Done with chemo!!!

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June was insane, and July was beyond insane.  But I promised more details about how Rio’s been doing.

She finished up her last chemo on Wednesday.  I expected fireworks or champagne or something for our trouble, but it was very anti-climactic.  Rio didn’t even get a “Cancer Survivor” bandanna like she did the last time.  I was joking with the vet tech about it, and she said they’d been talking about ordering some, but just hadn’t yet.  I told her, navy blue on a black dog didn’t really work all that well, and that bright pink was really more Rio’s color…

She’s really doing well with the chemo this last few doses.  No nausea, no lethargy to speak of.  We haven’t even needed the Cerenia or metronidazole the last couple of times.  Her appetite is still really good, too.

On the other hand, she had another urinary tract infection and had to go back on the antibiotics for three weeks.  We’ll do another check next week to see if it’s cleared up.  She’s also been having a heck of a time getting around.  I’m not sure if she tweaked her knee or if Zeff knocked her down and hurt it, but I had the doctor look at it and she said there doesn’t appear to be any “structural” damage.  She’s on an NSAID to see if it will help.  Five days now and she’s a little better, but still having troubles.

Her hair has grown back on her hiney, finally!  She’s a little patchy still where the worst of the calcinosis is, but it’s so nice to see her shiny black furry butt again!  Her numbers looked really good on the last ACTH stimulation test that they did a few weeks back.  Exactly where the doctor wanted them to be!  Her muscles are starting to beef back up, and the bloated belly has gone away!  So we don’t have to retest that for another three to four months!

Rio will have an ultrasound in a month as follow-up, but for now, she’s got a clean bill of health!

One more thing, and maybe this is something worth asking in the forums:  Rio’s lipomas have mostly all disappeared.  I wonder if it’s the change in diet or if the chemotherapy took care of them.


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Another chemo, another day…

Tripawds is a user-supported community. Thank you for your support!

Rio had her nearly last chemo this week (only two more left, YAY!!!), and so far, she’s doing pretty darn good.  She slept a lot today, but still had a good appetite and was pretty playful in between the naps.   Her tummy’s a little upset this evening (I need a gas mask), but I’m confident that she’ll be back to her self in a day or so. Over the last couple of weeks, she’s been making some definite strides in the right direction — she’s been seriously funny, crazy, wanting to play, lots of energy, lots of silly.  She seems to have more strength in her remaining rear leg and (pause for effect……..) she’s even started growing hair — truly!  She’s got tiny little whiskers along her back, and when she stands in the light, you can see the new growth.  Again, YAY!!!

Happiness is .... the Woo!

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Till there was Woo….

It’s APRIL!  Rio’s birth month!!!!  We don’t know what day, but she was about 7 or 8 weeks old when I got her on Father’s Day, 2000.  I still remember that little face.  I tried to walk away.  I actually decided I couldn’t take her (we were selling our house and didn’t have a clue where we would live while we built our new house).  But my friend said, “you can’t leave without saying goodbye to the puppy.”  I convinced myself I was strong enough, but I knew deep down that if I went back to “say goodbye,” I would be taking that tiny girl home.

  • The day I found Woo
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    Chemo #3 and all’s well

    Today we administered Rio’s third round of chemo (CCNU).  She’s been doing really great, although last week’s CBC numbers were considerably lower than when we started.  Dr. Sarah, our oncologist, prescribed Cerenia for vomiting, since she did get sick on the Vinblastine two years ago, but we haven’t needed it so far.  Continue reading

    Starting chemo

    Today is Friday, three weeks and three days since Rio’s surgery, and yesterday we started chemo for the second time.  I must say, when I saw my “little waif in the cage” nearly 11 years ago, it never would have crossed my mind that we’d end up on this road. Not that knowing would have made me walk away without her….  Could you???  Look at this face!!!

    The day we met!

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    The dreaded pathology report….

    Last night Rio’s oncologist called with the pathology results.  As I already half expected, the results are less than great.  Since her cancer has resurfaced post-chemo, we knew going in that it was likely to be a more aggressive version of the disease.  Also since it was in the region of a lymph node we knew there was every likelihood that it could be in those tissues as well.  Continue reading

    Road to recovery — Part I

    Rio underwent the amputation surgery yesterday, February 8.   I’d been having a really hard time with the idea of her losing her leg, and I wasn’t positive even as we went to our appointment with the surgeon if I was going to go through with it.  I’d been trying to think about it from the angle of “if it was elsewhere on her body, what would I do?”.  If it was on her back or her haunches or some other easily operable spot, the surgery would have been scheduled within hours of the diagnosis, so what was my problem?  The surgery was imperative if she was going to survive this particular tumor. Continue reading