Not just Holistic, but how to use E: All of the Above!

I made this blog because I did tons of research on success stories and research worldwide and used it on my dog with nasal cancer named Lucy. So, now my hobby is molecular biology. The treatment uses combination of health store supplements, some prescription meds, diet changes, and specific Ayurvedic and Chinese medicinal herbs. I just wanted her to have a better quality of life. I thought this combination of E: All the Above (except no radiation or chemo and surgery for this cancer was not an option) would help that for sure, but it actually put her bleeding nasal cancer in remission!
My approach to cancer is about treating the whole animals biologic system. But I do hate the word 'Holistic'. Sounds like hoo hoo. This is science based, research based data and results of using active herbal compounds that happen to be readily available and common. Some call it Nutriceuticals. Others may call it Orthomolecular cancer therapy. Or Cancer Immunotherapy.
-Slow cancer cell reproduction
-Make cancer cells become easier targets for the immune system
-Kill the cancer cells
-Rid the cancer cells
-Remove the toxins it produces
- Stimulate and Modulate the immune system
-Control secondary symptoms like bleeding, infection, inflammation, mucous, appetite, or pain for a better feeling animal
-Working with your vet for exams and prescriptions that are sometimes needed when conditions are acute.
Just by using a multi-modal treatment approach that is as diverse in attack as possible. Both conventional and natural.
The body conditions that allowed it to develop in the first place must be corrected. If caught early enough, like with Lucy, this ongoing maintenance correctional treatment is all that was required at this point to achieve, so far, more than 10 TIMES the life expectancy given (more than 60 months) after diagnosis WITH remission. I did not use radiation or chemotherapy or surgery.
I hope this cancer research can help your dog as well.

My Lucy

My Lucy
In Loving Memory my Lucy December 2016
CURRENT STATUS - It was for more than 5 YEARS after Lucy was diagnosed by biopsy in March 2011 with nasal cancer that she lived. And she was in remission for 4 of 5 years using no radiation or chemo! Now multiply that by 7 to be 35 years extended!! She was 12.5 years old - equivalent to almost 90 human years old. She ended her watch December 1, 2016. I miss her so much.

November 28, 2011

What is angiogenesis and how does this kill cancer?

Cancers in dogs (or humans) depend on angiogenesis (the creation of new blood vessels) to survive and proliferate. Tumors create new blood vessels that supply them with oxygen and nutrients, allowing them to grow in size and spread throughout the body. Antiangiogenic therapy cuts off these new blood vessels, effectively starving tumors and preventing their growth. Cancers may be controlled with effective doses of antiangiogenic drugs or herbs.
Angiogenesis inhibitors are designed to attack tumors by depriving cancer cells of their blood. Some antiangiogenic drugs or herbs may also be combined in order to hit multiple targets and improve their effectiveness.

Antiangiogenic therapy offers a number of advantages over traditional therapies for cancer:

  •    Tumor cells often mutate and become resistant to chemotherapy. Because antiangiogenic drugs or herbs only target normal endothelial cells, these cells are less likely develop acquired drug resistance.
  •    All tumors rely upon host vessels. Anti-angiogenic agents are therefore effective against a broad range of cancers.
  •    Conventional chemotherapy and radiotherapy indiscriminately attacks all dividing cells in the body, leading to side effects such as diarrhea, mouth ulcers, hair loss, and weakened immunity. Anti-angiogenic drugs selectively target dividing blood vessels and cause fewer side effects.
  •    Antiangiogenic drugs or herbs are relatively nontoxic and work at levels well below the maximum tolerated dose, so may be given in lower doses over longer periods of time.
  •    Antiangiogenic treatment may take weeks or even months to exhibit its full beneficial effect, but this allows for continuous, chronic control of disease.
  •    Antiangiogenic drugs or herbs may also serve as a powerful supplement to traditional chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
Please review this page of herbs and supplements that I use for this

November 26, 2011

Dog Bone Cancer Treatment Protocol Holistic

My Current Bone Cancer Protocol:

Actually research shows attack and support is basically same as nasal cancer protocol. You would likely need to do some of the conventional stuff though below

Here is conventional treatment info:


How do we Treat the Pain?
Keep in mind that dogs are usually euthanized due to the pain in the affected bone. Treating the pain successfully will allow a dog to live comfortably.

Amputation of the LimbRemoval of the affected limb resolves the pain in 100% of cases. Unfortunately, many people are reluctant to have this procedure performed due to misconceptions.
  • While losing a leg is handicapping to a human, losing one leg out of four does not restrict a dog's activity level. Running and playing are not inhibited by amputation  once the surgical recovery period is over.
  • While losing a limb is disfiguring to a human and has social ramifications, dogs are not self-conscious about their image. The dog will not feel disfigured by the surgery; it is the owner that will need to adjust to the dog’s new appearance.
  • Median survival time for dogs who do not receive chemotherapy for osteosarcoma is 4 to 5 months from the time of diagnosis regardless of whether or not they have amputation. Do you want your dog's last 4 to 5 months to be painful or comfortable?

Limb-sparing techniques developed for humans have been adapted for dogs. To spare the limb and thus avoid amputation, the tumorous bone is removed and either replaced by a bone graft from a bone bank or the remaining bone can be re-grown through a new technique called bone transport osteogenesis. The joint nearest the tumor is fused (i.e., fixed in one position and cannot be flexed or extended.)
  • Limb sparing cannot be done if more than 50% of the bone is involved by tumor or if neighboring muscle is involved.
  • Limb sparing does not work well for hind legs or tumors of arm bone.
  • Limb sparing works best for tumors of the forearm bone.
  • Complications can include: Bone infection, implant failure, tumor recurrence, and fracture.
Radiotherapy for Pain Control
Radiation doses can be applied to the tumor in three doses (the first two doses should be given 1 week apart, the second two doses 2 weeks apart.) Improved limb function is usually evident within the first 3 weeks and typically lasts 4 months (many oncologists report a range of 0 to 19 months.) When pain returns, radiation can be re-administered for further pain relief if deemed appropriate based on the stage of the cancer at that time.
  • When pain is relieved in the tumorous limb, there is an increase in activity that can lead to a pathologic fracture of the bone.
  • Radiotherapy does not produce a helpful response in about one-third of patients. (Remember, amputation controls pain in 100% of cases but if amputation is simply not an option, there is a two out of three chance that radiotherapy will control the pain.)
DrugsAt this time there are numerous analgesic medications available for dogs with this tumor. No single medication, however, is a match for the pain involved in what amounts to a slowly exploding bone. A combination of medications is needed to be reasonably palliative and should be considered only as a last resort if amputation or radiation therapy will not be pursued. There are several types of drugs that can be combined.

Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)These are anti-inflammatory pain relievers developed for dogs: carprofen, etodolac, deracoxib, meloxicam, firocoxib, and tepoxalin. These are typically given once or twice daily in tablet form at home. The patient should have good liver and kidney function in order to take medications of this class.

  BisphosphonatesThis class of drug has become the standard of care in humans with bone tumors yet bisphosphonates have not become a common part of veterinary practice for this condition. Bisphosphonates act by inhibiting bone destruction, which in turn helps control the pain and bone damage caused by the bone tumor. The most common bisphosphonate in use for dogs is pamidronate, which is given as an IV drip over two hours in the hospital every 3 to 4 weeks. In humans, an assortment of potential side effects have emerged (fever, muscle pain, nausea all lasting 1 to 2 days in up to 25% of patients, renal disease in certain situations, low blood calcium levels, jaw bone cell death); these issues so far have not panned out as problems for dogs and cats. Because bisphosphonate seem to be well tolerated, relatively inexpensive, and useful in numerous bone-destroying cancers, we expect to see this class of drug used more and more in small animal practice.

  Narcotic Pain RelieversWhile these drugs do not have anti-inflammatory properties, they are well-known analgesics and have been used in an assortment of forms for thousands of years. They are particularly useful in chronic pain because they do not interact negatively with other pain relievers. Drowsiness is a potential side effect. Tramadol has been particularly popular as part of a drug combination for bone cancer pain but there are other narcotics that might also be considered.

  Miscellaneous Supplemental Pain RelieversThere are two drugs that have surfaced as additional pain relievers for animals with chronic pain: gabapentin and amantadine. Gabapentin works on neurologic pain and is rapidly surfacing in the treatment of arthritis, surgical pain, and other chronic pain states. Amantadine works by reducing what is called wind up, a phenomenon where nerves become sensitized to pain leading to the experience of pain from stimuli that normally do not cause pain.

These different drugs are often given together to create meaningful pain relief to the osteosarcoma patient when amputation and radiotherapy are not going to happen.

How do we Treat the Cancer?
Osteosarcoma is unfortunately a fast-spreading tumor. By the time the tumor is found in the limb, it is considered to have already spread. Osteosarcoma spreads to the lung in a malignant process called metastasis. Prognosis is substantially worse if the tumor spread is actually visible on chest radiographs, so if chemotherapy is being considered, it is important to have chest radiographs taken.
  • Chemotherapy is the only meaningful way to alter the course of this cancer. 
  • Young dogs with osteosarcoma tend to have shorter survival times and more aggressive disease than older dogs with osteosarcoma.
  • Elevations of alkaline phosphatase, one of the enzymes screened on a basic blood panel, bode poorly. These dogs have approximately 50% of the survival times quoted below for each protocol.
  • The presence of tumor in lymph nodes local to the leg being amputated also bodes poorly. In the study by Hillers et. al published in the April 15th, 2005 issue of the Journal of the AVMA, median survival was significantly longer (318 days vs. 59 days) in dogs where the tumor was not evident in local lymph nodes at the time of amputation.
Cisplatin (given IV every 3 to 4 weeks for 3 treatments)
  • The median survival time with this therapy is 400 days.
  • Survival at 1 year: 30% to 60% 
  • Survival at 2 years: 7% to 21%
  • Giving less than 3 doses does not increase survival time (i.e., if one can only afford one or two treatments, it is not worth the expense of therapy)
  • Cisplatin can be toxic to the kidneys and should not be used in animals with pre-existing kidney disease.
Carboplatin (given by IV every 3 to 4 weeks for 4 treatments)
  • Similar statistics to cisplatin but carboplatin is not toxic to the kidneys and can be used if the patient has pre-existing kidney disease.
  • Carboplatin is substantially more expensive than cisplatin.
Doxorubicin (given IV every 2 weeks for 5 treatments)
  • The median survival time is 365 days.
  • 10% still alive at 2 years.
  • Toxic to the heart. An ultrasound examination is needed prior to using this drug as it should not be given to patients with reduced heart contracting ability.

Doxorubicin and Cisplatin in Combination (both given IV together every 3 weeks for four treatments)

  • 48% survival at 1 year 
  • 30% survival at 2 years 
  • 16% survival at 3 years.
What Exactly is “Median” Survival Time?
When a population is evaluated statistically, there are a number of ways the central tendency of the group can be evaluated. The median is the value at which 50% of the group falls above and 50% of the group falls below. This is a little different from the average of the group, though more people are familiar with this term. When you evaluate median survival times, you are looking at a 50% chance of surviving longer than the median (and a 50% chance of surviving less than the median).

What Does Chemotherapy Put my Dog Through?
Most people have an image of the chemotherapy patient either through experience or the media and this image typically includes lots of weakness, nausea, and hair loss. In fact, the animal experience in chemotherapy is not nearly as dramatic. After the pet has a treatment, you should expect 1 to 2 days of lethargy and nausea. This is often substantially palliated with medications like Zofran® (a strong antinausea drug commonly used in chemotherapy patients). These side effects are worse if a combination of drugs is used but the pet is typically back to normal by the third day after treatment.
Effectively, you are trading 8 days of sickness for 6 to 12 months of quality life. Hair loss is not a feature of animal chemotherapy.  (YOU MUST BOOST IMMUNE SYSTEM AT SAME TIME!!!!!!)

Axial OsteosarcomaWhile osteosarcoma of the limbs is the classical form of this disease, osteosarcoma can develop anywhere there is bone. Axial osteosarcoma is the term for osteosarcoma originating in bones other than limb bones, with the most commonly affected bones being the jaws (both lower and upper). Victims of the axial form of osteosarcoma tend to be smaller, middle-aged, and females outnumber males two to one.
In the axial skeleton the tumor does not grow rapidly as do the appendicular tumors, thus leading to a more insidious course of disease. The tumor may be there for as long as two years before it is formally diagnosed. An exception is osteosarcoma of the rib, which tends to be more aggressive than other axial osteosarcomas.
Treatment for axial osteosarcoma is similar to that for the appendicular form: surgery followed by chemotherapy. There is one exception, that being osteosarcoma of the lower jaw. Because of the slower growth of the axial tumor and the ability to remove part or all of the jaw bone with little loss of function or cosmetic disfigurement, it has been reported that 71% of cases survived one year or longer with no chemotherapy at all.

Treating osteosarcoma is an area that not all veterinarians are comfortable performing. Discuss with your veterinarian whether referral to a specialist would be best for you and your pet. 

Quotes from Dog Cancer Owners on Alternative Treatments and Results

"It is so helpful to see everyone's experiences with their pet's nasal cancer. Our 12-year old Honey Boy was diagnosed yesterday after a CT and scope at UCDavis VMTH. (excellent experience btw). The tumor is localized to his right nasal cavity. Organs, bloodwork etc are all in great shape and we took him in because of congested breathing through his nose and a blood spotting. Yunnan Bayio seems to be effective to stop the bleeding thus far. With our vet we've begun to determine a pain management plan with piroxicam for now. But my main reason for posting is that I am looking for different dog food recipies that I can make for his maximum nutrition (as well as our 2 other 12-year old dogs). It's clear nutrition is vital to his quality of life and I want to keep him as content and well-fed as possible."

"She is my baby ( MATSI) I dont have the heart to put her down, I just dont think she is ready. I have her on herbal medicines and believe this is why we have out lived the doctor's prognosis."

" I've had a dog go thru radiation in the past and although I think it may have helped some, in hind sight I think he suffered more than I originally thought. I think my concoction of alternative meds/nutritional supplements and herbal medications extended his life well beyond what the vets ever predicted. They gave him 3 months with radiation, he lived 1 1/2 yrs."

"my dog was diagnosed with nasal cancer 2 years ago on columbus day weekend and were told to take him home they did want to do surgery because it will come back and how far into the cavity it is, so we decided to find a specialist who will remove it and hope for the best by giving him grain free foods and holistic vitamins/ now we have him on vit d and fish oil and is still with us and approaching 2 years on Columbus day weeekend , there is hope for our beautiful pets"

"Great article. My 7 yr old springer was dignosed with lyphoma after exhibiting all of these nasal symptons. It took $3,500 for X-Ray, CT scan & rhinoscopy to get the diagnoses. After investing another $500 in chemo, which he reacted poorly to, we pulled back to go with 'comfort care' & we are happy we did. His personality has returned. we treat his symptons with low doses of prednizone & saline nasal spray. We understand & accept he may have a short time left but it is of higher quality than the life we experienced while undergoing treatments."

"I have a 9 year old Bouvier who was diagnosed with nasal cancer approximately 9 months ago. In hindsight, he has likely had it for over 2 years now (initial diagnosis was sinus infection). We elected not to pursue radiation or chemo; instead, he's on high doses of clindamycin plus meloxicam. He's still an active and happy dog, although the lump on his head is getting bigger. It's heartbreaking, but at the same time we feel lucky that the disease is progressing slowly."

"Our boy, had been treated for 2 years for allergies and had nosebleeds for 6 mo. before being diagnosed at age 7 by CT scan and biopsy. The Vet at a university teaching animal clinic told me he would not live more than 2 months without radiation. After some research, I decided against radiation/chemo and to provide comfort care. That was 12 months ago. Our boy just turned 8 and is healthy, happy and energetic today.
I tried steroids briefly but he had side effects. Now I give him Tramadol for pain control and will provide stronger pain meds if needed in the future. He eats organic foods; grazes on kibble, sweet potato or pumpkin mixed with salmon oil each evening, cottage cheese mixed with flaxseed oil each morning. These foods keep him eating, fight inflammation and so far seem to be working. He's not had a nose bleed since the biopsy although he does have a continuous runny nose.
Sure he has a golf ball sized growth on his nose and now has some small growths on his body, probably in lymph nodes, but these don't seem to bother him.
That initial fear and sadness has been replaced with happiness for every day he is with us because I know that for now, he is comfortable and happy too. I hope other families who face this diagnosis find this site and these comments as they are trying to decide what to do. I've never regretted the decision to provide comfort care over more conventional cancer treatments."

"Since I didn't think I had many options at the time I went to this Holistic Vet for her liver cancer and he put Ally on 2 herbal powders, Wei Qi Booster and Stasis Breaker. But about 3 days later she seemed to be feeling better, her stool was solid.
We are almost at a year on the meds and she's doing pretty well. She has her bad days here and there..good for a number of weeks then bad for few days. I can see her belly is distended from the tumor , and she's lost a lot of weight 65lb to 45lb. But runs around like a puppy when I take em to the park"

"Sounds like the holistic options gave you dog another wonderful year. I know of another person dealing with nasal cancer and treated it holistically and the dog lived another 14 months. Probably much longer than with surgery and chemo. I am a big believer in it as a option to expensive vet care."

"Do some research on Artemisinin. A research Doctor has done studies on it for humans and dogs. I know Yahoo groups has a forum on it. I tried it for my cancer dog and I swear she did live several months longer than was given her because of it. It's inexpensive and it can't hurt to try it."

"Meanwhile, I had already contacted a vet with considerable training and experience in both western and alternative veterinary medicine. He suggested Chinese herbs and acupuncture in addition to the Prednisone. Neither treatment usually has significant adverse side effects. The Chinese herbs might give him 6 or 7 months of additional, high quality life. This was as good as all but the most aggressive, severe and risky chemotherapy. An added bonus was that the alternative treatments were a reasonable and doable cost.
After examining my dog, the doc prescribed three types of Chinese herbs for him. 
The Chinese herbs had odd, magical names- Stasis Breaker, Wei Qi Booster, and strangest of all- Stasis in the Mansion of the Blood. I fervently hoped they would indeed be magical.

He tolerated the Chinese herbs just fine. In fact, he quickly learned to love them as I gave them to him in small hamburger balls. He would come running when I would call, “Pills!” Later, he would search me out and whine when it was time for his pills.
He had mostly good days and just a few ‘not so good’ days. On good days, he was like his regular self, wanting to go to the beach to wade and ‘fish’ or cruise the main street of ‘his’ town checking out the people, dogs and activities. On not so good days, he seemed tired and napped a lot, but did not seem otherwise sick or in discomfort.
The Prednisone started to lose its effectiveness. The tumors mushroomed hugely. My vet increased the Chinese herbs dosage. The tumors began to shrink and then disappeared altogether! I was thrillingly amazed!
While I was very happy (as was Gregs), I didn’t fool myself that he was cured. I knew this was a remission. But, hey, it was truly wonderful."
"Now – at the age of 14 he developed an Mast Cell Tumour on his shoulder and it grew very rapidly. It was diagnosed as stage III and became large and ulcerated. I quickly put him on benadryl – 50mg/3 times a day, my vet prescribed 20 mg prednisone twice a day, chinese herbs – Stasis Breaker and Qi Builder, raw garlic, fish oil and absolutely no carbs or sugar. I have to say that after 2 weeks the mass has reduced at least 50 percent – no ulceration(perhaps the mini-tee shirt helps from him trying to lick it) And he is eating, swimming and doing great. I’ve been told to add IP6 and Transfer Factors supplements. I am curious if anyone has taken this “holistic” approach and what I can expect next."

"It has been remarkable how whenever he goes through a period of not eating for a few days, he sometimes starts to have trouble again limping from pain with the bone tumor leg. Once he resumes eating and is back on the Chinese Herbs, his pain seems to always go away again within a few days. This cycle has happened so many times, I am convinced this is more than any possible coincidence.

In November 2005 I took Chuck on the 2-year anniversary of his cancer diagnosis. The Vet was delighted to report that his lymph nodes felt fine, his heart sounded good, that she could still “hear” some blocked areas in his lungs, but that considering what he has been through and now approaching 14 years for a large breed – he was indeed a miracle – and still standing on all four legs. Update he lasted 3 years. "

"My dog, Foster, was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma last October. My vet (an Oncologist), gives him the herbs you are speaking about, plus other pain meds and accupuncture. Also I wrap his leg with the Bone Stasis herb mix mixed with vitamin E oil for 12 hours per day. He takes half of a Pepcid A/C twice a day for any stomach problems. Foster was given about 3-4 months to live and he is going on 6 months. He plays and runs with the other dogs! "

"My French Bulldog was diagnosed with malignant lymphoma now 5 months ago. I have refused chemotherapy, yet have given him a variety of supplements, a.o. multivitamines, cat’s claw, curcuma, artemisinine, fish oil and injections with mistletoe extract (frequently used by anthropologists in cases of cancer). He has lived already longer than the 2 month average given him. Now I shall start Chinese herbs on the advice of my vet (this shall replace the mistletoe).
The main reason for my response is that there should be given more publicity and naturally be more research done on the -positive- effects of alternative medication in cases of cancer, hence also my appreciation for this site."

" Especially since I have used these herbs for my boy dog, and he’s lived longer already than the vet thought. And I am now using them again for my girl dog, who was diagnosed with osteosarcoma last Thursday."

"Thank you for your personal experience. My Presa Canario now 9 yrs old was dxd with Osteosarcoma in the right eyebrow and down right side of nose last Sept 2010 was given 3 mos to live. Chemo and Rad was suggested but I refused and went holistic and now stasis breaker, she is still with me today and doing well July 2011"

"Look up herbs for cancer in dogs, or ask a holistic vet for "Stasis Breaker". Our lab w/ lipomas uses it, and it has kept him from getting more lipomas. It's mainly an anti-tumor treatment from Chinese medicine."

I hope you or a friend never have to face this type of challenge with your beloved pet, but if you do, and would like to try an alternative approach that has been nothing short of miraculous for us, then I encourage you to check this out. The Chinese Veterinary Herb web site has many different formulas for many different health conditions for large and small animals – and they are a LOT cheaper than pharmaceutical drugs and in our case – offered hope and success where western “mainstream” medicine had none. Your Veterinarian can consult with the TCVM Herbal website and get recommendations for a formula that might help your pet with a variety of conditions. These chinese herbs are only sold through vets. Your vet has to order them from that site.  Lucy is using Stasis Breaker (a tumor buster) and Wei Qi Booster (an immune booster) herbal powders that I put on her evening meal. The price will of course put you off because this medical industry marks up alot, but it does seem to work. And it's cheaper and easier than radiation or chemo.

November 15, 2011

Grain Free Dog Treat Biscuit Recipes

    Here are 2 very low grain usage and wheat free and gluten free dog treat recipe. High protein, medium fat.

    Gluten Free Dog Biscuit Recipe

      - 1 Lb ground meat ( lamb, beef, chicken, turkey ) Lamb and beef tend to be higher in fat. Chicken and turkey might be a better choice for an overweight dog.
      - 1 large sweet potato ( cooked and mashed ) 
      - 1 large egg - 1/4 tsp garlic powder ( not garlic salt )or one large clove pressed 
      - 5 tbsp. large flake rolled oats ( organic if possible ) or 4 tbsp. ground flax seed meal
      Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mixing up very well. Lightly grease a cookie sheet with olive oil. ( very slightly ) Dump ingredients on cookie sheet and spread evenly and flatly to the sides of pan. This should be about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Bake for one hour at 350 degrees. Remove pan from oven and use your cookie cutter at this time, if you want. If you don't have a cookie cutter, just score the 'cookie dough 'with a knife or pizza cutter, into squares. Put back into the oven and bake for another hour at 250 degrees. This will dry these healthy dog treats out. Keep an eye on your oven. The time could be more or less, depending on how hot your oven runs. These dog treats should be fairly dry and a little crispy, but not burned.


     Grain Free 
    Beefy and Wheat free Dog Treat Recipe

    This Beefy Grain and Wheat Free Dog Treat Recipe is grain free for those who prefer to limit the amount of grain their pets eat.

    Beefy Grain-Free Dog Treats
    You can make these large or small and even feed them in place of a meal.


  • 1/2 pound ground beef—uncooked

  • 1/4 cup chicken broth

  • 1/3 cup black beans, cooked—mashed

  • 1/3 cup cottage cheese

  • Directions:
    Mix ground meat and chicken broth in a bowl. Add the black beans and cottage cheese. Mix all of the ingredients together thoroughly. Shape the mixture into bones or squares and place on a cookie sheet. You can make them big or little. Bake for 45 minutes in a 375 degree oven. Let cool.

    November 12, 2011

    Canine Nasal Tumors Chemotherapy and Radiation

    Tumors of the Nasal Passages in Dogs - Chemotherapy and Radiation
    *words in parenthesis are my comments

    Tumors of the nasal passages and sinuses account for 1-2% of all cancers in dogs. (seems like it must be higher, I have found just from people I know, they know somebody who had a pet with it) These tumors tend to grow into surrounding tissues, but have a low chance of spreading (metastasis) to other parts of the body. When they do spread, the most likely sites are the regional lymph nodes and the lungs. If no treatment is done, dogs live an average of 3-5 months after being diagnosed. (when they say no treatment, they mean Radiation or Chemo, they don't 'count' other methods oddly. Lucy is in remission just using diet and supplements, alot of them albeit) Chemotherapy alone can offer improvement in a dog's clinical signs, but it does not prolong survival. Similarly, surgery alone does not generally result in prolonged survival. Radiation therapy with or without surgery (depending on the type of radiation used) provides the longest survival attained so far in dogs with nasal tumors. Dogs live an average of 1 to 1 1/2 years with this treatment. (so 8 months longer than doing nothing? And I have to make them suffer through these treatments for 12 weeks of this 8-12 months, see below timeline and add it up, and it costs how much?!) However, most dogs eventually die as a result of their tumor. It is important to realize that any individual dog might do much better or much worse than this "average". At VHUP, treatment for nasal tumors consists of a combination of surgery and low energy radiation. Other facilities on might offer high-energy radiation, which eliminates the need for surgical removal of the tumor. In selected cases, chemotherapy may be recommended as well.
    The surgery (rhinotomy) involves removing all the tissues within the nasal passages through an incision over the bridge of the nose. The procedure takes about two hours, and a blood transfusion is sometimes administered during or after the surgery. Your dog will be hospitalized for 2 to 3 days to monitor for excessive bleeding, swelling, or air accumulation around the incision site. After the surgery, there will be a drain placed in the nasal passages for several days. During this time, an "Elizabethan" collar (a large plastic cone) must be worn to prevent your dog from dislodging the drain. There will be nasal discharge, at times bloody, for 1-2 weeks after the surgery. There may also be swelling and puffiness around the face and head during this time.
    Radiation therapy is started as soon as the surgical site has healed, which typically takes about 2-3 weeks. Treatment is given in twelve sessions on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule for 4 weeks. Each session requires a brief anesthetic period to insure that your dog does not move during the treatment, which takes about 10 minutes. The entire treatment period (from when you arrive at VHUP to when you leave) takes about 1-2 hours. Your dog should have no food after 8 PM the nights before a radiation treatment, but water should be available throughout the night. No topical medications should be placed on the radiated area the mornings of treatment.
    Your dog will develop radiation dermatitis and mucositis, also known as radiation "burns", starting during the third to fourth week of radiation therapy, and lasting for a total of 2-4 weeks. The side effects are limited to the treatment field, and will include the oral cavity and one eye. (that eye usually goes almost blind) There will be loss of hair, redness, and oozing. During this time, your dog will again need an Elizabethan collar to prevent scratching or rubbing of the area, and topical medications for the skin and eyes may also be used. Additional medications may include antibiotics and pain medications. Your dog should be encouraged to eat soft, moist foods during the recovery period. When the burns heal, the skin will initially be pink and hairless. The area will become freckled, and after several months hair may start to regrow, which is usually sparse and of a different color. Over months, tear production will slowly decrease, and your dog will need artificial tears. The eye within the treatment field may gradually lose vision. As a result of changes to the nasal passages caused by both the surgery and radiation, your dog will probably have a mild, persistent mucus nasal discharge. There is a very small risk (less than 5% of cases) of serious complications that could require additional treatment, such as a non-healing skin wound.
    Treatment of nasal tumors requires a large commitment of time, energy, and supportive care, as well as finances. ($10K by the time you're done I was told) This treatment option may not be the most appropriate choice for every dog or every owner. There are many factors besides medical ones that must be taken into consideration, and there is no "right" or "wrong" treatment decision, only what is best for your pet and your family.

    Information from Clinical Oncology Service
    Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania

    (so you see why I opted for researching holistic and natural cancer treatments instead and trying all of it to give to the dog, and luckily it's working - she is in remission. It took 4 months to get to remission, but during those first 4 months of diet changes and herbs and supplements she didn't get worse, only better little by little every week)

    November 11, 2011

    Dog Cancer and Pain Medications

    One of the most important tenets of holistic medicine is managing pain in  cancer patients.  All cancers cause inflammation which leads to chronic pain ranging from mild to severe.  Regardless of whether conventional or alternative modalities are employed, all cancer patients must be treated for pain.  I firmly believe this is the time and place when pharmaceuticals should be employed.  Numerous studies have shown the earlier these drugs are used, the better the patient will do.  This is true of people and animal patients—PAIN MUST BE TREATED EARLY! NSAIDS, or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, are utilized first to combat pain and inflammation. These are prescription drugs ( such as Rimadyl, Deramaxx, or Metacam(Meloxicam)) pets take daily in pill or liquid form on a long term basis.  If NSAIDS are not controlling  pain well enough,  then analgesics, such as gabapentin and amantadine, are  added to the pain treatment protocol.  Both of these analgesics  work on neurological receptors to control maladaptive pain.  They have been extensively used to help people battle chronic pain and are showing much promise for our animal friends as well. Tramadol, a synthetic opioid, can be used for acute flare-up of pain or break-through pain.

    I will be writing more about alternative pain medications for dogs who cannot tolerate NSAIDs in the near future, but there are times when an NSAID really is the best choice for pain control. This might be because other types of pain medication don't fully control the pain, or because the animal is sensitive to other medications as well.

    There are things you can do to make NSAIDs easier on the dog's GI tract, although they will not always be enough for every dog. To understand how some of these might work, it's important to understand what NSAIDs are, and how they function to control pain.

    NSAIDs are anti-inflammatory drugs that inhibit an enzyme called cyclooxygenase (COX for short). Cyclooxygenase is a substance in the body that causes it to produce prostaglandins, which cause pain and swelling. The problem is, prostaglandins do all sorts of beneficial things in the body, too, like maintain and repair the intestinal lining, control the body's hormonal systems, and regulate kidney function. There are, in fact, few body systems that do not rely, at least in part, on prostaglandins, so inhibiting them clearly has the potential to cause as many problems as it solves, or more.

    Most people know that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Rimadyl, Metacam/Meloxicam, Previcox, Deramaxx, Etogesic, and others can irritate the digestive system and cause ulcers of the GI tract. They do this because COX enzymes and prostaglandins are necessary to repair and maintain the intestinal lining. In fact, while kidney damage and death do occur as a result of these drugs and get most of the hype, the main reason dogs are removed from NSAID therapy is because of the damage to their GI tract, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, ulcers, and bloody stool.

    There are different kinds of COX, and they serve slightly different functions. It was once believed that COX-2 was the "bad" COX, and COX-1 was the "good" COX, and so the newer generation NSAIDs have been developed to be more and more COX-2 specific, but that is not turning out to be the case. It seems that COX-2 does have a protective effect on the gastrointestinal lining, and older generation NSAIDs like aspirin, which tend to inhibit COX-1 more so, or equally to, COX-2, actually have some GI-protectant benefits that help make up for the damage they cause.

    So, if your dog has osteoarthritis or some other form of chronic pain, and really needs to take NSAIDs to maintain quality of life, there are a number of things you can do to prevent gastrointestinal problems.

    First, make sure you are using multi-modal pain control. If you aren't relying exclusively on the NSAID for total pain control, you'll be able to use a lower dose, or even skip a day every few days and give the gut a chance to heal. Drugs such as Tramadol, amantadine, gabapentin, and narcotics can be used in combination with NSAIDs, or instead of NSAIDs, to control the pain of cancer or osteoarthritis. If your veterinarian isn't familiar with these drugs or is unsure of how to use them, ask for a referral to, or ask your vet to consult with, a veterinary anesthesiologist, or with the Analgesia/Anesthesia consultants on the Veterinary Information Network if they are a member. There is also a great deal of valuable veterinary information on the website of the Veterinary Anesthesia Support Group.

    Second, consider alternatives to be used in combination with, or instead of, NSAIDs. Fish oil capsules, glucosamine-chondroiton, Adequan injections, and acupuncture are among the main available alternative therapies that have shown benefit in many cases of osteoarthritis and inflammation. (And of course, keep your dog lean!)

    Third, ask your veterinarian about misoprostol. Misoprostol is a prostaglandin analog, and by taking it orally along with NSAIDs, you can help mitigate some of the effect of COX inhibition on the intestinal lining. While misoprostol can cause upset stomach and diarrhea on its own in some dogs, if your dog tolerates it, it's well worth considering as an adjunct to NSAIDs.

    Another useful drug is Sucralfate. 
    Stomach ulceration in humans is a prominent medical condition and there has long been pressure to develop effective and convenient ways to address this problem. Until relatively recently, we relied on simply neutralizing stomach acid by pouring alkaline solutions (i.e., Alka Seltzer, Tums, Rolaids etc.) into the stomach. In fact, ulceration is a complicate process and there are many ways to address it.
    Sucralfate was developed as an adjunctive treatment for stomach ulcers in humans.  Sucralfate is a sucrose aluminum hydroxide compound that forms a gel-like webbing over ulcerated or eroded tissues thus serving as a sort of a bandage. It is effective in the upper GI tract: stomach, duodenum (upper small intestine), and esophagus.
    Sucralfate not only “bandages” the ulcer but accumulates healing tissue factors in its bandage; it not only protects the ulcer but actively assists in the healing process. Because Sucralfate is a locally acting medication and is not absorbed into the body it has very limited side effects potential.

    How about antacids like Pepcid (famotidine) and acid controllers like Prilosec (omeprazole)? While they might reduce the symptoms of GI ulcers in dogs on NSAIDs, they don't appear to have any benefit at all in actually reducing the ulcers once they occurred. So despite their widespread use with NSAIDs, they may actually mask an ongoing problem. Misoprostol actually has some acid regulating properties itself, but more than that, it acts to restore the intestinal lining naturally, to prevent the formation of ulcers and help heal those that have already formed. In addition, the use of antacids can be contraindicated with both misoprostol and sucralfate.

    The herb slippery elm might also be worth considering, although it's not clear if it actually helps heal the gut, simply provides some protection to the intestinal lining, or only serves to make the dog feel better. Slippery elm, the inner bark of ulmus fulva, is a soothing, gelatinous substance that has traditionally been used for the treatment of ulcers. It is also used for sore throats and skin irritations. Slippery elm is an extremely safe herb and is actually used as a food. It is sold in bulk in health food stores, as well as in capsules and as a tincture. It's slightly sweet so most dogs will eat it readily, but it can be given in capsule form or as a tincture if necessary. A veterinary product exists called Phytomucil.

    Of course, the side effects of NSAIDs are not limited to the GI tract, so it's important to work with your veterinarian to monitor your pet's kidney and liver function as well.

    November 9, 2011

    Prednisone is making my dog pee. I need dog diapers?

    Yes, that is a side effect. Try to use Prednisone for worst times. Otherwise there's dog diapers.....

    Vet Clinic Text

    "Steroids, such as prednisone or prednisolone, can also be used to decrease
    inflammation in the nose. For these medications, we start with high doses of the
    medication for a short period to try to knock down the inflammation. It tends to work very well. If your dog
    shows signs of improvement with the medication, we then slowly decrease the
    dose of this medication as much as your dog tolerates. The exact taper is
    dependent on how your dog is doing, but as long as your dog’s symptoms remain
    improved, we usually decrease the dose by 25% every 2-3 weeks. Some dogs are
    able to be completely weaned off of the steroids. Some dogs with cancer may require long-term
    low levels of steroids. If this is the case, we try to keep the dose of the
    medication as low as possible to hold back your dog’s symptoms. Steroids can
    have several side effects. At higher doses, they will cause your dogs to urinate
    and drink excessively. It is very important to keep plenty of water available at all
    times. High dose will likely make your dog feel hungry but you do not need to
    feed him or her more food than normal. Large breed dogs can sometimes
    develop hind end weakness while on steroids. If you notice hind end weakness,
    it is important to tell your veterinarian so that we can try to taper the medication
    faster. Rarely, steroids can cause ulceration in the gastrointestinal tract, which
    may lead to vomiting, diarrhea, decreased appetite, blood in the stool, or black
    tar-like stool. If you notice any of these symptoms it is important to notify your
    veterinarian. Steroids cannot be stopped abruptly as a life-threatening reaction
    (addisonian crisis) may result. Therefore, the dose of these medications should
    not be changed except under the supervision of a veterinarian."

    Sometimes you can just use the bursts of prednisone just when things are bad. Long term every single day use depresses the immune system. Something you don't want. Plus they need to pee alot. And while you will be glad they are eating again, they will bug you about eating.

    Dog Won't Eat What do I do?

    My dog won't eat, What do I do?
    It's a fact that many illness impact a dog's metabolism. Changes occur in the way the body uses proteins, fats, and 
    carbohydrates in a way to fight for survival.  Some of these metabolic changes can become exaggerated or prolonged to 
    the point that they are harmful rather than beneficial. Significant weight loss and muscle wasting can occur rapidly and 
    can be difficult or even impossible to reverse.

    The typical problem with dogs with cancer is the refusal to eat their normal food or any food at all.  You may be able to 
    coax your dog to eat table foods, but these may lack the essential nutrients that your dogs requires at this time.

    A dog with cancer loses weight either because of decreased food intake and/or the metabolic effects of the disease. 
    There is often more than one cause for decreased appetite. Some of the causes are related to the disease itself and 
    some are side effects of cancer treatment. Human cancer patients can experience changes in their sense of smell and 
    taste. Sometimes this is the result of the disease, sometimes secondary to a nutrient deficiency such as zinc, and 
    sometimes due to side-effects of drugs or other forms of treatment.

    Tumors may physically interfere with eating and digesting food. For example, tumors of the oral cavity may cause 
    difficulties with chewing and swallowing. Tumors of the stomach or intestines may obstruct the normal passage of food or 
    the absorption of nutrients. Cancer therapies may also have a direct impact on the gastrointestinal tract. Some drugs 
    cause nausea and vomiting. Others may actually injure the cells lining the intestines. Radiation is often used to treat 
    tumors of the oral cavity which can cause inflammation and ulceration of surrounding mucous membranes. Surgical 
    removal of tumors involving parts of the digestive tract can obviously affect a patient's ability to eat or digest food. For 
    example, it might be necessary to remove part of a patient's jaw, tongue, or intestines. Surgery and radiation therapy 
    require anesthesia which involves periods of fasting before and after each episode.

    One serious and unpleasant consequence is that the dog may associate them with the act of eating or even the sight or 
    smell of food with nausea or pain. This is called learned food aversion. Food aversion is a well-recognized phenomenon 
    in human patients. Most everyone has experienced an occasion when they have become ill after eating a particular food. 
    Whether or not that food was responsible for the illness, it becomes associated with it in our minds. Although difficult to 
    prove, we believe that this occurs on dogs as well. One of the greatest challenges in feeding the pet with cancer is 
    preventing the development of food aversions whenever possible, and dealing with this condition when it does occur.

    Because we have to guess what a dog is experiencing when he refuses food it can be hard to determine the best course 
    of action. On the one hand we might work hard to coax a pet with palatable or novel food items in the hope of finding 
    something that will be eaten voluntarily. On the other hand it might be best to back off for awhile and rely on an artificial 
    form of nutrition (such as tube feeding) or even not feeding at all because of the risk of causing or exacerbating a 
    learned food aversion. Listed below are some general guidelines on how to approach these patients. Remember that 
    every patient is different, and requires individualized care and attention. No one thing will work in for every animal--be 
    patient and sensitive to the pet's changing needs.

    Resist the temptation to coax a pet to eat when he or she is feeling or showing overt signs of nausea or discomfort. Pets 
    that gulp or drool at the sight or smell of food, turn their heads away, spit out food when placed in the mouth, or bury the 
    food under their bedding should be left alone. Pushing food on a patient who clearly does not want it is a good recipe for 
    creating a learned food aversion.

    Discuss the possibility of anti-emetic drugs with your veterinarian if you think nausea and vomiting are a problem. Also 
    discuss the use of tube feeding. Many factors must be considered when deciding whether a pet is a candidate for 
    nutritional support. These techniques are not appropriate or feasible for every pet, but can be used successfully in many 

    A few drugs like Prednisone have been used to stimulate the appetite. It can work well at this plus it is a very strong anti-inflammatory.
    It cannot be used long term. Short bursts are ok.

    If your pet is showing some interest in food, there are many things you can try in order to increase interest in food.

    Try novel food items. If your pet has begun to associate a previously favorite food with unpleasant sensations, 
    introducing a very different type of food may overcome the aversion to eating. This can backfire if the patient is still 
    unwell, since the aversion may simply transfer to the new food. Any type of food can be used including dog foods (for 
    dogs), cat foods (for dogs or cats), and palatable table foods. Remember that table foods will not provide all of the 
    nutrients that a pet needs. If a pet eats an exclusively home-cooked diet for any period of time, you should get some 
    advice on how to make that diet more complete and balanced. I just add fried eggs and cooked ground turkey with a little garlic 

    to the kibble/pills and add a little warm water. 
    Try offering food in a novel setting or have someone different do the feeding. Sometimes an animal will associate its 
    surroundings with past unpleasant experiences. For instance, a patient may no longer eat in the kitchen but will eat on 
    an outside deck. Also, remember that dogs are social animals and may be more likely to eat with their pack--which 
    includes you! Coaxing a dog to eat during family mealtimes or with other pets present might be successful.

    Make mealtimes as comfortable and unstressful as possible. Try not to schedule them at the same time that you do other 
    treatments such as pilling. Avoid pushing food on your pet. Stroke and talk to your pet with food nearby and watch for 
    any signs of interest.

    Divide the day's food into as many small meals as your schedule will permit. The food ingredients that increase 
    palatability for most dogs and cats are moisture, fat, and protein. Adding water to a dry pet food or switching to canned 
    food may improve food acceptance. A pet's tolerance of certain nutrients must be considered when trying new foods. 
    Animals with kidney or liver dysfunction may not tolerate high protein intake. Animals with some types of gastrointestinal 
    disease cannot tolerate large amounts of dietary fat.

    The standard advice for getting anorexic pets to eat has been to warm foods to just below body temperature. This is 
    believed to increase the aroma of food, which in turn will enhance taste. But there is also some evidence that this might 
    be counterproductive in animals that are exhibiting food aversion. It's possible since these patients may be hungry 
    but have learned to associate certain smells or flavors with feeling badly. In these cases, offering food at room 
    temperature or even chilled may meet with more success. You will just have to try different ways.

    Because the syndrome of cancer cachexia (profound weight loss) can involve more than decreased food intake, even 
    the best efforts in encouraging a pet to eat may not prevent weight loss. This is because cancer can involve alterations 
    in normal metabolism that are not overcome simply by providing calories and nutrients. Certain types of tumors can 
    produce substances that affect energy and protein metabolism. The tumor itself competes for some of the nutrients that 
    should be going to the patient. In addition, the patient's immune system produces a variety of substances in response to 
    the tumor. For the most part these are beneficial, but they can cause alterations in metabolism that result in decreased 
    appetite, weight loss, and loss of muscle mass.

    Mirtazapine for Appetite Stimulation in Dogs and Cats

    Rx Mirtazapine (brand name Remeron™-Organon) is approved as an antidepressant for use in humans and has activity both as an alpha 2 receptor antagonist and as a potent 5HT3 antagonist. A side effect noted in humans taking this drug is appetite stimulation. Pharmacy faculty at the Mississippi State College of Veterinary Medicine used mirtazapine in a dog after all other attempts at appetite stimulation had failed, and were very pleased to find that mirtazapine restored appetite almost immediately in this dog. In another case, a physician used mirtazapine to treat anorexia and nausea in his Boston Terrier with chronic renal failure. Due to the vast improvement in the animal’s quality of life for one month preceding its death, the dog’s primary care veterinary clinic conducted a series of uncontrolled field trials using mirtazapine over the next 4 years in 24 dogs and 17 cats with GI symptoms that were marginally responsive or refractory to standard remedies. “Mirtazapine therapy led to a robust response in 12 animals, improvement compared with standard treatment in 16 cases, and an equivocal response in 13 animals. The most vigorous responses were observed in patients in chronic renal failure or receiving concurrent chemotherapy for neoplastic disease.”

    Many veterinarians have started using mirtazapine to stimulate appetite in both dogs and cats. There have been no controlled studies and dosing is still empirical, but most dogs are dosed at 0.6mg/kg orally every 24 hours and cats are dosed at 3.75mg/cat orally every 48-72 hours. The terminal half-life of mirtazapine in humans is more than 40 hours, and mirtazapine is eliminated partially through conjugation with glucuronide. For this reason, dosing intervals of less than 48 hours are not recommended for cats, as accumulation is likely. Mirtazapine is not commercially available in an oral suspension; however, compounding pharmacists have formulated suspensions upon the request of veterinarians and have anecdotally reported success with this dosage form. For cats that are vomiting as well as anorectic and cannot swallow or retain oral medications, veterinarians have instructed compounding pharmacists to formulate transdermal gels of mirtazapine (3.75mg/0.1ml), which also have left veterinarians with a positive impression of clinical efficacy. Obviously, further studies are needed to determine stability, safety and efficacy of these compounded dosage forms, but until such evidence is available, veterinarians may wish to try these dosage forms in cases that are refractory to traditional methods of appetite stimulation.

    Veterinary Forum, February 2006, pages 34-36

    Meeting the basic nutritional needs of a cancer patient can be a significant challenge. In human cancer patients, it is 
    established that malnutrition can increase the risk of complications and decrease survival rates. Patients with good 
    nutritional status have an improved response to therapy and better quality of life. While the effects of malnutrition have 
    not as yet been studied in veterinary patients, it seems likely that the results would be similar.

    Sometimes you gotta just give them some KFC Chicken. I have never seen a dog not eat that.
    This trick does work, but try to use it only when needed.

    November 7, 2011

    Dog Vaccinations and Canine Cancer

    If your dog has cancer it is imperative that they never receive another vaccination. Not ever again for the rest of their life. There are clear warnings about this from the pharmaceutical companies who make the vaccines. Any vaccination given to your dog will further impair their immune system and greatly reduce their likelihood of recovery.

    In cases where your vet wants to vaccinate you dog with cancer, or  refuses to give you a letter, you may want to consider getting a new vet. Here’s why.

    Every dog vaccine has a statement on the label and in the package insert that says this, or something similar to it. “For the vaccination of healthy dogs against (whatever the vaccination is for).”
    Well guess what? Your dog has cancer and because of this, is not healthy. According to the manufacturers instructions, vaccinations are not supposed to be given to unhealthy dogs!

    It goes on to say, “A protective immune response may not be elicited if animals are incubating an infectious disease, are malnourished or have parasites, are stressed due to shipment, or environmental conditions, are otherwise immunocompromised, or the vaccine is not administered in accordance with label directions.”

    If your dog has cancer he/she is immuno-comprimised, and it is not safe to give him/her a vaccination.  And by definition, your dog is physiologically stressed because of the cancer.

    Here below is some text from another researcher:

    A team at Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine conducted several studies to determine if vaccines can cause changes in the immune system of dogs that might lead to life-threatening immune-mediated diseases. They obviously conducted this research because concern already existed. It was sponsored by the Haywood Foundation which itself was looking for evidence that such changes in the human immune system might also be vaccine induced. It found the evidence. 

    The vaccinated, but not the non-vaccinated, dogs in the Purdue studies developed autoantibodies to many of their own biochemicals, including fibronectin, laminin, DNA, albumin, cytochrome C, cardiolipin and collagen. 

    This means that the vaccinated dogs -- ”but not the non-vaccinated dogs”-- were attacking their own fibronectin, which is involved in tissue repair, cell multiplication and growth, and differentiation between tissues and organs in a living organism. 

    The vaccinated Purdue dogs also developed autoantibodies to laminin, which is involved in many cellular activities including the adhesion, spreading, differentiation, proliferation and movement of cells. Vaccines thus appear to be capable of removing the natural intelligence of cells. 

    Autoantibodies to cardiolipin are frequently found in patients with the serious disease systemic lupus erythematosus and also in individuals with other autoimmune diseases. The presence of elevated anti-cardiolipin antibodies is significantly associated with clots within the heart or blood vessels, in poor blood clotting, haemorrhage, bleeding into the skin, foetal loss and neurological conditions. 

    The Purdue studies also found that vaccinated dogs were developing autoantibodies to their own collagen. About one quarter of all the protein in the body is collagen. Collagen provides structure to our bodies, protecting and supporting the softer tissues and connecting them with the skeleton. It is no wonder that Canine Health Concern's 1997 study of 4,000 dogs showed a high number of dogs developing mobility problems shortly after they were vaccinated (noted in my 1997 book, What Vets Don't Tell You About Vaccines). 

    Perhaps most worryingly, the Purdue studies found that the vaccinated dogs had developed autoantibodies to their own DNA. Did the alarm bells sound? Did the scientific community call a halt to the vaccination program? No. Instead, they stuck their fingers in the air, saying more research is needed to ascertain whether vaccines can cause genetic damage. Meanwhile, the study dogs were found good homes, but no long-term follow-up has been conducted. At around the same time, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Vaccine-Associated Feline Sarcoma Task Force initiated several studies to find out why 160,000 cats each year in the USA develop terminal cancer at their vaccine injection sites. The fact that cats can get vaccine-induced cancer has been acknowledged by veterinary bodies around the world.
    What do you imagine was the advice of the AVMA Task Force, veterinary bodies and governments? "Carry on vaccinating until we find out why vaccines are killing cats, and which cats are most likely to die." 

    In America, in an attempt to mitigate the problem, they're vaccinating cats in the tail or leg so they can amputate when cancer appears. Great advice if it's not your cat amongst the hundreds of thousands on the "oops" list. 

    But other species are okay - right? Wrong. In August 2003, the Journal of Veterinary Medicine carried an Italian study which showed that dogs also develop vaccine-induced cancers at their injection sites. We already know that vaccine-site cancer is a possible sequel to human vaccines, too, since the Salk polio vaccine was said to carry a monkey retrovirus (from cultivating the vaccine on monkey organs) that produces inheritable cancer. The monkey retrovirus SV40 keeps turning up in human cancer sites. 

    It is also widely acknowledged that vaccines can cause a fast-acting, usually fatal, disease called autoimmune haemolytic anaemia (AIHA). Without treatment, and frequently with treatment, individuals can die in agony within a matter of days. Merck, itself a multinational vaccine manufacturer, states in The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy that autoimmune haemolytic anaemia may be caused by modified live-virus vaccines, as do Tizard's Veterinary Immunology (4th edition) and the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine.(6) The British Government's Working Group, despite being staffed by vaccine-industry consultants who say they are independent, also acknowledged this fact. However, no one warns the pet owners before their animals are subjected to an unnecessary booster, and very few owners are told why after their pets die of AIHA. 

    We also found some worrying correlations between vaccine events and the onset of arthritis in our 1997 survey. Our concerns were compounded by research in the human field. 

    The New England Journal of Medicine, for example, reported that it is possible to isolate the rubella virus from affected joints in children vaccinated against rubella. It also told of the isolation of viruses from the peripheral blood of women with prolonged arthritis following vaccination.

    Then, in 2000, CHC's findings were confirmed by research which showed that polyarthritis and other diseases like amyloidosis, which affects organs in dogs, were linked to the combined vaccine given to dogs. There is a huge body of research, despite the paucity of funding from the vaccine industry, to confirm that vaccines can cause a wide range of brain and central nervous system damage. Merck itself states in its Manual that vaccines (i.e., its own products) can cause encephalitis: brain inflammation/damage. In some cases, encephalitis involves lesions in the brain and throughout the central nervous system. Merck states that "examples are the encephalitides following measles, chickenpox, rubella, smallpox vaccination, vaccinia, and many other less well defined viral infections". 

    When the dog owners who took part in the CHC survey reported that their dogs developed short attention spans, 73.1% of the dogs did so within three months of a vaccine event. The same percentage of dogs was diagnosed with epilepsy within three months of a shot (but usually within days). We also found that 72.5% of dogs that were considered by their owners to be nervous and of a worrying disposition, first exhibited these traits within the three-month post-vaccination period. 

    I would like to add for the sake of Oliver, my friend who suffered from paralysed rear legs and death shortly after a vaccine shot, that "paresis" is listed in Merck's Manual as a symptom of encephalitis. This is defined as muscular weakness of a neural (brain) origin which involves partial or incomplete paralysis, resulting from lesions at any level of the descending pathway from the brain. Hind limb paralysis is one of the potential consequences. Encephalitis, incidentally, is a disease that can manifest across the scale from mild to severe and can also cause sudden death. 

    Organ failure must also be suspected when it occurs shortly after a vaccine event. Dr Larry Glickman, who spearheaded the Purdue research into post-vaccination biochemical changes in dogs, wrote in a letter to Cavalier Spaniel breeder Bet Hargreaves: 

    "Our ongoing studies of dogs show that following routine vaccination, there is a significant rise in the level of antibodies dogs produce against their own tissues. Some of these antibodies have been shown to target the thyroid gland, connective tissue such as that found in the valves of the heart, red blood cells, DNA, etc. I do believe that the heart conditions in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels could be the end result of repeated immunisations by vaccines containing tissue culture contaminants that cause a progressive immune response directed at connective tissue in the heart valves. The clinical manifestations would be more pronounced in dogs that have a genetic predisposition [although] the findings should be generally applicable to all dogs regardless of their breed." 

     I must mention here that Dr Glickman believes that vaccines are a necessary evil, but that safer vaccines need to be developed. 

    Meanwhile, please join the queue to place your dog, cat, horse and child on the Russian roulette wheel because a scientist says you should. 

    The word "allergy" is synonymous with "sensitivity" and "inflammation". It should, by rights, also be synonymous with the word "vaccination". This is what vaccines do: they sensitise (render allergic)an individual in the process of forcing them to develop antibodies to fight a disease threat. In other words, as is acknowledged and accepted, as part of the vaccine process the body will respond with inflammation. This may be apparently temporary or it may be longstanding. 

    Holistic doctors and veterinarians have known this for at least 100 years. 
     They talk about a wide range of inflammatory or "-itis" diseases which arise shortly after a vaccine event. Vaccines, in fact, plunge many individuals into an allergic state. Again, this is a disorder that ranges from mild all the way through to the suddenly fatal. Anaphylactic shock is the culmination: it's where an individual has a massive allergic reaction to a vaccine and will die within minutes if adrenaline or its equivalent is not administered. 

    There are some individuals who are genetically not well placed to withstand the vaccine challenge. These are the people (and animals are "people", too) who have inherited faulty B and T cell function. B and T cells are components within the immune system which identify foreign invaders and destroy them, and hold the invader in memory so that they cannot cause future harm. However, where inflammatory responses are concerned, the immune system overreacts and causes unwanted effects such as allergies and other inflammatory conditions. 

    Merck warns in its Manual that patients with, or from families with, B and/or T cell immunodeficiencies should not receive live-virus vaccines due to the risk of severe or fatal infection. Elsewhere, it lists features of B and T cell immunodeficiencies as food allergies, inhalant allergies, eczema, dermatitis, neurological deterioration and heart disease. To translate, people with these conditions can die if they receive live-virus vaccines. Their immune systems are simply not competent enough to guarantee a healthy reaction to the viral assault from modified live-virus vaccines. 

    Modified live-virus (MLV) vaccines replicate in the patient until an immune response is provoked. If a defence isn't stimulated, then the vaccine continues to replicate until it gives the patient the very disease it was intending to prevent. 

    Alternatively, a deranged immune response will lead to inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, pancreatitis, colitis, encephalitis and any number of autoimmune diseases such as cancer and leukaemia, where the body attacks its own cells. 

    A new theory, stumbled upon by Open University student Gary Smith, explains what holistic practitioners have been saying for a very long time. Here is what a few of the holistic vets have said in relation to their patients: 

    Dr Jean Dodds: "Many veterinarians trace the present problems with allergic and immunologic diseases to the introduction of MLV vaccines..." 

    Christina Chambreau, DVM: "Routine vaccinations are probably the worst thing that we do for our animals. They cause all types of illnesses, but not directly to where we would relate them definitely to be caused by the vaccine."  

    Martin Goldstein, DVM: "I think that vaccines...are leading killers of dogs and cats in America today."

     Dr Charles E. Loops, DVM: "Homoeopathic veterinarians and other holistic practitioners have maintained for some time that vaccinations do more harm than they provide benefits." 

    Mike Kohn, DVM: "In response to this [vaccine] violation, there have been increased autoimmune diseases (allergies being one component), epilepsy, neoplasia [tumours], as well as behavioural problems in small animals."

    Gary Smith explains what observant healthcare practitioners have been saying for a very long time, but perhaps they've not understood why their observations led them to say it. His theory, incidentally, is causing a huge stir within the inner scientific sanctum. Some believe that his theory could lead to a cure for many diseases including cancer. For me, it explains why the vaccine process is inherently questionable. 

    Gary was learning about inflammation as part of his studies when he struck upon a theory so extraordinary that it could have implications for the treatment of almost every inflammatory disease -- including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, rheumatoid arthritis and even HIV and AIDS. 

    Gary's theory questions the received wisdom that when a person gets ill, the inflammation that occurs around the infected area helps it to heal. He claims that, in reality, inflammation prevents the body from recognising a foreign substance and therefore serves as a hiding place for invaders. The inflammation occurs when at-risk cells produce receptors called All (known as angiotensin II type I receptors). He says that while At1 has a balancing receptor, At2, which is supposed to switch off the inflammation, in most diseases this does not happen. 

    "Cancer has been described as the wound that never heals," he says. "All successful cancers are surrounded by inflammation. Commonly this is thought to be the body's reaction to try to fight the cancer, but this is not the case. 

    "The inflammation is not the body trying to fight the infection. It is actually the virus or bacteria deliberately causing inflammation in order to hide from the immune system [author's emphasis]." 

    If Gary is right, then the inflammatory process so commonly stimulated by vaccines is not, as hitherto assumed, a necessarily acceptable sign. Instead, it could be a sign that the viral or bacterial component, or the adjuvant (which, containing foreign protein, is seen as an invader by the immune system), in the vaccine is winning by stealth. 

    If Gary is correct in believing that the inflammatory response is not protective but a sign that invasion is taking place under cover of darkness, vaccines are certainly not the friends we thought they were. They are undercover assassins working on behalf of the enemy, and vets and medical doctors are unwittingly acting as collaborators. Worse, we animal guardians and parents are actually paying doctors and vets to unwittingly betray our loved ones. 

    Potentially, vaccines are the stealth bomb of the medical world. They are used to catapult invaders inside the castle walls where they can wreak havoc, with none of us any the wiser. So rather than experiencing frank viral diseases such as the 'flu, measles, mumps and rubella (and, in the case of dogs, parvovirus and distemper), we are allowing the viruses to win anyway - but with cancer, leukaemia and other inflammatory or autoimmune (self-attacking) diseases taking their place. 

    All 27 veterinary schools in North America have changed their protocols for vaccinating dogs and cats along the following lines;  however, vets in practice are reluctant to listen to these changed protocols and official veterinary bodies in the UK and other countries are ignoring the following facts. 

    Dogs' and cats' immune systems mature fully at six months. If modified live-virus vaccine is given after six months of age, it produces immunity, which is good for the life of the pet. If another MLV vaccine is given a year later, the antibodies from the first vaccine neutralise the antigens of the second vaccine and there is little or no effect. The titre is not "boosted", nor are more memory cells induced. 

    Not only are annual boosters unnecessary, but they subject the pet to potential risks such as allergic reactions and immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia. 

    In plain language, veterinary schools in America, plus the American Veterinary Medical Association, have looked at studies to show how long vaccines last and they have concluded and announced that annual vaccination is unnecessary.

    Further, they have acknowledged that vaccines are not without harm. Dr Ron Schultz, head of pathobiology at Wisconsin University and a leading light in this field, has been saying this politely to his veterinary colleagues since the 1980s. I've been saying it for the past 12 years. But change is so long in coming and, in the meantime, hundreds of thousands of animals are dying every year - unnecessarily.

    Just remember. If you dog has cancer…REALLY CONSIDER SAYING NO TO VACCINATIONS! 

    Disclaimer: This my opinion based upon evidence above. I am not a vet but I am a researcher and owner of a dog with cancer. Please make informed decisions based upon your own research whether or not to vaccinate.