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Butch's White Cell Count and Chemo Experience
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Member Since:
2 April 2023
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21 May 2023 - 1:34 pm
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Hello everyone!  My best friend Butch has osteosarcoma and had his right rear leg amputated on April 1st (and it was no joke!)  Many of you helped me through those first few post-amputation hell weeks and for that I will be forever grateful. 

I took him in for his first Carboplatin chemo apptmt on April 22 only to get a call from the oncologist saying that his white cell count came back low and in order to not completely destroy his immune system, she gave him a lower carboplatin dose. She prescribed an antibiotic (amoxicillin) thinking he may have a mild infection, and asked me to bring him back in a week and half to check his white cell levels.  We did this and his white cell count was up enough to go ahead and plan on the next chemo apptmt.  

On May 12th, I dropped him off for chemo #2, only to get another a couple hours later from the oncologist saying that his white cell count was so low that they couldn't proceed at all!  Her advice was to continue to antibiotic and come back in one week, which I did this past Friday, May 19th.  I dropped him off as usual in the morning and was relieved when I didn't a call until 1 pm, but the doctor explained that they did a repeat of chemo #1 - the lower dose carboplatin, because again his white cell count was low. 

I expressed my concern and the doctor said she had looked at Butch's medical history and it seems that he has always had a white cell count at the lower end of the acceptable range and this may just be normal for him. She said that if she went to the full carboplatin dose, his immune system would be severely compromised, so this is the regimen that she intends to continue.  My concern is that at a low dose of Carboplatin, Butch will not have the same chance to live another 1 to 1.5 years, as he would at full dose, but the oncologist said this is not necessarily the case. 

Has anyone else had this experience?  I'm very concerned.  On the plus side, he seems to be handling the dose he is getting just fine with no noticeable side effects.  Any thoughts or suggestions are warmly welcomed.  

Thx, 

Mommy Melissa 

The Rainbow Bridge



Member Since:
25 April 2007
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21 May 2023 - 4:48 pm
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Hi Melissa! It's good to hear from you and to know that Butch is doing pretty well overall smiley_clap

Your oncologist is right: a lower dose doesn't necessarily mean he has lower odds of keeping the cancer away. Dosages can vary so much depending on a dog's physiology. What helps one dog keep cancer away may not do the same in another. Everyone is different, but the important thing is that by just getting any chemo, Butch is statistically getting a better chance at beating the cancer odds than if he didn't have any chemo at all.

It sounds like you aren't running into the carboplatin shortage that Kiara's people encountered?

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2 April 2023
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26 May 2023 - 2:18 pm
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Thanks Jerry! That makes me feel so much better. Not sure what you mean about the carboplatin shortage. Haven't heard that it's a problem here in Las Vegas.  

Re building up his immune system, I just received my order of K9 Medicinals Immune Support powder and pills.  Hoping this along with homemade healthy meat and veggies will boost him so we can get our next treatment and kill those buggers!! 

The Rainbow Bridge



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27 May 2023 - 9:28 pm
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Yep there's definitely a shortage happening. I'm glad it hasn't hit Vegas yet.

Let us know what you think about K9 Medicinals. Feel free to post the nutrition therapy in our Eating Healthy Forum topic, we'd love to hear more about how you two are kicking cancer's butt!

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