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 30, 2012

Colostrum immunoglobulins for dog cancer treatment

Bovine colostrum from pasture-fed cows contains immunoglobulins specific to many human pathogens, including Escherichia coli, Cryptosporidium parvum, Shigella flexneri, Salmonella, Staphylococcus,[27] and rotavirus (which causes diarrhea in infants). Before the development of antibiotics, colostrum was the main source of immunoglobulins used to fight infections. In fact, when Albert Sabin made his first oral vaccine against polio, the immunoglobulin he used came from bovine colostrum.[28] When antibiotics began to appear, interest in colostrum waned, but, now that antibiotic-resistant strains of pathogens have developed, interest is once again returning to natural alternatives to antibiotics, namely, colostrum.[29]

Proline-rich Polypeptides (PRP)

These small immune signaling peptides were independently discovered in colostrum and other sources, such as blood plasma, in the United States,[42] and Poland.[43] Hence they appear under various names in the literature, including Colostrinin, CLN, Transfer Factor and PRP. They function as signal transducing molecules that have the unique effect of modulating the immune system, turning it up when the body comes under attack from pathogens or other disease agents, and damping it when the danger is eliminated or neutralized.[44] At first thought to actually transfer immunity from one immune system to another, it now appears that PRP simply stimulates cell-mediated immunity.[45]

A 2006 study published in the Journal of Experimental Therapeutics and Oncology indicated that PRP may have an impact on the aging process by reducing the spontaneous or induced mutation frequency in the DNA of cells.[46] Such DNA damage is implicated in the general process of aging. The study, which was performed in both hamster and human cells, looked at the impact of PRP on the frequency of defined DNA mutations in these cells as they occur naturally and when induced by various known chemical or physical agents. In cells stressed oxidatively, PRP reduced the frequency of mutation induced by reactive oxygen species (ROS) to nearly background levels in a dose-dependent manner. It is suggested that the antimutagenic properties of PRP are achieved via multiple mechanisms - by decreasing intracellular levels of ROS and so preventing DNA damage and by increasing the efficiency of natural DNA repair mechanisms.
PRP-rich preparations from bovine colostrum have shown some activity against various diseases including viral infections[47] of herpes viruses[48] and HIV,[49] as well as difficult to treat bacterial and fungal infections (MIGHT THIS HELP WITH DOG NASAL ASPERGILLUS FUNGAL INFECTIONS AS WELL?) like Mycobacterium fortuitum[50] and Mycobacterium tuberculosis[51] (cause of tuberculosis), cryptosporidosis in AIDS patients,[52] and candida.[53] Also for various forms of cancer, such as Hodgkin's disease,[54] osteogenic sarcoma,[55] prostate cancer,[56] and others. As an immune modulator, PRP is also effective in disease states characterized by an overactive immune system, such as allergies,[57][58] asthma,[59] and autoimmune diseases.[60]

Colostrum also has antioxidant components, such as lactoferrin[39] and hemopexin, which binds free heme in the body.[40]

The use of bovine colostrum in medicine, dates back thousands of years. Ayurvedic doctors have used it for physical and spiritual purposes throughout the history of time. Bovine colostrum was used in the United States, and all over the world, for immune problems, prior to the discovery of sulfa drugs and antibiotics. Thousands of scientific studies and human clinical trials worldwide have proven bovine colostrum to be safe and therapeutic.

If a calf does not receive colostrum, they will die within a week's time. The unique property of bovine colostrum is that it is a universal donor for all mammals. Colostrum contains all of the immune factors necessary for protecting the newborn from bacteria, allergens, toxins and viruses. Colostrum also contains a balanced proportion of growth factors that are required for growth and healing. Current research shows that colostrum triggers at least fifty different functions in the newborn.

A fascinating fact about colostrum, is that it contains polyproline-rich peptides, which are a regulator of the thymus gland (master immune gland) of the body. It establishes homeostasis in the thymus gland, by regulating an under active or overactive thymus.

Bovine colostrum is not species specific, so dogs (and other mammals including humans) can greatly benefit from it.

I am now giving Lucy 1 Colostrum cap at AM Meal and Night Cottage Cheese/Flax Oil Budwig snack.

November 27, 2012

Nutritional Requirements of Dogs and Cats with Cancer

Nutritional Requirements of Dogs and Cats with Cancer

Any illness, be it cancer or a benign disease, will have an impact on the patient's metabolism. During disease, there are many changes in the way the body uses proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. It is important to realize that, for the most part, these are adaptations that are geared toward survival. In effect, the body is prioritizing its available nutrients for purposes like wound healing and maintaining the immune system. Sometimes, these metabolic changes can become exaggerated or prolonged to the point that they are harmful rather than beneficial to the patient. Significant weight loss and muscle wasting can occur rapidly and can be difficult or even impossible to reverse.

The specific nutritional requirements of the pet with cancer are unknown. We do know cancer loves carbs. Cancer cannot utilitize fats and proteins that well to grow. Besides dogs are carnivores. Some nutrients are of higher priority than others. Water is the most essential nutrient. Next, a pet requires adequate calories and protein, followed by minerals and vitamins. 

A pet with cancer loses weight in part because of decreased food intake and in part because of the metabolic effects of the disease. There is usually more than one cause for decreased appetite and food intake. Some of the causes are related to the disease itself and some are side effects of any cancer treatment. We know that human patients with cancer can experience alterations 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. Feeding them fresh cooked meat  or eggs and some vegetables will work wonders on their appetite and health.

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 potential outcome of unpleasant side effects (such as nausea, pain or indisposition) is that the patient may associate them with the act of eating or even the sight or smell of food. 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 and cats 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. Again, feeding them fresh cooked meat  or eggs and some vegetables will work wonders on their appetite and health.

Because we have to guess what a pet 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 cases.
A few drugs have been used to stimulate the appetite. In our opinion, these drugs are best used in helping patients get over learned food aversions AFTER they have begun to feel better. Prednisone will make them hungry. But it is normally best for short term use due to side effects.

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. There are many dog cancer diets.

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 warm 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. Though if the fats are introduced slowly, tolerance usually occurs.

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.

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. Feeding them fresh cooked meat  or eggs and some vegetables will work wonders on their appetite and health.

November 22, 2012

Orthomolecular cancer therapy

 What is Orthomolecular cancer therapy, and how does it work? (it's just Holistic with science behind it...)

Orthomolecular biologic therapies help the immune system to function better by using substances that occur naturally in your body. The therapy may stimulate your body to make more of the substance, or the therapy may be a man-made version of that natural substance itself or the other way around.  Alternative names for Orthomolecular biologic therapies include biologic agents, biologics, biological response modifiers (BRMs), or immunotherapy. Orthomolecular therapy differs from chemotherapy because chemotherapy affects cancer cells directly whereas Orthomolecular therapy works with the immune system to fight cancer. 
The body's immune system helps to prevent disease, but it also plays a role in preventing cancer from developing or spreading. The goal of Orthomolecular therapy is to enhance this natural defense and its ability to fight cancer. Doctors do not completely understand how these therapies work to fight cancer, but the treatments are thought to stop or slow the growth of cancer cells, to make it easier for the immune system to destroy these cells, and to prevent cancer from spreading to other parts of the body.
Some biologics are used to help deal with the side effects of other treatments. For example, colony stimulating factors can help the body increase the production of white blood cells after chemotherapy and thereby decrease the risk of neutropenia, and in turn, infection. Just as there are many different ways of stimulating the immune system, there are different types of Orthomolecular therapies. 

How are biologic therapies given?

This varies depending on the particular type of Orthomolecular therapy being used. Therapies may be given by mouth. Therapies may also be given directly into a body cavity to treat a specific site.  Some of these therapies are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but many are still being tested in clinical trials. Depending on the type of cancer and how far it has spread, some patients may only need biologic therapy, while others may receive this in conjunction with other therapies (i.e. chemotherapy, surgery, or radiation therapy).

What are the side effects of biologic therapies?

Although some biologic therapies use substances that occur naturally in the body, side effects can occur as a result of either the greater production or the higher-than-normal doses administered. The most common side effects with biologic therapies are caused by the "revving up" and stimulation of the immune system. They may temporarily include fever, chills, body aches, nausea/vomiting, loss of appetite, and fatigue. Most side effects diminish at 24-48 hours after treatment, and for continuous regimens these side effects will lessen over time. Remember, every patient is different; some may develop all of the side effects, while others may have none or be somewhere in between. 

Hey, this stuff is working for Lucy! Just off the shelf health food store stuff in general!
I have used the above Orthomolecular cancer therapy concept and taken it simply to the max with the most diversity as possible in treatment. Diversity in treatment is the key.

November 16, 2012

Chronic Steroid Use Prednisone

Chronic Steroid Use
Long Term use in Dogs

Most people are familiar with the term cortisone, which is an old-fashioned word for cortisol, the hormone produced by the adrenal cortex in times of stress. In higher doses, cortisol has potent anti-inflammatory properties, making it a useful medication. Because of this property, cortisol has been synthetically improved so as to provide an entire family of glucocorticoid hormones that include such familiar medications as:
  • Prednisone and prednisolone
  • Dexamethasone (Azium®)
  • Trimacinolone (Vetalog®)
  • Methylprednisolone (Medrol®)
These medications last longer than natural cortisol and are stronger. In fact, there are so many therapeutic steroids that a doctor may choose the strength as well as duration of activity.

There has never been a class of drug that has more application in disease treatment than the glucocorticoid class.
Indeed, this group is rivaled only by antibiotics in lives saved.

That said, side effects from the glucocorticoid group are numerous and can be classified into those seen with short-term use and those seen in long-term use.

Short-Term Side Effects
A pet taking glucocorticoids is likely to experience the following:
  • Increased hunger 
  • Increased thirst (and possibly urinary incontinence if there is inadequate access to an area for appropriate urination) 
  • Panting (dogs) 
  • General loss of energy 
  • Recrudescence of latent infection (hidden infection being unmasked).
Further, pre-diabetic animals may be tipped over into a diabetic state with steroid use. Often in these cases, the diabetes resolves once the steroid wears off. Sensitive individuals may experience upset stomach that can be serious.
Should the above issues become problematic, adjusting to a lower dose of medication generally will solve the problem. The goal with glucocorticoids is always to find the lowest dose of medication that is still effective. Sometimes changing to another steroid solves the problem.

Long-Term Side Effects
There are many conditions that require long-term suppression of the immune system. Glucocorticoid doses generally include an anti-inflammatory dose that is lower and an immune suppressive dose that is higher; when used long enough, lower doses will suppress the immune system. When steroid use stretches out for more than four months, a new set of side effects (in addition to those listed above) becomes of concern:
  • Latent urinary tract infections in up to 30% of patients. Monitoring for these is necessary with periodic urine cultures. The patient will not have the usual symptoms of urinary infection as the steroid will suppress the inflammation associated with the infection. Culture may be the only way to detect the infection. 
  • Development of thin skin, blackheads, and poor ability to heal wounds or grow hair 
  • Development of obesity and muscle weakness
  • Hard plaques of diseased skin called calcinosis cutis. These plaques represent deposited calcium in the skin. 
  • Predisposition to infection of any kind, weakening of immune defenses 
  • Development of Cushing's syndrome
All of the above listed effects can be seen and can be considered symptoms of this syndrome.
When long-term therapy is needed, monitoring tests become especially important; requesting refill after refill without regard for the potency of these medications is not appropriate. Periodic urine cultures, checkups and even blood testing is part of responsible on-going corticosteroid use. For details on what tests are best for your pet, consult your veterinarian.

November 15, 2012

Oral and Nasal Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Dogs

Oral and Nasal Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Dogs

The squamous cell carcinoma is often one of the most heart-breaking tumors any living being can develop. The tumor is rapidly invasive locally but does not spread in the way we usually think of a cancer spreading until late in its course. This would seem to be a positive aspect lending itself to potential surgical removal and cure, but unfortunately that’s usually not the case. The tumor tends to arise in locations where surgery is challenging or where the tumor isn’t detectable until surgery is no longer possible. 
Before reviewing some of the more classical presentations of this tumor, let’s address what squamous cells are. Our bodies must interface with the outside world in several areas: our skin, our mouth and nose, our entire gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract and even urinary and reproductive tracts. All these areas are accessible from the outside world, if not directly like the skin is, then via some sort of opening like the urinary or GI tract. The cells that line these are areas are called epithelial cells and they can take many shapes depending on whether their job is to protect us from the environment (skin), absorb material from the environment (GI tract), or perform some other sort of job (respiratory tract). Epithelial cells also line our body cavities, the outside of our organs and blood vessels, and form a thin casing.   
Squamous epithelial cells are flat plate-like cells that form layers, a sort of a microscopic armor against the wear and tear that comes from interfacing with the environment. The squamous cells make up the outer layer of the skin, nose, and mouth.   
The squamous cell carcinoma (sometimes called simply a squame) arises when the body’s squamous cells become tumorous. Some classical presentations include:  
  • Sun-induced skin cancer (especially in white faced cats and white dogs)
  • Nasal squamous cell carcinoma of cats
  • Oral squamous cell carcinoma of cats
  • Nasal squamous cell carcinoma of dogs (especially long nosed breeds)
  • The nail bed squamous cell carcinoma of dogs
  • The squamous cell carcinoma in situ/Bowen’s disease     

But here is also a picture of dog nasal aspergillus
asp3 notice the depigmentation and ulceration

This page is not yet completed research

Key Points

Nasal tumors are locally invasive and have a lower tendency to spread early in the course of the disease

Radiation followed by surgery seems to provide the longest survial times

Chemotherapy may be an option if radiation therapy is not an option

  • Cancer of the nasal cavity accounts for 1% of all cancers in the dog.
  • About 80% of all nasal tumors in dogs are malignant.
  • Nasal cavity cancer tends to be a locally invasive disease. Late in the course of the disease, the cancer can spread to other parts of the body, with the lungs being the most common site. In one study, 0 to 12% of cases were found to have metastatic disease at the time of diagnosis; however, at the time of death, 46% of the dogs had evidence of spread of the cancer to lymph nodes and lungs.
  • The most common type of cancer that affects the nasal cavity in dogs is the carcinoma. This type of cancer includes nasal adenocarcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and undifferentiated carcinoma and consists of 2/3's of all types of nasal tumors.
Clinical signs
  • The average age of dogs with nasal cavity cancer is 10 years and males are slightly more affected by this tumor than females. Medium to large breeds more commonly develop nasal cavity cancer than small breeds.
  • Clinical signs of nasal cancer include bleeding from the nose, white, yellow or green nasal discharge, deformity of the face and tearing from one or both eyes.
  • Although the aforementioned clinical signs can be due to intranasal cancer, other causes may include high blood pressure, fungal infection and allergies. If your pet has depigmentation of the nose and nasal discharge, fungal infection is likely to the be cause versus cancer.
  • The first tests that are run include blood work such as a complete blood count, biochemistry profile, urinalysis and clotting profile.
  • Chest radiographs (x-rays) are made to evaluate that patient for spread of the tumor to the lungs.
  • Radiographs of the nasal cavity are generally of little diagnostic value to the clinician, therefore CT scan is recommended. This diagnostic modality will give the veterinarian a very good idea as to the type of disease process present (cancer vs. fungal infection) and the extent of the disease.
  • Definitive diagnosis of a nasal tumor is based on the evaluation of a biopsy of the tumor and is typically performed at the time of a nasal CT scan. Anesthesia is required for both procedures.
Treatment options
  • No treatment is an option, however survival times following diagnosis of a malignant intranasal cancer is quite short. One study showed a median survival time of 95 days. Dogs that had bloody nasal discharge had a median survival time of 88 days versus those dogs that did not have blood in the nasal discharge had a median survival time of 224 days.
  • Surgery alone results in median survival times that are less than six months, therefore is not recommended as the sole treatment.
  • Surgery followed by orthovoltage radiation therapy resulted in a median survival time of 23 months in one study, however other studies have not been able to reproduce these results. The type of radiation therapy seems to play a role in patient survival. One study which included 42 dogs, showed that surgery and orthovoltage radiation therapy was inferior to megavoltage radiation therapy reported in other studies.
  • Radiation therapy followed by surgical removal of the contents of the nasal cavity has given the longest survival times. In Adam's study (2005) of 53 dogs, the median survival time was 19.7 months with radiation alone and 47.7 months with 10 doses of 4.2 Gy per dose and subsequent surgery. Currently, this seems to be the best treatment for dogs that have intranasal tumors.
  • Photodynamic therapy (injection of the patient with a special light sensitizer and illumination of the site with a special light) has been reported in 4 cases and resulted in clinical remission of the cancer in the patients that had epithelial tumors, but not the dog that had a sarcoma.
  • Chemotherapy (carboplatin, adriamycin and piroxicam) has been reported in a series of 8 cases, in which 75% responded to treatment. Disease free intervals in the responding patients ranged from 150 to 510 days. This treatment may be a consideration if radiation therapy is not an option.
  • Recurrence of the tumor in most cases is expected.
  • Chronic nasal discharge and recurrent infection in the nasal cavity is a common problem following radiation and surgery of the nasal cavity, thus intermittent treatment with antibiotics may be needed.
  • Side effects of radiation include:
    • loss of hair over the bridge of the nose
    • chronic nonhealing wounds over the bridge of the nose
    • mucositis (sores in the mouth)
    • brain damage
    • blindness due to cataracts or damage to the eyes
    • oronasal fistulae - a hole that develops in the mouth that communicates with the nasal cavity
Summary of prognostic factors in dogs
  • Dogs afflicted with a nasal cavity tumor tend to have a shorter life span with
    • bloody nasal discharge
    • age greater than 10 years
    • sex: males
    • metastasis of the cancer at the time of diagnosis
    • failure of resolution of clinical signs following radiation therapy
    • please note that just because your dog may have one or more of these factors does not mean that treatment will not extend quality of life
Specifics about cats and nasal cavity tumors
  • Ninety-two percent of all nasal cavity tumors are malignant.
  • Lymphoma is the most common cancer that affects the nasal cavity in cats. In a study of 123 cats afflicted with nasal cavity cancer, the second most common cancer was carcinomas (adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma). Older cats are generally affected with a median age of 9 months in one study.
  • The most common clinical signs include nasal discharge, sneezing and vomiting. Other signs include loss of appetite, breathing difficulty and decreased activity.
  • On study showed that lymphoma may be localized to the nasal cavity (in about one third of the cases) and radiation therapy may be the treatment of choice. Cats that are infected with Feline Leukemia Virus or Feline Immunodeficiency Virus generally do not do as well and development of lymphpoma in other parts of the body are quite possible. Almost all cases are B-cell lymphoma. Nasal lymphoma tends to be more resistant to chemotherapy than other forms of lymphoma.
  • In a report of 19 cats that had stage 1 intranasal lymphoma, treatment with radiation and chemotherapy resulted in a disease free interval of 31 months and a median survival time of 31.4 months. Based on the fact that 17.6% of the cases had recurrences in distant locations, radiation therapy is not recommended as a sole treatment and chemotherapy should be also used.
  • In a series of 8 cats with nonlymphomatous intranasal tumors treated with course fraction megavoltage radiation (4 to 6 treatments) the median survival time was 382 days.

November 11, 2012

Arthritic Dog Products

Arthritic Dog Products

I have assembled a list of products that may be helpful for dogs with weakness, especially rear leg weakness. These products may be available through your veterinarian’s office, local pet supply store, or various Internet sources. I think they will facilitate the lifestyle of both the dog and the owner.
If you think your pet might require more intensive aid, read Care of the Paralyzed Pet for further products, including carts.
The products pictured here are only examples and are not all-inclusive. Other companies make the same type of products, and many of the companies included here make other products, as well. For example, offers many of these and other products for disabled dogs.
Standard legal disclaimer: Although I or my clients may have used some of the products on this page, most are here only because someone mentioned it, I saw their advertising, or I ran across their web page. I can’t vouch for any of these products or their companies, but if something looks like it may be helpful for your pet, please contact the company directly and find out for yourself. Conversely, if you know of any helpful products for arthritic dogs that you think we should include on this page, please e-mail us.
Slippery floors are trouble for the weak dog. Many a dog can exhaust himself trying to rise on a hard wood or tile floor. Rubber shoes for dogs have been used to protect the paws of performance and rescue dogs. They also help for negotiating slippery floors.
K9 Carts

Handles and Special Leashes
Some dogs simply need help getting up and we don't all have the strength to keep dog-lifting several times a day. Fortunately, special handle-harnesses are available to assist in raising up the back or front of the patient, whichever end needs help.
Walkabout Front / Rear Harness
K-9 Carts800-578-6960

Saddle Support Sling
Doggon’ Wheels888-736-4466

Walkabelly Harness
K-9 Carts

The Bottom’s Up Leash
Bottom's Up Leash800-204-7443

The Raised Food Bowl
When the food and water bowls are located on the floor, it may be hard for a dog to lean down to reach them. The dog may not be able to steadily bend his elbows and knees slightly so as to reach the food without becoming weak and having to lie down. And then it may be all the more difficult to stand up again.
Providing raised bowls allows the dog to maintain a standing position and be able to reach the food and water.
Your veterinarian can order this product for you through PetEdge (formerly known as the New England Serum Company). PetEdge does not sell directly to pet owners.
Adjustable Diner with Two Bowls

The Orthopedic Bed
Nuzzle Nest Beds
Great Companions
Comes in Small, Medium, Large and X-Large, but the biggest two sizes may not fit inside your home washing machine.

November 9, 2012

Lucy Nasal Cancer still in remission 11-8-2012

Lucy's Nasal Cancer still in remission 11-8-2012!
Diagnosed by biopsy 4/2011 with Nasal Adenocarcinoma. Got her into remission 4 rocky months later. Pretty wild. There is always hope.

November 6, 2012

Pet Loss Support Hotlines

Pet Loss Support Hotlines

Don't forget there a medications to help with symptoms like pain. Pain can be successfully managed. Please use them if can be. There is no reason to not use them to keep your pet with you as long as you can as long as Fido can still basically be Fido. 


When is it Time?
The decision regarding the euthanasia of a beloved pet may be the most difficult decision one makes in one’s entire life; obviously, the consequences are irrevocable. Whatever the decision is, it should be one that you can always look back upon and know that the best decision was made and that you would make the same decision over again in the same situation.
So how do you know if it is time? There are several criteria used in evaluating life quality and you should consider them carefully.
  • Is your pet eating? Basically, quality life involves eating or at least interest in food. An animal that is hungry has vitality that must be considered, though this is not the only consideration.
  • Is your pet comfortable? The pet should be free of debilitating pains, cramps, aches or even the psychological pain that comes from the development of incontinence in an animal who has been housebroken for an entire life. 
  • Does the pet still enjoy favorite activities? The elderly pet does not necessarily need to continue chasing balls or jumping after discs but he should enjoy sleeping comfortably, favorite resting spots, the company of family, etc. You know your pet better than any one and only you can truly answer these questions.
Dr. Alice Villalobos, the veterinarian who started Pawspice, a quality of life program for terminal pets, has published a scoring system for life quality called The HHHHHMM scale.  The letters stand for: Hurt, Hunger, Hydration, Hygiene, Happiness, Mobility, and More Good Days than Bad.
Quality of Life Scale: The HHHHHMM Scale

Pet caregivers can use this Quality of Life Scale to determine
the success of pawspice care. Score patients using a scale of 1 to 10.
HURT - Adequate pain control, including breathing ability, is first and foremost on the scale. Is the pet's pain successfully managed? Is oxygen necessary?
HUNGER - Is the pet eating enough? Does hand feeding help? Does the patient require a feeding tube?
HYDRATION - Is the patient dehydrated? For patients not drinking enough, use subcutaneous fluids once or twice daily to supplement fluid intake.
HYGIENE - The patient should be brushed and cleaned, particularly after elimination. Avoid pressure sores and keep all wounds clean.
HAPPINESS - Does the pet express joy and interest? Is the pet responsive to things around him or her (family, toys, etc.)? Is the pet depressed, lonely, anxious, bored or afraid? Can the pet's bed be close to the family activities and not be isolated?
MOBILITY - Can the patient get up without assistance? Does the pet need human or mechanical help (e.g., a cart)? Does the pet feel like going for a walk? Is the pet having seizures or stumbling? (Some caregivers feel euthanasia is preferable to amputation, yet an animal who has limited mobility but is still alert and responsive can have a good quality of life as long as caregivers are committed to helping the pet.)
MORE GOOD DAYS THAN BAD - When bad days outnumber good days, quality of life might be compromised. When a healthy human-animal bond is no longer possible, the caregiver must be made aware the end is near. The decision needs to be made if the pet is suffering. If death comes peacefully and painlessly, that is okay.
*A total over 35 points represents acceptable life quality

 Adapted by Villalobos, A.E., Quality of Life Scale Helps Make Final Call, VPN, 09/2004, for Canine and Feline Geriatric Oncology Honoring the Human-Animal Bond, by Blackwell Publishing, Table 10.1, released 2006.

If you are considering euthanasia, discuss the pet’s condition with your veterinarian prior to making a decision or even coming in for an appointment. Every veterinarian has a story or two about the pet that was brought in for euthanasia but turned out to have a relatively simple problem and ultimately achieved a complete recovery.

Visit these sites for numbers, and additional support to help you with the loss of your companion. Memorials, Stories and Information on how to cope with the grief that will surely follow can all be found on these pages.

University of Illinios Pet Loss Support Hotline

Washington State University Pet Loss Hotline

Grief is a natural part of loss and has predicable stages. Do not feel ashamed or embarrassed about grieving for the loss of an animal. Our pets are beloved family members and their loss is keenly felt. Still, it is important to realize that death is a natural end to life and that love will always continue. There are many resources available to assist in your grieving process.

The UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine has a Pet Loss Support Program that offers toll-free telephone support to callers. The hours are Monday through Friday, from 6:30 am to 9:30 pm Pacific Standard Time.

In addition, the following on-line areas may be helpful:

I nearly lost it after my previous dog died suddenly. Don't be alone. Also don't feel guilty about your strong grief. 
Dogs gave us everything unconditionally and were always there for us.  When it's time, be there to say good bye while sedatives are given, then leave before final medications. Maybe prepay in advance.