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Hi Tripawds! Loki's ditching his "bad paw" Monday!
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7 July 2017 - 2:21 am
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Hi everyone, just wanted to say hi to our new Tripawd community and share my story! I'm Loki, an 8-10ish year old pitbull mix, and my mommy says I'm her best friend. I picked her to be my mom when she came to the shelter in January, 2012, and we've spent almost all our time together ever since.

Although I do love adventuring with Mommy and Daddy (Brittnie and Alex),  I've mostly been a couch potato thanks to lasting effects of untreated Lyme disease when I was younger... okay, and maybe some laziness too.  I also have an old habit of paw licking that Mom says has cropped up throughout my life for all sorts of things, from Lyme pain to allergies to boredom. Sometimes I don't even know why I lick!

Unfortunately, when my front right leg started to hurt really bad, I couldn't figure out what to do about it, so I just started licking again... and then, since I was licking the bad paw (couldn't reach the ouchy spot), I started licking the other legs! Pretty quickly, my paws were all red and I was limping worse than ever.

Mommy and Daddy were really concerned, so they brought me to the vet. There, my vet wondered if my allergies were to blame. After a few weeks of various treatments, everyone decided they weren't. Next trip, we found out that my vet was moving away, and I started to see another vet. He listened when Daddy said that I seemed to be licking and limping on the right front paw more than the others. He agreed to do an xray, but it came out negative. He suspected I had strained the paw, and gave me pain medicine (carprofen) we knew worked for me with other minor injuries. That helped, but it didn't completely fix anything either. When my old cat sister went to the vet in January, 2017, my parents brought me with them because they didn't feel quite right about my visible discomfort and weird behavior.

By then, I was antsy and unenthusiastic about life, and had started gnawing on the bad paw... it really hurt, and I was depressed nobody seemed to have a better solution! The vet did a full assessment of the paw, including aspiration for cytology. This was negative. Sitting in the office, we all agreed that something was wrong, but nobody knew what. The vet thought maybe I had been having anxiety about my crazy little brother, who Mommy and Daddy rescued against my better judgment around the same time my leg started hurting. The vet agreed to another xray anyway, just to be certain before my parents would agree to put me on any meds.

As it turned out, the xray was negative, BUT while the vet tech was in the back room with me, he couldn't help getting investigative. He pushed all over my paw, and then started to push on my leg. Suddenly, he pushed on the bad spot and I screamed! Not only did it hurt horribly, but he finally understood! We rushed back to Mommy, Daddy, and the vet to show them for sure that I wasn't stressed about my brother after all (annoying as he is!). The vet did cytology on the bad spot, and soon enough he returned to announce that I had CANCER! We were all shocked! Within days, I went for a biopsy. During surgery, the vet was able to remove a 2.5" tumor that had been hiding, wrapped around my medial nerve near the carpal joint. He felt hopeful, but was also guarded about my options until pathology results came back. In the meantime, Mommy met Amber, a Tripawd Hero who visits her job as a therapy dog. Amber and her mom introduced us to Tripawds and told us that, if I did need amputation, I'd still have a great chance for a great quality of life.

A few days later, we learned that good margins of resection and a diagnosis of a grade 2 hemangiopericytoma led our vet to believe that additional treatment didn't seem necessary. We all hoped for a surgical cure, but after surgery I continued to lick, gnaw, and limp due to surgery-related neuropathy that didn't seem very responsive to medication. Repeat cytology in April showed no cancer cells, so we were forced to accept that I'd probably be that way forever. Amputation due to neuropathy wasn't an option, although I gladly would have given the bad leg away!

We were all begrudgingly starting to adjust to our new normal when, last weekend, the old pain started up along with a visible lump right under my carpal pad. When Mommy walked by, I held up my leg to show her. She took my paw in her hand and asked, "what are you trying to tell me?" She started to massage my leg, and then she noticed the lump. Distressed, Mommy and Daddy got me an appointment with the vet as quickly as possible.

The morning of July 3rd, cytology found the same cancer cells as before, indicating that the hemangiopericytoma had returned. Given that this type of soft tissue sarcoma generally recurs more entrenched and locally aggressive, Mommy and Daddy were hesitant to attempt another resection without chemo and/or radiation. They were wondering if maybe I would be better off without the stupid bad leg after all. The vet referred us to an excellent radiation oncologist for more info, and he called Mommy and Daddy that same afternoon.

The oncologist expressed similar concerns, worrying about the additional neuropathy or functional loss a nexessary pre-treatment debulking could cause. He also felt that, given one recurrence, even if I endured the debulking, 14-16 sessions of radiation, anz maybe chemo, the cancer could still return. In his words, "if a radiation oncologist is recommending no radiation, that should say something". He also said that, given the location and type of cancer I have, an amputation offers a 95% chance of cure (assuming my pre-op met checks are negative of course). 

So all that said, my mommy and daddy scheduled me for July 10th to finally cut this bad leg off once and for all! They officially joined Tripawds and have been vigilantly working to figure out what things I'll need. I keep telling them I'll be better than ever, but they aren't totally convinced. They bought me a bunch of shirts, accumulated old towels and rags, got two post-amputation compression shirts, and got me a sweet Big Barker Bed! They made a list of questions and medications to discuss with the vet, and got me special food that I really wish they'd share with me now! They've even been figuring out a special potty area for me next to the house so I won't have to go far away. I already have Ruffwear boots, and I hear a harness is in the works! They're working on grippy flooring, but haven't quite decided on that yet. For me, it's a countdown to new beginnings... Thanks to Tripawds, my new doggy mantra is "hopping on three legs is better than limping on four"!

On behalf of Mommy and Daddy, I want to say thanks to all of you for your world of support, tips, advice, and stories of success. I'll see you on the tripawd side of life this Monday! 

Hugs and puppy kisses,

Loki, Brittnie, and Alex (my stinky brother Phineas wanted to join the group, but I told him he's not allowed!)

🐾 I'm  Loki, the cutest guy around! 🐶

 I've been a tripawd since July 10, 2017, when I rid my life of a hemangiopericytoma! My mom, Brittnie, does most of the typing, so say hi to us both any time!

The Rainbow Bridge

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7 July 2017 - 9:27 am
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Hey Loki and family, welcome! We are so glad you're here (but sorry you had to lose that leg!). Your future posts won't need approval so don't be shy.

What a long, challenging situation you all endured (even before the cancer diagnosis). It's interesting, our Jerry had a similar kind of situation in that nobody could detect his cancer tumor because it was up in his shoulder and growing inward. Everyone poked and prodded for months, until they figured it out. I'm so glad you found that nice Amber and discovered our community.

Sounds like your recovery will go smoothly now that you're prepared. A big "3-paws up!" to your people, the are doing everything possible to help you have a great life on three! If there is anything we can do just bark at us OK?

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
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7 July 2017 - 11:40 am
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Thanks so much, Spirit Jerry! It's nice to be in good company with all of you! We'll keep you updated!

🐾 I'm  Loki, the cutest guy around! 🐶

 I've been a tripawd since July 10, 2017, when I rid my life of a hemangiopericytoma! My mom, Brittnie, does most of the typing, so say hi to us both any time!

Atlanta, GA
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7 July 2017 - 11:45 am
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Welcome to the best community nobody ever wanted to join Loki.  That mean tumor just wasn't showing itself for you and your pawrents, was it?  But how smart of you to show your momma the second time.

I was the mom to a great pittbull mix named Brendol who lost her leg to bone cancer over 4 years ago.  And shortly after joining Tripawds, we met and adopted a silly husky Tripawd named Adelaide.  As I write this, I'm working from my couch and listening to the loud snoring of my 15 year old chow mix who is currently recovering from a debulking of a probable hermangiopericytoma on her arm. Her age and health make her not a candidate for the safer option of amputation.  We have simply debulked the tumor in hopes of buying her time for her old age to outlive the tumor.  Beside, I think if I ended up having a 3rd tripawd I would get a bad reputation.

I sure hope your surgery and recover go great.  Brendol had lost a front right leg at age 12 and she had a great recovery.  Her type of cancer however was not a great one and it metastisized after 6 months.  Feel free to check out her blog if you would like some inspiration on recovery. http://brendol......ipawds.com

Karma and the pack

Adelaide is a young tripawd Husky, from an injury.  Her amp was on 10/1/12.  She has 4 sisters, Aissa (a senior border collie/chow), Maggie May (a puppy Great Pyrenees), Mathilde and Morrigan and 1 baby brother, Bagheera.  We are all watched over by our angel Brendol, who was dx with OSA 1/30/13, amp on 2/6/13, and left us on 8/20/13.

PitaPata - Personal picturePitaPata Dog tickers

 You can read their stories at http://adelaide.tripawds.com and http://brendol.tripawds.com
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7 July 2017 - 12:05 pm
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Karma, thanks for sharing your pups' stories! We've been so encouraged by all the success stories of older Tripawds, even when quality vastly surpasses quantity of life. We're feeling really fortunate that we arent facing osteosarcoma at this point. It sounds like you're making a reasonable choice for Aissa. We've been told that debulking hemangiopericytomas is often a great palliative option, especially for older dogs who aren't suffering from pain issues or a recurrence. 

🐾 I'm  Loki, the cutest guy around! 🐶

 I've been a tripawd since July 10, 2017, when I rid my life of a hemangiopericytoma! My mom, Brittnie, does most of the typing, so say hi to us both any time!

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7 July 2017 - 12:23 pm
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Hi Loki,

What a sweet boy you are!  I kept acting like it was my paw that hurt, too - for months, until finally the vet pushed on my shoulder and I I let him know THAT'S THE PROBLEM! I'm so happy you have such a high chance of a cure!  You'll be hopping around in no time.  I'd like to see some pictures of you when you have time.  

Welcome, Loki!

Zatoichiheart (and his Mom Tracy) 

Former neglect case/shelter dog, adopted in 2009.  Read my story hereElder statesman of Richard & Tracy's pack!  

Diagnosis of osteosarcoma of the left proximal humerus on Oct. 29, 2016 ~ Palliative Radiation & Zoledronate Nov. 2016 thru June 2017 ~ Left foreleg amputation on June 29, 2017 ~ Homeopathy with Dr. Loops starting July 2017.

Virginia
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7 July 2017 - 3:53 pm
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Welcome Loki, the cutest guy around!!!'' Now with that teaser, we must have pictures!!!

You are doing an EXCELLENT job of getting your research done and checking into the best options for Loki!!

Glad Karma posted as she has some good insight....even if she is "staeting to get a reputatio "...because we already know at some point she will adopt another tripawd! That's what caring and compassionate people lime Karma do!heart

STAY CONNECTED! We are all here for you and can answer any questions as they comemup. Recovery is NO picnic, bjt once recovery takes place and Loki's slarkle comes back you, and she, will be so thrilled!!

Tha ks for sharing your journey so far. It will be of great he@p to anyone in a similar situation.

Love and hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Virginia
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7 July 2017 - 3:56 pm
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And btw,Phineas, fpur leggers are allowed to join the family. You don't jave ro just have three legs....so keep that fourth, okay? 🙂 We want pictures of you too! 🙂

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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8 July 2017 - 9:59 am
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You are all so nice! For those looking to see my adorable face, I just posted my first blog entry introducing my family! Still figuring out the kinks, but I'm hoping to get everything looking spiffy. Up soon will be entries about my background and my cancer diagnosis pre-Tripawd. 🙂

🐾 I'm  Loki, the cutest guy around! 🐶

 I've been a tripawd since July 10, 2017, when I rid my life of a hemangiopericytoma! My mom, Brittnie, does most of the typing, so say hi to us both any time!

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11 July 2017 - 2:15 pm
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Hi everyone! I’m home from the hospital and doing great! Thanks for all the support and pawsitivity! Mommy will update our blog later today!

🐾 I'm  Loki, the cutest guy around! 🐶

 I've been a tripawd since July 10, 2017, when I rid my life of a hemangiopericytoma! My mom, Brittnie, does most of the typing, so say hi to us both any time!

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11 July 2017 - 4:51 pm
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Welcome home, Loki!  Rest up so you can heal and get back to your happy life!

Tracy & Zatoichiheart

Former neglect case/shelter dog, adopted in 2009.  Read my story hereElder statesman of Richard & Tracy's pack!  

Diagnosis of osteosarcoma of the left proximal humerus on Oct. 29, 2016 ~ Palliative Radiation & Zoledronate Nov. 2016 thru June 2017 ~ Left foreleg amputation on June 29, 2017 ~ Homeopathy with Dr. Loops starting July 2017.

Here and Now

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11 July 2017 - 8:46 pm
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Welcome home Loki! Take it easy for a while and keep us posted.

Virginia
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11 July 2017 - 9:10 pm
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LOKI IS HOME!!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

TRY and get some rest! You may have a few rough days and nights ahead.

We're here for you and with yiu, okay?

Hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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