Friday, March 3, 2017

Death and Taxes

The vet called. No need for additional testing - both the Oncologist and Pathologist have confirmed his tumor is a malignant melanoma, and they did not see the borders on the sample, so it's likely they didn't get the whole thing out.

Here's my options with my internet research findings

1. Do nothing - 3-6 months
2. Do an additional surgery to try and remove the entire tumor including margins - maybe 6 months
3. Do the surgery and then follow up with a vaccine treatment that is $2000 initially, and then $500 every six months - maybe 2 years
4. Do the surgery and put him through radiation - unknown amount of money, and since radiation is 3x a week and nobody does it locally, he would need to live somewhere else or even in a kennel for two months, away from his family.

#4 is not gonna happen. I would never put him through that.

#3 seems like a long shot as well - I sent an email to our vet to get more information on side effects, as he has pretty bad vaccine reactions. Of course the money part would be hard, but I would do it if it really improved his quality of life, but I feel like it might just extend his life, you know?

Hell, I'm even having issues with #2 - on one hand, making sure we get the entire tumor out seems like it would help. However, they have to take a segment out of his lip and then sew it back together. I feel like that might be really painful, and it also sounds like he is prone to these tumors and more are likely to pop up. The type of cancer is very aggressive, and spreads quickly. It might already have spread to other areas of his body. It's almost like I can't do the surgery without the vaccine, but really, how effective is this vaccine?

This little guy was supposed to live for 8 more years. Giving him up in a few months is going to be heartbreaking if that's what it comes to. Do I have any vets who read my blog and have an opinion? It's only been a day but I'm beside myself trying to decide.


  1. Fuck. No words. Just hugs. This sucks.

  2. I never comment here but my sister and her best friend both lost their dogs to cancer in the past year so I know it's hard to sort through the options. It does seem like you are stuck at options 1 and 3, definitely speak to the vet, ask them to be blunt. The most important thing is making the best of the time he has left, if you do that you will regret nothing.

    1. Thank you, I sent an email off to the vet with tons of questions, waiting to hear what else she has to say. That little mutt is going to spoiled as fuck though, regardless.


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