(OT) bad news about my old dog...

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by BethM, Jan 27, 2006.

  1. BethM

    BethM New Member

    but not unexpected. The lump on his knee has malignant cells in it, but not the kind that metastisize much. The vet is going to talk to the oncologist/surgeon and get back to me.

    I'm not sure they can do surgery. There's not much tissue to work with, since it on his right hind knee, where it's pretty much skin over bone. Also, it's on his GOOD leg, as the left hip has severe dysplasia. He's 10 years old, don't know how well he'd tolerate surgery regardless.

    He weighs 100 pounds, so it's not like I can pick him up to go outside.

    Is it awful of me to think about refusing much treatment for this? It'll cost tons of money, make him miserable, might make his last months worse than if we left it alone.

    Right now he is happy, fairly energetic, eats and poops and barks and does all the usual doggy things, including being very opinionated about many things, especially his dinner. He loves his walks, plays some with our smaller, young dog, is interested in his world, barks at the mail delivery person and the gardners, and probably will aggravate the heck out of the cleaning people today. (I am living at my sister and bil's house, they have lots of people who do stuff for them.)

    So, am I being selfish in not wanting to deal with major and aggressive treatment for Cosmo? I love him, but there are so many ways to look at this.

    Thank you all for letting me vent, and for your help.

  2. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    there are some cancer cells on dogs partic on leg lumps that sound a lot worse than they are. They usually stay in situ. They almost never travel elsewhere -most can usually be completely removed by your vet,along with the skin, who will then make a glove flap to cover the lump space and missing skin. Recovery is excellent usually. And dog will be walking even with other bad leg next day. The worse thing will be keeping him off the stitches. The total cost for the surgery I had done with my vet, who let me stay with the doggie during to watch, was $230.00 including all meds and xrays and follow up. It is a skilled but quick procedure. I'd encourage you to chat more about this. My dog had four great years afterwards, until his back went out and he got totally unable to walk unaided even then got two more years of love and company.

    Love Crom
  3. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I pray you can find the right answer which is best for everyone. God bless you.

    Love, Mikie
  4. BethM

    BethM New Member

    Crom, sounds you have a very reasonably priced vet. I suspect this will be lots more than that, though Thanks for the encouragement. Cosmo is a great dog and I'd love to have a few more years with him.

    Thanks, Mikie. I appreciate the prayers!

  5. Sbilek

    Sbilek New Member

    Beth, if it were my dog, Beth, I'd leave well enough alone, especially with the age factor.

    I'd enjoy the time you have left with him, and then if the situation progresses and the dog is in pain, I'd do the right thing then by your friend.

    I just went through the cancer deal with my 10 year old German Shepherd, had a hemangiosarcoma, the type that bleeds.

    My intuition told me it was best to leave it alone, as I know that sometimes when you start cutting on the tumors and cancers, it just spreads it, without aggressive chemotherapy, which is terrible hard on our animal friends, especially when they don't know what's going on.

    Had the surgery, month later the cancer spread to his spleen, and the look on his face was all I needed to make the decision that needed to be made.'

  6. BethM

    BethM New Member

    thank you so much for your support and kind words. My feeling is to leave Cosmo's lumpy knee alone, love him and spoil him and enjoy him for as long as I have him. It's good to hear others say the same. Vets are so good at making me feel guilty about this sort of decision.

    He had so many problems as a puppy and young dog, the vet and I figured he'd live about 5 years, and here it's been 10. 5 bonus years, to my way of thinking. He just got the short end of the genetic stick in many respects, but his personality and temperment and his gorgeous white coat overshadow all the rest.

    Cosmo is snoring in the hallway right now. He's a good dog. I think I'll take Cosmo and the little one for a walk soon.

  7. 69mach1

    69mach1 New Member

    what ever choice you make for your dog, cosmo...just remember atleast we are allowed to be humane and put the animals down and off to doggy or kitty heaven...that is why i would love to come back as a dog...

    when you are suffering and it is inevitable they can be put to sleep peacefully, we on the otherhand have to endure what ever these doctors and lawmakers will allow us to...or we take care of it ourself...

    it sounds like you have some people here that are talking about first hand experience w/their pets...they are very encouaraging...

    i wish you all the strength to care for your little or not so little freind cosmo....

    hugs to you and cosmos

  8. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    You are the one who knows your own dog and please do not think I was pushing you to make surgery decision, esp. as it seems that I have a very reasonably priced vet! I did want to add that because the type of cancer cell normally seen in these legs lumps does stay in situ(never moves) that what may happen is that the lump will just increase in size over a year or so-some grow slowly some not so, but they seem to remain harmless. The reason I opted for surgery, as my vet was very honest with me about the low likelihood of it spreading elsewhere(unlike vets who are scaremongers)was that it had gotten to egg sized and it was in a place where it got knocked all the time, and it was just easier to take it off when smaller than have it grow big. In reflection, I would have had it removed when it was pea sized as that would have been really simple. I think that your doggie will just have the lump grow bigger and it should not bother him or cause any distress or spread anywhere. My vet showed me pictures of doggies with lumps as big as grapefruits whose owners had opted not to operate. So I think your decision is fine, I just wanted to share my own experience. Especially with older dogs too, I have to say that an expert at Cornell Vet school shared with me that they have a tendency to get a spine problem from the anaesthetic, a stenosis, and he showed me research papers about this from all the top Vet schools. So I do think your decision is wisely made, and that the type of cancer it is will just stay in that place till doggie dies of other causes(ie old age)or the hip displasia getting too severe.

    Best wishes, Love Anne
  9. BethM

    BethM New Member

    I know in my heart what is best for my elder fur-kid, and I really appreciate the support I'm finding here. You are all such a down to earth bunch of angels! What would I do without you??

    I'll draw strength from your sage advice when the vet calls me next week and gives me the options THEY see as needed. It's so easy to get talked into procedures, out of guilt.

    I will remember that he is a DOG person not a human person, and that his is a much more simple view of life than ours.

    And I will slip him an extra treat now and then, just because!

  10. BethM

    BethM New Member

    good to hear from you! Thanks for the warning about the anesthetic and dogs.

    I'm sorry we didn't get to have lunch one more time before I left the desert. I hope things are going better for you.


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