Rosco the bulldog

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Jan 3, 2020
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Rosco
Hello all I am new to the forum and I am looking for some opinions about weather or not I should pursue chemotherapy for my 5 year old bulldog. My oncologist says that it is not necessary but that if we want to treat the cancer aggressively that they feel it will help. He had a subcutaneous mast cell tumor. The tumor was surgically removed with good margins and they also removed the local lymphnode which showed no signs of mast cells in it. Also he had a abdominal ultrasound done which came back with no obvious evidence of tourmors or spread. The problem is his tumor had multinuculer cells and his mitotic index was 4 which is boarder line for a low grade to high grade tumor. Also we were informed this cancer is very rare so there has not been alot of studies or numbers for survival times.
 

2BullyMama

I'm not OCD....now who moved my bulldog?
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Chelios (Frenchie), Cubby (Frenchie) Nitschke (2004-2011) Banks (2005-2014) and Lambeau (2014-2024)
Hello all I am new to the forum and I am looking for some opinions about weather or not I should pursue chemotherapy for my 5 year old bulldog. My oncologist says that it is not necessary but that if we want to treat the cancer aggressively that they feel it will help. He had a subcutaneous mast cell tumor. The tumor was surgically removed with good margins and they also removed the local lymphnode which showed no signs of mast cells in it. Also he had a abdominal ultrasound done which came back with no obvious evidence of tourmors or spread. The problem is his tumor had multinuculer cells and his mitotic index was 4 which is boarder line for a low grade to high grade tumor. Also we were informed this cancer is very rare so there has not been alot of studies or numbers for survival times.

I tagged three members that will have insight for you.

Also, if you search out site Nu (nubonics) documented her boy Curley's treatment and he is doing fantastic.
 

rjisaterp

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Apr 18, 2014
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Cooper, Jewel (April 27, 2013-May 7, 2022-RIPDaddy's Girl) and (Bentley Oct 2013-Dec 2021)
Hello all I am new to the forum and I am looking for some opinions about weather or not I should pursue chemotherapy for my 5 year old bulldog. My oncologist says that it is not necessary but that if we want to treat the cancer aggressively that they feel it will help. He had a subcutaneous mast cell tumor. The tumor was surgically removed with good margins and they also removed the local lymphnode which showed no signs of mast cells in it. Also he had a abdominal ultrasound done which came back with no obvious evidence of tourmors or spread. The problem is his tumor had multinuculer cells and his mitotic index was 4 which is boarder line for a low grade to high grade tumor. Also we were informed this cancer is very rare so there has not been alot of studies or numbers for survival times.

Please see my thread at: http://www.englishbulldognews.com/forums/your-bulldog-s-health/60086-jewel-chemotherapy.html
 

cefe13

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Sep 12, 2013
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Castor (2013-2021 RIP)
Hi there, Rosco, says Castor. Wishing you all the best.
 

oscarmayer

Have Bulldog Will Travel
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Jan 20, 2016
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We have only had a few instances of Mast Cell Cancer. In all instances, tumor removal was done without recurrence...except one. That exception was Trudy, Sandy's little girl. The tumor was removed from her jaw area and within 6 months another appeared. That tumor was removed and about a year later one popped up on her front leg. That one was removed. No chemo was ever administered.
Trudy lived to be 14 years old.
 

nubonics

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Sep 24, 2013
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Colorado
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Curly
Hello all I am new to the forum and I am looking for some opinions about weather or not I should pursue chemotherapy for my 5 year old bulldog. My oncologist says that it is not necessary but that if we want to treat the cancer aggressively that they feel it will help. He had a subcutaneous mast cell tumor. The tumor was surgically removed with good margins and they also removed the local lymphnode which showed no signs of mast cells in it. Also he had a abdominal ultrasound done which came back with no obvious evidence of tourmors or spread. The problem is his tumor had multinuculer cells and his mitotic index was 4 which is boarder line for a low grade to high grade tumor. Also we were informed this cancer is very rare so there has not been alot of studies or numbers for survival times.
I'm so sorry to hear about Rosco. Curly was diagnosed with Lymphoma 4 months shy of his 6th birthday. The only treatment options for lymphoma is chemo OR steroids to keep them comfortable for a few weeks. My husband and I went back and forth about whether or not to pursue treatment. We had lost another dog unexpectedly just a few months earlier and we really didn't want to go through the pain again so soon.

Lifestyle wise, Curly did really well during his chemo treatment. He actually had more energy than he did before chemo. The main side effect was diarrhea - his was controllable with meds and towards the middle of his treatment, we were able to figure out when he was going get diarrhea so we were able to prevent loose stools all together.

I did speak to other owners whose dogs were going through chemo, and they had more severe side effects - all were gastro related (vomiting and or diarrhea). One thing I did note was that the majority of the dogs were "senior" - they were 8-13 years old.

I am leaning that Curly did well on chemo because he was younger than most dogs who had to go through it (so that might be a plus in your case).

Also we caught the cancer really early. He was just at the vet a few weeks earlier on an unrelated issue with normal size lymph nodes. He started having bloody diarrhea when we took him back in and that when the tests for cancers were done.

The other warning I have is that when dogs are on chemo, they are also prescribed Prednisone. I found out the hard way that bulldogs are suceptable to Calcinosis Cutis, which is a side effect of being on prednisone. [MENTION=11639]rjisaterp[/MENTION] also experienced this side effect with his girl Jewel. It took about 4 month to clear up...and this week is the first week he is not itchy any more (we have been dealing with this since about September).

Curly is currently in remission for 4 months (or 5, I can't remember lol) and has been doing really well. The sad part about lymphoma is that about 90% of the time, it will come back more aggressively after about 6 months upon completion of chemo. So essentially we might have just put a costly bandaid on the situation.

The big question...would I do it again? If all the variables were the same (catching it early and age), yes. If the variables were different (older dog and/or caught late) probably not.

One of my biggest hopes is that he is in the 10%. I did a lot of research - curly is now on CBD (there is belief that it can slow down the growth of cancer cells) and we also had him lose weight - he lost ~20lbs over the course of the year. We read that overweight dogs are more prone to cancer than dogs who are a healthy weight. Hopefully with these environmental changes it will delay or maybe kill the cancer.

I hope this is helpful.
If you have any other chemo questions feel free to reach out!

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helsonwheels

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Jan 10, 2016
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Alberta
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Nyala, Jake (R.I.P. Duke)
[MENTION=9956]nubonics[/MENTION] not sure if I asked but what does curly eat?
 

nubonics

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Sep 24, 2013
812
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Colorado
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Curly
[MENTION=9956]nubonics[/MENTION] not sure if I asked but what does curly eat?
He was on Fromm's Pork and Peas prior to the cancer/weight loss. Around Oct 2018, we switched him to cooked homemade food.

long story short, my Boston Terrier had some teeth removed and we need to give her canned food for about a month, which was expensive but after that she started to refuse the kibble and the other dogs got jealous.

My husband looked at the ingredients and decided he could make the food. He works with veterinarians in the military so he got with them to help formulate homemade food. We didn't go the raw route because we live remotely on a mountain and storage would be an issue (3 dogs including a Great Dane).

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nubonics

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Sep 24, 2013
812
77
Colorado
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Curly
[MENTION=9956]nubonics[/MENTION] not sure if I asked but what does curly eat?
There was also an article I read that was called "Feed the dog not the cancer" but I can't find it. This article is close to that one though:

https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/health/anti-cancer-diets-for-dogs/

We do everything but the garlic. There is too much back and forth about whether or not garlic is good/bad for a dog and I don't want to risk it with a dog whose immune system is already compromised

There are a few other things we've added - like tumeric and quinoa to make sure that they are getting all the nutrients they need. Now when I run low and pull out kibble, they refuse to eat kibble. Spoiled lol

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helsonwheels

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Jan 10, 2016
13,081
2,395
Alberta
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Canada
Bulldog(s) Names
Nyala, Jake (R.I.P. Duke)
[MENTION=9956]nubonics[/MENTION]. Garlic is ok for dogs but needs to be fresh, organic n not in the jars already minced as there’s a lot of mixtures of Chinese garlic in them jars. Chinese garlic always tests positive for unsafe levels of arsenic and heavy metals and chlorine. Turmeric you can also find lead in it. Basically it’s all about ratio of weight n $$$$.... Why it’s important to buy organic. I know California do grow turmeric. Don’t forget your pinch of black pepper to get the full potent of the turmeric. Very important:)
 

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