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12 year old GSD with mammory tumor



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 30th 03, 12:23 PM
House\O\Dogs
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Default 12 year old GSD with mammory tumor

Please forgive the cross posting, but I am posting to breeds and behavior
groups too since I know that not everyone checks out the messages on the dog
health newsgroup.

Our much beloved 12 year old German Shepherd, Josey, had a mammary tumor
removed a week ago. She tolerated the procedure very well and is healing
quite nicely. However, today the biopsy results indicated that the tumor
material was cancerous. The vet said that he got "clean margins" around the
surgical area and that her lymph nodes do not appear to be enlarged.

Factors: She has always been a healthy active dog, but has slowed down a
lot during the last six months. She has been diagnosed with mild DM, which
has just now started to give her some minor trouble with her right rear leg.
Her senior exam bloodwork revealed that she probably has the beginnings of
Cushing disease, but no symptoms have appeared yet. She still goes up and
down the stairs pretty frequently, but is starting to have trouble holding
her bowel if there is "a round in the chamber".

Josey is still happy, eating well and really enjoys going swimming a couple
of times a week. We go for short walks rather than long ones these days.
She shows no signs of discomfort at this point.

My vet is going to talk to me about chemotherapy today. My question is, is
it worth it? I love this dog with all of my heart and want to do right by
her. I know that we are lucky to have been blessed with her for 12 years of
good health. Being that I am involved in rescue, I have heard from many,
many folks who have lost their pets at much younger ages.

I want Josey to have a wonderful life, and not be wracked by side effects of
Chemo. If she has limited time left here on earth with us, I want her to
enjoy it.

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?

Yours in dogs and rescue,

Lea S
Sterling VA
www.shepherdrescue.org


  #2  
Old July 30th 03, 12:29 PM
House\O\Dogs
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Oh cripes, the heading should read mammary tumor. Sorry about that!

Lea



  #3  
Old July 30th 03, 12:29 PM
House\O\Dogs
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Default

Oh cripes, the heading should read mammary tumor. Sorry about that!

Lea



  #4  
Old July 30th 03, 02:15 PM
FurPaw
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Default

House\"O\"Dogs wrote:
Please forgive the cross posting, but I am posting to breeds and behavior
groups too since I know that not everyone checks out the messages on the dog
health newsgroup.


[snip description of mammary tumor, surgery, general state of
dog's health.]

I want Josey to have a wonderful life, and not be wracked by side effects of
Chemo. If she has limited time left here on earth with us, I want her to
enjoy it.

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


Hi, Lea -

I'm really sorry to hear about Josey's tumor. The fact that it
was extracted with clean margins and no lymph node involvement
evident are really good signs.

Re chemo: we had to make that decision for Dylan (GSD), who was
7 when her squamous cell carcinoma was found. Based on our
discussions with the vet oncologist, we decided to go ahead. He
said that dogs normally aren't nearly as affected as humans. One
reason is that they use lower doses on dogs, because they are not
trying to keep them alive for another 20 or more years. We
decided that if she were showing side effects enough to make her
seem sick, we'd stop it right away. As it turned out, she sailed
through radiation and chemo with minimal side effects, and she is
still with us in good health nearly two years later.

In your case, it may be different because Josie is 12 and has
other health problems. You may choose to let her live out her
life in comfort, even if the cancer shortens it. Questions to
ask your vet include, will she be able to tolerate the chemo?
What side effects are likely, especially given her incipient
Cushings, etc.? How long will it be given for, and how often?
What is her prognosis with and without chemo? How and when will
they know if it's working?

Is your vet an oncologist, or can you consult with one? We are
lucky enough to live 20 minutes from a clinic that has two
excellent oncologists. An oncologist is more likely to be up on
the latest treatments and research than a GP vet.

One other factor is cost. Chemo is expensive. The drugs do vary
greatly in price, and sometimes they need to try another if the
first one isn't effective. Depending on your financial status,
you may have to factor the cost into your decision. Your vet
should be able to provide you with estimated costs of treatment.

It's a tough decision, not one I'd wish on anyone. I wish the
best to you and Josey.

FurPaw
--
There's no reason to give credence to anything spoken above 90
decibels.

To reply, unleash the dog.

  #5  
Old July 30th 03, 02:15 PM
FurPaw
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

House\"O\"Dogs wrote:
Please forgive the cross posting, but I am posting to breeds and behavior
groups too since I know that not everyone checks out the messages on the dog
health newsgroup.


[snip description of mammary tumor, surgery, general state of
dog's health.]

I want Josey to have a wonderful life, and not be wracked by side effects of
Chemo. If she has limited time left here on earth with us, I want her to
enjoy it.

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


Hi, Lea -

I'm really sorry to hear about Josey's tumor. The fact that it
was extracted with clean margins and no lymph node involvement
evident are really good signs.

Re chemo: we had to make that decision for Dylan (GSD), who was
7 when her squamous cell carcinoma was found. Based on our
discussions with the vet oncologist, we decided to go ahead. He
said that dogs normally aren't nearly as affected as humans. One
reason is that they use lower doses on dogs, because they are not
trying to keep them alive for another 20 or more years. We
decided that if she were showing side effects enough to make her
seem sick, we'd stop it right away. As it turned out, she sailed
through radiation and chemo with minimal side effects, and she is
still with us in good health nearly two years later.

In your case, it may be different because Josie is 12 and has
other health problems. You may choose to let her live out her
life in comfort, even if the cancer shortens it. Questions to
ask your vet include, will she be able to tolerate the chemo?
What side effects are likely, especially given her incipient
Cushings, etc.? How long will it be given for, and how often?
What is her prognosis with and without chemo? How and when will
they know if it's working?

Is your vet an oncologist, or can you consult with one? We are
lucky enough to live 20 minutes from a clinic that has two
excellent oncologists. An oncologist is more likely to be up on
the latest treatments and research than a GP vet.

One other factor is cost. Chemo is expensive. The drugs do vary
greatly in price, and sometimes they need to try another if the
first one isn't effective. Depending on your financial status,
you may have to factor the cost into your decision. Your vet
should be able to provide you with estimated costs of treatment.

It's a tough decision, not one I'd wish on anyone. I wish the
best to you and Josey.

FurPaw
--
There's no reason to give credence to anything spoken above 90
decibels.

To reply, unleash the dog.

  #6  
Old July 30th 03, 02:34 PM
Tara O.
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"House"O"Dogs" wrote in message
...
Please forgive the cross posting, but I am posting to breeds and behavior
groups too since I know that not everyone checks out the messages on the

dog
health newsgroup.

Our much beloved 12 year old German Shepherd, Josey, had a mammary tumor
removed a week ago. She tolerated the procedure very well and is healing
quite nicely. However, today the biopsy results indicated that the tumor
material was cancerous. The vet said that he got "clean margins" around

the
surgical area and that her lymph nodes do not appear to be enlarged.

Factors: She has always been a healthy active dog, but has slowed down a
lot during the last six months. She has been diagnosed with mild DM,

which
has just now started to give her some minor trouble with her right rear

leg.
Her senior exam bloodwork revealed that she probably has the beginnings of
Cushing disease, but no symptoms have appeared yet. She still goes up and
down the stairs pretty frequently, but is starting to have trouble holding
her bowel if there is "a round in the chamber".

Josey is still happy, eating well and really enjoys going swimming a

couple
of times a week. We go for short walks rather than long ones these days.
She shows no signs of discomfort at this point.

My vet is going to talk to me about chemotherapy today. My question is,

is
it worth it? I love this dog with all of my heart and want to do right by
her. I know that we are lucky to have been blessed with her for 12 years

of
good health. Being that I am involved in rescue, I have heard from many,
many folks who have lost their pets at much younger ages.

I want Josey to have a wonderful life, and not be wracked by side effects

of
Chemo. If she has limited time left here on earth with us, I want her to
enjoy it.

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


Try getting onto a GSD list and asking if anyone else has put their senior
GSD through Chemo and how the dog did. I fully understand your wish to not
subject Josey to suffering as I'm the same way. I firmly believe in quality
of life over quantity of life but that's just me. Whatever decision you
make, I don't believe anyone would have a right to find fault with you.
Find out all you can about the side effects of chemo in an older dog and go
from there.

--
Tara


  #7  
Old July 30th 03, 02:34 PM
Tara O.
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"House"O"Dogs" wrote in message
...
Please forgive the cross posting, but I am posting to breeds and behavior
groups too since I know that not everyone checks out the messages on the

dog
health newsgroup.

Our much beloved 12 year old German Shepherd, Josey, had a mammary tumor
removed a week ago. She tolerated the procedure very well and is healing
quite nicely. However, today the biopsy results indicated that the tumor
material was cancerous. The vet said that he got "clean margins" around

the
surgical area and that her lymph nodes do not appear to be enlarged.

Factors: She has always been a healthy active dog, but has slowed down a
lot during the last six months. She has been diagnosed with mild DM,

which
has just now started to give her some minor trouble with her right rear

leg.
Her senior exam bloodwork revealed that she probably has the beginnings of
Cushing disease, but no symptoms have appeared yet. She still goes up and
down the stairs pretty frequently, but is starting to have trouble holding
her bowel if there is "a round in the chamber".

Josey is still happy, eating well and really enjoys going swimming a

couple
of times a week. We go for short walks rather than long ones these days.
She shows no signs of discomfort at this point.

My vet is going to talk to me about chemotherapy today. My question is,

is
it worth it? I love this dog with all of my heart and want to do right by
her. I know that we are lucky to have been blessed with her for 12 years

of
good health. Being that I am involved in rescue, I have heard from many,
many folks who have lost their pets at much younger ages.

I want Josey to have a wonderful life, and not be wracked by side effects

of
Chemo. If she has limited time left here on earth with us, I want her to
enjoy it.

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


Try getting onto a GSD list and asking if anyone else has put their senior
GSD through Chemo and how the dog did. I fully understand your wish to not
subject Josey to suffering as I'm the same way. I firmly believe in quality
of life over quantity of life but that's just me. Whatever decision you
make, I don't believe anyone would have a right to find fault with you.
Find out all you can about the side effects of chemo in an older dog and go
from there.

--
Tara


  #8  
Old July 30th 03, 03:03 PM
Suja
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

House\"O\"Dogs wrote:

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


I'm really sorry to hear about Josie, Lea. I don't have any personal
experience with this as you know, but hope that these links can help:
http://66.13.229.109/mature_pet_articles_p151.asp
http://www.vetinfo.com/dmammary.html
http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body...__canine_.html

I don't have access to this journal, but this one might be a worthwhile
read if you can get your hands on it(maybe Dr. B has access?).

Principles of treatment for mammary gland tumors. Novosad CA. Clin
Tech Small Anim Pract. 2003 May;18(2):107-9.

From everything I have read, it looks like the histologic subtype, the
size of tumor and its stage are influential factors in the survival
rate, so you might want to ask about the specifics of the tumor and ask
what the implications are.

Good luck to you and Josie, Lea. You'll be in our thoughts. You know
how to get a hold of me if you want to talk.

Suja

  #9  
Old July 30th 03, 03:03 PM
Suja
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

House\"O\"Dogs wrote:

Any advice from those out there who perhaps have been through a similar
situation?


I'm really sorry to hear about Josie, Lea. I don't have any personal
experience with this as you know, but hope that these links can help:
http://66.13.229.109/mature_pet_articles_p151.asp
http://www.vetinfo.com/dmammary.html
http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body...__canine_.html

I don't have access to this journal, but this one might be a worthwhile
read if you can get your hands on it(maybe Dr. B has access?).

Principles of treatment for mammary gland tumors. Novosad CA. Clin
Tech Small Anim Pract. 2003 May;18(2):107-9.

From everything I have read, it looks like the histologic subtype, the
size of tumor and its stage are influential factors in the survival
rate, so you might want to ask about the specifics of the tumor and ask
what the implications are.

Good luck to you and Josie, Lea. You'll be in our thoughts. You know
how to get a hold of me if you want to talk.

Suja

  #10  
Old July 30th 03, 03:43 PM
Marcel Beaudoin
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Marcel Beaudoin wrote in
. 1.4:

Suja wrote in
:

I don't have access to this journal, but this one might be a
worthwhile read if you can get your hands on it(maybe Dr. B has
access?).


I don't, but I asked a friend who is dating someone in vet school to
see if I can get an electronic copy.


In the mean time, if someone speaks spanish, they should try goinmg to
this site http://www.al-dia.cl/sistema/tablas/...x-vf.asp?id=25
(or http://tinyurl.com/iifs )and then go to Clinical Techniques in Small
Animal Practice. Scroll down to pages 103-106 and then click on the
Obtener link. It looks like you can register for free and pay a small
amount to get access to the journal and get a copy of the article. I
*think*. I know my alma mater doesn't carry it.

Also in the mean time, you might browse through the following google
search:
http://www.google.ca/search?num=50&h...-8&newwindow=1
&safe=off&q=principles+treatment+mammary+gland+tum ors+chemotherapy&btnG=G
oogle+Search&meta=
or
http://tinyurl.com/iig2

It might prove to be useful. It looks like it is mostly reports on types
of treatment, but I don't know.

Here is a search page on Dog mammary tumor
http://www.google.ca/search?num=50&h...-8&newwindow=1
&safe=off&q=dog+mammary++tumor&btnG=Google+Search& meta=
or
http://tinyurl.com/iigg



Good luck and my thoughts go out to you.

--
*******************************************
Marcel Beaudoin & Moogli

*******************************************
'If people could put rainbows in zoos,
they'd do it.' -- Hobbes
*******************************************

 




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