Help with Viking's Chemo & Chanel's Surgery
$490 raised
26% of $1.9k goal
12 contributors
5 Years running
♥ My Viking Guy (Belgian Tervuren) has Lymphoma and it's also in his Spleen. He was diagnosed November, 2011 and has been on Chemotherapy treatments ever since. His expectancy of life at that time, without the medication was approximately 4-6 weeks. ...
♥ My Viking Guy (Belgian Tervuren) has Lymphoma and it's also in his Spleen. He was diagnosed November, 2011 with B-cell -- at least Stage 4 and has been on Chemotherapy treatments ever since. His expectancy of a happy life at that time, WITHOUT TRYING the chemo medication was approximately 4-6 weeks. So, OF COURSE, OF COURSE, OF COURSE I wanted to try the medicine. He has been doing remarkably great ever since. Viking has never had any side effects, nor does he show any signs of his illness... THANKS to his body accepting the medication (thus far). Even though his medical costs are extreme... I will never give up... until Viking feels otherwise... as I'm sure you all feel the same way about your BFF's (Best Furry Friends). Viking's energy is at Mach 5, he'd eat 24/7 (if I let him!) and he has never had one day of any fatigue/lethargy.

♥ Miss Chanel (Newfoundland mix) has recently incurred an abnormal cyst within her stomach, that numerous Veterinarians and Specialists can not thoroughly identify the cause of the cyst and why it is retaining fluid pockets. It is causing her Lymph Node to be enlarged, which is pushing on her stomach to where she looks pregnant. She is spayed, and there is not a chance of a pregnancy. Other than the fact that she looks like she swallowed a honeydew melon, she is healthy. Her medical care has already incurred over $1,500. which included an ultrasound, x-rays, blood drawn, a biopsy procedure (that she had to be sedated) and of course 2 sets of lab work (one to check for cancerous cells, and another for all else). Her results came back, and her cyst contains a bacterial infection, which after being on antibiotics for 4 weeks has not reduced the enlargement. She now has to have surgery performed, to remove the barrier cyst.

All of my fur'kids have been rescued from a family that had been kindly fostering, to the animal shelter to the county pound... but the true end of it is... they have lovingly ADOPTED me!

All (not a portion), but all proceeds from this fundfaiser will benefit and be applied toward the medical care of my fur'kids:
The Viking Guy "CFO" (Chief Furry Officer) and
Miss Chanel "CTO" (Chief Taste-Tester Officer)

Please "share" our story in your social network and if you are able to give, please know that every little bit helps =) I am humbled, and we Thank You ALL for your LOVING support ♥

→ UPDATE: November 20, 2012
Yesterday Chanel went back to the Veterinarian. He did an ultrasound on her belly and extracted 400ml of fluid from her cyst to make her feel a bit more comfortable (and to not have such a tight big belly). It seems to have made her feel better, as today she is feeling more energetic and she even looks happier. He has sent her fluid to the Lab to make sure that the infection is completely gone before performing surgery to remove the cyst. Thanks for reading our story updates & for all of your loving support.

→ UPDATE: November 24, 2012
Yesterday I received the results from her Veterinarian on Chanel's culture. Chanel’s culture did not grow any bacteria – good news! Unfortunately, that also means that if there isn't any infection, that the cyst isn't due to infection and needs to be surgically removed. Thanks for reading our story updates & for all of your loving support.

→ UPDATE: November 27, 2012
Viking had his treatment yesterday and he is still anemic, HCT=21.4% (normal low=36%). His Oncologist was very happy to see that he doesn't seem that low... she said that he acts like a 30% dog would. His platelets increased from 116k to 130k. Another treatment of vincristine was administered and he is still a Happy-Yappy Viking Guy. As of tomorrow, it will be one year from the day of his first treatment, and to date... he has never had one side effect at all. PAW'lease keep all of your paws crossed =)

→ UPDATE: December 17, 2012
Viking goes for a treatment tomorrow, crossing our paws that his blood work is stable enough for the chemo IV medicine ❤ I'll post his update afterwards.

→ UPDATE: December 18, 2012
Viking had a chemo treatment today (vincristine, with a follow up this week of cytoxan). And, the good news today was... his blood work improved since last CBC tests. His HCT level increased from 21.4% to 26.1% and his platelets increased from 130k to 162k ❤ GO VIKING!

→ UPDATE: December 27, 2012
Chanel is going back in today to have another temporary procedure to extract additional fluid within her cyst. Her belly (as her Veterinarian anticipated), has built/filled back up with the fluid. PAW'lease cross your paws that she does well ❤ Thank You

→ UPDATE: December 28, 2012
Chanel went back to the Veterinarian yesterday to have additional fluid extracted, as her belly was starting to make her uncomfortable again. She is feeling 100% otherwise, eating normal, playing normal and is Happy-Yappy! This visit, her doctor was able to have 500ml of fluid removed although it seems as though the wall lining of the cyst is starting to get thicker and is making it a bit more difficult to extract the fluid. The good news on the other hand (paw!) is that the cyst has not grown anymore in size. We know that the extractions are only a temporary solution to our primary goal of having the cyst surgically removed. A loving Rhank Roo to PAW'mazing Dr. Brad Rosonke, DVM and a Thank You to all of you for reading our story updates & your loving support ❤

→ UPDATE: January 10, 2013
Well, Miss Chanello Marshmallow had to go back in today (much earlier than hoped) for another extraction. It seems as though the last extraction did not last as long as the first one =( The procedure today, the doctor was able to extract 1,100ml from her cyst... although the inner lining of the cyst is becoming extremely thick (as it is protecting the fluid) and is making it tougher for the extractions. She obviously is in need to have her cyst surgically removed as soon as possible, to eliminate all of these mini (and temporary) procedures. As always, Thank You all for reading our story updates & your loving support ❤ Next Update: Viking has his appointment at the Oncologist for blood work tests, and chemo treatment on January 14th.

→ UPDATE: January 14, 2013
Viking went for his treatment today and their CBC machine had not been reading HCTs (measure of anemia) out correctly the whole day. So, they additionally performed an in-house blood smear, and adequate neutrophils/platelets for treatment were seen. PCV was increased at 28% and lymph nodes were stable =) Treatment administered was Vincristine (0.7 mg) + Cytoxan (200 mg). Viking has surpassed his 14th month of chemo treatments, and his Oncologist is overwhelmed of how well he is doing. She said that she is very happy with where he is right now and how well he is doing... and of course ME TOO! As always, we truly Thank You for ANY contribution that you can donate and for reading our saga ❤

→ UPDATE: February 1, 2013
Well, Miss Chanel can not wait any longer. Her surgery is scheduled for Tuesday morning. Her belly is just way too uncomfortable, she seems depressed and frustrated and barely wags her tail. The scariest part for me is that the cause of her cyst is a mystery and numerous Veterinarians and Specialists have never seen a cyst like this. So, we have nothing to pattern it from or to. Of course my biggest fear is the fear of the unknown, so please cross all of your paws toward her surgery being a medical-breakthrough success ❤

→ UPDATE: February 11, 2013
Well, it's been a long week for all of us and seems to be continuing into this week. Chanel did have her surgery last Tuesday (6 days ago) and the cyst was a bit more involved to remove, than expected prior. The cyst had somehow become intertwined with her colon, and so close to her aorta and attached to a lymph node. Approximately 80% of the cyst was removed successfully, but obviously could not get too close to her aorta without complications. She has an incision on her belly approximately 10" in length with stitches underneath that will dissolve, as well as approximately 15 staples above. Her incision is healing amazingly, although she has still not regained an appetite =( The last time that she actually ate a meal was Monday evening, prior to her surgery on Tuesday. She went back in for 2 day post re-check and had an ultrasound to make sure all looked good. It looked great. She was also given an appetite stimulant, but did not work. Since her appetite has still not returned, we went back in on Saturday for a few hours to have her digestive system monitored via X-rays. Again, all looks great and no blockage of any kind. She is now on an anti-nausea medicine, as well as a different type of appetite stimulant for 7 days. I have tried just about everything, and she just snubbs. I am obviously giving her food manually and smearing it on her tongue to make sure she is getting calories, nutrients and protein. So, cross our paws that she starts eating on her own SOON! Next update: Viking goes in for his treatment today @ 4pm.

→ UPDATE: February 25, 2013
My apologies for not updating sooner, so much has happened between Viking and Chanel. To shorten the versions, Chanel finally began to eat on her own again... THANK DOG. It was close to 9 days from when she ate her dinner the night before her surgery. I smeared canned food on her tongue numerous times a day, and along with a different appetite stimulant and a low dose of prednisone... finally she wanted a treat... and then eventually a meal. She went in to have her staples removed, and is healing (and eating) great. She's even back to pouting (aka, begging) for food when I'm eating!

Now, my Viking Guy did in fact go in for his chemo treatment on February 11, 2012 and I received bad news that she (his Oncologist, Dr. Hillers) found a new, large lymph node and his other lymph nodes did not really shrink any since last treatment. His HCT level also dropped a bit down to 24.9% (from 26.1%). His body is starting to become more immune to the chemo medicine... even though his energy is animated and his eating is like a locomotive. The mean monster "c" word is just too cruel inside. He has developed a periodic cough, but we are trying Dycycloline just to see if it may help before the next step is X-rays. But, down deep in my gut... it is most likely additional lymph nodes inside making him cough at times. It's just so heartbreaking that he is doing so well externally... while his blood cells say otherwise. He had a slight nose bleed this evening, of which I emailed his Oncologist about. Unless it happens again or the bleeding doesn't stop after 15 minutes... we have an appointment this Thursday. I have no idea if he will be too anemic for a chemo treatment or if he will be able to have a treatment. My paws and heart are crossed... that his blood levels are high enough for medicine ~ xoxo to all of you that continue to read our story ❤

→ UPDATE: February 25, 2013 (evening)
OMD -- this evening has been a whirlwind. Viking's nose began to bleed (as it has not done that since November 12, 2011 and of COURSE it is scary. I was able to stop the bleeding and he is fine. He is scheduled for his treatment in 3 days, so unless he bleeds again -- we'll stay on schedule. On top of that, Chanel started crying as that she did not want to climb the stairs -- almost as if she sat wrong or napped wrong. So, needless to say -- again -- a whirlwind of a night! I helped Chanel up the stairs, so that we could all go to sleep for the night. The next morning, she did not want to go down the stairs -- I felt that something was wrong more than she just laid wrong. I emailed her Veterinarian to see if I can continue the Tramadol from her surgery. That is what we are trying to see if that helps her.

→ UPDATE: February 28, 2013
Viking had his treatment today. His levels have dropped to where the Oncologist is worried (AS I). His HCT was at 21.9% (prior 24.9%). His platelets were 99k (prior 150k). Viking was given doxorubicin (30 mg) ❤

→ UPDATE: March 4, 2012
Tramadol not really working for Chanel as she is now screaming to stand, emailed Veterinarian to see about bringing her in for an exam and took her in today for an anti-inflammatory shot to see if it helps her. Doctor said that it may take 3-4 days to see any improvement.

→ UPDATE: March 8, 2013
No improvement for my very painful little girl Chanel. Veterinarian said that it may be a ruptured disk and to consult with Neurologist for an MRI to see what is causing her so much pain. Called Neurologist and set up appointment for Thursday (aka FUR'sday) to see if he can help her ❤

→ UPDATE: March 14, 2013
Chanel went to visit the Neurology Center today and met with a Neurologist and had an approximate 2 hour exam. We chose to try medicine therapy to see if weeks of complete "quote" bed rest would help. This would entail a minimum of 4-6 weeks of zero activity except for going outside to go pee-pee or poo-poo and then right back onto her blanket bed. She can't stand on her own right now anyway, nor can she even flip over on her side without me helping her. Until a doctor tells me that she will be in this pain always -- I will never give up and do whatever I can -- even if its being her 24/7 nurse -- that means, bringing her water/food/hugs/kisses ❤ Here's to lots of bed rest, lots of pain pills, anti-inflammatory pills and whatever else she needs to keep her in less agony and miserableness.

→ UPDATE: March 28, 2013
Viking went in for his treatment. His HCT levels increased a bit (YAY) to 24.5% (prior 21.9%) and his platelets increased to 136k (prior 99k). Was given doxorubicin (30 mg) again and we went on our way ❤

→ UPDATE: March 28, 2013
Chanel's FIRST TIME that as I helped her up, she only cried vs. screamed. Seeing a bit of improvement, although she is losing a lot of her muscle since she has been basically immobile since her surgery February 5, 2013 (when she had staples and stitches down her entire belly).

→ UPDATE: April 6, 2013
Chanel starting to feel a bit better over the past 2 days, a cry here and there when we get her up to a yelp or two. But do see some progress -- as it is a VERY SLOW process. If this ever happens to your dog -- PLEASE BE VERY PATIENT and be very gentle. I use a beach towel as a sling to help her walk the few steps out the door to go pee or poo ❤

→ UPDATE: April 11, 2013
Viking had a growth on his bumm, that looked as though he may have strained a bit when going poo. Called the Veterinarian right away to take him in this afternoon. It went back inward within 2 hours. Called doctor back to see if he still wanted me to bring him in, he said not if it went away -- but to keep an eye on it and if it worsens to bring him in.

→ UPDATE: April 14, 2013
Chanel is starting to walk on her own without the towel, as a guide sling. She even GOT UP ON HER OWN (from the carpet)... YAY! She is still very fragile and walks extremely slow -- but progress. She had a day this past week where she yelped, but I am guessing now that she may have just slept wrong as she is able to turn herself over to another sleeping position. Also am allowed to start weaning down a tiny bit of her pills, to make sure that she is healing ❤

→ UPDATE: April 17, 2013
After Viking's bumm seems to be getting worse (not going back inward all the way after he goes poo-poo, took him into Veterinarian today. After doing a fine needle aspirate of the mass, Viking has a 1cm x 1cm anal mass (4+ lymphocytes, 3+ prolymphocytes, 2+ pmn's - Diagnosis: Rectal prolapse secondary to rectal mass. If prolapse is prolonged, advised to put sugar on it to minimize swelling. Viking is scheduled to go to the Oncologist for his treatment on Thursday -- I hope it's gone completely by then ❤

→ UPDATE: April 21, 2013
Chanel is doing better and better -- slowly but surely -- she is walking a bit straighter and is staring to get up more frequently on her own without help. She primarily uses her front legs to pull her up, but she's doing it ❤ She really is the stubborn one outta the PAW'sse!

→ UPDATE: April 25, 2013
Viking went to the Oncologist, and his bumm looked even worse and the mass was even larger. The Oncologist didn't even want him to have his chemo because she felt that his mass was so bad that it needed surgery right away. Even though his levels had increased (HCT 29% and platelets 164k), she mentioned that if it ruptured, that he would go in a horribly painful way and that I may have to start thinking that his body is becoming immune to treatments and................. as you can imagine I left crying my eyes til my stomach hurt and my tears felt never ending. How can this be, I've so much for him to not take his happiness from him and this is how he may go -- tears everywhere, I can't bare to know that. Of course, needless to even say to you all -- I was/am a mess. Within a few hours after getting home, I had a little time to think and emailed his Oncologist with some questions. She asked if I would bring him in first thing tomorrow morning (as she felt he was an emergency) and she wants to administer his chemo to see if it will in fact reduce the mass. I of course wrote back, we'll be there ❤

→ UPDATE: April 26, 2013
Viking had a treatment this morning, he was given #5 of 5 of the doxorubicin. THIs medicine can only be given 5x in a dog's lifetime, as it can cause heart damage if used more than 5 doses. Along with his chemo, I am to up his prednisone to 20-30 mg per day and apply Preperation H to his mass 2 x a day. I am still a mess, but other than Viking not understanding what the heck is on his bumm -- he is suoer happy and eating and playing with his flippers (aka his toys) ❤

→ UPDATE: April 29, 2013
Viking's mass is decreasing and visibly less inflammed -- Thank DOG ❤

→ UPDATE: May 3, 2013
Viking's mass has decreased inward and is not visible any longer... YAY! Although, his cough that he has had on and off for some time seems to be getting a bit worse. He is regurgitating his food/water, as though it is not even going all the way into his stomach. Oncologist is aware and has prescribed Metoclopram to see if the medicine can push the food through. Also he may have developed Megaesophagus, of which the esophagus's muscle does not function properly to push food into stomach.

→ UPDATE: May 6, 2013
Emailed Veterinarian to see about possibly bringing Viking in for a chest X-ray to see why his food/water is not fully going into his stomach. Also did research on the Megaesophagus treatments, and if he is placed vertical for approximately 20-30 minutes from eating to allow gravity to work -- it may help ❤ I will try it tomorrow -- crossing all paws here in our home!
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