JCN71
2 weeks ago my 8 year old Ariedale had a mastectomy and the biopsy came back 2 days ago as cancer..  I was told it had spread to almost her lymph nodes and the best thing to do would be just let her live the rest of her life out (no chemo) and keep her as comfortable as possible..  I have felt like life as I have known it for 8 years is all but over.. I have been depressed ever since the news..   Not trying to play myself as a victim, just wondering if anyone has any advice on what to feed her or any meds that may help her have more quality time before she starts to go down. She is currently fine and you wouldn't know anything is wrong with her..   And any advice on how to cope with your best friend dying of cancer would also be welcome...

Thank You,
Chris Norris
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Marty3004
Hey Chris
I'm so sorry to hear about your dogs cancer diagnosis. Same thing has happened to my cat recently, she had a lump removed from her abdomen, it was tested and turned out as advanced lymphoma.  They put her on chemotherapy pills and steroids but it's just to slow the cancer down and give us more time with her.  

They said chemo treatment for cats isn't as evasive as for people and it doesn't affect them as badly, not sure if it's the same in dogs but it may be worth checking why no medication if it gives you more time with her.

 As it's advanced they have given molly weeks to couple of months.  I know how devastating the news is, our pets are our family,our best friends and sometimes people don't understand the thought of losing them is equal to losing a human friend.

My life has turned upside down, it's all i can think about all day long, I'm always watching her for changes and can see her getting a bit worse each day and it's heart breaking.

All I can say is your dog doesn't know her diagnosis and she's just enjoying her time with you.   Try to enjoy every day with her, spoil her rotten and take each day one a time.  Your going to have wobbles but you know you are doing everything you can for her and she knows that, and knows shes loved.

I came across this forum looking for people who understood what I was going through as I didn't feel like I could talk about it with people I knew. There are some lovely comments and good advice on here from people who have been through the same which has really helped me. If only to know your not alone.  
 
Martin
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JCN71
Thank You Martin, so sorry to hear about your Molly..  I hope with the treatment you are able to get more quality time with her..  

Yes, losing a pet is just as bad as losing a friend..  I have lost my best two friends over the last couple years and it didn't compare to the grief I am going through with my dog. My family doesn't seem to feel anything like I feel, so I try to hide my grief..  I am so thankful that I found this site where people understand what I am going through. 

I do the same (think about it all day long).. It has consumed my entire day thinking of how long do we have? What can I do to extend our time together? Do I just accept the fact that she will be gone soon and in place of trying to feed her food that she doesn't like just to try and get a few more days out of her, or just let her eat whatever she wants and know she was happy right up until the end?    I just have so many thoughts running through my head..

You are right she does not know her prognosis and I try to be fun loving (and it is so very hard) as I can.. we go for a ride in our jeep and take a walk everyday when I get home from work..    She is loved more than she will ever know and I know she loves me too.. Guess that what makes it so hard,,,

Once again Thank You for your words and always know there is someone you can talk to who knows your pain..   Let me know anytime you need someone just to listen,,
Chris Norris
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Westie_angel26
I have lost pets before but never experienced anything like this, as we knew it was going to happen unlike our other pets when they died suddenly, in some ways it's more difficult but make the most of every day, take lots of pictures/videos and I made some paw imprints and took hair cuttings.  Nothing can prepare you but there are many websites that I found helpful, to understand the process what was going to happen and the stages of pet loss.
But you must always put there needs before your own, make sure they are comfortable and happy but you will know when it is time, give them the dignity that they deserve.
We had 3 and half months of worrying, how long has he got? Is he suffering? Etc, but he was happy and acting himself up until the end and we will remember him like that.
It's been 2 weeks since we lost charlie and it was the hardest thing I have ever done in my life.
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Memories_of_Marmalade

Dear Chris,

I am vey sorry to read of your dogs health and for all that she and you and yours are coping with.

My boy "Marmalade" was given steroids the year before his health went down hill. And they almost killed him, but he recovered and then he had an incredible appetite and tons of energy for many months. But it was TOO much energy. He never napped anymore, which pets like to do obviously. When his health declined again I opted out, as steroids are "as bad as they are good", with all kinds of side effects. Vet's have called them both "a curse and a gift."

We spent $4,000 dollars once on our cat "Dusty" in the year 2000 to try and save her and it was a mistake. She was older at around 18 years old and she suffered terribly. I will never forget what she went through.

One thing I learned with my own pets Marmalade's demise...you can never, ever know if a Vet and/or Animal Hospital knows what the Hell they are talking about. It's a 50%-50% situation. It's like playing in a casino. Rolling the dice. This forum is filled with archived posts from those who have experienced bad or wrong advice from countless Vet's and Animal Hospital's. I will never trust one again and I took Marmalade to 5 of them.

When it comes to Vet's and Animal Hospitals claiming that animals are "do not feel pain" during sickness or terminal illness or treatment ? I will never, not ever trust them. Pet's feel discomfort, pain and significant anxiety from being sick just like we humans do. And they also experience side effects from treatments and medications. But they can not clearly communicate how they feel and in most cases will hide how they feel, as in the wild, animals will be ousted from their pack or colony and in fact be killed if they are sick. I had a professior of biology tell me this fact. 

I heard my Marmalade moaning in the middle of the night when sleeping near the end. He was deaf so he did not know I could hear him. He would not moan during the day. I knew it was time to let him go. I could not allow him to detorate further. I owned him that much.

They say "you will no when the time comes." In the mean time love on your girl as best you can, as you have always done. And yes, spoil her rotten. I am so glad that at the end Marmalade had some McDonald's Fish Sandwhich and some gourmet Japanse meatballs. He could not eat too much, but I hope he enjoyed them.

Godspeed and I hope these last days are as loving and fun and joyous as they have been for the last 8 years.

All best,
James
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Henizwhoa
I’m so sorry for your loss Chris
Forever in our heart Lilo, Onyx, and Lola
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BoxerMomForever
Chris - sorry - about this devastating news.  I so can relate- our boxer was diagnosed last July. She had liver cancer. We did the same - let her live each day out as long as she wasn’t suffering. She did fine, but her rapid weight loss was even more devastating to see in a large dog. We had pills for the nausea but that was it. She got worse early October when she refused to eat.  They say please don’t dwell on what’s to come but just cherish each day and spoil them more.  To be honest I feel like I grieved soon as she got diagnosed.  Please try and not do that, they feed off our emotions.  Hugs to you! I know it’s a difficult journey ahead.
Linda *Mom to two boxer angels* Lily {White Girl} 6/22/09 - 10/14/19  ** Ginger {Flashy Fawn Girl} 6/4/97 - 5/28/09
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JCN71
Thank you all for the kind replies..   We have a WONDERFUL weekend this past weekend..  She was almost as normal as we could hope for..  Just hope it lasts for a long while..   Yes I myself started the grieving process as soon as I got the call that gave me the terrible news..   It has somewhat gotten better over the last few days and I have come to terms with I may not have her for much longer at all, but we are going to do our best to make each day the best we possibly can. I know without a doubt that she knows how much she is loved (that seems to be all I tell her lately). She brought a joy to my heart that I will miss greatly once she is gone.   Such a terrible thing we have to go through.. 

Thank You all! 

   
Chris Norris
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Eric2007
My boy Toby, a Pitbull Terrier I had for 12 years had problems walking. Doctors couldn't diagnose him but they assumed it was cancer. They wanted to operate but that his chance of surviving the operation was slim due to his age. They would not offer chemo except for steroids. They finally saw something in an ultrasound that confirmed the masses in his stomach. I tried vitamins for pets with antioxidants. Maybe I bought myself a couple of months. He passed away about 2 1/2 months later.  During that period I gave him any treat he wanted and spent as much time with him as possible. He ate spaghett and Doritos. His whole life I only fed him home made healthy food but I let him enjoy those carby foods since I knew his time here was limited.
I carried him everywhere. He weighed 80lbs. Took him to parks etc.. He was my boy. 
I miss him so much.
I suggest you spoil your baby rotten with the time you have. You will miss her dearly but knowing you spoiled her does help ease the pain a little.  It's been 1 1/2 months since I lost him and it still hurts so very much. 
Some days worse than others. But remembering that during those two last month's how he would love eating that spaghetti, munching on those Doritos and loving when I would carry him outside on the lawn or the park so he could sunbathe while I lay next to him, gives me moments I can smile.   
Eric
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JCN71
Thank You So Much Eric..  I have been torn between trying to feed her healthy and give her vitamins to give us some extra time (but I could tell she wasn't happy when she was eating), or just let her eat whatever she wants..    At first I was like i'm doing everything I can do to keep her alive as best and for as long I could, but at the end of the day I just want her to have the most fun she can as her time is approaching..   I am thinking I am just going to let her do anything she wants to and just pray I will be able to choose the right time to know when it is her time to rest her spirit..   

I love this dog to death and don't want her to ever suffer in any way,,    I owe her that for all she has meant to me.. 

Thank You,
Chris Norris
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BoxerMomForever
Towards the end when my Lily didn't want her food.  I cooked her whatever she wanted and would eat.  Scrambled eggs, boiled chicken, boiled ground meat, baby food, etc.   Again I am sorry you are going through this.  But we do what we can to let them live each day as long as they are not suffering.  I sure wish they can speak to us.  You have to make decisions for them and hope its the right thing.  Hugs to you.
Linda *Mom to two boxer angels* Lily {White Girl} 6/22/09 - 10/14/19  ** Ginger {Flashy Fawn Girl} 6/4/97 - 5/28/09
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