German Shepherd Dog > Lymphoma - any help appreciated (7 replies)

by butterfly on 03 June 2009 - 17:06

Posts: 2
Inscrito: Wed Jun 03, 2009 05:22 pm

Fritz, our extremely handsome German Shepherd has just been diagnosed with lymphatic cancer - a total shock.

We've had enormous help and support from friends and our vet  and today visited a specialist who gave us the options - one, chemotherapy which entails six months of possible unhappiness and trauma for him and us and then with the possibility of only six months remission.  The second option,  medication - Lomustine plus steroids - this apparently is a breakthrough drug which hopefully will hold the cancer at bay and the third option, steroids only  -  however, there is very sadly, no known cure for this condition.

We've chosen the second route for treatment and have just given him the two lomustine plus 25mg prednisolone and I was just wondering whether anyone else had experienced giving their dog this treatment for the same condition.

It is a hugely sad situation because Fritz is only six years old and such a great character.

A big thank you for any help and advice.

Jennifer  (Blakemore)

by DebiSue on 03 June 2009 - 18:06

Posts: 3232
Inscrito: Sun Aug 06, 2006 04:47 pm
So very sorry about your news.  That blows! 

Niether of the options look good either.  Chemo, what a nightmare.  Steroids can really wreak havoc.  Hopefully the treatment you chose helps.  Watch how he reacts and try to remember through the tears that it's possible the best thing for HIM would be to just let him go peacefully.  If he seems to tolerate the treatment well then hang in there.  Maybe there is hope.  But try to recognize "the look" when he tells you it's time.

My thoughts and prayers will be with you.

by gouda on 03 June 2009 - 19:06

Posts: 1483
Inscrito: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:28 pm
Hi butterfly

 Please put your dog to sleep.,I know what they go through.
I put my Stud dog Cardshark,s Micheal down last year for the same illness.

I believe that someday you will spend eternity with your dog.
Dont let him suffer,trust me it wont get any better.

May God be with you,in your day of mourning.

God bless

by malshep on 03 June 2009 - 21:06

Posts: 1942
Inscrito: Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:11 am

Hi butterfly,
    Your vet probably already has this set up but this is just a reminder have a CBC with platelets one week after dosing  and prior to next dose. They should do a liver function tests initially before starting treatment and then every 3-4 months.
Good luck with the treatment, I am so sorry this is happening to you, we all have loved great dogs and lost them. As I have said before there are many here on the board who will hold your shoulders up while you go through this. Also remember as you go through this with Fritz make sure he is comfortable, and when the quality of life is not there anymore make the decision that is good for him. You will be in my prayers.

by GS Mom on 04 June 2009 - 02:06

Posts: 178
Inscrito: Fri Aug 01, 2003 04:09 am
My dog Rainer was diagnosed with Lymphoma in May of 2007.  He underwent the 6 month Madison/Wisconsin protocol and was in remission for 17 months.   He only had 2 days of feeling bad the whole time receiving chemo treatments and actually had way more energy than her had previously.   He came out of remission in October of 2008 and we did a second round of chemo  - switching out one of the drugs for another.  He is currently still in remission and hopefully will see his 6th birthday soon! (knock wood).  He was diagnosed 1 month prior to his 4th birthday.

The lomustine (CCNU is a very old drug) is effective and given orally, but you will not get as long a remission as with the 5 drug protocol.  If you go with a single drug protocol Doxorubicin would be your best bet at attaining a long remission.  If your dog responds well to chemo you can continue to try to achieve second, thrid and even 4th remissions.  There are also a couple new drugs which are tyrosine kinase inhibitors which will be used in trials for certain cancers including lymphoma.  There are trials in differnet parts of the country which your dog may be eligible for that will help with the costs.

My boy has had a great quality of life and wouldn't be with me today if I had given up.  He is not suffering and is a happy boy!  I have also met alot of people at our oncoly hospital who have had very successful chemo and radiation treatments with their dogs.  Even the ones who have not had the best outcomes say they do no regret trying.  The extended quality time is worth it.

by butterfly on 04 June 2009 - 18:06

Posts: 2
Inscrito: Wed Jun 03, 2009 05:22 pm
Hi - A message for GS Mom

A big thank you for your positive reply - I have forwarded your note to our vet and the specialist and we are going to actively look into the possibility of using the drug you mention.

I am sure your German Shepherd will enjoy his sixth and seventh birthday and as longs as Fritzy continues to wag his tail and has an enthusiasm for life, we will look very much on the positive side.

Again a big thank you

Best wishes   Jennifer - I wish I was a butterfly.

Since I am new to the forum and  not sure how these words are going to appear  I would like to thank everyone who replied.

by Franki on 04 June 2009 - 20:06

Posts: 59
Inscrito: Thu Jun 19, 2008 06:48 pm
Hi Butterfly,

I've had two Doberman diagnosed with cancer.
I did a lot of research and used these products.
They are natural, they are pricey b/c it's for a big dog.
One of mine died not from the cancer the other is
10+ years old and I have not given the supplements for probably
a year now and no recurrence.

I used the K9 immunity.
the K9 Transfer Factor and the Omega 3.

Good luck to you, I know where I'm at they have treated it as in
GS Mom's post with good results.

Keep us posted.

by phoebe on 07 June 2009 - 05:06

Posts: 93
Inscrito: Sun Dec 12, 2004 10:26 pm

I strongy second GD Moms chemo recommendation.  My understanding is that it is standard protocol, and dogs generally tolerate chemo much better then people.  I would also consider adding a new vaccine develped in a collaboration between Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the AMC.   The lead investigator is Dr. Philip Bergman at Brightheart Veterinary Center in Bedford NY.  He will know all the centers in the country.  I have absolutely no financial interest in this vaccine, but was involved in similar projects in collaboration with Phil, and if it were my dog, I would call him right away to see if he were eligible for a trial.   I cannot of course say if your dog would be a candidate, I am not a vet, but Phil is a great doctor and human being, and very well respected in oncology.  Look at this link 
Phil's contact info is there.

You can use my name, Polly Gregor.

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