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Recently diagnosed osteosarcoma - 8 year old Newfoundland
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Member Since:
11 September 2016
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2 October 2016 - 1:20 pm
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Hi everyone,

Update on Luna - we thought last Wednesday we were going to lose her. She wouldn't get up, wouldn't eat, wouldn't take her pills. After a lot of coaxing we got her to do the minimum. Upped her meds to the max (tromodil, carprofen, gabapentin) and she's been a little better after getting used to them (she was really groggy and out of it at first). Friday she was somewhat herself and we could see there will be a few more days but we are taking it a day at a time. There is some enjoyment but not much movement. She's been coughing, gurgling a little when making some noises, and breathing heavy sometimes. Just eating the good stuff these days, none of her usual kibble and won't take some treats she used to enjoy (actually she used to eat most everything before). The limp is really bad and I wonder if we should have amputated but with the lung symptoms I am thinking it's pretty late in the game here. We sit outside a lot and enjoy the nice fall weather. I'm going to work as little as possible.

@hester it actually was an ortho surgeon we consulted with since the wait was much longer for an oncologist.

@Claire, I'm not sure how to take your post...although you are saying to not second guess I feel like that is what you are saying? Maybe I'm just feeling like I made the wrong choice, or I should have seen it sooner and done something, and am reading too far into it. But I appreciate the fact that this is an amputation site and I probably should not have posted until I was sure of what we were going to do. With the info I had initially, that it had not spread to her lungs, we were going to amputate.

Ugh, this sucks so much. I will make a plan with the vet. We've been talking daily until this weekend.

April

Livermore, CA




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2 October 2016 - 1:56 pm
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Hi April,

You and Luna are welcome here, you become part of our family from your first post.  We have had several dogs here that never had an amp for whatever reason, we consider them honorary tripawds just like Luna.  The cancer journey is hard no matter how many legs you have, we are here to help and support you during this very difficult and emotional time.

You have done your best for Luna and that is all that is important. Focus on your girl and treasure each of these precious moments.  So many of us have walked this path and understand how you feel.

Karen and Spirit Maggie

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

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2 October 2016 - 2:06 pm
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As Karen said, you and Luna are part of the Tripawds family no matter what.  Amputation is not an option for everyone.  We all come here to learn, and for support, no matter what decision we ultimately make, or if we are even given the opportunity to make a decision.  For now, enjoy the time you have together.  Sit outside, eat whatever she wants, cuddle and hug and take some selfies together.  Even those of us who were able to amputate did not get any guarantees on time remaining.  Be together with her every moment that you are able.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

Minneapolis, MN
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2 October 2016 - 2:17 pm
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Wow, so, so sorry the impact of metastasis to the lungs seems so, well, impactful.  Yeah, the Onco calendar at the U of MN is a challenge, for sure. 

And yes, you belong here whether amputation made sense for Luna or not. We are all in this together.

Please, I know it is so easy to do so, but do not take on the guilt of "not seeing it sooner".  I think Claire means what she says - don't second guess based on what others have done or what was right for another dog or what the outcome was for another dog.  

I am pretty certain that I and 4 vets in my regular practice AND the U of MN specialty vets missed Pofi's diagnosis for a full year.  We all knew something was going on - but there were red herrings and distractions and despite nagging suspicion on my part and for my main vet's part, we missed it when it (in retrospect) likely started, and at 9 months prior to actual diagnosis.  The same ortho surgeon vet looked at the same "evidence", but Pofi was SO stoic about the pain, the pieces did not come together for her till months later when she saw him again.  Even then, she expected it to be the size of a marble and was shocked - possibly even shaken - when it turned out to be the size of a baseball. And the pathology after amp showed us all that it was surely there all along and certainly at the time of that first consult.  

But I can't control any of that.  I did try.  Vets did diagnostics, looked him over, poked and prodded.  He just did not really give those clear pain indicators till much later....

While I wish it were different, I had to move past that and concentrate on the moments we have now.  Just as you are doing.  Sitting outside and enjoying the crisp, cool weather and the scents on the breeze.  Just enjoying each other's companionship.  She does not judge you - this cancer is not your fault.  

Please give her some love from me...

Lisa, Minneapolis

On October 27, 2016, nearly 6 months after amputation, and 18 months since his cancer likely started, we lost Pofi to a recurrence of Soft Tissue Sarcoma in his spine quite suddenly.  His canine sister also succumbed to cancer on March 1, 2019 - we lavished her with our love in the interim, but life was never quite the same without her only real canine friend. Cliff kitty had to leave us, too, suddenly, in August 2019. Lucia kitty grieved all these losses, but helped us welcome two new Lurchers into our home and our lives, Shae and Barley.

Blog: Pofi, Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Amputation

Kansas City
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9 September 2016
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2 October 2016 - 2:46 pm
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Please, I know it is so easy to do so, but do not take on the guilt of "not seeing it sooner".  I think Claire means what she says - don't second guess based on what others have done or what was right for another dog or what the outcome was for another dog. 

That's exactly what I meant short and succinctly.

Also, it was a little unclear whether you were / are committed to one path.  And basically, I wanted to convey that if you were still in decision phases, whatever you ultimately decided is perfectly okay and don't look back.  There was a little back and forth on my part because I wasn't understanding where you were, ultimately, with your plan 🙂  Apologies for creating confusion.

My heart goes out to you and Luna.  I know this is a difficult time for you.  Please try to focus on her positive moments and enjoy them as often and as much as possible.  Let her make you laugh again.  Let her kisses warm your heart.  And for goodness sake, treasure the clumps of hair she's dumping everywhere this time of year!  LOL.  I think all I do currently is sweep up after my Newf.  Oh, and feed her all the good stuff that makes her drool so you can get a funny picture.  Have fun with her, my dear.

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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2 October 2016 - 4:50 pm
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This part of the journey is sooooo hard, moreso on us humans than our dogs. They were blessed with the magic of living in the moment with no worries! We humans...not so much.

As you can see, we have already fallen in love with Luna a dd your ARE family, period, end of story! Outsiders may say we put the "fun" in dysfunctional!

This awful piece of crap disease has plotted its course (or tried to anyway). Once metastasis to 'the lungs take hold with outward signs of discomfort, amputation is just not an option anymore (obviously, there are exceptions, just don't know of any). We have seen mets form in a matter of weeks from one xray to the next. We DEFINITELY have seen many scenarios here was amputation was just not a viable option for so many reasons.

We were able to still offer support and love when needed most...because we understand like no others can. Your love for Luna brought you here...and Luna brought you to us so we could help hold you up in days you want to crumble.

But you won't crumble today because your love for Luna is sooooo strong....so unbelievably strong...you will stay focused on the now! You will make svery second count! And you will spoil and spoil and spoil every minute!!

And I'll just touch on this. As far as making a "plan" with the vet, this is what I did. I wanted them to undersw the house visit woukd be a celebratory one. They were ro come in upbeat with all"tools" hidden. We would give treats and applause and constant chatter about what a good girl my Happy Hannah is! I had a plate of steak, some ice cream, some M&Ms, srinky liverwurst and her most favorite delicacy ibn the world...DEER POOP! Yep, a scoop of deer poop fresh from my field that morning! I didn't necessarily scheule a "day" per se during that conversation. It was more along the lines of days that would be off the table in the upcoming weeks. I also k ew ahead I woukd want cremation...I woukd tape a lock of my hair over her heart along with a picture of us, and I would keep some of her fur. I share this nkt to make you sad (although I'm sitting here crying), but so that you can get it taken care of and back to focusing on Luna!!

Yes, one day at a time. I think you may find that, as the meds settle in, she may indeed start feeling better. And yes, the Gaba can make her groggy, so you maybe seeing some of that. The important thing is managing her pain. If that seems to be working, then you can ask about lowering the dose without compromising her quality. A fine line indeed.

Cheese pizza, cheeseburgers, cupcakes, ice cream, chicken....oh my....this Luna is going to love all this spoiling!!

PLEASE STAY CONNECTED!!! We also have a TRIPAWDS HELPLINE 1 844 TRIPAWDS. We've been where you are. It sucks. We understandheart

Now go smooch that ADORABLE Newfi mug for us...even if it has deer poop drool on it!!

Surrounding you with 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!

Member Since:
15 July 2016
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3 October 2016 - 9:39 pm
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Hi,

We did the amputation 10 weeks ago, had clear lungs, spleen, liver, and lymph. We now have lungs full of metastasis and are planning our end of days. It sucks.  I cry at the darndest things these days.  I cancelled my business trip for this week, and my husband turned around halfway to the airport this morning and cancelled his. We were sure today was the day.  But it wasn't.  Tomorrow?  Next week?  How will I know?  

I'm writing to let you know you're not alone, and certainly no second guessing. Amputation isn't a miracle cure. Even with perfect pre-amp labs, we got 10ish weeks. Not a year. And it cost a pretty penny. As a 50-something engineer with 25+ years at the same company, I had the financial freedom to take that risk. Not everyone does.  And human families have to come first in my opinion.

Good luck over the next days or weeks. Spoil Luna. Feel her fur. Snuggle when you can. Look in her eyes to find out when it's the right time. No regrets. Luna doesn't have any. That's what I'm trying to do with Milo.  

Peace,

Jenifer & Milo  

P.S.  Milo ran outside at full speed a few times today to bark at passersby and the usual ghosts in the yard. And he ate for the first time in days. After a rough morning, today wasn't the day. 

Virginia




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22 February 2013
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3 October 2016 - 9:47 pm
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Jennifer, to hear Milo is still being Milo makes me smile. It's such a testament to the fact that none of the " medical sruff" means squat to Milo! He's doing things Milo's way!!heart

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!

Member Since:
23 May 2016
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4 October 2016 - 3:08 am
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Gosh this thread has had me in tears so many times (and I'm sat at my desk at work, everyone must think I'm an emotional wreck!) But it is a day we all have or will face. I chose to do amputation and Chemo, but as its been said, its not a miracle cure. I try to prepare myself for the final days, think about how I want them to be but as Zuki is my first dog I haven't had to be in this position yet with any of my animals. So reading your stories really does help with the reality of check of it all. I am going to need to suck it up and be strong for my boy just like all of you have been - your all inspirational and a wonderful source of comfort.

April, you are doing an amazing job with Luna, it seems you have been dealt a particularly rough hand and for that I am sorry but please don't doubt yourself, you have done everything you can, with all the love and passion you have always shown Luna - that's all she knows and for that you should be proud.

Keep connected, your story will help so many. 3 or 4 legs its still crappy cancer and therefore is totally relevant for this site.

Much love Karis and Zuki

Zuki Wuggafer 30/09/06 - 11/11/16. Right hind tripawd due to Osteosarcoma. He had a strong 5 and half months as a tripawd but unfortunately a secondary issue with his spine ended our battle. He loved life, loved our family and was the best dog I could ever ask for. Truly my first love, forever in my thoughts and heart.

Read our story: http://zuki.tripawds.com/

Member Since:
23 May 2016
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4 October 2016 - 3:11 am
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Jenifer and Milo - I've followed your story and I am so sorry you find yourself here so soon, but stay strong, stay solid and smoother the gorgeous Milo in so much love.

I'm thinking of you all xxx

Zuki Wuggafer 30/09/06 - 11/11/16. Right hind tripawd due to Osteosarcoma. He had a strong 5 and half months as a tripawd but unfortunately a secondary issue with his spine ended our battle. He loved life, loved our family and was the best dog I could ever ask for. Truly my first love, forever in my thoughts and heart.

Read our story: http://zuki.tripawds.com/

Member Since:
11 September 2016
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10 October 2016 - 9:49 pm
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Hi everyone,

Last Monday, Luna told us it was time. Sunday, when I wrote my last post, she was ok but not moving much. Throughout the day she quit bearing weight on her bad leg and was having trouble getting around with just the other three. She was very reluctant to eat that night. Monday am she wouldn't get up, eat even the very best food, or take her pills. She had been breathing heavily that morning. We could see it. They say you know and we knew. We didn't think it would be that quick and weren't quite prepared. Moving a 125 lb dog who was mostly unable to move herself was one of the worst experiences of my life. I just have to tell myself that her pain is gone. At first it was unbearable. Took a few days to not constantly be on the verge of tears. I keep thinking I hear her. She's not there to do all her routines like wait in the bedroom when I take a shower. Sweeping up all brown fur from my other dog, Dexter, made me burst into tears Friday. Dexter is incredibly low maintenance and it feels so weird to just have him. Thank you all for your support. I'm glad this site exists and wish you the best. 

April

Livermore, CA




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10 October 2016 - 10:40 pm
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I'm sorry April.  I know it was very hard but you gave your girl one last, unselfish gift by letting her go on ahead.

After so much intense care dealing with a sick dog their absence is even more pronounced, even with another dog in the house there is still a loss of purpose.

I'm glad you came back and let us know.  If it helps in any way please post more about Luna here so we get to know her better.

She will live forever in your heart and so will always be by your side.

Karen and Spirit Maggie

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

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14 February 2016
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11 October 2016 - 2:00 am
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I am so sorry to hear about your loss of Luna.  The void they leave is unbelievable.  Take special time to cuddle Dexter.  One dog cannot replace the other, but perhaps he can help you as you grieve.

Otis - 106 pound lab/Dane mix, lost his right front leg to osteosarcoma on Febuary 9, 2016.  Four rounds of carboplatin completed in April, 2016.  Lung mets August 25, 2016.  Said goodbye too soon on September 4, 2016.   Lost his adopted sister, Tess, suddenly on October 9, 2016. likely due to hemangiosarcoma.  

Wherever they are, they are together.

London, UK


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15 December 2015
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11 October 2016 - 3:55 am
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I'm so sorry to hear that Luna has gone. She was clearly so loved and so treasured and you did all you could to help her. Dogs weave themselves into our lives so tightly that when they go, the absence seems to run through everything. In time joyful memories of your time together will start to overshadow the pain of your loss; though it will never leave you entirely, it will not be always the dominant thing. Hug that Dexter tight and know that our thoughts are with you. 

Meg and Clare (and Elsie Pie) xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 13, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Pie and Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR 




Member Since:
21 May 2016
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11 October 2016 - 5:55 am
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Oh noooo April, I am devastated to hear the news about Luna's passing 😞😞😞😞

Life is definitely not fair 😔

I really know how you feel and understand how difficult it is to handle all that weight ... I lost Kinky (a blue Dane) 5 1/2 years ago and Eurydice (a huge arlequin) has osteo ...

Our only "consolation" is we will all meet again one day, our bond is far too strong to ever be over, your beautiful Luna is now shining bright, the brightest star in the sky watching over and waiting for you 🌟

As for hearing her, I would say she is still around her loving earth family, I had so many things happening after Kinky passed and some were even witnessed by some of my non-believer friends who could not, for once, offer a logical explanation. 

To quote Sally "you can never lose what has never left you"

Please know my heart, like all other pawrents here, is with yours 💕 and your gorgeous baby girl 💫

Eurydice 77kg/170lb Great Dane limping end of April 2016, amputation (right front leg/osteosarcoma) 4 May 2016 6 courses of carboplatin followed by metronomic therapy, lung mets found 30 Nov 2016. 3 courses of doxorubicin, PET scan 26 Jan 2017 showed more mets so stopped chemo. Holistic route April 2017. Lung X-ray 5 May 2017 showed several tennis ball size mets, started cortisone and diuretics. Miss Cow earned her XXL silver wings 12 June 2017, 13 months and 1 week after amputation and 6 1/2 months after lung mets, she was the goofiest dawg ever and is now happily flying from cloud to cloud woof woofing away :-) 

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