Jump to content

Bison The Rottweiler And His Lymphoma Battle


Recommended Posts

Hello everyone,

Meet Bison, he is an almost 5 and a 1/2 year old Rottweiler. Here he is kickin it on the grass near my house, this was about 2 months before his diagnosis:

IMAG0431.jpg

On the 28/03/2012 I noticed that Bison had developed a massive growth underneath his neck. This literally happened overnight, because I specifcally remember patting him the night before. I did think his breathing was amiss but I attributed this to an incorrectly diagnosed 'infection' by another vet. You see, about a week earlier I took Bison into the vet, because his eyes appeared blue and infected/inflamed. This was attributed to an infection and his heavier than usual breathing was also considered to be the result of infection. Clearly, that wasn't the case. After observing him the night before, I didn't really see him on the morning as I left the house early in a rush, but on returning home I was informed that his neck appeared to be very swollen, to my shock, he appeared as in the photos below:

IMAG0547.jpg

IMAG0544.jpg

I freaked out. I knew something was very wrong as the growth was fast...very fast. I rushed him to the emergency vet who examined him and gave me the bad news. On first appearances, it seemed that all of Bison's lymph nodes were swollen and that it was highly likely that he had developed Lymphoma, an aggressive and common cancer in canines. Fortunately, it also happens to be one of the most treatable cancers and responds well to chemotherapy. The vet took a sample from a lymph node on his leg, just to be sure. I was in shock. I was very upset and felt shattered. Overnight, the swelling increased. His abdomen also started to swell and felt very tight and appeared distended. I didn't sleep that night. In fact, I woke up at about 4am randomly and my heart was pounding rapidly. I felt anxious. I had to wake up early and book the oncologist appointment.

On the 29/03/2012, I took Bison to the oncologist at the Melbourne Vetrinary Speacilist Centre. The oncologist confirmed that Bison did indeed have Lymphoma and he conducted a number of tests to see how healthy Bison was and what approach should be taken. Bison's bloodwork and urine analysis revealed that he was healthy and a good candidate for aggressive chemotherapy. Here are a few pics of his first battle scars, these were due to some of the tests that were conducted:

His lower back: IMAG0548.jpg

Front leg: IMAG0550.jpg

I was informed of the costs involved and the different types of treatments available. The general prognosis for a dog with lymphoma is around 10-14 months (depending on a number of factors, mainly the T cell/B cell difference, which I won't know till next week sometime) with treatment and around 1 month without treatment. About 1 in 4 dogs will survive for 24 months and 1 in 10 dogs will be cured all together. Given those odds and given that Bison wasn't too old and still a fit, strong dog, I decided that the chemotherapy treatment was approrpiate for him. This treatment is costly, but fortunately I'm in a position where I can afford it. I can see why many people would simply not treat a dog due to costs alone. The initial testing itself cost around $2000 and the chemo will cost around 6 to 7000 dollars, assuming no major complications. Hospitisations and so on, would be extra and add to the costs. Having considered all the relevant factors, I opted to begin the 25 week UW-Madison protocal ASAP.

On the 30/03/2012, Bison went in for his first chemotherapy treatment. He seemed pretty active before going in and was very happy/excited coming out. He likes the staff there, they are all friendly and actually care about dogs.

As of the early hours of the 01/04/2012, he has had no side effects. On the plus side, he seems fine, he is very energetic and playful, he is being very affectionate (as per usual), he is being spoilt rotten....oh and the swelling has gone down...considerably. His abdomen doesn't seem swollen at all anymore and the swelling under his neck is almost gone too. I have a positive feeling that he'll respond very well to this treatment protocol. Some pics of him that I took earlier, note the reduction in swelling:

IMAG0576.jpg

IMAG0579.jpg

That's pretty much all for now.

I'm trying to tweak his diet to perfection, I'm also trying to find out which are the best suppliments to order. I'll post more about that as soon as possible. Getting his diet right will be essential.

I aniticpate I'll update this thread regularly.

Thanks for reading and thanks for all the support that I've been getting on DOL, it really helps. :)

Edited by DerRottweiler
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 201
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Lots of love and healing thoughts being sent your way!

That swelling was so big! It must have been a massive shock to see something like that happen so suddenly! :hug:

Great to see that the swelling has reduced so much, so quickly. :thumbsup:

Thank you for posting this and allowing us to share in, and learn from, your journey :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I cant get over how big the swelling was. Any wonder you were so anxious about it. Gee he's looking good so quickly though, Doctore. Keep up the positive work, buddy.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for all the comments/support. :).

01/04/2012.

He is still doing fine, it has been roughly 48 hours since his first chemo treatment. He still has plenty of energy, is eating well and hasn't had any side effects.

I can't wait to get him started on some natural support to help him through the chemo.

I'll be consulting with Dr Robert McDowell: http://www.herbal-treatments.com/contact-us/robert-mcdowell-s-herbal-treatments.html

Also, a few members here have used the following with great success:

http://www.dogcancer.net/k9-immunity-plus.html

http://www.dogcancer.net/tf.html

Further opinions on the above products are appreciated. Also, if someone knows a local Australian supplier, that would be great.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing your journey DR, I find these types of things massively helpful and I'm sure other DOLers do too. It's excellent that you're feeling positive about it, I'm a big believer in trusting your instinct and sometimes you just know how things are going to go. He's such a gorgeous looking boy, I hope his side effects are few and he comes out the other side of treatment with the best prognosis possible. :hug:

PS. Love his name! Nothing like naming your dog after a large non-dog related species. ;) :D

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks all.

I decided to start this thread for a few reasons, one to create a log of what happens to him and the entire process. Another was to benefit others, should they find themselves in a similar position in the near future. I found some of the old threads on here very helpful. :)

He is still doing well, have been watching him closely all day. He weighs 50.5kg still and is rather energetic, playing with his toys, guarding etc.

A few pics I just took, behold, the ferocious Rottweiler devouring his next victim:

IMAG0596.jpg

IMAG0597.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

So rapt that all is going well and that you are getting the best advice and treatment.

Bison is a gorgeous looking dog. :D

Thank you for introducing us and allowing us to share in your journey.

Photos and videos are a must :thumbsup:

Another thing to include in Bison's diet is lots of green veg, like silverbeet, spinach and other veg high in antioxidants. However, just check that none of them are contraindicated with Robert's herbs or the chemo agent. Peter is very open to a combined approach.

Link to post
Share on other sites

So rapt that all is going well and that you are getting the best advice and treatment.

Bison is a gorgeous looking dog. :D

Thank you for introducing us and allowing us to share in your journey.

Photos and videos are a must :thumbsup:

Another thing to include in Bison's diet is lots of green veg, like silverbeet, spinach and other veg high in antioxidants. However, just check that none of them are contraindicated with Robert's herbs or the chemo agent. Peter is very open to a combined approach.

Thank you!

I (my mum rather) am going to start cooking his meals for him, at the moment I'm feeding him lean mince only, meanwhile I figure out supps and vegetables. The vegetables you mention, should I just cook them in with say, chicken mince? And then add the supps on top of that?

Or would it be better to keep all food raw?

Bison is beautiful boy. You know I wish him and you well. Have just pm'd you again.

Thank you again, you've been very supportive and your advice has been great.

And that goes to everyone who has been PMing me with advice, or posting in either of my threads with comments, links etc. DOL is a wonderful resource and given all the information I have at my disposal, I believe I have a better chance of success by combining the chemo, with an anti cancer alkaline diet and natural supps to boost energy levels, appetite and his immune system.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wishing you and Bison a long and healthy remission...

As for chemo and side effects... If they are going to be a bit low (if) it is usually a few days after the initial treatment. He may just be a bit more tired, eat a bit less or drink more...

Do they have you keeping a check on his temperature every day?

I checked Ollie's temp twice a day every day while he was having chemo as it is a good way to make sure they are doing well and there are no infections or illness...

He is a stunning boy and I have everything crossed for him..

Link to post
Share on other sites

There's not much i can add really other than to wish Bison all the best during his treatment. It's always a huge shock to receive news like this, but hopefully some success with the treatment will come his way.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wishing you and Bison a long and healthy remission...

As for chemo and side effects... If they are going to be a bit low (if) it is usually a few days after the initial treatment. He may just be a bit more tired, eat a bit less or drink more...

Do they have you keeping a check on his temperature every day?

I checked Ollie's temp twice a day every day while he was having chemo as it is a good way to make sure they are doing well and there are no infections or illness...

He is a stunning boy and I have everything crossed for him..

Thank you.

Yeah on the brochure I recieved, it says the side effects normally start around 48 hours after the treatment and can last up to 7 days. As of yet, there haven't been any symptoms.

I haven't been checking his temperature in fact. How do I go about doing that? This is great, I just keep learning.

There's not much i can add really other than to wish Bison all the best during his treatment. It's always a huge shock to receive news like this, but hopefully some success with the treatment will come his way.

Thanks mate, appreciate the kind words.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We are still thinking of you and reading with interest. It is fantatsic of you to share this so we can all learn from your experience. Thank you so much for doing that for us.

Link to post
Share on other sites

You just need a Normal thermometer from the chemist and you take his temp the same way the vet does (rectally).. Clean it with dettol each time you put it away.

Normal average temp is 38 degrees Celsius but it can vary between 37.2 to 39.2

Your vet can tell you what his normal temp has been in the past...

Ollie had chemo for about 6 months and there were only a small handful of times that he had any side effects. He usually just went off food and didn't really want to do much for a day...

One thing that did happen was that his thyroid was damaged.. Now there is a bit of a difference of opinion on this... The holistic vet was convinced it was because of the chemo and the vet suggested that was possible but it could also have been from the cancer or totally unrelated...

Olliemstarted to gain a lot of weight and even though I was cutting his food back he kept gaining.. I don't think the vet believed me when I said I was cutting his tucker back.., he also got tired and when we went for a walk, he would only walk about 500m and want to rest.

Just something to keep an eye on...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...