Two weeks ago my partner and I were given the devastating news that our beloved buddy Dingo was diagnosed with lymphoma, a common cancer in dogs. During those two weeks we witnessed a radical change in his personality, energy level and appetite. He no longer showed interest in his toys, rarely socialized with his favorite human visitors or his local dog pals. Within two weeks he stopped eating which put us at the point of desperation.
The news of Dingo's cancer came after numerous trips to his regular vet, testing him for a variety of different ailments that met his symptoms. Lymphoma was mentioned as a possibility but other conditions needed to be ruled out before the doctors made that diagnosis. Unfortunately, all other tests came back negative. Next a biopsy to his lymph nodes registered positively that material was present that might have been cancer and it was recommended the gland be removed for more complete examination.
This image was taken 24 hours after Dingo's first chemo shot. The scar is where the lymph node was removed a couple days prior.
We received the news from the lab that there was indeed cancer present in his body and my partner and I decided to proceed with chemotherapy.
Dingo, being the strong willed dog that he is, surprised us after his first chemo session yesterday. The doctors warned me that most dogs get very ill after their first injection and we should be prepared for him to be pretty out of it. Prognosis was Dingo would probably just want to sleep and might suffer from side effects including vomiting or diarrhea. None of this happened with our boy, but rather, he bravely championed the day as if nothing was the matter. Within 6 hours of returning home he was showing signs of his regular spunky personality. He started playing with his toys again, visited with company and best of all, ate a good sized meal. Needless to say we're completely ecstatic! It's been 24 hours now and you wouldn't even have know, other than his scar, that Dingo is ill.
During the 2 - 3 weeks that his health declined I began to put many things in perspective. With the terrible fear of us loosing him, I thought of all the things I had intended to do with him but never did. Excuses of being 'too busy' or too preoccupied with more important things floated in my consciousness. I told myself that if Dingo could just regain his health, even for a short while, I'd devote as much time as I could to living in the moment with him.
Dingo and his other dad Barry.
So the reason for this blog is to document our time together, gather information on canine lymphoma then pass it all along to others who's dogs fall victim to this disease. Dingo is a very special member of our household and makes an impact on all who meet him. I just want to share with those interested in his journey at this point in his life.