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Johnnie's Story - a Golden Tripawd in Rio
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Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Member Since:
17 May 2014
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26 June 2014 - 8:37 pm
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Greetings to all.  This is the story of our saga to get Johnnie's diagnostic for OSA.  We live in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Last September (2013) our Golden boy Johnnie, then just 5 years old, started limping, right after helping himself out of the pool without using the stairs.  We thought he had sprained his front leg, or had slipped on the wooden deck.  Trip to the vet, 5 days of medication, "if he doesn't get better you should see the orthopedist, bla bla bla". October: first appointment with the vet-orthopedist.  X-ray plus clinical exam: arthritis, front leg elbow. More medication + weight-loss diet + some restrictions (no stairs, no running, etc).  Started acupuncture in October, tried 8 sessions with one vet, stopped because there was no improvement.  In January switched acupuncture vet,  8 more sessions and dog wasn't getting any better.  March:  the acupuncture vet (wonderful !) suggested a full check-up, because he suspected there was something else going on, since symptoms were too much for an elbow arthritis.  By this time a lipoma had appeared on the left shoulder.  Blood tests + ultrasound + upper thorax X-ray in April.  Call from the vet:  severe bone damage on the head of the humerus, compatible with osteosarcoma.  Mid-April 2014: surgical biopsy.  Three weeks until results came in from the lab, negative ( ???).   Appointment with the onco-vet.  May: CT scan + needle aspiration for a second biopsy.  Citology positive for OSA, but lungs clear.  Time for big decisions.  By this time I had already discovered the Tripawd blog, and I cannot tell you how much the videos, photos, and testimonials helped our family with this hard decision.  Johnnie joined the tripawd club on May 20.  After two days at the hospital he was cleared to go home. The first days were complicated, but from the 8th day onwards things got better and better.  Now, one month after surgery, he is back to his old self, happy to be pain-free.  Pathology of the bone: chondroblastic osteosarcoma.  First round of carboplatin this Tuesday June 24, and up to now things are going fine.  We decided to try chemo, provided he does not have severe side effects, and will continue with the acupuncture + Apocaps and K-9 Immunity Plus.  Johnnie's blood test this week turned out fine, no anemia or any other abnormality.  Our boy will turn 6 this Saturday June 28, and we hope to celebrate with a victory of Brazil's soccer team in the World Cup.  He will be using his Brazilian Team T-shirt as a proud tripawd.  Thanks to Tripawd Blog for all the support, suggestions and information.  

Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet.   Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues.   Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle.  October 17:  started having seizures.  Taking fenobarbital for seizures.  April 18: started prednisone.

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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26 June 2014 - 9:15 pm
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Daniela & Johnnie, welcome. I'm so glad you shared your story and that we could be there for you during such a tough time. How awesome that he's doing so well now, YAY! OK, just for you and Johnnie, I'll cheer for Brazil to win the World Cup!

It's amazing how his story is so similar to others' all around the world: vet says it's arthritis, puts the dog on pain killers, limp happens inconsistently, dog finally limps so bad that things then move very quickly. That's exactly what happened to us.

You are a terrific parent, doing all you can do for this sweet doggie. I hope that he continues kicking butt, and we look forward to being a part of your journey. We don't get very many members from South America so please don't be shy and post photos, ask questions, start your own Tripawds blog, etc. Thank you so much for being here. Give Johnnie a big smooch from us!

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

Virginia







Member Since:
22 February 2013
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26 June 2014 - 9:42 pm
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Just want to say welcome and to remind you that u on are not alone!

Your Johnnie looks adorable and we all look forward to seeing more picture.

Yeah, this can be a very scary time, that's for sure. But as you see Johnnie continue to recover and get his sparkle back and enjoy a pain free life, you will k n ow that "all is well" in Johnnien it's world and he's not worrying about a thing.

Let nothing rob you of your time with Johnnie.....He sure isn't!! He's living n in the present and soaking up all the lov I ng and spoiling you can throw his way!,

Stay connected to us and know we are all here for you!

((((((((((((((HUGS)))))))))))))

Sally and Happy Hannah

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!

Westminster, MD
Member Since:
31 August 2013
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26 June 2014 - 10:17 pm
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Hi and welcome, to you and your handsome boy Johnnie......just want to say sorry for this scary, new journey you are starting with. There is plenty of support here, and plenty of personal experience of dealing with the ugly "c". You sound like you are really on top of things in dealing with this, and hoping Johnnie does very well with chemo. With his birthday coming up, seems like a great time for super, extra spoiling !! We love cake, steak and ice cream around here, and occasional M&M's !!

Keep us posted, and keeping you and Johnnie in my thoughts......
Bonnie & Angel Polly

Member Since:
18 September 2013
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27 June 2014 - 6:08 am
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Welcome to tripawds!

I'm glad you got a second opinion when Johnnie's arthritis wasn't getting better.

Happy, hoppy birthday tomorrow, Johnnie.

Hugs

Linda and Tucker

Los Angeles, CA
Member Since:
13 June 2013
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27 June 2014 - 7:40 am
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Welcome to Tripawds!!! We are all here for you! 

Keep us posted ... and more photos! 🙂 

Alison & her Shelby fur-ever in her heart 

Shelby Lynne; Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. Proud member of the April Angels of 2014.

October 15, 2000 to April 8, 2014

Our story: Broke rear leg in June 2013 - non-conclusive results for cancer so leg was plated and pinned. Enlarged spleen in September 2013 and had it removed and was diagnosed with Hemangiosarcoma and started chemotherapy. Became a Tripawd January 8th, 2014 and definitive Hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Three major surgeries in 7 months and Shelby took them all like a champ only to lose her battle to cancer in her brain. We had 8 amazing extra months together and no regrets. #shelbystrong #loveofmylife

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Member Since:
17 May 2014
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28 June 2014 - 7:19 am
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Thanks to all for the messages of support.  Many questions are coming up, especially with regard to using Apocaps and K-9 Immunity with the conventional chemo that the onco-vet, a classical alopat, is accustomed to.  For instance: she prescribed antioxidants, but in Dr. Dressler's book he does not recommend them.  My impression is that some information here in Brazil is outdated, and there are not so many OSA cases around.  I credit this to the fact that large dogs are not that common in the city, and those that are in the countryside are most probably euthanized without a diagnostic or treatment.

I was surprised with the statistics regarding cancer in Goldens, and contacted Johnnie's breeder to see if there were many other cases "in the family".  According to the breeder, she never had a case of OSA with one of her dogs, although she has had cancer issues.  Johnnie's mother and father are alive and in good health (ages 8 and 9),  Johnnie's grandpa Wagner passed away at age 12 - from a hemangiosarcoma in the heart.  I am keeping the breeder posted on Johnnie's progress.  

As soon as I figure out how to make photos available I will post them here.

Daniela&Johnnie

Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet.   Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues.   Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle.  October 17:  started having seizures.  Taking fenobarbital for seizures.  April 18: started prednisone.

Orrtanna Pa.
Member Since:
25 January 2014
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28 June 2014 - 12:34 pm
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Welcome! Sorry you are going through all of this. Kudos to you for getting 2 nd and even 3 rd opinions. Your story sounds a lot like ours and probably quite a few others here. Once you get through the first few weeks, the pain meds that make them dopey are gone and you will see a return of his previous personality. They are so happy to have the source of their pain gone and they sure do not worry about how they look on three legs. Best of luck to you as you start his treatments. Lori and Ty

TY GUY, Best Black Lab ever! Diagnosed  and had amp in January, 2014. Kicked MRSA's butt. Earned his angel wings on April 16, 2014. Run Free my boy and don't forget a shoe. Ty is a proud member of the " April Angels". Ty sent us Daryl, a Tripawd rescue in Sept. of 2016. Daryl is 5 +or -. We are also Pawrents to Chandler, a Border Collie mix who is 15 and 1/2, Lucy, a Corgi who is 7, 2 minis, 2 horses, and a feisty cat named Zoe. Zoe had a non skeletal Osteosarcoma removed in July 2015. No Chemo, she was at least 16. She is going strong although she is now completely blind. She is now close to 20 and her hobbies are eating and sleeping in front of her personal heater. 

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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28 June 2014 - 12:50 pm
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Daniela, here is a link about how to add photos to forum posts. If you still have trouble figuring it out I'm happy to help, just send me a Private Message (see the "PM" button here above my post?)

You're doing your homework about cancer therapy options, that's awesome. If your oncologist is willing to work with you to find the right balance of holistic and conventional medicine, even better. I can imagine your options for who you work with are quite limited, since oncologists are still few and far between even in the U.S. So if this is someone you are comfortable with and you're limited in your choices, one way to gently approach the doc with your findings is to say "I found this information about _____. What can you tell me about it? How do you feel about this information?"

Here's a great post about talking to your vet about your research:

Reasonable Expectations VI: The Ability to Discuss Your Internet Research With Your Vet

Meanwhile, did you see the latest K9 Immunity blog post we published? Tripawds members shared their experiences using it:: When Surgery and Chemo Are Not Enough to Fight Dog Cancer

FYI, Unfortunately Goldens have an incredibly high rate of canine cancer, one of the highest of any other breed. Have you seen Morris Animal Foundation's Golden Retriever Lifetime Study? Lots of good info there.

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

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Member Since:
17 May 2014
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6 July 2014 - 9:19 pm
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Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet.   Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues.   Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle.  October 17:  started having seizures.  Taking fenobarbital for seizures.  April 18: started prednisone.

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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11
7 July 2014 - 1:42 pm
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Love love love these pics Daniela! He is soooo sweet. I asked in your other post; may I put some of these in our photo gallery? They're great photos showing the progression from recovery to hoppy times!

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

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Member Since:
17 May 2014
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8 July 2014 - 9:44 am
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Hi Jerry / Adm:   Sure, feel free to use the pictures !  

I have been taking weekly photos to send to my daughter and son who are not at home, and even though we would say he was doing fine they only believed when I sent them pictures.

regards,

Daniela

Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet.   Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues.   Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle.  October 17:  started having seizures.  Taking fenobarbital for seizures.  April 18: started prednisone.

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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8 July 2014 - 3:17 pm
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Aww thanks! The pics are wonderful.

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

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Member Since:
17 May 2014
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15 July 2014 - 9:12 pm
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Hello.  This afternoon Johnnie went to the Vet Clinic for blood testing and for his 2nd round of chemo (carboplatin).  He had very mild side effects the first time, so we are hopeful we will be able to get at least to round 4.

His blood test came out very good, so that was good news.  I am giving him K-9 Immunity Plus in the morning, and he absolutely loves them!  Started with 3 chews, but this past week increased to 5 chews - 3 in the morning and 2 in the evening.

Tonight, chicken soup for dinner (chicken + carrots + a little brown rice), and went to sleep early.  Will be doing the preventive nausea medication for 4 days in a row: 80mg (1/2 tablet) first thing in the morning.  

After one and a half hours at the vet, he was really, really happy to be home.  

https://drive.g.....sp=sharing

Here are more photos from this last week (7th week post-op), including those taken in the semifinal game where Brazil was beat dead by Germany, 7x1.  

https://drive.g.....sp=sharing

Daniela & Johnnie

Our awesome Golden Boy was diagnosed for OSA in April 2014 in the proximal humerus, front-leg amp on 05/20/2014. Finished chemo (Carbo6) on 07/10/2014. Ongoing treatment: acupuncture + K-9 Immunity Plus ( 3chews) and home-cooked no-grain diet.   Stopped Apocaps because of liver issues.   Liver issues: controlling altered enzymes with SAM-e and Milk Thistle.  October 17:  started having seizures.  Taking fenobarbital for seizures.  April 18: started prednisone.

On The Road


Member Since:
24 September 2009
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16 July 2014 - 10:14 am
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It's good to hear from you! You were on my mind when the World Cup was going on, so sad for Brazil and Argentina :(

But YAY for Johnnie, I hope the chemo goes very well once again. Remind me, what anti-nausea medication is he getting?

He is the happiest dog ever! I love this boy:

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

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