Comments on Euthanasia Was Best Answer for Dog With Hemangiosarcoma

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mick   CINCINNATI, Ohio

5/15/2015 10:14:41 AM

My dog was just diagnosed with cancer of the spleen. The vet says that how long she'll live is unknown but that she'll eventually bleed out. I have asked if it's painful and was told "no". He recommends putting her to sleep as it will be hard on me to watch when she starts bleeding internally. She's overall doing fine particularly considering she's old. I'm really torn as I'd like to let her die at home whenever the time comes(months?)

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Louise   Sarasota, Florida

4/12/2015 9:07:21 PM

My rescue Rottie, Buddy, aged 8, was diagnosed with hemangiosarcome shortly after I became his Mommy. The oncology vet said that she would not operate on him - that this type of cancer is not painful - to take him home and make him comfortable until he passes. She said he had days to live. 18 months later, I took Buddy back to the vet. She was amazed that he was still alive and told me the same thing - take him home and make him comfortable...2 and a half years later I finally decided to euthanize Buddy after he could no longer walk and I realized that he was becoming uncomfortable. My precious Buddy lived over 4 years with hemangiosarcoma. He loved his life and really wanted to live. I've never seen anything like it. He still had a heart appetite on his final day, It was one of the hardest things I have ever done and my heart feels like a rocket blew threw it. I'm so devastated at the loss of my sweet Buddy.

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Kristine   San Diego, California

4/12/2015 8:45:07 AM

My daughter and I made the decision two days ago to let out beloved 13 yr old GSD go after being diagnosed with an acute, life-threatening rupture of a splenic hemeangiosarcoma. We felt that the stress of surgery and chemotherapy so WE could have her 3-6 more months would have been unkind to our sweet girl. We learned our lesson last year with our other dog who had meningioma. His last few weeks were miserable and not what he deserved. My heart has been broken twice in 12 months, but I know I did right by my girl. Prayers for all who have made the same humane decision.

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Athena   Liberty, Missouri

3/20/2015 2:48:08 PM


I understand the heartache you are going through on deciding what to do with your child's pain and suffering. When I learned that Copper had Hemangiosarcoma last Friday, I fell to my knees and sobbed. Both of his doctors had no hope for recovery and said that his suffering will only worsen. He had one day long episode two Sundays ago (the emergency visit led us to see the oncologist last Friday) and then a short episode three days later in the morning.

After the oncologist appointment, I struggled with the same decision. Did I want to gamble with his life? How long will it be till his next episode or worse...what if I come home from work and he died a painful death. The episodes that they experience are painful. They are caused by one of the tumors exploding and then they have internal bleeding until their body absorbs the blood. But new cancer cells are formed again. This specific cancer spreads through their body quickly. Unfortunately, in most cases it is detected too late for treatment.

We made the tough decision to say our final goodbye to him Wednesday the 18th (My Grandmother's birthday who has been gone since 2008). During his last few days, we gave him his favorite human meals, went swimming, hiked through the woods, played in parks, and his entire family gave him so much love.

I haven't stopped crying since last Friday when we learned he had cancer. I miss him so much the pain in my heart is unbearable. I still talk to him as if he is still here. Copper's collar is on my nightstand, his toys are in the same place and so are his beds...till I'm ready to move them or donate them. The urn and keepsakes are ordered and I will receive his ashes next Tuesday.

This decision was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life including mourning my best friend of twelve years. Ultimately, I didn't want to watch him go through the painful episodes or come home finding out that he died alone. I decided to say goodbye to Copper as he fell asleep on my lap. I sobbed, I prayed, and I sang to him as he drifted away. His doctor cried with us.

I love Copper so much. He was the greatest soul that has ever come into my life. We went on many great adventures together and he loved me unconditionally. I am thankful that he chose me to be his best friend 12 years ago this

I hope my experience has helped you to make your decision. My heart is with you. I wish I could tell you it gets easier, but it doesn't. You can find grief counseling in your area if the pain is too much to bear. I am actually leaning that



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Cj   Venice, Florida

3/20/2015 10:33:18 AM

Our 10 airedale was diagnosed 3 weeks ago. He has had several " episodes" that last anywhere from 5 hrs to 10hrs-then snaps out of it ready to play,eat, take walk, and his all-time fav-car rides. Last thurs we thought was the end, but he came out of it and chased and played like a puppy. As I write, he has been in an episode since 4am this morning. My husband and I are really torn as to when is the right time to put our Boomer to sleep. Any in-sight would be greatly appreciated.


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Athena   Liberty, Missouri

3/14/2015 6:26:42 AM

Yesterday, we learned that Copper has Hemangiosarcoma. Last Sunday, he was very ill. He was shaking, would not lie down, would not eat, and he was vomiting. We rushed him to the hospital where we learned from an X-Ray that his liver was enlarged and had pushed his stomach aside.

During his appointment with his general doctor, she recommended taking him to an oncologist for an ultrasound. That afternoon, we learned from the oncologist that my best friend of 12 years has Hemangiosarcoma of the liver, kidney, and possible spleen. The tumor is so aggressive that surgery will not remove it all.

The oncologist predicted that Copper will only have one to two months of life without treatment. With treatment, he would have 6 to 8 months of life. My wife and I made the most difficult and heartbreaking decision to say our final goodbye to him this coming Wednesday. We are making the most out of these last few days with my best friend. He has been my living guardian angel for the last 12 years of my life. I am not looking forward to Wednesday morning, but I'm trying to stay strong. I don't want him to suffer in pain. I love him so much.

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Angela   Elgin, Oklahoma

1/25/2015 5:56:03 PM

My 8 year old chow chow/husky mix was diagnosed with this in October 2014. It was a complete shock to my partner and I. In September, he became finicky with his food which he had done in the past so I did not think anything of it. However, I noticed for several weeks he would barely eat any of his food. Then one night I rolled him over on his back and noticed a swollen belly. The next day we went to our vet where they confirmed a mass was over his spleen and liver. We were sent to a specialist who later confirmed our dog had hemangiosarcoma. We decided to take him home that day so we could love on him and get the closure we needed. We tried to keep him comfortable and gave him the dr prescribed

prednisone. He had good days and bad days. The final evening was very hard we had scheduled earlier in the week to put him down on Friday. Ironically, Thursday evening was very tough for him as he threw up several times and did not want to come in from outside. I prayed to God after I heard him wimper to please not let him suffer through the night. After that prayer Diego slept soundly all evening??????. The next morning we took him to the vet and my partner and I stayed with him through the euthanasia. The euthanasia process was so peaceful and comforting and somewhat of a relief. Our boy was no longer in pain and although we did not immediately decide to put him down we were able to cherish our last days with him. It might sound selfish but I do not regret keeping him a few days after receiving the diagnosis. This was the hardest thing I ever had to do in my adult life but as a dog owner you will know when it is time to send your beloved pal to rainbow bridge and I truly believe I will see him again one day.

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Cynthia   Seattle, Washington

12/27/2014 7:26:13 PM

To Hope

Is Cooper still
My dog was just diagnosed and we are

Thank you for


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Bob   roswell, Georgia

12/20/2014 1:19:41 PM

I buried our Golden Lab today after having her put to sleep yesterday. I will spare you the details of what we've been going through the past few days but I will implore you to take action if this is what your pet is facing. I am shocked at how aggressive this disease is!! From the "early" signs of tiredness and vomiting to the procedure yesterday...only 14 days!! All I can say to anyone who reads this is...Don't Delay. If you suspect hemangiosarcoma, or certainly if your vet tells you that's what it is, it's only a matter of a few weeks. And the life your dog will have of left without "treatment" (which is rarely effective) will be filled with excruciating pain. They may not show that they are in pain but you need to know that they are. From what I can gather, this disease is terminal, quick and painful. Your pet deserves better...euthanasia is the best solution...otherwise you're only delaying the inevitable. Sorry to be so blunt, I'm just sick to my stomach right now and happened to find this site where I could offer my experience. Cherish the time you have with your pets, and record as much of it as you can.

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Rachel   rockford, Illinois

7/21/2014 1:12:32 PM

I am so sorry for your loss. In 2011 after having just turned 8 years my Pembroke Welsh Corgi passed away in his sleep three days after being diagnosed with a baseball sized hemangiosarcoma on his spleen. Only a month prior we had neutered him (he was a retired show dog at that point) to help relieve him of anal fistulas. During the neuter the vet did not notice anything we needed to be concerned about. Three days before Thanksgiving we took him to the vet as he had been very lethargic and even had two seizures. The doctor gave us the bleak prognosis, said he had around 3 months left at best, and sent some mophine home with us to help if he was in pain. Three days later my poor baby boy went to bed and never woke up. His father also passed away around 10 years of age of this same horrible cancer. His father was a heavily health tested top winning show dog. Hemangiosarcoma is a silent killer and I only wish we had known his fathers fate sooner so that perhaps we could have avoided the heartbreak of losing out handsome sweetheart far too soon.


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Liz   Milford, Connecticut

7/14/2014 10:31:45 AM

My dog is going through this right now. Same exact thing as the poster. We are debating putting him down today. He is lethargic, not breathing well, eating on occasion, not showing interest in most things. I am so heartbroken. This is the first time I have had to do this and it came as such a shock (the diagnosis). Since it had already spread we knew the verdict was terminal but we got an extra month with him than what the vet said originally. The worst part is that sometimes he has bouts where he acts like himself so it makes the decision even harder. I'm so torn. Help.

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Hope Chalmers   Gulf Shores, Alabama

6/30/2014 4:29:01 AM

Our 7 year old basset hound Cooper is recovering from a splenectomy this morning. After losing his appetite and appearing very lethargic I called the on call vet. I explained to her his breathing was fast (44 per min) and the other signs named above. I took him in and lab work was done and an ultrasound. Cooper was diagnosed with cancer. He had a nodule the size of an adult's fist on his spleen and his abdomen was full of blood. By the grace of God he was stable enough to remove the spleen but required a blood transfusion as 3 liters of blood was taken from his abdomen. The moral to this story is...if you think your dog is sick, do not hesitate one second to take them in, even on a Sunday night at 9pm. This Monday morning would have been too late for Cooper. We have a poor prognosis but we will keep him comfortable and he will let us know when it's time for him to go. Yes, I know him that well. Just like he was telling me it was time to go to the vet and that something was seriously wrong. Those who read this post, please pray for Cooper and our family. God bless from Gulf Shores, Alabama.

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Hope   Gulf Shores, Alabama

6/30/2014 4:11:58 AM


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Leslie   Woodbridge, Virginia

1/14/2014 4:37:54 PM

I lost my 12 year old (13 in April) Jack Russell to the anemia that is caused by this bleeding. He was diagnosed the day after Christmas when he had passed out on the kitchen floor and wet himself. I took him in to the vet immediately and it was discovered that he was anemic. We were going to ultrasound him on the upcoming Monday, but decided to do some preliminary x-rays first on the day after he passed out. The vet was surprised to see his cloudy lungs. She said his cancer was secondary so the spleen is the likely culprit and would explain the anemia. He had two small cutaneous mast cell tumors 5 years previous. The removal was successful, but I personally think that his issue with mast cells manifested itself once again in this illness...possibly causing a tumor on his spleen. That's my theory. The vet gave us prednisone and a bronchial dilator and told me to feed him anything I could get into him. He did well for about 6 days and started to decline each day after that, eating less and less each day. I tried EVERYTHING. His final morning...4 days later, I called the vet. He refused to get out of bed and wouldn't eat and I had to assist him to drink. Through that final day, he had a few bursts of energy that resulted in him becoming temporarily incapacitated. He would recover for a bit...The vet arrived at my house that evening and we said
I know now by the bond he and I had that I wasn't really a dog owner. I'm was an Oliver owner. He is forever
I love you Oliver.

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Charlie   Bergen County, New Jersey

10/14/2013 1:04:35 PM

My Portuguese Water Dog was found in our backyard on May 17th, 2013 at about 6pm. We tried to get him inside, we even bribed him with bacon (what dog turns down bacon!) but we were unsuccessful. There is an emergency pet vet two towns over and our immediate reaction was "let's get this dog to the hospital!" He was wheezing and obviously distraught, so we picked up our 110lb 9 year old baby, got him over to the hospital and watched our pup be rolled away. This was hard for us because we have never seen our doggie like this. About an hour later the vet came in to tell us the bad news, our dog had a tumor rupture on his heart. Fluid build up in his heart sac made it more difficult for him to breathe. The amount of fluid around his heart was the equivalent to TWO 2 liter bottles of soda. Tear rushing down our face, the doctors told us they didn't know if he was going to make it, but they were going to keep him over night. If fluid built up again, they would have a surgeon come in and cut a hole in his heart sac so fluid could dissipate on its own. Even then it was unknown how long he might have to live. Euthanasia wasn't even an option in my head. I got to see him once more, he looked a lot happier and it was good to see him breathing. Then I went home without my baby... the next day they called and said very LITTLE fluid built up overnight and we would be able to take him home to see what happens. He was very loopy on meds when I went to pick him up, he was very tired. We were told to bring him in again in one week. We babied him and stayed by his side, yes crying, but remembering all the good times we had with him. The next week, we brought him in again and they said he was looking better than ever. The doc said if we had brought him in any later he wouldn't have made it. Now, almost five months later, we celebrate his 10th birthday. He is virtually back to normal. He was never an extremely athletic dog. He was overweight, yes but that did not stop him from taking a nice dip in the ocean every summer! He plays fetch and loves to watch TV. He still loves to go for walks and enjoys spending time with his people. We are thankful everyday for him. He has taught us to love unconditionally. Moral to the story, even though we didn't notice any signs of Hemangiosarcoma, if you notice symptoms with your pup I urge you to seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY! It could be something minor, but you never know. Remember, this disease is COMMON in large dogs. Do not think you're alone. Cancer is an evil disease and hopefully sometime in the future we can find a cure. Now, go hug your babies. They love and need you more than you know!

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Marty   Jupiter, Florida

9/12/2013 11:04:09 AM

We just had to put our 11 year old Pug down last night, less than 24 hours before he showed us any symptoms of being sick. He was playful at 9PM and then put himself to bed. A half hour later we went in and he didn't look good. We took him to the VET at 4PM the next day who did an x-ray. He told us there was a tumor that looked to be on his spleen. He sent us to the ER who did an ultrasound and found that it was also attached to his liver. He was also bleeding internally which made him look uncomfortable. There was really no choice but to put him down. That was the hardest thing I have ever done. My wife holding him with my 17 year old daughter and me watching him go to sleep forever. He was my best buddy. RIP are still the Master P.

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Paula   Briarcliff Manor, New York

9/6/2013 4:22:44 AM

My 13 year old Westie was diagnosed with this horrible disease in March, it's coming up on 6 months. I am enjoying everyday I have, but I am beginning to see her drifting away from us. Yesterday she was running, playing, today, she is under the bed, not wanting breakfast, but hand fed her some chicken and she took it, along with one of her Yunnan Baiyo, thinking about giving her one of the red pills, will be checking her gums to see if they are pale, she might be having a bleed. This is such a horrible disease, pray for all the pups with it.

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Sylvia - 253976   

6/21/2012 12:13:13 PM

By the time my dog's hemangiosarcoma was discovered, it was already too late. She had sub-dermal tumors (which literally came up overnight!) but an ultrasound confirmed the presence of tumors on her spleen and liver. Up to about a week before eventual diagnosis she had been doing really well for her age (nearly 15) and was active and eating
Surgery wasn't an option. The vet's opinion was that she'd bleed out if opened up. She was too far advanced for chemo to be an
She had an internal bleed whch she recovered from, and was picking up again, eating ok and going for shorter walks, but was enjoying life generally. She needed more rest and sleep however. I decided to hang on with her because her overall quality of life was good. The vet said she could yet have weeks to months based on her quality of life, and said she could recover from small bleeds ok so long as they didn't happen too often. However it was like living with a ticking time bomb. At any time she could have another internal bleed. If it was a "slow bleed" she could pick up again and fight back, but if it was a big hemorrage, she could die in
She had another sudden bleed a week after her first. I sat with her in the night hoping it would pass like the first one. The emergency vet told me to watch her very closely for signs of improvement or worsening, but by early morning it became obvious this was beginning to overwhelm her. So I had her put to sleep. She died very quickly and
If anyone would like to read her blog "Misty's Blog, a dogfight with Cancer", this is the

(may not "search" well yet, but in a Firefox browser, if the link is highlighted, right-clicked, and "open link in new window" chosen, that should go through fine.)

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Tammy   Rydal, PA

6/3/2012 9:28:55 PM

Our 9 yr old Basenji mix had been sick for over a month, some days better than others. Bouts of lethargy, abdominal pain and lack of appetite. First two vets gave her pain meds. Third vet gave antibiotics and Pepcid. Multiple labs were run. Finally, the fourth vet recommended an abdominal ultrasound. We finally got a diagnosis. Two massive tumors on the spleen, small masses on the liver and internal bleeding. We made the hardest decision of our lives to euthanize our baby. But we felt that it was in the best interest for Maggie. She was either going to die from a rupture of the spleen or splenic tumors, or would die of the metasticized cancer. I couldn' t bear the thought of her dying alone while we were at work. Or suffering during the long ride to the ER in the middle of the night. Cancer sucks and turns your life upside down. I can only grasp on to the notion that we saved her from additional pain and distress.

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Mary   Mechanicsburg, PA

2/24/2012 6:55:02 PM

y boxer is going through this right now. I too don't want to let him go. But after today I decided its the only kind thing I can do for him now. He is vomitting or wrenching constantly today. After several phone calls to the vet regarding different medications to try to help him through today nothing has helped, I know he is miserable and is counting on me to make it better. Our appt. is first thing in the morning. Don't feel bad for helping your dog pass from this world try to push that feeling away by understanding that even one day more could have made it absolutely heart breaking miserable for Him. God bless.

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