TRIPAWDS: Home to 14442 Members and 1614 Blogs.
HOME » NEWS » BLOGS » FORUMS » CHAT » YOUR PRIVACY » RANDOM BLOG

Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat

Tripawds is the place to learn how to care for a three legged dog or cat, with answers about dog leg amputation, and cat amputation recovery from many years of member experiences.
JUMP TO FORUMS

Join The Tripawds Community

Learn how to help three legged dogs and cats in the forums below. Browse and search as a guest or register for free and get full member benefits:

  • Instant post approval.
  • Private messages to members.
  • Subscribe to favorite topics.
  • Live Chat and much more!

REGISTER   |   LOG IN


Please consider registering
Guest
Search
Forum Scope




Match



Forum Options



Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters
Register Lost password?
sp_Feed sp_PrintTopic sp_TopicIcon-c
To Chemo or not ot Chemo
sp_NewTopic Add Topic
Forum Posts: 38
Member Since:
2 September 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
1
9 September 2008 - 2:13 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

I’m so confused. Cody is scheduled to have his staples removed this Thursday. We will also meet with the oncologist. Since we are 2 hours away from UW-Madison vet hospital they have also scheduled time for Cody to have his Chemo if we decide to proceed. In my mind I was all set to proceed but after reading posts at other websites many owners say they have chosen not to give Chemo due to the age of the animal and what it may put them through. Cody is a 12 1/2 year old Lab. He’s recovering pretty well for an older guy. I am hoping to see even more improvement and energy once the staples are removed. Maybe it would be too soon to do the Chemo if he needs more recoup time from surgery? I don’t know!!! Madisons protocol is Capsplatin (I know that I spelled that wrong) once every 3 weeks for 3-4 sessions. He has no visable Mets in his lungs. He had a left front leg amputated which is a little harder on him as he has moderate arthritis in his hips. Any words of advise from some of you faced with this same decision. I just want to do what’s right for Cody. He’s trying so hard and we are right there with him. Thanks, Cathy 

Manchester, UK
Forum Posts: 210
Member Since:
2 February 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
2
9 September 2008 - 4:02 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Hi!  Without going back to look, I’m not sure how long it is since Cody had his surgery but when we were waiting for Darcy’s biopsy results to come back after her surgery, I was talking to the oncologist and he said they like to start chemo within about 14 days.  As it happened, Darcys start was closer to 21 days in the end.

My personal thoughts are that I would go ahead and do the chemo if your vet thinks the time is right.  Best not to loose any time before starting it, if at all possible.

Statistically (and all we can do is look at statistics) there’s more chance of a better/longer outcome with chemo rather than without so if Cody is up to it, I’d do it as soon as possible.

Most dogs don’t have too many side effects and those that they do have are usually managed pretty easily with medication.  (Darcy was a bit of a one-off but that shouldn’t have come as any surprise to any of us!).

Best of luck with whatever you decide Smile

Darcy – tripawd since 16th October 2007.

***Darcy would love to be your friend on Facebook - just search for Darcy Deerhound***


Forum Posts: 1955
Member Since:
22 August 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
3
9 September 2008 - 4:57 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Cody,  I would definitely do the chemo!  Carboplatin is very safe (as far as chemo goes).  Unlike Adriamycin, it does not damage the heart muscle, and is much easier on the kidneys than the old drug (Cisplatin).  You have to watch the white count because any chemo drug can be immunosuppressive.  If your white count goes too low the next chemo has to be delayed or antibiotics given.  Sometimes nausea is a concern but the Vet School will probably give something called Cerenia to prevent that.

Statistically, dogs live much longer with chemo after amputation because most osteosarcomas have already metastasized at the time of surgery, even if lung rads are clear.  Some dogs like Jerry can do well on metronomic chemotherapy .  I don’t know much about that but I think it involves a low oral dose of Cytoxan alternating with an NSAID like Deramaxx.

I went to vet school in Madison and they are well known for a super oncology dept.  All of the docs are nice there but hopefully you can get Dr Vail!  He is my favorite.

Tazzie starts her chemo on Monday.  We had to wait 21 days because of my work schedule and I wanted to make sure she would be healed enough for me to get her in the van.  Keep us posted!

 

Pam and Tazzie

Forum Posts: 38
Member Since:
2 September 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
4
9 September 2008 - 9:23 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Thanks Bevi and Tazzie, I feel a little better. Of course, I will do whatever our vet recommends but I always like to be armed with as much information and support I can muster beforehand. I think when I made my appointment they said David Vail was the faculty member on rotation this week!  I do feel very lucky to have such a wonderful facility to take Cody to if there is any silver lining to all of this. Thursday will be 13 days from his surgery. He’s just starting to do better now that he’s off the meds and I was having second thoughts about putting him through the chemo. On the other hand I want to give him all the tools he needs to help him fight off this terrible disease as long as he can while enjoying his golden years. It sure has been an emotional roller coaster…the support and information on this site has been a godsend…now I’m off to put on my happy face and nuzzle up with my baby. Keep you posted! 

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 25575
Member Since:
25 April 2007
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
5
9 September 2008 - 9:47 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Hey Cody, I think that if your Mamma’s gut feeling was to go with the chemo, then by all means she should listen to that feeling, and go forward with it.

Here at Tripawds, a few of our friends have had minor issues after chemo, like decreased appetite, but most other dogs did just fine, and any side effects they did experience were far less than anything faced during the first few days after amputation. 

Wow, talk about a great facility, you are so lucky!

Here is the background about my Metronomic Protocol if you’re interested. 

Keep us posted, we’re rootin’ for ya.

Your friend,

Jerry 

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Golden, CO
Forum Posts: 30
Member Since:
16 August 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
6
10 September 2008 - 10:52 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Cody,

A couple of weeks ago we found ourselves in the exact situation you describe.  Molly went in to get her staples removed post-amputation and we found out the vet wanted to start chemo (Lomustine) immediately, that day.  Up to that point, we thought she might only have grade 2 soft tissue cancer, but another test that also came in that day revealied it was the more aggressive grade 3 histiocytic sarcoma type and had likely spread somewhere else in her body.  Because we felt the chemo would give Molly the best chance at fighting the spread of the cancer, we decided to go for it.  Like you, I questioned our decision because Molly was finally regaining her energy and feeling better after the amputation.  I worried that the chemo would make her sick again.  However, that has not been the case yet.  We are now almost done with her first round of chemo and have not seen any side effects.  She is also on prednisone which makes her pant alot, but other than that, she is doing great.  She has been galloping around, swimming, playing in the creek and wagging her tail like a crazy-dog lately.  We start her second round of chemo on Monday.

Best Wishes,

Heidi and Mollydog

 

Molly was diagnosed with Synovial Cell Sarcoma (grade 3 with hystiocytic markers) and had her front leg amputated on August 15th 2008.  We had a wonderful two years with her until she passed at age 13.5 on August 29th 2010.  As far as we could tell, her cancer never returned.

Forum Posts: 38
Member Since:
2 September 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
7
10 September 2008 - 11:48 am
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Thanks Heidi, That’s encouraging. I think we will be going ahead with the treatment. Tomorrow is the big day! May I ask, how old is Molly? I’m so glad she is doing well and enjoying herself. That must make your heart sing! Wish us luck. Cathy

Forum Posts: 729
Member Since:
28 May 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
8
10 September 2008 - 2:24 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Hi Cody…Zeus here, I started my chemo 2 weeks after surgery and my mom had the same exact concerns about me getting sick etc…We decided to go through with it because it gave me the best chance of fighting this horrible disease and because our oncologist assured us that there were no side effects with Carboplatin. We did 4 treatments, 3 weeks apart and finished up at the end of June. True to my doctor’s word, I had no side effects except for being a little lazy the day that I had the treatment. It was a piece of cake. I also had 2 treatments of pamidrinite each one month apart – the purpose is to strengthen the remaining bones. No side effects from that either.

I’m 10 1/2…

Tell your mom to listen to her heart…when my mom took me in to get the staples removed, she was 100% certain she was not going to do chemo, but after discussing it with the doctor and obtaining all the information, she did a complete change of mind…and heart.

Good luck and let us know how it goes ~

Love,

Zeus and Mom

Heather and Spirit Zeus - Our life changing journey…from the earth to the heavens…one day at a time…always together

Golden, CO
Forum Posts: 30
Member Since:
16 August 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
9
10 September 2008 - 11:20 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Cody,

Molly will be 12 in four months, though she still acts a bit like a goofy puppy.  She has always been very active and even went on a backpack trip earlier this summer before her diagnosis.

She is doing so well through this and is such a brave girl, though I am still nervous about her chemo treatment since I know we are still in the early stages of the whole process.  I am dreading the second dose on Monday because I fear it may start to take its toll.  I try to stay positive, but it is hard sometimes… every day brings so much uncertainty.

 Hang in there and best of luck tomorrow.  We’ll be thinking of you.

 Heidi and Mollydog

Molly was diagnosed with Synovial Cell Sarcoma (grade 3 with hystiocytic markers) and had her front leg amputated on August 15th 2008.  We had a wonderful two years with her until she passed at age 13.5 on August 29th 2010.  As far as we could tell, her cancer never returned.

uschmonster
10
16 September 2008 - 1:08 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Hi. Without actually checking locally, I heard that carboplatin treatments can cost $4000-$5000. is this true? while I am willing and able to spend what it will take to get my Uschi dog thru amputation (probably within a week), another 5K for chemo is hard to swallow. especially when my vet said that the chemo hasn’t been shown (in his opinion) to increase quality days. am I getting the real story?

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 25575
Member Since:
25 April 2007
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
11
16 September 2008 - 1:31 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

uschmonster said:

… am I getting the real story?


Thanks for commenting Usch! Boy. If there was one "real answer" we would love to share it with you. Truth is, every dog’s story is different.

My people opted not to do IV chemo with me after my surgery. Not because of cost, but because I was only given 3-4 months to live. Well, I’m in month 22 now!

Yes, the cancer did metastasize in my lungs after about 14 months. My people then put me on an oral chemo (cytoxan) treatment. And I’m still hanging in there. But with ever decreasing lung capacity, I do get tired very easily.

There are plenty of others in these forums who have gone through post-op chemotherapy with success stories to share. Hopefully they can provide better input regarding cost and quality of life. Try searching above for Carboplatin too!

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

Forum Posts: 1
Member Since:
16 September 2008
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
12
16 September 2008 - 3:49 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Cody,

My German Shepherd Asja ("ass-yaa") was 12.5 years old when her front right leg was amputated, and we started chemo two weeks later (carboplatin).  She recovered pretty well from the amputation, and she took the chemo pretty well.  If you can afford it, it should give you more time with your dog. I don’t regret what we did, Asja lived a year after amputation.

I heard that carboplatin treatments can cost $4000-$5000. is this true?

That depends upon the size of the dog and number of treatments.  My dog was 85 pounds, carboplatin was $450 plus hospital supplies, each treatment was around $600 +/-, and we did five treatments three weeks apart.  So the carboplatin treatments were around $3000, maybe $3500.  If your dog is smaller, obviously the vet will use less drugs, hence less cost.  My vet told me if my dog was 5 pounds heavier, we’d need another bottle.  Her leg was 4.5 pounds.  I didnt know if I should laugh or cry about that five pounds.

 

 

The Rainbow Bridge



Forum Posts: 25575
Member Since:
25 April 2007
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline
13
16 September 2008 - 5:16 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Asja said:

Asja ("ass-yaa") was 12.5 years old when her front right leg was amputated…


Thanks for registerring and joining the discussion Asja! And thank you for your thoughtful input. Please feel free to add a new topic and share your story with others.

It's better to hop on three legs than to limp on four.™
Latest Tripawds News
Read my story here.

Support the Tripawds Foundation!

tazziedog
14
16 September 2008 - 10:42 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Uschi,

I think that you should strongly think about getting carboplatin treatments, because it is the best way to try to slow down the metastasis of this bad cancer.  Some dogs met quickly even with chemo and some met slowly, but over 90% of dogs will see cancer spreading to other bones or lungs at some point in this disease. 

Carboplatin is generally well-tolerated by dogs, with the chance of lethargy, vomiting, or diarrhea.  These side effects are usually mild although sometimes serious reactions can occur.  Carboplatin is expensive but at least a generic form is now available.  My dog Tazzie had her first chemo yesterday.  At 170 pounds the drug alone was $560 but if it adds 1-2 years to her life it will be worth it! 

Pam

uschmonster
15
17 September 2008 - 11:06 pm
sp_Permalink sp_Print sp_QuotePost

Thanks. Uschi had her amputation today but I have already made an appt. with a vet oncologist in early Oct. in Seattle to determine the next step. It’s about an hour away. I figure the only way I can truly decide about chemo is to talk to a specialist and get an estimate. Uschi-dog is only 63 lbs, so maybe less than $500 per? the amputation was a success I’m told. I don’t get her back until tomorrow (thurs). You know, I wish I would have thought of taking an ink print of her doomed paw beforehand. oh well.

Forum Timezone: America/Denver
Most Users Ever Online: 597
Currently Online:
50
Guest(s)
Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)
Member Stats:
Guest Posters: 1043
Members: 9813
Moderators: 2
Admins: 3
Forum Stats:
Groups: 4
Forums: 23
Topics: 15723
Posts: 220322
Administrators: admin, jerry, jim
Moderators: betaman, krun15
Tripawds is brought to you by Tripawds.
HOME » NEWS » BLOGS » FORUMS » CHAT » YOUR PRIVACY » RANDOM BLOG