Well, I am sorry to report that even though his alkaline phosphatase is normal and his lymph node was clear when it was removed in May during the amputation, Sampson’s cancer has spread to his other front limb. We are waiting to receive confirmation from a radiologist, but I think the writing is on the wall. For those of you struggling with the choice, in hindsight we would not have done anything differently. His limb needed to be removed for the pain, the chemo gave him some extra time and he is having a wonderful summer.
I will keep everyone posted and wanted to thank everyone for their continued support during this roller-coaster we have been on.
Well-we haven’t written in a while because we are having a ruff time. As a reminder Sampson had his surgery on 5/5/2010, he started chemo on June 11th. After his 3rd treatment of carboplatnin, he lost his appetite. He never full regained it. He became really finicky. Two weeks ago he had a treatment of adriamycin and he had a terrible reaction. He did not eat or drink for 3 days. We spent days at the vet on IV fluids and he seemed to be feeling a little better. The good news is his liver and kidney enzymes are normal. They thought he might have mets in his stomach and fortunately the sonogram was negative. Multiple views of his chest were negative. So upon examination, it seems the cancer has not spread. We put him on carafate and pepcid and discontinued his Rimadyl since it may be contributing to his gastric upset. He became so arthritic and weak he could not walk. We have reintroduced the rimadyl over the last 4 days and he is now at a max dose. He is having a terrible time getting around. If we put him in the pool he swims and seems fine. The problem is we pick him up to stand and it seems he can’t hold his weight. Then if he gets going he can walk though it looks painful. We plan to take him to the vet early next week. Is this a reaction to chemo, can it make a dog so weak so quickly. It has been 2 weeks since his last treatment, so I thought it would be unlikely that he would still have residual effects of the chemo. He did fine with the first few treatments, but I guess it is cumulative. Ironically he seems happy when he is not moving. The lack of appetite is confusing, he will eat, but only certain foods. Yesterday it was chicken, today it is sliced turkey, who knows what he will eat tomorrow. So maybe he is manipulating us for food, I am a sucker I can live with that. It is this weakness in his legs that concerns me, is it general atrophy from not moving for 2 weeks, arthritis or something else. Has anyone had similar experiences? Thanks in advance for your help
Well-I had my 3rd round of carboplatin and boy did I get queasy.
I haven’t tossed my biscuits, but I completely lost my appetite for a few days.
This was very upsetting to my pawparents. Mom over-reacted and I spent the day at my vet getting fluids. The heat didn’t help either. It took me 3 days to get my appetite back. In the meantime, I have been eating rice and chicken (hand fed of course). Not bad, tonight I had steak-much better and I ate all by myself. I am switching to a new chemo in a few weeks and I hope that I tolerate it better. Overall, I am enjoying life and having a great summer.
All-Sampson has been walking much better. We are no longer concerned that he has cancer in his other leg. He is also getting up and down the stairs in our house all by himself. We put on his ruff-wear harness for support if needed. His chemo is going well. His appetite is good (not great). He seems to eat more frequent, smaller meals. Rotisserie chicken works (rottie-chicken as we call it in our house). Sammy does need to take metronidazole for his BMs. He doesn’t have diarrhea, but after breakfast during his nap a little poop escapes. I am starting to enjoy the smell of rottie gas in our house. His brother Owen has Addison’s disease and quite a bit of GI distress too. That said, the boys are having a good time and taking care of one another.
Sampson has been doing great. We haven’t written because we have been enjoying the summer. It is hard to beleive it is 7 weeks post surgery and he is doing so well. Seeing is believing. It is good to know we made the right decision
Thanks all for your comments, it is so wonderful, helpful and comforting to read all of your experiences. Our dog has seems to be hopping on his two back legs. I am hoping he is just getting used to walking and maybe he is a little tired on the remaining front. Our vet scared the life out of us when she said he looks lame. We need to watch him. Sam is home with his Dad. I can’t wait to get home and see my babies
It has been two weeks since Sampson’s surgery and he has been doing great. His appetite is almost back to normal. He is getting around much better, walking up the stairs and playing ball. Today, Sampson had his consultation with his oncologist and his first day of chemotherapy. I was thrown for a loop when the doctor thought he was walking funny. My first thought was no kidding-he has 3 legs. Well, the vet noticed he is hopping with his two back legs. He has done this occasionally at home, I though he was just figuring out how to walk. So he was given a more through exam and they were not able to come to any conclusions. It can either be that he is in pain because he is putting so much pressure on his remaining front leg. I have noticed that he is licking it more. But then again that is what he did on his osteosarcoma leg (yikes) or worst scenario-maybe he has a tumor on his back leg. We need to watch him for a few days and pray it does not get worse. I am hoping he just over-exercised the last few days. Also, his alkaline phosphatase is higher than it was at prior to amputation and we were told to discontinue his rimadyl (which is the only thing that helps him feel better). We were instructed to continue his pain meds (tramadol).
It has been a confusing day. I am sure it will not be the last. I am trying not to worry because we do not have any definitive news-well as you know that is impossible.
Unfortunately, I have a meeting and I am out of town, so Sampson is at home with his Dad and rottie brother. I was told, he was a little nasty tonight. He likes to relax outside on our front deck and did not want to come in. When his dad tried to bring him in, he showed his teeth. Can the chemotherapy affect behavior? And if so, can it happen so soon after treatment. We have a lot to learn-any insights out there?