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Chloe is an almost 8 year old Corgi. She was recently diagnosed with a sarcoma on her left scapula. It still remains a mystery as to what type of cancer it is. The vet has recommended amputating her limb. I'm wondering how long has everyone's dog survived after amputation and chemo. Has anyone had their furbaby for more than a year after amputation?
25 April 2007
Hi Chloe and family, welcome. We're so glad you posted, we kept missing you in the Tripawds Chat yesterday. I was wondering what Chloe's story was, thanks for explaining.
Has an oncologist looked at Chloe yet? If not, keep in mind that two opinions can make all the difference in a situation where the cancer is TBD. Also, is she on pain medication to manage the pain she is most likely experiencing?
Meanwhile, about survival rates. Those numbers really vary on so many factors, including the type and aggressiveness of the cancer. Once the leg is gone and the tumor is "graded" your oncologist can tell you what the odds are for her longevity, as well as guide you on what kind of treatment plans are available.
One thing to keep in mind is that statistics for survival rates are really just guesses. They are based on studies of dogs and not one of them was Chloe. Just as humans are all different in their existing health, how their bodies tackle illness, etc., so are animals. Each is so unique and nobody on the planet can predict exactly how long each will live, with or without cancer.
Some members who were diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer defied the odds and surprised everyone by living much longer than vets expected. Our own Jerry was among them. He was only supposed to survive six months and he lived 2 years (and we opted out of chemo). Others have gone much longer. And on the other paw, some have not lived anywhere near what the vets had hoped for. It's all a big crapshoot really.
The important thing to remember is that dogs don't keep calendars. They don't care if they get one day or one million. To them, it's each moment with us that matters most. They don't dwell on tomorrow or what ifs, they don't know what a lab report says. As long as we focus on giving them the best, most pain-free life we can, that's all they ever want. One of the greatest lessons we can learn from all this is to live in the moment as they do, or to "Be More Dog" as we call it around here (click on the link for our recording about how to do that).
Does this help at all? Stay tuned for more feedback from others and don't forget to check out Jerry's Required Reading List for lots of insight, as well as The Dog Cancer Survival Guide, which is an indispensable book for coping with a diagnosis.
22 February 2013
Corgis are soooo darn cute!!!! 'Cannot wait to see pictures!!
My post will be short because the best "support" I can offer is to read Jerry's reply over and over and over until it really resonates with you!! 🙂 Really! Write it down!
All your pup cares zbout is having a pain free life and being next to your side for spoiling and loving!!! 🙂 Days in a calendar mean nothing to him. The bliss of being by your side without pain means everything! Knowing that you are making every day CHLOE DAY makes her a happy girl!! 🙂 .
Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!
PS....One of our Super Stars around here was Stubborn Pug Maggie. She was given a "statistic"'of approximately six months. She didn't listen! Four years later she crossed over with something different!!
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!
I have gotten 3 opinions. The most recent is from an oncologist at Tufts University. I live in Connecticut on the Massachusetts border. We are taking her to our local vet (vet #1) on Monday to get more xrays. Specifically of her chest area to see if it has spread. During our 2nd opinion, the Vet specialist in Rhode Island took the 2nd set of xrays and didn't see any signs of spreading. So I'm hopeful for the same results. Although they did tell us that it doesn't mean that cancer isn't there, just that there aren't enough cells there to show up in the xrays.
I'm so torn as to whether or not to keep her medicated with the Gabapentin and Rimadyl or do the amputation. Chloe is a very energetic girl who always wants to play. But I know eventually if we don't remove the limb that she is going start to slow down. Her appetite is great, so that is good.
It's the hardest decision I've ever had to make.
25 April 2007
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