Finally I saw a different vet and insisted on x-rays, only to learn that it was osteo. I strongly urge everybody to insist on x-rays. In Phene's case it didn't make a difference as far as treatment and prognosis, but I knew what I was working with and knew when to let him go.

 

ETA: Phene never limped or broke any limbs. He appeared to be in discomfort and started to lose his appetite.

Edited by robinw

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Xavi the galgo and Allen the cat. Missing Iker the galgo ?-Feb.9/19, Treasure (USS Treasure) April 12/01-May 6/13, Phoenix (Hallo Top Son) Dec.14/99-June 4/11 and Loca (Reko Swahili) Oct.9/95 - June 1/09.

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Naturally cancer is frustrating for everyone involved, there is no prescribed way to go about when why or how to deal with it. We can always look back and say what we could have done (and most of us do on a daily basis). Everyone fears every limp and dreads the OS diagnosis in whatever form it may be.

Personally we have had a number of limps over the years that resolved without issue. For me when FedX had his first event of tweaking his leg combined with screaming/crying I had a feeling what it was. Our vet (who is great with greys and had one himself) wanted at first to do a trial of NSAIDS, but I asked for an xray and there was the OS.

My point is (because i am not sure it is clear) is that all health matters whether it be human or animal need to be a combined and collaborative effort between patient and medical professional. Only we know what is 'normal' with our dogs, and I strongly believe in a 6th sense that tells us when something is wrong whereas the vets only see our animals once in awhile along with thousands of other dogs.

Trust your gut and never feel bad about taking too close a look at something suspicious, worse case is that nothing shows up or you are proved wrong, but your mind will be at ease which is worth a lot.

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Pinky has got a good amount of hair growth going-still a long way to go, but decent progress so far :)

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

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