Featuring Demian Dressler, DVM and Susan Ettinger, DVM, Dip. ACVIM (Oncology), authors of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide
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Side Effects of Chemotherapy

Recommended Supplements for Dogs with Cancer: The Most Important Supplements in Order of Importance from The Dog Cancer Survival Guide

Readers of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide check Appendix A to find the most important supplements for dogs with cancer listed in order of importance.

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More Melatonin and Dog Cancer

More details on melatonin and dog cancer, including the whys, hows, and how much.

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The Most Important Question in Dog Cancer

What’s the most important question in dog cancer care? You’ll be surprised at what Dr. Dressler has to say.

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Your Dog Cancer Journal

Keeping a dog cancer journal — even a simple one — can help you and your dog tremendously. It doesn’t have to be fancy or take a long time. If you’ve got a pen, you’re all set.

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Guidelines for Dealing with Your Dog’s Chemotherapy Side Effects

As I’ve discussed in other posts, chemotherapy is very well tolerated in dogs. Yes I know that is hard to believe. I have had family members get chemo and we have all seen it on TV, but happily it’s not like that for dogs. Approximately 80% of dogs do not have side effects at all…

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Giving Your Dog Chemotherapy at Home, Safely

  I get a lot of questions about how to be safe around chemo drugs administered at home (for example, during metronomic chemotherapy).  Here are some of the most frequently asked questions, and my answers: Is my pet safe to be around? Yes, your pet is safe to be around after treatment. Being around family…

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Metronomic Chemotherapy for Dogs with Cancer

What is Metronomic Chemotherapy? Metronomic chemotherapy is a relatively new type of chemotherapy that uses low doses of oral (pulse) chemotherapy given on a continuous treatment schedule. Since it is given daily or every other day, the chemotherapy is given at lower doses then typical chemotherapy, often with a reduced toxicity profile. That reduction in…

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Common Cancer Mistake: Assuming Chemotherapy Is Not an Option

Do dogs suffer during chemotherapy for their cancer treatments? This veterinary oncologist has an answer that might surprise you.

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Common Cancer Mistake: Starting Your Dog with Lymphoma on Prednisone Too Soon

It happens all the time, so don’t beat yourself up if you’ve done it. But if you can, avoid the use of steroids (such as prednisone) before chemotherapy, or before the diagnosis of lymphoma is confirmed. Now, I’m not bashing prednisone across the board. Steroids are used for many things in veterinary medicine. For example,…

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DogCancer.TV: Palladia™ and Dog Cancer- What You Need to Know

Dr. Ettinger and Dr. Dressler discuss the use of Palladia, an FDA approved drug for dogs, as a chemotherapeutic treatment for dog cancer.

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Chemotherapy for Osteosarcoma

In my last two posts about osteosarcoma (OSA), we discussed treatments that address the tumor affecting the bone. We discussed amputation, Stereotactic RadioSurgery (SRS) like Cyberknife, palliative radiation, and limb-spare surgery. While these treatments are important for the malignant tumor destroying the bone, metastasis (cancer spread) is inevitable.  So even if the primary tumor is…

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DogCancer.TV: Diarrhea and Dog Cancer What You Need to Know

A short video in which Dr. Dressler and Dr. Ettinger discuss several causes of diarrhea due to dog cancer and some methods that may help attain gastrointestinal relief for your dog.

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DogCancer.TV: Vomiting and Dog Cancer- What You Need to Know

In this video, Dr. Ettinger and Dr. Dressler address some causes of vomiting due to your dog’s cancer, as well as how to cope and when further intervention by your vet may help.

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Low Dose Chemotherapy Better for Canine Hemangiosarcoma?

Chemotherapy in dogs is normally given at doses that are as high as possible.  This is to try to rid the body of as many cancer cells as we can, although some dogs will have occasional side effects related to the use of conventional chemotherapy. For this reason, there is interest in using lower doses…

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Why I love being an oncologist

In my first blog, I wrote about that many people I meet cannot believe I am an oncologist for dogs and cats. I know it sounds weird, maybe even corny, but I am so thankful for my job. As the year comes to a close, I have thought a lot recently about how grateful I…

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Immune System Fuel

Dogs with cancer, especially widespread cancer, have a lot of different health issues that need special attention.  The cancer has a way of overtaking and affecting many different body systems.  In order for us to beat the odds in any consistent way, we need to tend to each of these different cancer effects.  As readers…

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The chemotherapy appointment, demystified

Ever wonder what happens at your dog chemotherapy appointment? The idea of chemo may conjure up an image of a bunch of people sitting around in chairs hooked up to their IV chemo lines, but how do we do that in dogs? Let’s break a typical chemo appointment down, with Charlie as my example. Charlie…

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My Dog is Young…and Has Cancer??

These days cancers in young dogs do not seem to be that rare.  And they are especially difficult since it is such a shock.  Often we have the perception that things like this do not happen, or should not happen. Yet we are faced with this brutal reality that seems impossible to accept and even…

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Prejudice in Chemo Side Effect Treatment for Dogs

Bias (prejudice) is an important issue in medical treatments being withheld.  Some of these treatments may have benefit, and dog cancer is no exception. Managing the side effects of chemotherapy is an important part of cancer care.  Chemotherapy is most commonly delivered at the Maximum Tolerated Dose (MTD).  This means the highest doses that the…

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The Oncologist’s Perspective on Statistics: Part Two

In last week’s post, Statistics Part One, I discussed why statistics can be very helpful to the pet Guardian. And while stats are an important part on oncology, my years in practice highlight their limitations. So before we dive into some common statistical terms (in my next blog), I think it is important to remember…

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What I would do for my dog with lymphoma?

When Guardians come in for a consultation with me after receiving a cancer diagnosis, they often ask “Doc, what would you do if this was your dog?” I usually refuse to answer the question (with one important exception, which I will get to in a moment). There are too many personal factors that go into…

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Critical Question when Weighing Dog Cancer Chemotherapy Options

Many Guardians are faced with difficult decisions when facing a dog cancer diagnosis.  One of the toughest is whether to choose a treatment that seems more aggressive than others. A guardian should first get an idea of whether the expectation of the treatment is worse than the treatment.  Many times dogs receiving chemotherapy treatment do…

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A Useful Discussion for Dogs With Cancer

I received a question recently that involves a common situation for guardians coping with a dog cancer diagnosis. So, to benefit everyone, I am including my answers here, in the hopes that you can apply the information to how you manage your dog with cancer. This case is Almond, who is a 10 year female…

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To Chemo or Not To Chemo?

One of the little known facts about veterinary medicine is that chemotherapy does not cure cancer in dogs, with few exceptions (except transmissible venereal tumor or the very rare lympho or something). I believe that many people are unaware of this fact. So we are left with a treatment  modality that has a goal of…

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Pau D’Arco: Dicey in Dog Cancer

In the last post, I focused on really looking at the source of the information you are receiving about your dog’s cancer.  Let’s get into some specific examples of questionable “intelligence” you may have received. Some, claiming authority in the area of supplements for dog cancer, are pushing Pau D’Arco.  Be careful, everyone! Let’s look…

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Why Would Anyone Choose Chemotherapy?

Very few people overall will opt for chemotherapy for their dogs with cancer. This is interesting, because in human medicine it is widespread. It would seem that fear of life quality loss, expense, side effects, and lack of cure in true malignancy are the main deterrents. However, there are some reasons why some do opt…

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Where Do I Begin?

“I am overwhelmed with all the information I am reading to help my dog with cancer.” Does this sound familiar to anyone out there? Most of the readers of this blog are searching for information. Once a true malignancy has developed, the realities can feel utterly unacceptable. This leads to information gathering.  Whenever we are…

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Anti-oxidants versus Pro-Oxidants

A reader asked an interesting question recently that I thought would make a good post. The question involved the use of antioxidants, either for dogs with cancer or to help prevent cancer. Lets get an overview to clarify this frequently-muddied picture. A free radical is a reactive molecule that tends to damage cell parts.  When…

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Astragalus Immune Booster and More

I’d like to share some information taken from Traditional Chinese Medicine.  One of the important aspects of full-spectrum care to improve cancer outcomes is investigating.  Many times these investigations have led outside the borders of our country. China has a long, well developed, complex system of medicine. It is very different from what we are…

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New Antioxidant Info For Managing Dog Cancer

Got some new stuff for everyone into vitamins and antioxidants in cancer treatment for their loved dogs. Recall we are talking about cancer treatment, not cancer prevention. These are two different categories gang, with different considerations. You may recall also that the big deal is that there has been concern with free radical scavenging, which…

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