Meet Bobby – he is a 12-year-old Collie dog who is currently undergoing chemotherapy for lymphoma (a type of cancer).
We would like to share his story with you in the hope that it might help other owners with dogs diagnosed with this disease, and making the decision whether to consider chemotherapy.
All dogs are different in how they respond to treatment, but Bobby has remained well throughout his treatment so far and has improved a lot from when we first saw him in the surgery.
We first saw Bobby when his owners were worried that he had lost weight, was off his food, and had sickness and diarrhoea. The vet found that all of his lymph nodes (glands) were enlarged and advised that we should take some samples.
The samples from Bobby’s lymph nodes unfortunately confirmed that he did have a disease called lymphoma, which is a type of cancer of the white blood cells.
Although we cannot cure lymphoma, some dogs will go into a complete remission after a course of chemotherapy (which means that all the signs of symptoms of the cancer have disappeared). Bobby’s owners had a consultation with an oncologist (a cancer specialist) and decided to go ahead with his course of treatment, most of which can be carried out here at the Scott Veterinary Clinic.
Bobby initially had weekly appointments at the surgery to be given his chemotherapy medication and also had some tablets for his owners to give at home.
As he progressed through the course the appointments became fortnightly instead and he is now nearing the end of his course of chemotherapy and we are very pleased to say that he is in remission.
Before each dose of medication, he has to have a blood test to check that his blood cell counts have not been affected and that it is safe to give the dose. Bobby always copes very well with his regular visits here and continues to wag his tail throughout his time with us!
As with any medication, chemotherapy can cause some side effects, but usually these are fairly minor. Bobby has done very well and other than one episode of an upset tummy, he has not suffered any ill effects at all!
We would always discuss any potential side effects and the results that we would hope to achieve with an owner before beginning any treatment, but we hope that sharing Bobby’s story has helped some of you who may be faced with this diagnosis.