Cancer messed with the wrong dog

Photography Newsletter

March 11, 2014

My dogs drive me nuts. Why is it that after you have a baby your dogs go from being your best friends to just being in the way?! It’s sad, but true in my case … until now. Many of you have had the opportunity to meet our two K9 children, Ava and Walter. Ava is a frisky, willful, seven-year-old lab NYC rescue. Her husband, Walter is a purebred six-year-old blue Great Dane with so much heart it’s scary. When Walt was 3 he survived bloat (gastric dilatation-volvulus), which is a miracle in and of itself. After being rushed into emergency surgery, having a third of his stomach removed, we were told that he only had a 10% chance of living … which he did.
We’ve always known that he was a trooper but he’s showing us now more than ever. After two months of misdiagnosis of a torn ligament, we opted for a second opinion and were horrified to learn that Walt’s “torn ligament” was actually bone cancer. He had his front leg amputated that afternoon to hopefully localize the cancer and help with the pain. We felt horrible. We knew he was in pain, but had no idea how much. The surgeon told us to be prepared for a new way of life for the big guy, however, dogs adjust amazingly well to amputation and will be up and running in no time. We left Aspen Meadows Veterinary Clinic (the same place that saved his life the first time) in shock (emotionally and financially) disbelieving that he would ever walk again. The following morning Mark and I took turns visiting Walt … and to our total amazement, he jumped right up on three legs to greet us. He came home that afternoon and we’re happy to report that after two weeks of rest and recovery, he’s running around the yard with his beloved wife, Ava … loving every second of life.
He was due to begin one round of chemo this week, which we’re hoping buys him another happy year at least, but the official histopathology results haven’t returned from the lab. I’m holding out hope that it’s not actually osteosarcoma and he won’t actually need chemo, and therefore will live many more years. That may just be wishful thinking, but I’m putting it out to the universe in hopes of positive return. One thing I know for sure, cancer messed with the wrong dog (and his once again loving and patient owner).
Stay tuned for the lab results … positive thoughts in the meanwhile are always welcomed.
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