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My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2644 NorthWest NJ
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2014-04-01          189872


Sadly we took our Chocolate Labrador (8 will be 9 next November) to the vet yesterday for what I thought was a sprain, mild fracture or recurrence of Lyme, only to find out that he has a tumor in his shoulder and has Osteo sarcoma.

For which the course of action would be to amputate his leg and give him radiation and chemotherapy. That could only be done if the cancer has not spread to his lungs. But 90% of dogs diagnosed with Osteo sarcoma have the cancer in their lungs. If amputation,radiology,chemo is a go he might live 12 to 24 months with this treatment. Though half of dogs that have limb amputation, radiation and chemo do not live 12 months. At best they make 24 months, but it is troubled life at best.

Doing nothing he will live a couple of months or so. This cancer is very painful and they gave us medication Ramidyl (novox). My uncle died died of sarcoma.. regardless of the cost I do not think I could have my dog go through that amputation chemo process. So we are just going to make him as comfortable as possible...



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____________________________________________________________________________________
My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
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2014-04-01          189875


Sorry Dennis. Amazing how attached we can be with an animal.

We had a Golden Retriever we had put down about 7 years ago for cancer. I knew he did not have the energy as he no longer would jump in back of my pickup. Just thought it was age. He also had developed bad breath which we could not figure out and the Vet said that was a sign the cancer had gotten into his lungs. We found it as the cancer began showing up as lumps on his coat which we at first thought were some kind of insect bites.

By the time all was confirmed he was in great pain and we felt the only human thing was to have him put to sleep. Stayed with him the full time. He would have for me. kt ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2014-04-01          189876


I'm sorry to hear that Dennis. As members of the family it is a very sad and difficult situation.

It's a hard decision but if the shoe was on the other foot you wouldn't want to suffer in a diminished and painful state for months or years, the eventual outcome won't change.

As animal lovers we, too, have had this situation. Our miniature poodle had a huge welt grow on her face in the space of an hour one day. Took her to the vet who sent us to animal emergency, where she was diagnosed with acute thrombocytopenea, which means her white cells were destroying her platelets and she was bleeding out internally. The majority of dogs die from that but she was only 5-6 years old so we spent the money and put her through chemo. She recovered and has been doing great for the last five years but it could have gone the other way.

Our heart goes out to you and your family. When he goes it will be very hard, all the things about him that you will miss, but fortunately for us the pain is eventually replaced with loving memories over time.

There's a book called "Cold Noses at the Pearly Gates" we bought when our last dog died. Not very well written but the gist of it is that we will see our extended animal family again in heaven. I hope that is the case. ....

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My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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dkheckmanl
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 134 Middleton, ID
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2014-04-02          189889


Dennis, very sorry to hear about your dog. I think you are making the right decision in not making your dog go through the amputation and chemo route. My Border Collie had kidney failure in her latter years. I kept her alive with medication and system flushing for the last year but she had no quality of life. In hind sight I wish I had put her down sooner.

Enjoy him while you can and may his spirit live on with you as you remember all the good times you have had with him the past 6 plus years. ....

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My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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yooperpete
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1413 Northern Michigan
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2014-04-02          189894


Dennis:

Sorry to hear about your dog. You are making the right decision. We had to put our lab down the weekend after Thanksgiving in '12. It was hard to do but memories of her will last for our entire lives. I built a 10' x 14' shrine in the form of a rock garden as here resting place. She gets a grave blanket wreath decorated with dog bones, etc. every year. A solar eternal light is placed at the head of the garden.

Ours was a stray that found us. She was about 2 when we got her and she was with us exactly 10 years. She was full of life and love until the day she died from liver failure. ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2644 NorthWest NJ
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2014-04-03          189904


My kids love our Labrador Kobi even more than I thought. It surprises me a bit to see my 19 year old son spend so much time loving him up... my daughter is coming home from college just to be with him.. Kobi has been a part of their lives they grew up together so to speak!

It is frustrating to not be able to do anything for him and I can see how starting treatment seems better than doing nothing. He wasn't too bad yesterday.. he has been out once today which seems to have been too much for him as even though it is gorgeous out he is very tentative on the bad leg and won't come out even if I go out and sit on the porch and wait.

I just gave him his medication and hopefully he will feel better.

I have had 4 dogs over the years:

Kiva Siberian Husky put down at 8 years Osteo broken spine

Koren Yellow Lab put down at 12 terminal abdominal cancer

Koko Chocolate Lab put down at 12 Blind Nervous system break down

Kobi Chocolate Lab now 8

Yes I have this thing for naming dogs with "K" go figure. I read somewhere that dogs respond better to short names no more than two sylables. So far here is how that has worked for me:

Kiva only responded if you had food in your hand.

Koren was from a field trial breeding stock. I trained her to hunt pheasant, she obeyed hand commands at long range, fantastic obedient loving dog. She would do absolutely anything I asked her to do.

Koko was more from the looks side of the dog world. Since my kids were small when we got him they had little influence on him. He could be taken off leash and obeyed my commands. But he had no nose for hunting.

Kobi a smaller chocolate lab about 65 pounds kept him trim. He grew up with my kids loving him up and chasing him around the yard playing. Does not listen to a word I say unless I have food in my hand. Really cannot take him off leash all those years of the kids chasing make bad habits that are hard to break... He is a calm dog classic lab only barks when he should, so quiet in the car my wife has forgotten to let him out on occassion...

Thanks for all of your comments on your 4 legged companions :)
....

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My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

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Chief
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4284 Southwest MiddleTennessee
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2014-04-04          189924


So sorry to hear about your dog Dennis. I think you are doing the right thing. My parents lost their dog last week. She was a similar breed. She had a cancerous tumor that was removed. She seemed to be healing but then got an infection in her digestive system and passed. She was like a small child to my mother and father. All you can do is the best you can while considering the pain and suffering of the dog and even then it is VERY painful to lose them like that. Were it me in that condition, I sure appreciate it if those carry for me took into considerate as much has you have Dennis. God Bless. ....

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My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

View my Photos
DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2644 NorthWest NJ
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2014-05-23          190359


The week before Easter my dogs condition worsened. The tumor was now the size of a half grapefruit. He had trouble getting up could only take a couple of steps before he had to lay down again. In the evenings we had him on the couch, then we would use peanut butter to encourage him to step off the couch and into the crate where my son and I would carry him and the crate outside to do his business.

Add to the that the rapid breathing and whimpering from the pain... we went to the vet on Good Friday. I talked to the vet about whether there was anything we could do to make him more comfortable so he could pass at home. She said that the tumor had grown in only 2 weeks what most dogs experienced in a full year, so the the cancer was very aggressive. Using narcotics would probably make him feel good enough to break the bone causing excruciating pain... no good option. So we put him to sleep Friday.

We buried his ashes in the back yard last Sunday.

It is hard to diagnose illness in patients that cannot talk :(

About a year ago we noticed that he would act as if he was shocked and slip as he tried to get traction on the hardwood floors. I now think that he probably had the the beginnings of the bone cancer then and he was reacting the same way he would to the invisible fence shock he was familiar with. ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

View my Photos
kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2014-05-25          190366


Very sorry to hear this Dennis, dogs are family and it is so hard to lose one. The decision to put him down had to be heartbreaking but it was the right one. It's sad to watch them suffer. The good times will be remembered even as the pain fades. ....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
My Labrador started limping has osteo sarcoma cancer

View my Photos
kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2014-05-28          190386


Dennis know it hurts but think on the good times and experience. You will realize he meant more than you probably realized then and be thankful for the lessons you learned from the good and bad times there.

We planted a holly tree with cement dog where we buried our Golden and I think of him every time I cut around it. We buried ole shoes and such with him as he loved to bury such. Most were ones he had buried and we dug up and saved for some reason. Sure do miss that ole boy. Knew it was safe to be outside for he was a great snake dog. Could sniff either kind out real well. kt ....

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