Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?
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Thread: Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

    Howdy all, this is my first post- and it's long. Sorry!

    My 6 year old golden retriever/german shepherd mix was diagnosed with lymphoma back in mid July. He was showing symptoms for a few weeks before that- lethargy, lack of appetite, and his back legs starting swelling right before being diagnosed. The vet tried other treatments before figuring out it was lymphoma.

    We put him on prednisone instead of chemo. The improvement was amazing, for the past month he's been great. Acting normal, eating again and putting weight back on. But for a week or so he's been showing symptoms again- not as much appetite, breathing is a little loud, right back leg is swollen, and now every lymph node is swollen, including even a line of small ones along the spine.

    Because of the prednisone he still acts fine, and my worry is that I don't want this to continue for too long. My worst fear is that his nodes get so swollen that he develops a bowel obstruction or something like that. I would rather him go without that pain, but he just seems too active and happy to put him to sleep right now.

    Any suggestions how to dose the prednisone? Or when to know it's time? He's 60 pounds and currently on 10mg twice a day. We know the end is close, and just want to make it painless and quick. We've considered cutting his dose down to avoid the steroids "shielding" us from how sick he really is.

    Thank you!

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  3. #2
    Senior Member 3doglady's Avatar
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    Re: Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

    I'm so sorry to hear your dog has lymphoma. I can't imagine how hard it must be for you and your dog. The frequent saying, 'you will know when it's time" is so true. You will know when it's time.

    Can you add Pepsid and Benadryl? Benadryl helps reduce the histamines that cancer releases and pepsid reduces the acid build up from cancer.

    You may also want to join the canine cancer group on yahoo. They are very supportive and will be able to provide more insight and helpful suggestions. They are an awesome group. http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CanineCancer/info

    Make every day count. I wish you the best.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  4. #3
    Senior Member aero4ever's Avatar
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    Re: Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

    I'm so sorry that you are going through this. Can not imagine how difficult this must be for you. As far as when you'll know it's time? You will. I had to make the decision years ago and knew when Pugsley gave me "the look". It is one of the most unselfish things we can do for our hairy children and believe with every ounce of my being that they would thank us for not letting them suffer. My prayers and thoughts are with you.
    Everything I know, I learned from my dogs!

    A dog wags its tail from it's heart!

  5. #4
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    Re: Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

    Thank you for the kind words.

    I think my fear now is that the prednisone is masking how sick he actually is, and I don't want that to go too far without me being able to tell when it's time, which is why I'm considering taking him off of the steroids.

  6. #5
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    Re: Lymphoma + Prednisone. When is it time to let him go?

    I am so sorry to hear about your dog's lymphoma. We lost our corgi, Eddie to lymphoma last week, and like you chose not to go through chemo. Your vet can tell you if he is out if remission, and if so reduction of prednisone is fine as it might help his breathing. Most dogs with lymphoma quit eating, but our Eddie never did. The look in his eye, and labored breathing told us it was time to help him to the bridge. Treasure every moment, pat him, play with him, or just sit with him and enjoy what time you have. Bless you both.

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