pkantor
Our Siberian husky, Smokey, was diagnosed with cancer back in mid April.  We had been trying to figure out the source of stomach upset and diarrhea.  After many tests and many visits to our vet, we were referred to a specialist.  She did an ultrasound on him and gave us the bad news.  Smokey has masses in his liver, stomach, and on the outside of his intestines.  He also has a gall stone She couldn't confirm  they were cancerous without a biopsy, but told us there was nothing that could be done for Smokey, and that the disease would progress.  She advised us that when his quality of life was poor that we would need to make decision. 

I cant believe it, but it has been 6 months!!  My wife and I have cherished every single day with him!  When he first came home after the diagnosis, he wouldn't eat.  He would go outside and eat grass to try and vomit.  I thought he wasn't going to make it through to his 11th birthday April 30th.  We called our vet to see if there was any other meds we can try that would make him less nauseous . She prescribed a medication that is used for humans (If someone wants the name let me know and I will ask my wife) and Smokey was almost his old self again!! The downside is these pills are VERY expensive ($90 per week)  Even with the cost, we are so blessed to have something that finally helps him!!

The vet didn't think he was in any pain, and we don't think he has pain either.  He doesn't pant or whine (unless he wants treats!) When he has a bad day I think it more of a gallbladder attack (diarrhea / nausea)  A bad day is usually followed by 6-6 good days where he eats 3-4 small meals a day, numerous treats, and INSISTS on his walks!

Everyone says "he will let you know when its time"  I sure hope he does. We are terrified  that something major like a tumor bursting (not even sure that is possible?) or some catastrophic even like that causing him pain.   On the flip side, I cant let him go unless he lets me know.  We had planned a trip with friends in March (before diagnosis). We were supposed to be going to the Florida Keys next week.  We cannot leave him in what could be his final weeks here.  Our friends understand, but there are some that say "why don't you just let him go?".  Sorry, I can't put my dog down so I can go on vacation!!

Sorry, I didn't mean to write a book.  Just hoping for some guidance. 
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Jimbo106
If Smokey still wants his walks, I'd say he still wants to be with you. Vacations can happen again, the moments you have now will be gone forever. When he stops eating, that would be the time to sit down with the vet for a quality of life talk.

Kind thoughts to you and Smokey

Jim

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Luckyleah
Beautiful dog. My dog just passed of liver cancer after 1 1/2 years past diagnosis. It finally spread to the lungs and went fast after that. I had a similar experience to you with improvement after diagnosis and the debate of when. My answer was when i saw him starting to struggle andi Nknew it could 't improve. If he had had a look that was fading or a temperament change. My guy stayed loving people and my arrention until the end even though he couldnt walk far. He wasnt having lroblems with elimination. We did end up cooking for him the last year it was all he would eat but it worked! Once those last days he stoped eating again and i had no more tricks, the panting from the last couple weeks (he saw vet lungs and heart sounded good but xray showed cancer) ihad episodes of labored breathing and the last couple days he losthis vision and started having episodes of dementia. But he still knew me and groomed and alert he didnt look so "bad". I felt terrible for doing it, guilty and selfish. I worked through those emotions that first night though with reinforcement frm my mom and husband. In talking it out i realized the reason i feel like "i couldnt take it anymore" is because he couldnt, he was struggling now but he wasnt going to give up on me and his death was going to be very slow. I think i caught it at the point i wanted where he was dying but not so far down the pipe that he was suffering horribly, just enough to make it clear what i had to do. The weeks prior he became unusually affectionate and staying for pets longer. I am still sad but it is the missing kind now and i dont feel guilt after the first night. It was what ii had to do. So sorry for your your sick boy a d this horrid decision. Continue to treasure these last weeks or months.
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pkantor
Thank you both for the reply and the kind words. Smokey is still hanging in there! Feel so blessed to have this time with him!
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pkantor
Smokey woke up this morning and his face and neck were swollen.  The vet thought if was potentially fluid built up?  We was able to drink water but not able to eat.  We made the decision to let him go.  We are heartbroken, but we know we did the right thing.  He was the best dog ever!!  We will miss him dearly!
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Beesmom123
I am so sorry for your loss
It is obvious you loved Smokey dearly and wanted to spare him unnecessary suffering
That is true unconditional love

I have a cat with cancer who is being treated and is doing quite well at the moment, one cherishes and appreciates each day as we know they are limited

Peace to you
Diana
Bee- "Good night sweet prince & flights of angels see thee to thy rest"
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camunki
so sorry for the loss of Smokey, yet i am glad you had many more months of life with him, even after the cancer was predicted.

Alot of dogs don't have that "extra time"......sometimes when cancer hits, it comes on so aggressive there is not time. 

You did the right thing til the very end, and then you knew it was time....

Your Smokey is your guardian angel now...til you meet again.

Cam

Cam


 
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