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Great Dane in China with Bone Cancer: plz help
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Member Since:
13 November 2010
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13 November 2010 - 6:45 am
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hiya, so sorry to disturb u guys, i am very happy to see u here, i am bowei han,come from china,study in uk ,i have a great dan, i wanna ask some your experience from anyone plz, i would like to ask these questions if your dog has been cured: after u found ur dog have got bone cancer, how many monthes after u bring it to do the amputation, how was its situation before the amputation, cos i am not sure is it too later for my dog, i got pic on my facebook,his situation below
 

my great dan is 12 years old,it got bone cancer on his right back leg, it felt painful and walked hard from about Februray 2010, and than its right leg became swelling, we went to hospital
it is bone cancer,cos my dog and my dad they live in china, chinese doctor not really good at cure dogs, so i need some advice form anyone

plz help me, we feed pills to my dog to get rid of the painful everyday. it can eating well, but because of his gota heavy weight, it can not walk properly, i do not know my dog's bone cancer have metastasizes or not. is my dog can getting well after the amputate if its bone cancer have been metastasizes?

and also its testicle getting red, swelling a little bit, btw,it only have single testicle when it was born, chinese doctor said anther one is in its belly, i don't know is it a problem to make this amputate. i just wanna it getting better.

i don't wanna my dog dead,could u give me some advice about what can i do now? i am studying in uk now, i can not go to back to china now, but i can tell my Dad the advice from you . thanks a lot.

bowei han

On The Road


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13 November 2010 - 10:32 am
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Bowei,

We are glad you found us, thank you for writing. We are very sorry about your dog but please know that there is always hope that a dog with bone cancer can beat the odds and survive much longer than anyone expects. And in the meantime, as you can see, even big Great Dane dogs can lead good lives on three legs!

It sounds like your dog has osteosarcoma bone cancer? The type of cancer he has will determine what his prognosis is. Whatever kind he has, be aware that all dogs are different in how they respond to cancer treatments. Some may live two years with cancer while others may only live two months. Not all types of bone cancer are "curable" and yes, some will metastasize to the lungs. If you are unable to do chemotherapy on your dog, that's fine, not everyone does.

What is more important is that you make the time your family has left with your dog as pain-free and enjoyable as possible. We like to say it is all about quality of life and not quantity of life when it comes to bone cancer and being a three-legged dog.

Part of the quality of life challenge is keeping your dogs weight down. It sounds like he may be having a hard time getting around. Could he be overweight at all?

The swollen testicle may be due to any number of issues, I think it's important to have the vet look at the problem to determine why that is happening, I haven't heard of that before.

I hope this helps you and your family. Please let us know how he is doing OK?

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

Livermore CA
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13 November 2010 - 11:15 am
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Hello Bowei

I'm sorry to read about the cancer in your dog.  Amputation will take away the pain and usually it is done as soon as the dog is diagnosed.  After that, he will learn how to hop around and he will be happier because there is no pain.  You have an advantage of having Chinese medicine doctors there--he can take cancer medicine just like a person. 

There are a couple of things to consider about amputating, besides eliminating the pain.  The tumor is weakening the bone so it can break, and it will metastasize if it stays there.  I know this is not an easy decision, especially since you are far away from your dog.  I hope the doctors there can help him.

My experience started with my dog limping.  It was about a month until I took him to see the doctor because I thought he had just injured himself and it would heal.  The doctor made an x-ray and found the cancer.  His amputation was a week after that.  It was early enough that it had not metastasized and he has been hopping around happily for almost 2 years.  His doctor has recommended a Native American cancer medicine and a Japanese mushroom medicine and a few other things, and so far, he has been cancer-free.  We've been lucky--it doesn't always happen like that.

I hope your dad can find a doctor to treat your dog.  Let us know how it's going.

Mary and Cemil

Cemil and mom Mary, Mujde and Radzi….appreciating and enjoying Today

Cemil's blog

Las Vegas, Nevada
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13 November 2010 - 1:50 pm
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Welcome Bowei Han,

 

I'm so sorry that your dog has cancer in the bone.  What is your dog's name?

As you know the bone cancer is extremely painful.  Humans can not bear the pain like a dog.  The best thing is to remove the leg that has cancer to eliminate the horrible pain.  The doctor that found the cancer can tell you the process first before amputation.  He can tell you whether the cancer has spread and if his blood work is healthy, etc.  

Is your dad able to take care of him after the surgery?  The recovery is usually 2 weeks.   Your dog will be pain free afterwards.  The cancer won't be cured but it will prolong his life and he can live without the pain.

Yes, please keep us updated.

Sending you good luck wishes from across the ocean,

Comet's mom 

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

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13 November 2010 - 5:32 pm
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Hello guys:

Thanks for the reply from Jerry and Cemil, that is help me a lot, very nice .u guys give me lots confidence.i have already make the decision for amputation next week,but my father do not think so .  

But i still have questions to ask. due to the situation is lots different from western country in China, my Mom found some best dog doctors depends her relationship, one of them is  working  for zoo of Beijing,one of them is a professor in this area, but i have to say i feel sad,none of them suggest do the amputation, they suggest euthanasia when my dog getting worse.    there is no very professional facility in china compare with western country, after the amputation, they will put my dog in a cage to look after, my Dad my dog will became worse if it can not see my Dad after the amputation, doctor even said maybe my dog will died in the operating table. i wanna know if dogs always died in the operating table in western?  anyway they never suggest the amputation from February,my dog just start limping from February,doctor said my dog's cancer has metastasizes to lungs on June, but my Dad do not think so. because my dog have a good spirit, (btw how can i send the pics to this website, i got its x-ray pic   ) i got link on facebook:http://www.face.....1414726539

my father is worried about my dog hard walk from 4th  floor to ground floor, my dog can not even climb to my bed, it is hard to get on the car for my dog,after all it is 12 years old.... my dad said my dog was getting worse after it went back from hospital last time.cos it took my dog too much spirit to move.  i just chat with my Dad, i feel hard to make the decision now. doctor said it will metastasize to lungs very soon after the amputation,  they alway persuade me do not do the amputation, i think i explain the situation more clearly than last time .is amputation still the first choice?

Bowei Han

Livermore CA
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13 November 2010 - 8:35 pm
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Bowei Han, it's very hard to respond to your post.  If your dog can have the amputation done (I mean, he can get to the operating room and the doctor can do the surgery), that might be his best chance.  It's your decision to make.  Your dad is there with him, knowing how much spirit he has.  Bone cancer is very painful for a dog, and it only gets worse.  Your choices are to get rid of the leg and the cancer and the pain, or let him escape from the pain.  I know your choice will be made with love for him.  I hope it works out in the best way.

In answer to your question, yes, sometimes dogs in Western hospitals die on the operating table.  Not often, but it can happen.  When any of my dogs has an operation, I always pray that everything will go well.  There are no guarantees.

I pray that everything will go well for Adun.

Mary

Cemil and mom Mary, Mujde and Radzi….appreciating and enjoying Today

Cemil's blog

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13 November 2010 - 9:53 pm
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We understand this is a very difficult decision you must make. Some dogs have died on the operating table, though that is very rare. More important is the care he will receive after surgery. The amputation will remove the pain of his leg, so he actually should be able to go up/down stairs better within a few days, but four floors is a lot of stairs! Whoever cares for him will need to be very dedicated to carrying him as needed for up to a few weeks if necessary.

Another thing to consider is that most dogs with cancer already do have lung metastsis at the time of amputation, usually it is just too small to see on x-rays – what vets call "micro-mets". If they are seeing the metastses on the x-ray, his cancer may already be quite advanced. Finally, while amputation is the best way to eliminate the pain, it does not cure the cancer. If Adun is otherwise fit and healthy, and will recieve proper care and help during his recovery, he should do well. We wish you the best of luck. 

Here are instructions for posting photos in forum posts.

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

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13 November 2010 - 9:55 pm
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Bowei, it sounds like your dog is in great spirits, which is good, and he is getting the best care available. What a lucky boy!

Usually when a person is in doubt about a dog's diagnosis, we suggest getting another opinion from a qualified veterinarian, then make a decision from there. It sounds like your family is doing all the right things, but this is not the news anyone wants to hear, we are so sorry.

As I mentioned, it's all about quality of life, not quantity. Only you know what's right for your dog, but if he is in pain, the kindest, most compassionate thing you can do is to help him get rid of the pain, either through amputation, or in the case of what the doctors are suggesting, "palliative" care, which means pain management until the pain becomes unbearable for him, and you must make that terrible decision to relieve him of his pain forever. It's so hard, we understand completely.

If a dog has lung metastasis, taking the leg off may not give him a good quality of life because it may take him longer to recover from the surgery than he would actually live with the cancer in his lungs. Vets do not recommend taking the leg off when metastasis is present.

Nobody can say for sure what will happen, and only you know what your dog is capable of. That leaves you and your family to make the decision, which we know is terribly hard, but whatever you decide your dog will know is based on love, and that's what counts.

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

Las Vegas, Nevada
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14 November 2010 - 12:25 am
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February,doctor said my dog's cancer has metastasizes to lungs on June

 

Bowei Han,

I tried to get your picture and put it here, but I couldn't see it on your Facebook page.  Just copy the link and paste it in  the "tree" looking icon.

I'm going to agree with "Jerry".

If  your dog has cancer in his lungs, it may not be good to have  the surgery.  I am sorry to write that.  But that means the cancer has spread.   The dog doctors should have suggested amputation in February to give him the best chance to fight cancer.   The surgery would be a hard thing on him now and he may not have the strength to recover.   His spirits may still be good even with cancer in his lungs. 

And since your dad lives on the 4th floor of an apartment, I'm not sure how your dad could get him up and down on 3 legs if he did survive the surgery.  After the surgery it will be very hard to move him. 

 

I sorry that I am not saying something more positive for you.  I wished I could write a happier message.

 

In your heart, you and your family have loved him so much.  And he has been around a long time and I'm sure he has given you much happiness.  The best you can do is make him comfortable as possible and just love him until he is in too much pain.

Sending you every good thoughts,

Comet's mom

Her Retired AvatarComet - 1999 to 2011

She departed us unexpectedly  January 23, 2011 at the age of 12 1/2.

She was born with a deformed front leg and a tripawd all of her life.

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14 November 2010 - 3:57 am
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hiya

Thanks everyone, thanks a lot

[Image Can Not Be Found][Image Can Not Be Found][Image Can Not Be Found]

btw,my dog's name called Adun, he is my little brother,lol.

I think we will get help from friends to help Adun move from home to hospital if we decide to amputate,Adun refuses take the lift, we have no idea to let him get into the lift.

anyway i will keep in touch with u guys when we decide before as soon as possible.

My Dad will discuss with vet depends on quality of life, not quantity.my Dad agree with  Comet's mom,The dog doctors should have suggested amputation in February to give him the best chance to fight cancer

 

Jerry said : If a dog has lung metastasis, taking the leg off may not give him a good quality of life because it may take him longer to recover from the surgery than he would actually live with the cancer in his lungs.  this answer is very important for me,  what is the most situation will happen after get ride of the leg from a dog has lung metastasis? does lots of dog in my dog's situation will dead from the new lung problem very soon? i just wanna count the percentage of successful  for Adun, in order to accept bad news if anything wrong happen after amputation

My Mom alway mention that Adun is too old to do this amputation(12 years old).

thanks ,i love u guys

Bowei Han (Hudson)

My heart lives at Rainbow Bridge
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14 November 2010 - 9:31 am
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I am very sorry you are struggling to make this decision.  I know how difficult it is, and I know how important it is for you to have as much information as possible before making a decision.

I agree with the others, for the best outcome the amputation should have been done in February.  There were several factors our vet used in recommending surgery - age, weight - is the dog overweight for its size, is there visable metastesis - can it been seen on x-ray, is the overall health good - all other organs functioning in a normal range.  The dog does not have to meet each criteria, (my Trouble was overweight) but needs to have a reasonable chance of being able to overcome the challenge.

Using his criteria, and the knowlege I've gained over the last two years, my concerns are - the lung metastesis, his age, and the stairs. It is hard to say how long or what quality of life he will have with existing lung metastesis prior to surgery.  There are others here who have had to re-learn how to use the stairs and I hope they come in and tell you about their experiences. Four flights is a LOT of stairs.  If he would use the lift, that would be so much better until he is healed.  And his age - 12 years old is really old for a Great Dane.

I thinks someone already mentioned this, but be aware if you do not do the surgery, there can be a fracture caused by weakness in the area of the cancer.  It is a risk you take when deciding not to do surgery.

Only you know the dog well enough to make these decisions.  There are no wrong choices.  You will make the decision with love for Adun and we will all support your decision and stand by to offer support.  You have already discovered that quality of life is the key, that tells me you will make the best choice possible.

You will be in my thoughts as you decide. 

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.


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14 November 2010 - 11:08 am
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I am sorry that you have to make this decision. My dog Tazzie was an English Mastiff and she weighed about 185# after the amputation.  She got around well but she could not do steep flights of stairs.  She was missing a front leg which is a little harder on them so if your dog is losing a back leg he might be able to so it.  Being overweight will definitely make it harder.

I would be concerned if the vet said that he saw lung mets on an xray.  Once you take the leg off the lung mets tend to grow faster so you may be only looking at a few months with your dog after amputation, even with chemo.  The swollen testicle could be inflamed or infected or could also be cancerous so that is also an issue.

There are some things that could help in case amputation is not an option.  Your vet could give an IV infusion of a drug called pamidronate that can help take pain away and actually strengthens the bone.  There are also herbs that can help.  A company called Jing Tang Herbal makes a mixture called Bone Stasis powder that can also delay bone destruction (the herbs come from China but I think the company is USA).

It is very rare for bone cancer to be cured; most of the time we try to delay the onset of metastasis and manage that if we can.  You must have taken great care of your dog for him to have lived 12 years!  I hope all goes well for you.

Pam

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14 November 2010 - 7:05 pm
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my father will go to see vet without Adun today, he is going to discuss with different situation and know some possibility inadvance, in order to bring Adun go to see vet to make the final decision after taking the x-ray for leg and lung,so tomorrow we will make the final decision after see the x-ray,so i hope i can get the final advice from u guys,thank u!!

i think there are  2 situation i should think before i know them. one is  x-ray showed no problem about Adun's lung and testicle. The second situation is there are problem about Adun's lung or testicle.plz guys ,i wanna know any possibility i can do if the second situation happen .

do u guys have any experiences about when the cancer has lung metastasis, i wanna know what does it looks like? is it more painful than the hurt from the leg bone?or dog will died very quick from this? what is people always do when this situation happy.( i really do wanna know what chinese vet gonna say,they just can say something not detail,just like use euthanasia when Adun can not bear the painful, whatever the situation is ,they will answer the same thing when dog got cancer)

Adun's spirit is  good now ,my father said Adun picked the Flip-Flops for him yesterday, and Adun still  shout when stranger walk pass my home's door everytime, i will ask my friend to help Adun with going to hospital tomorrow , hopfully my Dad can bring some useful information from the vet

thanks everyone again, u guy give me hopes, i can only say chinese vets they give me nothing about hope!they said Adun gonna be over and Adun just can wait for died(something like this) from February,they never realise  to help a dog enjoy its last time and giving us the hope to againest with Cancer .they do not think about quality of life,they got lots thing need to learn about the way to thinking.

 as Pam said i should feel happy for Adun to have lived 12 years. i forget to let u guys know that Adun got murrain when he was about 1years old, but he  beat it with us.  i am proud of  Adun anyway, he is my good brother!!he is a fighter!!

Bowei Han (or call me Hudson)

On The Road


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14 November 2010 - 7:06 pm
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hbwhbwhbw3344 said:

what is the most situation will happen after get ride of the leg from a dog has lung metastasis? does lots of dog in my dog's situation will dead from the new lung problem very soon? i just wanna count the percentage of successful  for Adun, in order to accept bad news if anything wrong happen after amputation

Bowei, I just wanted to let you know that TazzieDog, who answered this for you above, is our favorite veterinarian.

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

On The Road


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14 November 2010 - 7:19 pm
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hbwhbwhbw3344 said:

do u guys have any experiences about when the cancer has lung metastasis, i wanna know what does it looks like? is it more painful than the hurt from the leg bone?or dog will died very quick from this? what is people always do when this situation happy.( i really do wanna know what chinese vet gonna say,they just can say something not detail,just like use euthanasia when Adun can not bear the painful, whatever the situation is ,they will answer the same thing when dog got cancer)

Hudson,

Every dog is different in how the cancer affects their lungs. In general, when the mets grow too large, they will impact the dog's breathing, and cause them to be short of breath. Some dogs will be affected quickly, and others may live several months with the mets.  Usually it is not painful until breathing is too difficult.

There are two blog posts I wrote about how my own cancer happened. They are sad to read but at least might give you some idea of what to look for:

"What to Expect Next"

"Saying Goodbye: How We Knew"

I also wanted to point out this post, about pain relief drugs called "Bisphosphonates" that you may want to discuss with your vet. These drugs are used when amputation is not an option.

"Bisphosphonates, When Amputation Is Not an Option"

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

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