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Canine Cancer Blogs
Finding support in first-person-with-dog stories
Blogger Todd Reubold with Jasper.

When my sister-in-law was diagnosed with cancer, my niece created a blog for family and friends in very short order. At first it seemed an odd choice, but soon I saw the smarts in it. It was an excellent way to streamline communications. I could find out about her progress and leave encouraging comments without being one of dozens of callers interrupting important healing time and demanding the latest news be told to me—and only me—for the tenth or the fortieth time.

I know there are many, many personal blogs like theirs—some public, others password protected—so I wasn’t really surprised to be introduced to blogs written by people dealing with canine cancer, even though I hadn’t stumbled across any yet.

This week, we heard from Todd Reubold, who recently launched a blog called The Adventures of Jumping Jasper-Roo the Viszla Dog. “I started the blog as a way to connect with others who are going through the same thing with their pets,” Reubold told us. “Before Jasper’s diagnosis, I had no idea that cancer accounts for nearly 50 percent of all disease-related pet deaths each year.” The National Canine Cancer Foundation estimates that one in three dogs will develop cancer, a daunting estimate that is similar to the odds for human cancer.

Reubold’s is a new blog with only a handful of entries, so far, but they strike at the heart of the thing—the first-person-with-dog perspective on balancing fight with acceptance, exploring options for treatment, sadness over bad news and joy in simple pleasures. A different case is Margarat Nee. She’s been keeping her blog, La Vida Fresca, about holistic canine health and raw-food diets since the middle of 2006. When her dog Vida was diagnosed with oral cancer two years later, her posts took a turn. Now she focuses the role of diet, herbs, Reiki, and acupressure in Vida’s treatment.

Coping with, treating, loving dogs with cancer are themes that thread through many blogs about dogs and even those not about dogs but into which this bad news comes. Sometimes I gripe about all the me-me-me of the blogosphere, but then I read these heartfelt stories and thoughtful, real-world advice and I reconsider. I wonder if there are blogs by individuals that have helped you deal with your dog’s cancer or maybe other challenges with your best friend? When the going gets tough, what sort of company do you seek? I’d love to know.

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Lisa Wogan lives in Seattle and is the author of, most recently, Dog Park Wisdom. lisawogan.com

Photo: Jasper thumbnail image photographed by Hannah Lynch.

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Submitted by Margarat Nee | June 24 2010 |

My blog, "La Vida Fresca," didn't start out as a blog about cancer. It started out simply as a blog about "life with a raw fed dog." When my dog was diagnosed, though, cancer inevitably became the focus. I hope that what I write about Vida and her journey through care helps others, and can give people some traction against fear.

http://theartofdog.blogspot.com/

Submitted by Paul | September 8 2011 |

My wife and I have been using a treatment called Neurofascial Process to treat our golden retriever who has cancer (tumors in her spleen, kidney, and liver) along with some holistic medications. The process involves connecting points in the body by touch to release toxins. My wife writes a blog about it at www.greendogmarket.com/dogblog

Submitted by Anonymous | October 24 2011 |

My father's rottie was just diagnosed with bone cancer at only five years old. They were told she has no chance of survival. As a last hope, she is undergoing a new treatment known as the Navy Protocol. My Dad is keeping a blog online to help track her progress and raise awareness. Please pray for Princess! She is the most wonderful dog!

http://pappysassafrass.blogspot.com/

Submitted by Karen C. | March 1 2012 |

Our Golden, Duke was diagnosed in January (2012) with non epithelial cutaneous lymphoma, T-cell. We were told that it is rare & usually fatal. Duke has had 3 chemo treatments, & the vet wants to stop since she has seen no decrease in size of his lesions. Duke was only four at diagnosis. He is still very happy and active and has a great appetite. I have him on an immunity boost ultra product from Aloha Medicinals. I don't want to just give up, take him home & wait for him to die! The vet has been consulting with an oncologist from the U of Illinois. Duke is a rescue who we've had since puppyhood -- we have 4 other large rescue dogs as well. I was recently laid off from my occupation, so money is a factor.

Submitted by Amy | March 29 2012 |

So sorry to hear about Duke. Unfortunately, I can relate - our 5 yr old Lab, Dempsey, was just diagnosed with the same thing. In fact, she began chemo just yesterday. The oncologist told us that out of a couple of thousand cases of lymphoma, this is only the third of this type she's seen. But,the other two had very good outcomes with chemo. One was treated at 18 months, and died at 10 yrs of an unrelated cause; the other was treated at 3 and is still okay a couple of years later. Of course, 2 cases doesn't indicate much, but she sounded guardedly optimistic. At this point, the plan is to have 16 treatments of a type of chemo called the Madison-WI Protocol.

A few years ago we lost another Lab - at 13 y.o. - from Mast Cell cancer. She had a long happy life (the beloved dog my kids grew up with) but it was still awful to see. I have that sinking feeling of 'here we go again...' Money is also a very difficult factor here - between the economy and a child still in college, this couldn't happen at a worse time financially. But, as you said, how do you not treat it? Dempsey is pure love, just the greatest dog.

Submitted by Jane Hughes | June 22 2012 |

I've been through a lot with my dog. We have been in and out of the hospital for treatments this week. She is a trooper though, sometimes I wonder if I am as strong as she is because she is sooo strong. I have been struggling with paying for the medications and I know a lot of other people do to. I thought I would share this contest I came across to win some free supplements. I entered and all I did was write, Me and my dog like to cook to stay healthy, on their Facebook wall. You could win $60 of free supplements... http://www.facebook.com/ElimaySupplements

Submitted by jeans1234 | February 24 2013 |

It has gotten to be pretty common, especially in older dogs. Fifty percent of dogs over the age of 10 develop cancer at some point. We see malignant lymphoma, which is a tumor of the lymph nodes. We see mast cell tumors, which is a form of skin cancer. There are mammary gland tumors, or breast cancer, and soft tissue sarcomas. We also see a fair amount of bone cancer in dogs.More info
http://fundapetmiracle.com/

Submitted by siena | March 27 2013 |

My beautiful 15 year old sheltie was diagnosed with a fast growing type of oral cancer 2 months ago. It is a devastating shock and like many of us who have commentated here I have set up a blog detailing the experience. Sharing the grief is really helping me cope.
http://atearintheheart.blogspot.co.uk/

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