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Be More DogWhat does it mean to Be More Dog?

Find out in Be More Dog: Learning to Live in the Now by Tripawds founders Rene and Jim. Learn life lessons learned from their Chief Fun Officer Jerry G. Dawg! Get the book and find fun gifts in the Be More Dog Bookstore.

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Griffin's Journey
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New York, NY
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2 October 2020 - 9:47 am
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I'm posting a quick update just to say that today is Griffin's 6 month ampuversary!  I can't believe the time has flown by so quickly and I know we would not have made it through this journey without the love and support of our Tripawds family!  This has been a good week, with Griffin's appetite steadily improving and his spirits remaining happy! sp_hearticon2sp_hearticon2sp_hearticon2

And he looked quite dapper today with his special Halloween (candy corn) leash! 

Griffin-standing-brick-oct-2-blog.jpgImage Enlarger

Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com

Virginia




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2 October 2020 - 12:04 pm
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HAPPY HALF YEAR AMPUVERSARY GRIFFIN!!!   You have rocked these six months like an Olympian  Champion Tripawd RockStar!!   

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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!

On The Road


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2 October 2020 - 6:49 pm
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WOW! I had no idea today is the big day, congratulations you two! Six months is huuuuuuuge!

Lookin' good in your fall bling Mr. G. Keep on rockin the life 😉

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet



Member Since:
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2 October 2020 - 7:08 pm
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Happy 6 month Ampuversary ❤❤❤ I'm so thrilled Griffin has his appetite back!

You've done such an amazing job with him.  And he's still glowing in his handsomeness💘💘💘

Hugs,

Jackie, David, Bo, Andy, Oscar, Phoebe, and the coolest feral tripawd kitty Huckleberry

Huckleberry's Blog

Member Since:
10 April 2020
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3 October 2020 - 11:37 am
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Happiest of ampuverseries. Ziva is right behind you coming up on her 6 month as well. 

Keep on being the best dog and mom you can. 

Member Since:
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3 October 2020 - 7:46 pm
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Happy 6 month Ampuversary Griffin!!  I'm so glad you're gobbling up your food again.  You are absolutely the cutest little guy.  I wish I could give you a big hug.  Stacy, thanks for sharing Griffin with us.  Give Griffin a hug for me sp_hearticon2

New York, NY
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11 October 2020 - 11:23 am
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Griffin was at AMC on October 7th for another round of Doxorubicin after a washout period of about 2 weeks since we ended the use of Palladia.  During that time, Griffin’s appetite steadily improved, and while it was not yet back to “normal” (prior to the start of Palladia in mid-August), he was eating a good amount of dry and wet dog food along with home-cooked meals each day and he gained one pound.  After the chemo on Wednesday, we celebrated with McDonald’s cheeseburgers around 2pm which was the last food that Griffin ate until Saturday (yesterday) afternoon.  It is not clear if the chemo was causing nausea since the side effects of Doxorubicin usually appear about 3-5 days afterwards, not immediately, but regardless of the cause, Griffin was definitely not interested in food.  After 48 hours, I contacted his oncologist who prescribed Zofran (brand name version of Ondansetron) which is an anti-nausea medicine and Entyce (brand name version of Capromorelin) which is an appetite stimulant.  Griffin started both meds Friday night, had a diarrhea accident in the house overnight, and was very lethargic on our morning walk on Saturday (to be expected since he hadn’t eaten in 3 days!).  However, by yesterday afternoon, he was interested in food and ate 2 large turkey burgers.  He had another diarrhea accident in the house last night and has not yet been interested in food today.

Needless to say, I am incredibly frustrated, although I try very hard not to show it to Griffin.  I would feed him anything he wants, but that seems to change from day to day, so I have no way of knowing what to offer him on any given day.  While his appetite was improving after we stopped the Palladia, Griffin was still refusing to eat any wet dog food on its own or with dry dog food, and would usually eat one large meal of wet/dry mixed with home-cooked (ground meat with kale and spinach) in the evening as opposed to one smaller meal in the morning and another in the late afternoon.  So, we still have not found a wet dog food that Griffin will reliably eat, although I am grateful that he is not refusing his Taste of the Wild dry food.  I have wasted so much food trying to tempt him and I am never sure if he is truly not feeling well enough to eat or if he is just waiting me out to see what else I might offer him.  He has stopped eating pill pockets or anything that might contain meds, so I have to push pills down his throat, which neither of us enjoy (although to his credit, he doesn’t really fight me or seem to hold a grudge!).

Here’s his current medication and supplement list:

  • Zofran – 4mg up to 3 times a day (small pill)
  • Entyce – 2.5ml once a day (liquid that seems to taste nasty)
  • Ellevet CBD Oil – 0.3ml twice a day (liquid that he seems to tolerate)
  • Cobalequin – 1 tablet daily (oh right – forgot to mention that Griffin is B12 deficient, probably due to his prolonged inappetence from the Palladia)

To add insult to injury, the cost of the new meds that I picked up from AMC was $300, but I could have bought them from an online veterinary pharmacy for $75.  I know things in general are more expensive in NYC than elsewhere, but price gouging on meds is infuriating.

Sorry for the long post – I just needed to vent.  As always, any advice about our current situation would be most appreciated.  I know diarrhea is a potential side effect of Entyce, so I’m not sure how worthwhile it is to keep him on it if that continues, but if anyone has specific experience with that medicine, I’d love some input.  Thanks!

If you've made it to the end of this very long post, please enjoy this lovely autumn photo of my handsome boy!

Griffin-oct-4-blog.jpgImage Enlarger

Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com

On The Road


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11 October 2020 - 12:14 pm
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((((hugs)))) you don't ever need to apologize Stacy, of course you are frustrated and upset. We totally get it and appreciate your sharing. It's important for people to know about the entire journey of a Tripawd with cancer, not just all the good stuff.

I'm so sorry you guys are dealing with these ups and downs. I'm seeing a lot of high highs and low lows, which cannot be fun at all. It's enough to make anyone cray cray.

Do you think it's the Doxo causing the inappetence and GI issues, or the side-effect medications that are causing the issues? Or both? I know it can be so tough to tell during chemo treatment. Any ideas?

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet



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11 October 2020 - 12:41 pm
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I'm sorry this has been so hard on both of you. I cannot give any advice on the medicines,  this may help with the loose stool though. 

If you boil up some whole grain rice in broth,  a good starchy whole grain rice.  Add enough broth or broth water mixture so that the rice can cook but you have water leftover.  My dogs have always been picky about rice,  but the broth is usually a winner and it has a lot of that starch that helps work as a binding agent.  You could freeze them into cubes if he won't lap it up out of a dish,  or you could mix small amounts into his food. 

I hope you're able to get over this hump quickly. Keeping you in my thoughts💖

Hugs,

Jackie, David, Bo, Andy, Oscar, Phoebe, and the coolest feral tripawd kitty Huckleberry

Huckleberry's Blog

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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11 October 2020 - 2:43 pm
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jerry said
((((hugs)))) you don't ever need to apologize Stacy, of course you are frustrated and upset. We totally get it and appreciate your sharing. 

Do you think it's the Doxo causing the inappetence and GI issues, or the side-effect medications that are causing the issues? Or both? I know it can be so tough to tell during chemo treatment. Any ideas?

  

Griffin's journey, all of it, is so well documented and so helpful for everyone jere.  We appreciate  so very much that you continue  to take the time to Chronicle everything about Griffin..and about your feelings too!  It's perfectly "normal" to be frustrated and to need to vent (although this is hardly a vent!). It gives the rest of us permission to feel that way too on all the ups and downs of thos journey!

Yeah, I was kinda thinking aling the lines of what Jerry said....maybe a combo of the dox and the other stuff too...maybe moreso the Dox??

 While a small, very small  percentage  could be Griffin holding  out for the good stuff, I doubt that is the main cause.  

Of course, all the above in the FWIW column.

Now, we do need to CELEBRATE  CHUNKING UP WITH THAT ONE POUND WEIGHT GAIN!!!👏👏And we get to celebrate another delightfully  happy  picture pf one of our favorite tripawds!!

Keep is posted

(((((((((((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!

New York, NY
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24 March 2020
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11 October 2020 - 3:42 pm
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Thanks for the support Rene, Jackie, and Sally!  We are going on over 2 months of the issues with Griffin’s appetite and I don’t feel like I’m any closer to figuring it out than I was at the start, but I’ve tied a knot at the end of my rope and I’m hanging on!

I truly have no idea if it is the Doxorubicin that is making Griffin nauseous.  He never had an adverse reaction to either the Carboplatin (3 rounds) or Doxorubicin (2 rounds) previously, and this side effect occurred the next day rather than during the usual 3-5 day window.  One member of his oncology team remarked that he could be experiencing pancreatitis due to the fatty nature of the McDonald’s cheeseburgers, but he’s never had an adverse reaction to them before (and doesn’t eat them all that often).  The Palladia really did knock him for a loop, and I think he wasn’t fully recovered before the latest round of chemo, so perhaps it hit him harder than usual.

I also really struggle with interpreting when he is truly nauseous and when he simply doesn’t want what I am offering.  In my mind, if he were feeling nauseous, he wouldn’t show any interest in food or check it out by sniffing, but that’s what he does all the time.  When I ask him if he wants a treat, he jumps up and heads to the kitchen, but then will sometimes refuse high value treats, such as a Rocco & Roxie jerky stick.

During his oncology appointment on September 26th, his oncologist remarked that the prolonged inappetence could make him B12 deficient, and since the lab test would take days to return, she proactively gave him a B12 injection.  Turns out he tested very low for B12, so he’s taking a supplement now.  Here’s what I learned about why a dog needs vitamin B12:

Vitamin B12 (also known as cobalamin) is important for many aspects of your dog’s health. It’s crucial for healthy nervous system and brain function, as well as for the formation and growth of blood cells. It’s also involved in intestinal health, so your dog needs B12 to maintain healthy digestion.

After starting the B12 supplement, I noticed that Griffin was drinking a lot more water each day than normal.  He was eliminating it easily, but when I mentioned it at his October 7th oncology appointment, they ran blood work and a urinalysis to rule out issues with his kidneys or a urinary tract infection.  Turns out he is borderline hypercalcemic, which could be caused by his dietary issues or could be another issue entirely, including cancer. 

So, the B12 and hypercalcemia could be caused by his inappetence issues, since he was not eating consistently or nearly enough each day for 6 weeks, which was likely caused by the Palladia, and in turn, his low B12 and hypercalcemia could be making him lose his appetite again now.  Or it could be something else altogether. icon_rolleyes

And, if this weren’t enough for him to deal with, Griffin has an aural seroma (like a hematoma but containing fluid and not blood) that formed in his left ear flap from his excessive head shaking after swimming for hours each day on our summer vacation in August.  It was drained twice by our local vet when she administered the Yale vaccine, but it returned each time larger than before, so it needs to be dealt with surgically.  I have a consultation this week with the surgeon who amputated Griffin’s leg (whom we adore!), and while he assured me via email that it is a simple procedure, it will require him to be anesthetized.  That procedure is currently scheduled for mid-November (Dr. Spector is actually booked through December, but they made an exception to squeeze in Griffin – I guess he has clout at AMC!).

I’ll end this on a positive note.  Griffin was left alone for a few hours this afternoon and managed to eat a fair amount (turkey burger with some wet and dry dog food), and then polished off a chew treat after I returned home.  Go figure! sp_hearticon2

Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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11 October 2020 - 4:40 pm
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Surely you were an Investigator in a previous  life!  You make Sherlock Holmes look like an amateur!

Okay, you have a ,little bit of the eating issue resolved.  Fix him something  yummy and then leave!  😉

Boy, the B12 therapy makes a lot of sense on so many levels.  Glad you're  onto that.

Also. it makes sense that maybe  there wasn't  enough "way oit" between the Dox and the Palladia.   Dunno, but certainly  ppssible.

Geez, and now you have the ear issue!  Crazy!!!  I'm sure you'll research thoroughly,  but any chance of using warm compresses  to help drain this, or am I way off base?

Yep, Griffin is a one of a kind doggy, that's  for sure!!!

❤❤❤

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!

On The Road


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24 September 2009
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12 October 2020 - 1:33 pm
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Stacy you've got a lot to keep track of with Griffin's health and let me say you are doing an incredible job! The amount of detail you are observing is key to helping figure out his health challenges, kudos to you smiley_clap

This is what stuck out to me:

The Palladia really did knock him for a loop, and I think he wasn’t fully recovered before the latest round of chemo, so perhaps it hit him harder than usual.

Based on that he didn't have previous side effects to the other chemo treatments, your observation makes total sense, let's run with it! The fact that he ate today is a really good sign that his body is getting back to a normal state. We will keep our paws crossed that it continues to do so, and will be extra healthy by the time that hematoma surgery has to happen (ugh! Sorry about that!). Keep us posted.

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Virginia




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12 October 2020 - 1:49 pm
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I almost never fo back and try and correct a typo...not enough hours in the day.  Plus usually you can figure out what I meant 🤪

Maybe not in this case thoug.        “way oit"....  typo transaltion:  "wash out"

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!

On The Road


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12 October 2020 - 3:38 pm
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benny55 said
Plus usually you can figure out what I meant 🤪

Yep, sure can! Speaking from the heart is a universal language. sp_hearticon2

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

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