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Archives for Cancer Awareness

Morris Animal Foundation Studies Metronomic Chemotherapy

Metronomic chemotherapy is an at-home chemotherapy regimen that involves giving frequent, low-level doses of chemotherapy pills instead of the the high doses typically given during IV chemotherapy. Metronomic chemo is often prescribed after IV chemotherapy to help keep cancer cells from spreading, but can also be given in lieu of IV chemo.

Metronomics has been around for years, but is finally gaining acceptance by veterinarians as groups like Morris Animal Foundation release studies showing how metronomics can help dogs with soft tissue scarcomas. In their 2010 study, Morris researchers:

” . . . studied whether metronomic dosing of the drug cyclophosphamide is safe and effective in treating dogs with soft-tissue sarcomas. Thirteen dogs were enrolled in the study and all but two (which experienced tumor growth and were removed to pursue other treatment options) successfully completed the treatment protocol. They identified the dosage of cyclophosphamide that resulted in a significant decrease in the number of small blood vessels within tumors, which suggests that this approach slows tumor growth by decreasing blood supply to tumors.

Because metronomic chemotherapy is associated with a far smaller incidence of side effects compared with conventional chemotherapy, is easier to administer and is less expensive, it is a very attractive treatment option for owners of dogs with cancer.”      (see Morris Animal Foundation’s report)

Metronnomics Explained

Tripawds favorite veterinarian, Dr. Pam Wiltzius, shared her knowledge about metronomics in this Discussion Forum post:

It is only recently that oncologists have started using it as part of metronomic chemotherapy.  The main side effects are on the GI tract although some dogs can have low white cell counts but this should be unlikely at low doses.

I just finished researching metronomics for Sammy and here is what I found.  Most oncologists prefer meloxicam (Metacam) as the NSAID due to it’s wide safety range but a few still prefer piroxicam. There are 5 different chemo drugs that are being tried but the only one with research behind it (so far) for this use is Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide).

The main side effect is on the bladder with some dogs getting infections and some getting sterile hemorrhagic cystitis (bleeding and pain without infection).  This is rare and usually reversible by stopping the drug. Some oncologists give a low daily dose of a diuretic (Lasix) to try and prevent this but most don’t since diuretics can affect the kidneys. My holistic vet recommends cranberry capsules as a way to prevent a UTI. . .

The other drugs used are Palladia (main limitation is cost), CCNU (possible side effects on liver so not good for your dog), Leukeran (chlorambucil), and Alkeran (melphalan).  The latter two are safe but not much info yet on efficacy but there are oncologists trying these.

Metronomics are so new that no one is sure yet what is the best protocol.  Some dogs might do well on 1 drug and others may not. It is hard to evaluate results since some dogs live a long time with amputation alone and no chemo so are these drugs really doing anything? I think it is worth a try!

When I was on metronomics in 2008, it was still a new practice that many veterinarians hadn’t heard about. We’re glad to see it catching on, thanks to funding from groups like Morris and practitioners like Dr. Wiltzius who are enthusiastically exploring this protocol for their canine bone cancer patients.

Are you on metronomic chemotherapy? Or were you? If so, what was your experience?

Recommended Reading:

Tripawds Discussion Forums: Tips and Resources: Metronomic Therapy for Canine Osteosarcoma Metastasis: Jerry’s Experience

Tripawds News Blog: Dr. Rosenberg’s Thoughts on Metronomics and Supplements

Tripawds Downloads Blog: Metronomic Protocol: A Primer for Pawrents

Dr. Dressler’s Dog Cancer Blog: Low Dose Chemotherapy and Cancer

Walk with Tripawds Heroes and Morris to Cure Canine Cancer

Morris Animal Foundation is a cause near and dear to Tripawds’ hearts.

Two members on opposite sides of the U.S. also share our fondness for Morris, and will show their love by walking in Morris’ Cure Canine Cancer Campaign’s upcoming K9 Cancer Walks in Knoxville, Tennessee and Los Gatos in Northern California.

As the oldest animal health research and advocacy group in the world, Morris’ Cure Canine Cancer Campaign is making amazing progress to prevent, treat and, ultimately, cure canine cancer.

Hop with ET Gayle in Knoxville, Tennessee

Tripawd member and bone cancer survivor extraordinaire ET Gayle and sister Charon are walking on Sunday, September 18 at Concord Park in Knoxville. Wooo hoo!

This dynamic duo is just $330 shy of meeting their fundraising goal of $1,000! Help them get there today.

Walk with this pawesome team in pawson or give any amount to help Morris continue making their remarkable strides in finding the causes and cures for canine cancers.

Join Tripawd Chloe in Los Gatos, California on October 9

One year bone cancer survivor (and counting!)  Tripawd girldog Chloe will hop with her momma Nicole on Sunday, October 9 in Los Gatos.

They are currently looking for teammates, especially so they can get a new Team Tripawds t-shirt made, so join the discussion forum topic about the Los Gatos walk and let ‘em know you’ll be there!

Let’s give a big SHOUT OUT to these pawsome members who are going the extra mile to raise money for Morris Animal Foundation’s Cure Canine Cancer Campaign!

Won’t you join them?

Great Pyrenees Blood Samples Wanted for Osteosarcoma Research

Has your Great Pyrenees dog been diagnosed with osteosarcoma bone cancer? If so, just one donated blood sample can make a huge difference in cancer research at the Van Andel Institute.

The Van Andel Institute, a biomedical research facility based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is seeking small blood samples of Great Pyrenees dogs with osteosarcoma for their  Canine Hereditary Cancer Consortium.

It’s so easy to make a difference!

Dr. Roe Froman, DVM and Senior Veterinary Research Scientist at Van Andel explains:

“If owners prefer not to take their dog in to have a blood draw (at their vet’s office), we can also send them a salivary DNA collection kit.  The kits are very easy to use, owners can do them at home, and include prepaid return mailers.”

Your Tripawd Can Help Fight Canine Cancer

Known as the CHCC, this team  is utilizing Van Andel’s newest genetic resources and technologies to screen, test, diagnose and treat hereditary canine cancers, which will eventually help them gain insight into the ways that specific cancers affect both dogs and people. Researchers are currently studying five types of cancers that affect both dogs and people:

  1. Osteosarcoma
  2. Hemangiosarcoma
  3. Lymphoma
  4. Malignant histiocytosis
  5. Melanoma (oral or digital)

Blood samples from other dogs affected by cancer are also wanted. Dr. Froman says “We are requesting samples from owners and veterinarians from affected dogs.  We can use both fresh (NOT formalinized) tumor samples, as well as blood samples.  The tumor cells are grown in the lab, and they are extremely useful for studying the biochemical pathways of the cancers, as well as the underlying DNA of the tumors.

In the case of the osteosarcoma dogs, a blood sample from a dog whose already undergone amputation (again, with a confirmed histo diagnosis), would be very useful.”

For more information about how your Tripawd can participate in this important project, please visit the Van Andel Institute’s Canine Hereditary Cancer Consortium website.

Members Help Get the Word Out for Tripawds

Every year your ongoing generosity helps us attend dog-oriented events to increase awareness about canine amputees and bone cancer.

From last November’s 2 Million Dogs event in Washington to the Fort Collins Doggie Olympics, if there’s an affordable dog event in our path, we do our best to be there.

Last week we put Tripawds Spokesdog Wyatt Ray to work at the Larimer County Humane Society 21st annual Fire Hydrant 5k Fundraiser and Pet Expo (which raised over $55,000 for dogs in need!).

Our Tripawds display included Tripawds Gear and canine fitness equipment, books, fliers,  Tripawds handmade jewelry and lots of doggie snacks.

The event was extra special because our Tripawd Pal Dakota, his sister Evelyn, Mom Shari and little brother Aidan came to help.

Who could resist sweet Dakota?

We were so hoppy to see that one of our exhibit neighbors was Doug Koktavy, author of The Legacy of Beezer and Boomer.

Doug’s book is one of the best tools for helping pawrents cope with their dog’s serious illness. Read it if you haven’t already, it’s a keeper!

Later the afternoon turned into a Tripawds reunion when Spirit Peyton’s people and little brothers Dillon and Rhys stopped by to say hello.

One of the highlights of the day was meeting Kara Pappas, Development Manager at the Larimer County Humane Society, along with her three legged rescue dog, another rear legger named Wyatt!

Kara was so happy to meet us in person, because Tripawds had been such a great resource for her when recently, a sweet, three legged lab came into the shelter.

Kara wanted to adopt him but she wasn’t sure if a tripod dog would require lots of care. She looked online, and Tripawds.com alleviated all of her concerns. Our discussion forums, blog stories, tips and resources all helped cinch her decision to give Wyatt a furever home.

Hearing stories like Kara and Wyatt’s are why we exist…

To show the world that canine amputees can have a good life and really aren’t any different from quadpawds.

And it’s because of the pawrents like you who contribute your time and financial support that we can do it; from taking the time to share your Tripawd experiences and offer support to new members, to shopping through our blogs and our Etsy store.

Every click, every dollar you spend on or through here makes the world a better place for three legged dogs.

Thank you so much!

As part of our ongoing commitment to show you where your financial support goes, here’s what this event cost Tripawds:

Exhibit Space: $75
Tent Canopy: Borrowed
Sales Tax Permit: $8
Total: $83

 

Dog Cancer Clinical Trials Help You, Help Others

If your Tripawd is battling cancer, did you know canine cancer clinical trials can help provide medications, reduce medical expenses and contribute to cancer research for dogs and humans alike?

Clinical trails help doctors in the medical and veterinary fields investigate methods to improve detection and treatment of cancer, as well as improve the quality of care each patient receives.

Because many dog cancers act similarly to the way comparable cancers behave in humans (especially osteosarcoma), dogs are ideal candidates to test promising new treatments. Many of today’s mainstream treatments for humans were often first proven beneficial in dogs through clinical trials.

Tripawd Hunter recently reported that she is participating in an Ohio State University osteosarcoma clinical trial at her oncology clinic in Los Angeles, the Veterinary Cancer Group.

While most trials are conducted on-site at a veterinary teaching hospital, more and more forward-thinking oncology groups are partnering with vet schools and cancer researchers to conduct dog cancer clinical trials directly at their clinics. In addition, groups like Animal Clinical Investigation exist to match veterinary school clinical trials with veterinary oncology clinics to help more dogs than ever.

How Clinical Trials Work

According to the Perseus Foundation’s Clinical Trial Handbook (click here to download in PDF form), clinical trials are conducted at four distinct phases. In each phase, scientists seek answers to questions like: What is the correct dosage and use of the treatment? Does the new treatment have anti-cancer effects (i.e., does it shrink tumors)? How does the new treatment compare with existing ones? And finally, they test the new treatment against at least two established treatment regimens, by randomly assigning each one to a given group of patient.

There are often many requirements to participate in a clinical trial, which may include frequent visits to the vet and following restrictions on supplements and foods. In every instance, the dog’s quality of life is placed first.

In return for following the requirements, dogs get to receive things like a promising new drug and/or cutting-edge treatment. Their humans often (but not always) receive discounts on treatment costs.

For More Information:

Thanks for Making Tripawds a Top 10 Team at Morris Cure Canine Cancer Walk

Thank you so much to everyone on the pawesome Team Tripawds crew!

You helped us raise a whopping $650 for the Morris Animal Foundation’s Cure Canine Cancer Walk in Elk Grove, CA.

Collectively the walk raised nearly $60,000 to help Morris continue their impawtant work to help end this terrible disease.

Your belief in Morris’ Cure Canine Cancer Campaign propelled our amazing team onto a list of the Top 10 fundraisers!

We’re hoppy to report that this is the second time we’ve made it into their top 10 list for a Cure Canine Cancer Walk.

If you were there, we’d love to see more pictures. Please post them in this Discussion Forum topic.

Many thanks to everyone on our team, together we are making a difference!

Shout outs to the 2011 Team Tripawds crew: Neil & Margaret Riley, Diane & John Hollenbeck, Andrew Rockriver, James Starr, Lelise Pierce, Brad Burkholder, Tina Wong, Mary James, Gina Van Klompenberg, Christian Powers, Julie Horenstein, Anna Holmes, Seanne Moulton, Catherine Murray, Karen Riley and Erin Schultz.

 

OSU Greyhound Health and Wellness Conference This Saturday

With apologies for the late notice, we just learned about this impawtant event for Greyhound pawrents. Since bone cancer is one of the leading diseases affecting Greys, we’re sure that our Ohio-based members will find this conference beneficial to attend.

This Saturday, May 7, the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine and the OSU Greyhound Program is presenting the Second Annual OSU Greyhound Health and Wellness Conference.

This event will present valuable medical and surgical information for Greyhound owners, adopters, trainers, and for veterinarians involved in the care of Greyhounds.

Topics will include common diseases in Greyhounds, separation anxiety, and Greyhound genetics. among others. Dr. Guillermo Cuoto, one of the leading doctors researching cancers in Greyhounds, will present. There will be a joint morning session for the whole group; the afternoon sessions will be separate for owners/adopters and for veterinarians.

Download the brochure here to make plans to attend. If you can’t, you can follow the OSU program on their Facebook page!

Last Call to Join Team Tripawds on 5/7 Cure Canine Cancer Walk

Team Tripawds is in the final stretches of recruitment for the Morris Animal Foundation Walk to Cure Canine Cancer, next Saturday, May 7 in Elk Grove, Northern California.

Walk with us!

Whether you walk in pawson or in spirit from the comfort of your home, you can rest assured knowing that the hard-earned money you gave to the  Cure Canine Cancer Walk will go toward funding the work of oldest and most respected animal health research organizations in the world, the Morris Animal Foundation.

Our goal is to raise $500 and we’re almost there. We just need $155 to reach it!

Learn why we support Morris Animal Foundation. We’re sure you’ll agree that they’re pawesome.

Show Your Team Pride

And remember, there’s a whole new line of Team Tripawds gear to wear on the big day!

Join Team Tripawds today!

Join Team Tripawds and Morris Animal Foundation on May 7

Come one, come all! In just a few weeks, Team Tripawds is once again kickin’ cancer’s butt at the Morris Animal Foundation Walk to Cure Canine Cancer, in Elk Grove, Northern California.

Northern California Team TripawdsJoin us on Saturday, May 7, 2011

Funds raised at the Cure Canine Cancer Walks go toward funding the work of oldest and most respected animal health research organizations in the world, the Morris Animal Foundation.

We’ve got three team members now and we would love to have more members walk with us. Our goal is to raise $500 and we’re not there yet, so sign up today.

Why We Support Morris

We wholeheartedly support Morris Animal Foundation because of the huge impact their Cure Canine Cancer Campaign has had on the lives of our beloved dogs.

Since 1948, Morris has funded over 148 succesful canine cancer studies, such as;

  • Research that showed how bone cancer spreads
  • Ways to custom tailor chemotherapy
  • How chemo resistant cancer cells behave

The Morris Canine Cancer Walks help raise money so Morris can continue these breakthrough discoveries.

Join us in Elk Grove, or at Home in Your PJs!

This walk will take place in Elk Grove, near Sacramento. Anybody is welcome to join our team on-site, but remember you can also walk virtually from the comfort of your own home.

The walks are always so much fun! For our last team effort, Nicole, Chloe’s Mom, designed this fantastic shirt for everyone.

Team Tripawds has participated in every walk since they began a couple of years ago, and we would sincerely appreciate any kind of support you can give toward this effort.

Let’s make this year’s Northern California walk bigger and better than ever so we can reach our goal of curing canine cancer for good!

Join Team Tripawds today!

Tripawd Talk Radio: Ask an Oncologist This Saturday

As we mentioned here in our Tripawd Talk Radio discussion, we’re having renowned veterinary oncologist Dr. Johnny Chretin of VCA West Los Angeles as our special guest this Saturday:

VCA L.A. Oncology Vet Dept. StaffDate: Saturday, 02/26/2011
Time: 3:30 Pacific / 6:30 Eastern
Length: 30 min

Call-in Number: (310) 388-9739

Dr. Chretin will be taking your calls about the presentation and diagnosis of bone cancer in dogs and the various treatment protocols available.

We’ll also talk about the innovative bone marrow transplant program Dr. Chretin is leading, for dogs battling lymphoma.

Ask Your Questions Ahead of Time

Please post your questions for Dr. Chretin before Saturday, here in the Forums.

About Dr. Chretin

Dr. Chretin received his DVM from Colorado State University and completed an internship in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery at North Carolina State University. Johnny then completed a 3 year residency in Oncology at Tufts University in 2002 prior to joining VCA West Los Angeles Animal Hospital. His interests are in novel chemotherapeutics and strategies to minimize their toxicities. In addition, Dr. Chretin is heading up VCA West Los Angeles’ bone marrow transplant program for dogs which began treating patients last July.

Remember, ask your questions here in the Forums and we’ll be sure to ask the good doctor during Tripawd Talk Radio, this Saturday at 3:30 pm Pacific, 6:30 pEastern.

Disclaimer: Information provided at Tripawd Talk Radio and Tripawds.com is not a substitute for medical care by your personally selected, qualified veterinary professional. Always seek the advice of a licensed veterinarian prior to making any medical decisions or undergoing treatments or therapies, or if you have questions about your dog’s health. We advise against any medical decisions made without the direct involvement of your veterinary team. Tripawds.com is a project of Agreda Communications, which is not responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any form of damages whatsoever resulting from the use (or misuse) of information contained in or implied by the information available at Tripawd Talk Radio or Tripawds.com.

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Best Gear for Tripawds

Find the most helpful items for three-legged dogs by checking out Tripawds Gear product reviews and demonstration videos. Here you will find the popular Ruff Wear harness, and Bark'n Boots, or FitPAWS training equipment and much more!

Tripawds Nutrition Blog

Learn about the best dog supplements and healthy pet diets for all Tripawds, with or without cancer. Save on dog medications, healthy food, and learn about K9 Immunty, Power Mushrooms, Dasuquin, and other recommended canine supplements.

Gifts for Tripawd Lovers

Show your Tripawd Pride with three legged dog t-shirts, cards, caps, mugs, memorial gifts, and more! Follow the Gifts Blog for new item announcements, or browse the Tripawds Gift Shop directly. Get your Tripawds bandanna here. You name your price!

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