My Dog’s Alive 10 Months Since the Cancer Returned

11 Sep
Buford Woo

Buford my brave cancer dog. I can’t believe he’s still here with me

I HAD A MONTH OF HELL

I am happy to report Buford is now doing well and still running and playing with his friends. I have been battling for a month getting weight back on him and I have finally succeeded.  I was not sure what was going to happen, and it’s been a lot of one on one time with him.

If you remember, in July when he had the bacterial infection from stress (cancer dogs require constant companionship with their owners, the bond is very important) from me working so much, it knocked some weight off him. As a cancer dog he cannot afford to lose weight due to the diet he is on.  When I went to take his picture several weeks ago (see above) I saw tons of skin and bones.   His back portion was sunk in. Not good. I refused to let the cancer eat him up, or have his body eat his muscle.

 

Normally you can pull on a dog’s back  if he’s a basset hound and get tons of flab. His you can’t. So what do to?  The good news is, he is hungry all the time. He will beg for food all the time.  This is great news, he has not lost his appetite!  Any one who has a basset hound knows, their keen sense of smell is what makes them so wonderful. And two, he trusts his owner I could feed him anything and he’d eat it.  That is the bond we have.   The issue with the cancer dog is simple: you have to feed the dog and starve the cancer. Keeping weight on Buford is hard. Because he gets :

NO RICE

NO GRAIN

NO BREAD

NO CORN

NO STARCH

NOTHING WITH SALT

what a mess.

So I had been forced to rethink my strategy. For awhile  when he was sick he associated the chicken with the sickness, and he was hesitant to eat it. I put him on straight bottom round for two weeks, and could not get weight back on him. Probably because bottom round is not that fatty, it’s a lean cut of meat and not a lot of protein. I then had to mix the chicken back in slowly,

 

Here is two weeks into my recovery mode, looking better but still too thin:

Buford Woo

Weight loss is a bad sign, you have to nip it in the butt immediately

 

Chicken Fat for the Cancer Dog

Natural animal fats are very important to the cancer dog

Now I have been feeding him twice a day, as much as he will eat, a mix of kale and chicken and fats.   I will mix in the occasional carrot or sweet pepper,  I have been forced to go with PORK BACK FAT and GROUND BEEF to aid in helping him.  Normally I would not use the latter due to the processing. But basically Ground beef is high in fats, what choice do I have at this point? Let him starve, or fatten him up?

PORK BACK FAT  this is highly indigestible to some dogs but to Buford it is a high fat content for his diet. I have to cut the pieces up small, but I really get upset when all I can find is highly salted pork back fat in commercial packages. I am so against the salt because I am trying to keep his system high acidic and now salty, so I have to struggle with giving him this. I need to find a butcher who has pork back fat without the salt, and that’s hard to find.

COOKING YOUR PORK BACK FAT: All I do is sizzle it in a fry pan on both sides (after I soak and wash the salt off) and then cut into centimeter sized cubes (this is the hard part, have you tried to get a knife thru solid fat, it’s horrific) .  Then I bag and freeze into small sandwich baggies. I use a little here and there and it will last a very long time in the freeze.

 

DAY AND NIGHT FEEDING : THANK GOD CHICKEN THIGHS ARE ON SALE FOR .99 PER POUND.

I feed him tons at night with his meds. This is a large bowl and I’d say about 1.5 lbs of food. I stock up when the chicken thighs are on sale at Giant.  Whatever he doesn’t eat will be kept for the morning breakfast.  This is easy to do, make one big meal and use the leftovers for morning food. Here below you can’t tell but I have chicken, chicken bones, pork back fat cubes, his pills, and ground beef mixed into one quarter of a raw carrot and a bunch of fresh uncooked organic kale (mixed with chicken juice for flavor.) The whole idea is to flavor the veggies like meat or chicken to get the dog to eat them. At first he loved them but over time he got sick of them. Mixing the fat or a little concentrated jellied juice (that you save from the chicken)  in and puree’ing them will trick his nose.

Chicken Dog Dinner

F=== you cancer! I’m gonna fight as long as I can!

After a few weeks of using the pork fat cubes, ground beef, lots of chicken fats and letting him eat until his heart is content and we have finally reached our goal. The weight is back on:

Plumped Up Cancer Dog

BUFORD IS GREAT BUT I’M WORN OUT

I am also suffering from a grade 3 ankle sprain with ligament damage. I’m supposed to be taking it easy but two months in and I can’t stay off my foot. How can you when life requires you to walk from point a to point b?

With patience and persistence you can help your loved pet fight cancer. It takes a lot of time out of LIFE in general, but it’s proven to work with Buford.  I have done what I set out to do. My husband and I basically remark on a daily basis that we could not believe how Buford is still here and doing so well.  My husband even said, “I thought you were crazy, doing all that research and buying all those pills.”

He watches me feed Buford his now 17-odd pills a night .

Life does revolve around the dog, but we like it that way.

PROGNOSIS:  Buford’s cancer return was told to me in December 2012. I believe it could have returned since September 2012 as he was having urination issues.  If so, this is one year living and beating cancer.  It has been several years since his initial operation.  If , when I found out the cancer had returned in December 2012 I would have made the decision to operate or give him chemo, he would have passed away soon after that and suffered a great deal.

Fuck You Cancer

In my eyes, he’s a cancer survivor and the bravest dog I know. As long as he’s willing to fight, I owe him a little lifestyle change so he doesn’t feel like he’s fighting all alone. He has a team of us, family and friends who all realize just what a miracle he is.

Truly I didn’t think my dog would be here today.

I wish people could read this blog before their dogs get cancer, to know what to do if they ever want to battle cancer. Sadly most people find this blog after their dog is so far gone or have taken chemo or big operations that this therapy doesn’t help them.  Also, I realize there’s no cure for cancer. But you sure can slow the sucker down a little and spend quality time with your loved pet in the meantime.  Every day is a blessing to me.

 

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2 Responses to “My Dog’s Alive 10 Months Since the Cancer Returned”

  1. Tammy Sexton September 12, 2013 at 5:16 am #

    Hi Jenny!

    It’s me again, Tammy the Marketing Coordinator at The Uncommon Dog. We just finished another informative info-graphic that I thought you might be interested in. It’s titled “How Dogs Became Our Best Friends!”.

    If you love dogs, like we do, then you’ll love this story. Recent scientific breakthroughs have increased our understanding about how dogs have come to play such an integral part of our daily lives. This fun and engaging info-graphic tells that story in a way that we hope makes it accessible and interesting to everyone.

    If you would like to share this info-graphic with your readers, please feel free to do so. You can find the info-graphic here: http://www.theuncommondog.com/how-dogs-became-our-best-friends.aspx Again, all we ask in return is that you link back to TheUncommonDog.com, in some way, from your post.

    Also, definitely let me know if you do decide to post it because we’d be happy to spread the word again about the blog post by linking to it from our Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ pages.

    If you’d like your e-mail removed from our mailing list, please let us know.

    Big Tail Wag!
    Tammy Sexton
    Marketing Coordinator

  2. emilywalsh688 September 19, 2013 at 4:21 pm #

    Hi! I just got reading through a few of your posts and I had a quick question relating to pets and cancer. I was hoping you could email me back when you get the chance. Thanks! – emilywalsh688@gmail(dot)com.

    Emmy

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