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Canine Lymphoma - finding treatment


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Hi all my lovely 9 yr old Berner was diagnosed today. I had taken her to the vet because she had a cough and vet found the swollen nodes and he said if I planned chemo I need to find someone ASAP. There are limited options in VIC and 3 were booked until 24Th-ish and only one of those was willing to review the file for urgency. The long weekend is not helping I have emailed the file to all the places I could find on Google that I couldn’t reach today.

I am panicking - 4 week prognosis if nothing is done so waiting til the appointments  seems too late


I am not sure if I don’t get contacted by anyone by late next week to start Prednisolone because at least that buys a bit more quality time and better than doing nothing.


OR do I just try taking her to a affiliated emergency dept. for her cough and hope they will take her in.


I just don’t know such a gamble! I do feel a bit bad about all these sick animals needing help and not enough specialists to go around.


i did need that rant so thanks for reading. If you have any insights to share I would be grateful

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Here in Sydney we have the Small Animal Specialist Hospital ( SASH) for pets.  They have oncologists that specialise in canine cancer and they have a vaccine for Lymphoma.  Perhaps if you rang SASH ( 02 9889 0289) they could recommend a cancer specialist in Victoria.


Google Cancer Specialists for dogs in Melbourne and there should be something similar to SASH.  If you had cancer you would be seeing a oncologist not a GP.  The same applies to your dog.


All the best for your dog.  I have had 1 Giant with Lymphoma but that was 16 years ago.  I think they have made some progress with the disease since then.



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Lymphoma progresses quickly .

Sadly Berners are high on the list and you have done very well for her to get too 9 yrs .

My advice understand the effects the chemo can give your dog,don’t be fooled into the dogs don’t have side effects line as they can .


I had a dog with lymphoma,she survived 3 months before it was all too much .

She was 3 years .

We have no regrets opting for quality memories and enjoyable times .


Our vet is very down to earth and made it clear the chemo would not save her and it was very advanced .


The vaccine is a great long term hope not sure it’s quite there yet as I own a breed that was used as a priority in the trials due to the higher incidence of this disease .


Fingers crossed for the time you have what ever path you decide .

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So very sorry that your lovely Berner has this diagnosis. It can come as such a shock, and particularly if they only have one or two symptoms.


My 16 year old Border Collie was diagnosed with Lymphoma (peripheral glands only) .. At that age, and since she alsready had indications of early stage renal disease, chemo was not an option .. although of course I was tempted.)  The prognosis was 1-2 months .  My vet offered Pred as a one off ..it did reduce the nodal swelling for a week or so, and I got altogether 6 weeks of reasonable quality for her before I had to farewell her .. amid gentle tears form me and my vet who had been treating her since puppyhood.


Although Berners are living longer these days, and although our first instinct is to try anything to have our beloved dogs with us for longer, I don't think I would be looking at chemo for a 9 year old Berner.   I would definitely try Pred - at worst, it may buy you a little time to come to terms with the sitruation.  It did for me.


Best of luck with helping your beautiful girl.

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