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Please help. Today is one of the worst days of my life and I feel shattered. My beautiful, precious dog has just been diagnosed with perianal adenocarcinoma. My beautiful Mushu is a 8-9 year old Japanese Chin that we adopted as a puppy from a rescue organization. He is so lovable, playful, active and has a massive personality. He loves his basket full of dog toys.  He loves his treats.  His "sister" is a 9 year old blind doggie who, also adopted as a puppy, whom he adores and protects. Mushu has been an essential source of support and comfort for my husband with combat-related PTSD. He was so healthy, annual vet exams etc. Last seen by the vet last June. A few weeks ago I felt a lump to the right of his anus.  It was soft, movable and not painful. It seemed to have come out of no where.  Even the groomer didn't notice it. It was surgically removed by our vet last week.  This am she called to tell us that although she was originally sure it was a cyst, the pathology came back as adenocarcinoma. Surgical margins were not 100% "clear" and she does not see this as a curable situation. This cancer is known to spread to lymph glands and lung, although she felt that his lymph glands did not feel enlarged. We are seeing a radiation Rx vet on Monday. Probably radiation Rx then chemo Rx. He may also need preliminary scans to look for metastasis before Rx.  Cost of Rx may be $5-7K to gain 2-3 years.  The vet says that those could be "good" years and does not feel that he should be put down right now.  I can't even imagine dong that to him. I would spend that $ in a heartbeat if they were "good"  years  but my hubby may need convincing.  I don't want to, can't, lose my dog!!! This is all so surreal, and I feel I have been thrown down a deep black bottomless well. I look at him now, he looks at me playfully with his big eyes, not understanding why I am sobbing, and I can't believe that a killer is inside him.  Please help...I can't imagine losing him or having to put him down. He is one of my "everythings".
Patti Ballard

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Reply with quote  #2 
My dear Patti, My sincere sympathy for the terrible news you received.
It’s inconceivable, I know, to think of putting your dog down. The sad fact of life is that at some time we will all go. In my view it is a question of how we want to go. Personally I would not want to go through horrible radiation and chemo therapy if there was no chance that it would cure me. Our animals can not choose and Mushu is dependent on you to do what is best for him. I’m rather surprised that the vet would recommend this course of treatment for a cancer that she doesn’t see as a “curable situation”. As you said yourself, the costs will be very high and I’m not suggesting the vet would recommend it based on making money but just that you need to be your baby’s advocate. As much as it breaks our hearts, and I have been there, at the end of the day it must be about what is right for your loving pet. We have to put our own feelings aside and do the right thing for them. Their time will come eventually regardless and we don’t want to look back and think we allowed them to suffer so that we could hold on to them. I faced the same situation. I opted not to have Sampson, my loyal and loving companion, go through radiation or chemo therapy. Instead, I took some sick time, took Sampson to the park every day, walks along the beach which he loved and having every treat his heart desired. When it became obvious that he was in pain, and animals will hide their pain so I stayed in close contact with my vet who fully supported my decision, I stayed by his side and the vet helped him to find peace. I hope the same for you Patti, that you can find peace with your decision. You’ve only just had this terrible news and this is all very shocking for you so my heart goes out to you. I hope you are able to find the strength to do what is right for your beloved Mushu. Take Care my dear,
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