When Man's Best Friend is Fighting to Live | Dog Cancer
Two years ago, as we were a few days away from a vacation in Utah, we noticed Boss acting quite strange when anyone came close to his right eye. He would dodge his head if it looked like anyone or anything was coming near it. What seemed over night, a large bumped appeared right above his eye. Christian immediately took him to the vet. The vet told him that it could be a ulcer of some type but most likely it was cancer. The doctor wanted to put him on antibiotics to rule out an infection and told us Boss should be okay while we were out of town.
So we went on our week vacation with Boss on our minds but we knew he was in the best care at the kennel. The day that we were flying back, we got the worst call ever. Boss' bump seemed to grow in inches over night and his eye was swollen shut. The doctor advised us to schedule a biopsy and CT scan the minute we got home. So here we were crying at McCarran Airport weighing out our options. We thought that Boss gave us so many great years, that were going to fight whatever he had. On our layover, we scheduled his biopsy and CT scan for the day we got back in town.
Poor Boss looked so pitiful when we picked him up from the vet. His whole face was swollen and he had a large cut on his head where the biopsy was taken. Then we went home and we waited. The waiting game is no joke. I am lucky enough to have my summers off so I just laid in bed with him day in and day out.
A week or so later, we got the dreaded call that told us the worst possible news. It's cancer. It is a very aggressive Squamous Cell Carcinoma in his nasal cavity that is inoperable. We had three options: Chemotherapy, Radiation, or put him down. Surgery was not an option since there was a huge possibility he wouldn't make it out alive. We knew that he wasn't ready to give up so we decided on Chemo and it did wonders. The doctor told us that there was only a 20% chance that it would work. And it did. His tumor shrunk half the size within weeks. Things were looking up for our boy!
So three weeks later, we went in for another treatment but it never happened. Boss had a high fever and they wanted to keep him over night to figure out what was going on. They never figured it out. They couldn't figure out how to stop it. Days went by and Boss stopped eating for the doctor or assistants. He was being poked every hour with needles. I called Christian at work and said enough was enough. He needed to be home in the comfort of his bed. I didn't want him dying on a metal table. The very next morning, we picked him up. We thought that we wouldn't make it in time to say goodbye but thank god we did. When Boss saw that we were there to pick him up, his tail almost fell off it was wagging so hard. He was so happy to see us!
We took him home. We left food out if he got hungry. One of us was with him at all times. We didn't want him to die without someone next to him. About three days after bringing him home, Boss decided that he was hungry. He got up and ate for the first time in days. A week later, he was back to being the young hearted dog that we loved. All he needed was was to be home. Like Patch Adams said, "Being happy is the best cure of all diseases."
We have gone two years now with his cancer. We decided to stop all treatments, The time that he has left on this planet, it should be the best time of his life. We stopped the dog food and now we only give him organic chicken and vegetables. We've taken him on a few more camping trips which are his favorite.
But these past two months have been the hardest on him. He has good days and bad days. He doesn't go on walks anymore because he gets too tired.He is blind in the bad eye but good lordy can he eat. He's so hungry all the time. We had to move our kitchen trash can to the screened-in porch because he constantly knocks it over. We do have a plan in place when the day comes when Boss is ready to go to doggy heaven. We decided to have the vet come to the house and make all the pain go away. But for now he's happy and that is all that matters.
On May 7th, we celebrated his 13th birthday. Who would of thought that two years ago that Boss would see another Christmas let alone two more birthdays. He has given us the world. We have had the pleasure of seeing the world through his eyes and we only hope that we have given him the life that he deserves. Happy Birthday Pups! You are the sweetest most kind dog I have ever met!
For those of you going through doggy cancer, you can do this! Be strong and do what's best for your pup! You may encounter a miracle.