There’s been a little going on behind the scenes that has rocked our world recently. This week our beloved fur baby Aiko was acting lethargic. He didn’t have his normal energy levels, didn’t want to eat and barely wanted to get up and his gums were pretty much white. After multiple trips to the vet, blood tests and continued symptoms, they still couldn’t distinguish what was wrong with him. After finally doing an X-Ray, they discovered a dark area in his abdomen that they then did a ultrasound on. Turned out he had multiple tumors on his spleen, which ruptured and were filling his abdomen with blood internally.
We decided to take him to a different animal hospital that specialized in emergency surgeries and thankfully he was in good hands! He is currently recovering from his surgery. His spleen and the multiple tumors on it were removed as well as one on his shoulder. That was the easy part though because once those tumors were biopsied, we found out they were malignant. Meaning our boy has the dreaded C word…Cancer.
This has truly shaken our world. We’ve been spending much time caring for our boy and researching the best way to go forward. Since the expectancy for his diagnosis of Hemangiosarcoma (which is a common cancer of the blood vessel) is only a few months, we are looking at our options. We want whatever time he has left to be a good quality of life. We still have yet to meet with an oncologist and explore more options.
After much research we have discovered promising research being done on the effect of diet, amongst other things, in fighting cancer in dogs. Some good resources we’ve found are Dr. Dressler’s book, The Dog Cancer Survival Guide and ketopetsanctuary.com. KetoPet is doing pretty awesome stuff in the research and treatment of dog cancer. A few things we’ve learned so far is that 1. Cancer is the number one killer of dogs and the numbers are growing and 2. The research and treatments of dog cancer is about 20 years behind human cancer research.
All of this has made us realize even more that we are our pets health advocate. Vets and specialists are there to be part of your team and your professional but at the end of the day, we know our dog best and ultimately we make the decisions for him. It’s our job as pet owners in general to advocate for them and be their voice, since they don’t have one.
We don’t know exactly how much more time we have with our sweet Aiko, but we do know the rest of his life with be filled with lots and lots of love, adventures, walks car rides and health promoting food. We are going to give this guy the best chance he can get. Don’t skimp out on regular visits to your vet. Even if your dog looks healthy, they can’t tell us what’s going on or how they’re feeling. It’s one way to care for our pets and can allow you to sometimes catch things earlier rather than later.
In case we are a bit slower on getting orders out or responding to emails, please be patient with us! We are trying to help our boy heal and kick cancers butt. We wanted to let you guys know what was going on for the reasons we just listed but also in case any other dog-lovers are going through something similar. You’re not alone and any advice you may have, please share in the comments!