Dealing with the unexpected, Pet Antics!

Pets Get Sick Too, Some Sad News This Week

I don’t post too often about our pets but occasionally they take a staring role in what goes on around here. 

DSCF3492 Holly has been in our care for a little over a year now.  We have been ‘fostering’ her for a friend of ours and last Saturday we took her to see a Vet about some lumps that have been growing on her for awhile now.  The news wasn’t what we expected.  These were NOT fatty tumors according to the veterinarian and one of them was causing him a great deal of concern.

I went ahead and ordered some needle biopsies on the two tumors and will find out the results sometime on Tuesday.  For the last two days we have been talking it over about what do you do when your dog gets cancer?  We’ve never experienced that before.  Unfortunately, after a long talk with the vet, we know that there really isn’t much we can do.  I guess we are just hoping the tests come back with an idea of how much time we have and a decision about what to do next.

And really, to lighten up the mood around here, as if to put a middle paw to the whole thing, the poor girl went into heat and is causing quite the stir in the neighborhood.  I’m not sure that was the kind of ‘Lucky’ I was talking to her about!  Aggh!

We’ll keep the fingers crossed around here until we hear more from the vet…


22 thoughts on “Pets Get Sick Too, Some Sad News This Week”

  1. Cathy, this is Teri with 2 Million Dogs, an organization that supports canine cancer research. We shared your blog post on our official Facebook page because so many of our dogs have received a cancer diagnosis. You’re welcome to visit us on Facebook and ask questions of our community any time ( Hopefully your dog’s tests will be negative. Keep us posted!

    1. Hi Teri, I’m not sure how you found my humble little blog but thanks for stopping by. It is so good to hear from all of you over at 2 million dogs. I did not know about the organization so this is such a wonderful surprise! Oh this Internet works in mysterious ways doesn’t it?
      So far, as of yesterday afternoon, we got the test results back and they were inconclusive.
      So we still don’t know what kind of cancer these are, only guesses. We are told they would need a bigger tissue sample to know for sure. Our next step now is to get her a chest xray and an ultrasound to see if there is anything in her lungs and chest or other places. The Doc says that if she is clear then we could go in to a surgery knowing that these are the only two tumors we need to treat. One they think is some kind of sarcoma and the other they believe to be a carcinoma on her mammary gland. This girls got breast cancer is how they likened it. The carcinoma is what they are worried about, that it could take hold in other parts of the body.
      But I guess I have a lot to learn on this subject. Thank everyone over there at 2 million dogs for their support. It was such a nice thing today to wake up with so much mail!!! I will go over there sometime today and figure out how to post…thanks again, you are wonderful!

  2. first, I have to say, I’m SO sorry to hear about your pup. We have a great dane with lymphoma and a cat with liver cancer…talk about luck. if you are looking for advice all I can tell you is spoil them as much as you can and love them more than you ever have before. we’ve been going through this for about a year with our dog and about 3 months with our cat and I have to tell you there is an obscene about of treats at our house right now.

    the only other thing that i’ve found to make me feel better is doing things for other people. we participated in a cancer walk last weekend and it made me feel so good that so many other people were putting up a good fight, too. not that you need to go do charity work, but just find something that makes you feel good and try to do that often to keep your spirits up. its a really hard road, but you definitely aren’t alone!! you and your pup will be in my thoughts!

    1. Thank you! I’m sorry to hear about your dog and cat. You are right, doing things for other people is a wonderful thing. Taking care of Holly is a gift I am giving to another person, it is just so sad that we are working through this hurdle!! We are also puppy raisers for Canine Companions for Independence with our second dog Jamba. The first pup is a working service dog now, probably the greatest thing we’ve ever done, I get tears in the eyes just thinking about it.
      Thank you!

  3. Cathy-
    You are definitely NOT alone!! As said above, OBSCENE amount of treats, attention and love =) Praying for positive results for your pup!!! I SOO know how you feel!! Praying for comfort as well during the unknown times!

    1. Treats! Yum! Unfortunately for Holly she gets a 50 pound Lab following her waiting for her to drop the treat and or hid the treat…then HE snatches it! Poor girl.

  4. I came by from the 2Million Dogs FB post. I just wanted to say–my beagle is a two time cancer survivor and the first time they told me he would only live a year with surgery and chemotherapy. We fought it anyway and he’s still with me 8 years later. He’s the star of our memoir “The Dog Lived (and So Will I)” published last month (available at Target, Sam’s Club and all bookstores). The book/ story might cheer you and certainly gives you information on what it’s like to battle cancer in a dog. Best of luck to your whole family.

    1. Awe! Thank you Teresa! What a great Beagle you have. Okay, I’m going to look up your book, that sounds like a truely great inspirational read!

  5. I too, learned about your situation from 2 Million Dogs. First of all, until the results are in, TRY, TRY not to worry. They could very well come back as something other than fatty tumors and still not be cancer. We’ve had that happen twice now.
    The other thing to remember is that not all cancers are an automatic death sentence for dogs (or cats). Some tumors are fully cured through surgery alone. And some dogs, although not fully cured through surgery, are able to live for a good long time with the disease. My Rio had cancer for more than 4 and a half years. My Tosca was recently diagnosed with a cancerous tumor, and I’m certain she will put up an equally valiant battle.
    And as for there “not being a lot you can do,” I am sorry to tell you but your vet is very WRONG. The first thing to do if your dog does have cancer is get a second opinion from an oncologist. Nothing against your vet, but cancer is not something he/she probably sees every day and so therefore there is little likelihood that he/she is up on the latest and greatest treatment options. Even if you don’t want to or can’t afford aggressive treatments, just changing out the diet and adding a few key supplements can go a long way in prolonging your pup’s health and life. You can find out more on cancer diets at
    Good luck with your pup, and here’s hoping that the tests come back with a B9 result!

    1. Thank you Micki! It IS good to know that there are things we can do. Holy Cow! Till this morning I’d not heard of the 2 million dog website. What a great thing! Thank you all so much for the comments, reading all of these has been wonderful. We did get the lab results back from Holly and they were inconclusive, that was yesterday afternoon. So we are back to trying to figure just what types of cancer these tumors are.
      I’ll keep you all posted!

  6. Much love from Lindsey and Laycee in Louisiana. I just found out my dog Laycee is dealing with some type of blood/bone marrow cancer. She is my old lady, and at 12 years old I cannot image putting her through treatment, so we are making her last moments together memorable. We compiled a bucket list of all the things she loves to do, and we are going through that together and as another commenter said, there is an obscene amount of treats in my house. Another great piece of advice I got was, she doesn’t know anything is wrong with her, so don’t let her know! Just keep loving her and doing the things she loves to do!

    1. Hi Lindsey and Laycee! Ahhh, the bucket list. What a sweet thing to do. That would give me so much comfort to be able to do that and make the best of the time you have together. But you know, you’re going to have to make it a very long list!!!! Thank you for stopping by and for your well wishes!

  7. Cathy, I too came by this from 2milliondogs. My experience with pet cancer is probably like cancer in people. If caught early, they can go a long time. If not, it can end very quickly. We have a 4+ year lymphoma surviving mini-doxie, but lost 2 collies within weeks of diagnosis. The collies had internal tumors that affected their spleen. They came as seniors via different rescue groups. One we only had for 7 weeks total. They other we had for 3 years. We also had a staffordshire terrier that I got when my folks could no longer care for him. We lost him to an inoperable melanoma in his throat. The doxie we was only 3 yo when diagnosed and we were able to do chemo on him. We weather that rather well, after the first 6 weeks. I’m not sure in the first 6 weeks, how much of his issues, which were mostly lethargy, were chemo and how much was cancer. Either way, durinng the whole time, he never lost his appetite and today, you’d never know he had cancer. He gets checked regularly for any minor issue.

    1. Yes, I’m sure every dog will experience this crazy cancer differently. Thank you for sharing your experiences, these are inspirational. Thank you for caring!

  8. My cancer baby is a cat. She was 5 when she was diagnosed with lymphoma almost 3 years ago. She went into remission within 3 months of starting chemo and she came out of remission 10 months later but we were able to get her back into remission for the past year. She has developed a couple of tumors on her belly area but her doctor watches them and isn’t overly concerned. Her blood twork has been spectacular.
    I kept a journal in the beginning because I needed to vent and get my worries out. I do go back and read it every so often
    Her doctor told us from the get go that 1 year was protocol anything after that was gravy. This past April, we took 2 dozen cupcakes that were decorated to look like mashed potatoes and gravy to celebrate our first year of gravy. Her doctor told us she could eat anything she wants and she uses that against us quite often.
    Take it one day at a time and love them as much as you can.

  9. Cathy. So sorry to read about Holly on the 2 Million Dogs Facebook page. I understand the fear and uncertainty you are experiencing, but I beg of you, do not give up hope; regardless of the news you receive. Cancer sucks. No two paws about it. My Great Pyrenees, Czar, who is an angel sent from heaven, was diganosed at age 10 years with Osteosarcoma this past May. Very, very aggressive bone cancer; we elected to have his rear leg amputated right away, and he underwent 2 rounds of chemo; short of the recommended 4. Once the chemo stopped, and the drugs cleared from his system about 4 weeks later, he rapidly improved, and the chemo side effects disappeared. We live life every single day as a “jackpot” for Czar. I try and stay in the moment, each day, and not allow my mind to race forward into the unknown. On October 10, Czar celebrated his 11th birthday; in typical fashion, visiting his favorite people and eating home made carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. He is an amazing inspiration to many, and as a retired pet therapy dog who has helped hundreds of children with cancer, he continues with his dignified, passionate, loyal and loving ways. All the best to you with Holly ~ there is hope, and please never, ever give up!

    1. Thank You Beth! What a great dog Czar is! No, we’ll not give up hope. Thanks you guys over at 2 Million dogs. What a wonderful feeling to know you all have Holly in your thoughts and prayers today!

  10. I too come from 2 million. I am crying as i write this after reading others situations. we lost our Ruffy about a year ago in December to cancer. Out of the blue he started to limp. It was too late as he had it throughout his back 1/2 of his body. He was a big 32 lbs lhaso and a great kind dog. it hurts to talk about him. I will only tell you to do exactly what my wife and I are doing with his sister and father….spoiling them! I appreciate every single second I have with them now…more than ever! I take the time to get down on the floor and play at their level. Give them massages. talk with them and they will help your tears. I so hope your doggie doesnt have cancer. I will pray for you at night. take care. Jerry

  11. Cathy, I’m sorry to hear that your pup has those lumps and you are faced with the decision of how to treat her. I just lost my Rosie, a Shih Tzu, in September to cancer. We were lucky in that it didn’t drag out, but this isn’t an easy path in any event. Not knowing if she hurts or how best to treat the illness is so hard.

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