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Riley - 2.5 weeks Post Front Right Leg Amputation Update
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Member Since:
13 March 2023
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19 April 2023 - 9:31 am
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Rily update - Riley is doing very well. Yesterday, he had his final series of injections for ELIAS Immunotherapy. The main side effects so far have been being tired, nausea, and some vomiting. Nothing too major. 

I did call the vet and he gave us some nausea meds to give him which seem to help.

He's moving around very well and has even gone up and down our 18 steps to our second level! Then, jump on my son's bed like you used to. I'm just amazed!

Around 2 weeks after surgery he really wanted to be upstairs as he kept following my son towards the steps. I carried him up the stairs and placed him on the bed. My son jumped on the bed and was hugging him and I left the room for a minute. I came back a few minutes later and Riley had a big smile and tears at the same time.

I think he must have thought he wouldn't be allowed up to his bed anymore so I think they must have been tears of joy. icon_lol

On May 2nd we make our first big trip to Ohio for Aphresus. We are pretty scared and nervous as he will be staying there overnight.

Thanks again for all the support. 


The Rainbow Bridge

Member Since:
25 April 2007
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19 April 2023 - 10:17 pm
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Well what a great update! Going through the Elias therapy isn't the easiest thing but you and Riley are making the best of it. A lot of people would have gotten upset by the side effects but you didn't because you are seeing the big picture Attitude is everything!

He definitely deserved a good cuddle on the bed, and many more!

So happy life is good for you all. Let us know how the next visit goes. You and Riley can do this!


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22 February 2013
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21 April 2023 - 10:45 am
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The visual of  how happy Riley was to be back up on the bed just melted my heart.  Eogs hate veong separated  from THEIR bed or THEIR couch 😉

He really is going remarkably  well.  Yoi are doing  everything possible for your boy  and he knows it!  We're  all cheering for him!


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!

Member Since:
22 January 2023
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25 April 2023 - 9:20 pm
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Bill, I am not sure how I missed your story. I read from the beginning to now and your words were exactly how I felt and still feel today. Lacey is my chocolate who had her front leg amputated and it’s like she’s her self all over again minus one leg. Her hair is still growing back too. 

Just wanted you to know I’m a grown man that doesn’t cry but when we found out Lacey had cancer I lost my mind. I was lost and very very sad.  My family had to make sure I was ok. I am not 100% today but I feel better as she is leaning against me right now…

I know how you feel and I wish I had the right words to make things better. All I can say is you are not alone. This site is incredible as are the people who visit and comment. I’m here my friend. 

Member Since:
15 March 2023
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27 April 2023 - 7:53 am
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Yay Riley! What a great update!  He got to be back in his happy place. I can easily see him with your sun all cuddled up and his big smile, love is amazing both from dogs and to our dogs.

good vibes headed your way for your big trip to Ohio, everything will be OK, you are prepared, and you are doing this so Riley can continue to have a good quality of life!

Member Since:
13 March 2023
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5 May 2023 - 8:57 am
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I'm sorry as it looks like I had some replies that I missed.

Robid - thanks for sharing and I'm so sorry to hear your story. I appreciate you taking the time to reply.

Riley 30 days past amputation update + ELIAS Immunotherapy Update - May 5th

Well, we got back from Ohio yesterday evening. Riley did super well with his Aphresis. The office in Columbus loved him and was super excited as this was the first time they had done the procedure at that office. They shared pictures with us of the doctor kissing and hugging him as he lay on the table for the procedure. They cared and it made us feel so much better. The procedure was a success and they said they sent off his T-Cells to ELIAS Labs to get "pumped up!"

He did really well on the long ride down and back. 4 hours there and back.

Plus, staying at a different house, etc. He was just a rock star for us!

The vet did give alot of drugs before we left to head home which made it hard because Riley couldn't even lift his head let alone stand and pee. I told them that Trazadone hits him hard and they gave him 150mg a few hours before we left. Plus 400 mg of gabapentin along with other drugs. He still can't walk.

Luckily, I carried him out this morning and he stood long enough for a pee. He did pee before bed last night on his dog bed, but the pee pads we bought worked great so no worries.

Hopefully, he will sleep it off and be better tonight.

Next week it's back down to Ohio, but this time we go to Dayton for the T-Cell infusion part of the process. The last major hurdle!

One more super long week, but then we can start focusing more on recovery.

My wife and I did have a breakdown during the trip as the emotions became overwhelming. We've been so focused on the process of getting him from Point A to Point B that we weren't really processing it all and then it just washed over us both.

Luckily, we have each other during this time.

We did find time during his procedure to go to a conservatory with plants from all over the world, plus a butterfly house which was nice. My wife was a little envious that this beautiful butterfly landed on me and looked like it gave me a hug and flew away. Everyone was like, "Wow, you are so lucky!". In my head, I laughed a little as they had no idea I was traveling across state lines with my chronically ill wife and 3 legged dog to do experimental cancer treatment. Yes, very lucky I thought silently. smiley4

All in all, things are going as well as can be expected and I will update everyone after we get back next week. Love to all and support to everyone.


The Rainbow Bridge

Member Since:
25 April 2007
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6 May 2023 - 2:39 pm
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Aww Bill that is such a beautiful scene to imagine the butterfly landing on your shoulder. Maybe that was nature's way of telling you that it's all going to work out. Little signs like that can be so meaningful.

Ok good luck with everything, we'll await word.

Member Since:
13 March 2023
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17 May 2023 - 9:42 am
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Riley + ELIAS Immunotherapy Update - May 17th

We have completed Riley's 2 big trips to Ohio for his immunotherapy treatment and he did very well. Especially, the Aphresis which takes 6 hours. The vet team said he was awesome! He really didn't want to go back and neither did we but the vet team was great.

He's battled some nausea, etc, but it's pretty much what we've expected. He has 2 more shots that we are doing at home and then his treatment will be done. Then, it's up to his body to fight the cancer.

When we had our second trip down to Dayton they actually had their marketing team interview us and Riley because he is one of the few dogs who have gone through the process.  (MedVet)

When they are finished I will make sure we share the posts they create.

It was a lot more expensive than we thought it was going to be so we did create a gofundme to try to get some help, but we will see. I hate asking for help, but $20,000+ is a big chunk of change.

I pray we made the right decision.

Thanks again for creating this wonderful place and I will keep updating when new information comes up.


The Rainbow Bridge

Member Since:
25 April 2007
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17 May 2023 - 10:59 am
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Oh my gosh Riley the spokesdog, I love it! Yes please do share when the interview goes up.

WOW 20k? Eeeeeee! Oh my gosh Bill. I had no idea it was that much. Thanks to RIley though, hopefully as more people see that it works, the treatment will become more widespread and costs will go down.

It's really good to hear from you and to know that life is good. GO GET EM RILEY!!! You're DOING IT!!!

Member Since:
15 March 2023
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23 May 2023 - 10:03 am
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Ya'll are going to be famous! How cool, can't wait to see the interview. Glad to hear everything has gone smooth, I'm a little envious that you will already be done with treatment (I know it was still a lot though), it's a pretty incredible idea and I am hopeful it will help Riley!

Regardless of what happens you made the best decision for Riley and your family at the time and with the information you had. I look forward to more updates!

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