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Subcutaneous SubQ mets: Tazzie 2
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Member Since:
26 November 2008
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27 November 2009 - 8:55 am
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jakesmom said:

I'm not sure if the radiation would do anything... it all depends on what the lump is, and if it is radiosensitive...

I have to remind myself that I will not curse, I will not curse, I will not curse, but if I did those lumps would be the prime candidate for venting.  We are so very sorry to hear that they have taken off so badly and appear to reduce Tazzie's mobility.  However, I was very pleased to see that the spirit is doing very well and to us that is the most important thing.  As long as they love life, we can find the courage to continue.

My understanding of radiation is similar.  From the web site my local vet gave me after Cherry's diagnosis, "Radiotherapy does not produce a helpful response in about 1/3 of patients", but they were really talking about Osteosarcoma in the leg rather than the Tazzie's type of tumors.  Out here our oncologist team is working even today, which is a holiday for many.  In fact, Cherry recieved her third chemotherapy treatment on New Year's Eve last year.  My main concern then was that we got home before the crazies go on the road.

Let us know what you decide.  We will continue to send our very best thoughts and prayers.

Bob & Cherry

PS: Actually it is us who are sorry that you had the "bummer" news to transmit.  We just want to be there for you and Tazzie.

Member Since:
22 August 2008
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27 November 2009 - 10:52 am
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Susan I would definitely look into the radiation since that seems like the best bet to try and make Tazzie feel better.  I also think that gabapentin is a good drug to try.  It is cheap and side effects are rare (some people report sleepiness that lasts for the first few days and then goes away).  Tazzie's dose would be 300-600 mg 2-3 times daily depending on his response.


Member Since:
13 July 2009
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27 November 2009 - 11:58 am
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Thanks 'guys' – meaning all of you. I appreciate your support, information and ideas.

Short update (because I just got to work):

Last night was not great.  Once I saw that Tazzie's mobility was starting to be impaired and the size of the lump, I thought the "C" must be in other bad locations, lungs, liver, and probably the tumor was pushing on the spine. It was the first night he did not want to go upstairs to bed, and also slipped a bit when hopping on the couch, so I moved a mattress downstairs (probably not great for his sleep or mine). I did not know if he would be able to stand in the morning and if that might be our last night. The lump is so large, I cannot imagine radiation working – maybe two months ago it might have been appropriate.

This morning we went to the vet anyway. She commented on how he is still so bright and happy and wants to investigate everything (I brought a bag with his supplements to show her and in typical Tazzie fashion, he has to explore it). She is going to try to find out about radiation from an oncologist. I hope someone is in Calgary today! She has not ruled it out.

To my amazement, X-rays showed no sign of mets in the lungs (only did one view) and the tumor is not contacting the spine. It is headed toward the head of the illium, but as yet has not made contact with bone. (We also found no evidence of foil from the Hershey kisses he ate last week!)

She gave me a script for Gabapentin, but wants me to start with 100 mg, then up to 200 after two days if all is okay, then maybe up to 300 mg. Pam – is that just too low to begin? I don't want to give him so much pain drug that he is just dozy. There is not point in keeping him around if he is just dozey, since we are not talking temporary (unless radiation is an option).

Until we see how the Gab works, she says to stay on tramadol at night. The tramadol made him clumsy and it seems possible the Gab will do that too.

So things seem better now than they did last night or this morning.

The vet did not know what 'electron radiation therapy' was. That was the term the 'oncovet' used during chat – if any one knows, let me know.

Thanks again for your incredible support, tazziedog, Cherry, Emily, Jerry, Jake and others!

Susan & Tazzie 2

Member Since:
22 August 2008
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27 November 2009 - 3:13 pm
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Your vet is probably starting the gabapentin at low dose to see if there will be side effects.  I tend to start higher but I think it is okay to follow that schedule.  Most dogs have no problems with gabapentin but it is probably better to be safe than sorry!


Member Since:
13 July 2009
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28 November 2009 - 9:35 pm
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Ahh, the downs (ugh) and then ups (yay) of tripawd-hood. Just wanted to say that Tazzie is doing better than Thursday night, despite the cantelope he carries around on his hind leg. Next weekend will be his 9th birthday (!!!) and he seems to be reverting to puppyhood very quickly. I haven't seen this much counter-surfing in 6 or 7 years. Today I came home to find a box of licorice-spice tea bags on the living room floor with puncture marks. Thank dog he did not eat them, or I'd be surfing the web to find out if they are poisonous. I know I sound incredibly careless, but Tazzie is getting incredibly motivated. He's not as dumb as he looks!

Yesterday afternoon and especially this morning he was hopping around just fine - running full tilt with his young Malamute pal at the park - even before having any pain med. He has been doing what I think is about 3 km each Saturday. We walk a little way and then sit around while his pal and my friends walk a bit farther, then we make the return journey together. I was adamant that Tazzie would NOT be walking anywhere today. We would just sit at the park. But he proved me wrong, plus he really wanted to charge down the steep cliff to find something smelly (I got him back before he succeeded and the harness came in really handy to prevent a roll in something stinky). Nothing like a tripawd on power mushrooms to make you feel better when it seems that things are getting bleak.

As for vet news: the radiation oncologist in Calgary told my vet that he thought radiation might help for pain relief at the tumor site and would be preferable to meds. He'd have to get a CT scan to assess other lumps before they decided if it were appropriate. I have not spoken to that oncologist myself so do not know their criteria - I expect Tazzie has some tumors developing in bad places by now. So it is possible that Tazzie and I will make the two-day trip to Calgary as soon as my classes end (Tuesday). I guess he is long overdue for another haircut!

I hope to talk to that oncologist on Monday to get more information on the pros and cons. Would be nice to find out as much as possible before making such a trip! 

I hope y'all (how yank is that?) are having a great holiday weekend.

Susan & Tazzie 2

Member Since:
20 May 2009
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28 November 2009 - 10:17 pm
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I laughed at the tea bag story.  My sister has a dog, part rott and part basset hound, funniest looking dog you have ever seen.  He has a rott body on short basset hound legs.  Well, he eats everything on the counter when they leave the house no matter how far back they push it.  When they first got Mugsy my sister came home to make dinner and could only find one loaf of bread and thought she bought two.  No sign of it.  Until Mugsy poohed out the twist tie!  Since then he has eaten (boneless) chicken thawing in the sink and other countless groceries.  I don't know if he likes tea like Tazzie though. (Hershey Kisses and Pizza Boxes -YES!)

Let us know how the consult with the oncologist goes.  It sounds like Tazzie still has a lot of living to do.  We are rooting for him.

Debra & Angel Emily

Debra & Emily, a five year old doberman mix, who was diagnosed with an osteosaecoma. She had a right rear leg amputation on May 19, 2009. On November 10, 2009 she earned her wings and regained her fourth leg.

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19 September 2009
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29 November 2009 - 12:04 am
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So glad to see Tazzie is back to getting into his fav treats.... Well at least things he thinks smells good for the moment... I hope that the radiation buys both of you some more quality time. He has got himself a mom that loves his very much... Our thoughts will be with you...

Alisa & Little Spirit Sis Shilo

Shilo diagnosed with osteosarcoma 9/4/2009, amputation 9/9/2009. ShiloAnne lost her battle 11/23/2009 where she regained her fourth leg and is patiently waiting for her parents to join her. We will always love you baby girl.

My heart lives at Rainbow Bridge
Member Since:
28 November 2008
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29 November 2009 - 6:17 am
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Curious dogs are happy dogs.  Tazzie rocks.

Shanna & Spirit Trouble ~ Trouble gained her wings 3/16/2011, a 27 1/2 month cancer survivor, tail wagging. RIP sweetheart, you are my heart and soul.  Run free at Rainbow Bridge.
The November Five - Spirits Max, Cherry, Tika, Trouble & Nova. 11/2008 - 3/2013 An era ends as Queen Nova crossed the Bridge.

On The Road

Member Since:
24 September 2009
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29 November 2009 - 1:58 pm
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No mets? Yipeeeeeeee!!!! And countersurfing? Wow Tazzie, you are rockin'!

But dude, go for something better than tea!

As for radiation therapy, there are lots of good resources out there.

University of Florida; Radiation Therapy Overview

Dr. Demian Dressler's Things You Need To Know About Radiation for Dog Cancer

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene | | |

Member Since:
13 July 2009
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29 November 2009 - 2:08 pm
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Well, let's put it this way: "no mets in the usual places", although we haven't checked the liver which is definitely suspicious. Still, Mom was pleasantly shocked that my cantelope (soon to be a honey-dew) was not attached to the spine and that my lungs are probably clear.

Well, despite my lame attempt at the tea, I tried to roll in some stinky fish-guts or something. But that darn Ruffwear harness made it possible for Mom to catch me before I could do my back flip.

I often have trouble getting the Dressler blog to load, but will try those pages. I have not found many resources on radiation (and the idea scares me), so appreciate the links.

Tazzie 2

Wesley Chapel, FL
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13 September 2009
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29 November 2009 - 3:56 pm
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Well, I'm so glad to hear that Tazzie is doing much better lately... We were all getting worried! But it sounds like he's in pretty good shape except for his 'cantalope'!Wink Good luck with the oncologist and the radiation... I really hope it helps Tazzie.

Keep us posted on all his crazy adventures... licorice tea bags??? Oh My!

Angel Jake's Mom

Jake, 10yr old golden retriever (fractured his front right leg on 9/1, bone biopsy revealed osteosarcoma on 9/10, amputation on 9/17) and his family Marguerite, Jacques and Wolfie, 5yr old german shepherd and the newest addition to the family, Nala, a 7mth old Bengal mix kittie. Jake lost his battle on 11/9/2009, almost 8 weeks after his surgery. We will never forget our sweet golden angel… ….. CANCER SUCKS!

Cordoba, Argentina
Member Since:
20 August 2009
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29 November 2009 - 4:58 pm
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Hi Susan and Tazzie2,

seems to me that Tazzie is fighting like a champ and I would too, if I had so much support!

In England & Europe radiation is really big, as they are very much for limb-sparing... so maybe you could contact someone over there, and I read in some German sites, that it usually helps a lot and is very good for pain management ... that Tazzie obviously doesn't need yet as he goes bouncing in the park!  Good for you dear Tazzie!

Many, many hugs

Cecilia & Spirit Hori

Spirit Horacia, Castaño, Olympia + human family Cecilia, Georg and Julia - - - Hori first diagnosed 8/6/09, ampu 8/12/09, run over the bridge 9/10/09 – We miss you every day dear girl!

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