Bull Mastiff - enlarged Lymph nodes (possible Lymphoma)

millimoo

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Absolutely gutted as my mums 7 1/2 year old Bully has enlarged Lymph nodes in his neck.
He's been to the vets and had a needle biopsy tonight, but its also been confirmed that his other nodes are up too.

I regularily check them as my mum lost another Bull Mastiff to Lymphoma 12 years ago, and up to 3 weeks ago they were a normal size.

He's well in himself, bouncing around like a fool, but has had the odd quiet day. However my question is your thoughts and experiences of Chemotherapy (if it's an option, and his liver/kidneys aren't already effected)

My mum wants to do right by the dog, and at this stage is insure if it would be the right thing to do... She wants him to be pain free, happy and himself. But she has bad memories of her previous mastiffs decline, and I know she may be reluctant to use chemo - however I know treatments have improved over the years, and it's not like treating a human.

Ultimately we have to wait for initial results tomorrow, but it would be good to get some feedback, as we are preparing ourselves for bad news - especially as it's endemic in the breed.

Thanks in advance
 

JEZA

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Dear OP
Well ive had 3 beautiful bullmastiff friends over recent years. First one died at 3 years with this, second one died at 8 with, I guess, old age and the most recent again with lymphoma aged 5.
I think you have done well to have a bully live that long. My last one who I had put down at 5 years, did well on steroids for a while. But as soon as she stopped eating and looked depressed, I had her put down. She initially had a lump removed about aged 3 years and didnt have any further treatment until she developed quite a few lumps at 5 years.
All very sad but Im glad I had them in my life even for such short times. Mine were brindles, 2 black and one red.
 

JEZA

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Sorry, I didnt answer your question about chemo. I would never put a 7 1/2 year old bully through chemo out of respect for the dog. I always feel, with these wonderful animals that come into our lives, not only do we owe them a good life but we owe them as good a death as we can manage for them. Sorry to hear about your dog.
 

twiglet84

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Hi there

Sorry to hear about your dog. IMO I would seek advise from an oncologist and weigh up all the pro's and con's for treatment. There are so many different chemo regimes that it might not be as bad as seems. For instance we used to see one patient twice weekly for bloods and iv chemo which i personally wouldnt have done with my pet but another patient that used to come in weekly for oral chemo (a tablet).

I know u have a dog and the examples i gave were cats. It never hurts to ask questions and get all the facts from the professionals. Remember what suits some people and their pets wont suit others. I dont know where your based but we have an oncology referral close by called VRCC.

Im a firm believer in quality of life not quantity. (Ive seen people make decisions based on - it could be 6months without chemo and 9months with. But what will the quality of the 6 or 9 months be).

Good luck xxxx
 
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millimoo

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Thanks for your replies, sadly the vet thinks 2 months without treatment and 6 months with.
A bit shocked and numb at the moment, especially as he's so well in himself.
Mums going to discuss things with the vet, but ultimately his wellbeing comes first, and having nursed a Bully through Lymphoma before, she will PTS sooner rather than later.
We're based nr Leeds, but to be honest trust our vet, and not sure it's worth referral as the outcome will be the same - really appreciate the suggestion though.
His breeder is absolutely gutted, as they have been carefully selecting bloodlines for over 12 years trying to reduce this Cancer.
Initial plans are to start some tablets (mum was a bit vague) and see how he gets on. If he's made poorly by meds, he'll come off them and be managed in the short term accordingly.
JEZA, so sorry for your loss, it's truly heartbreaking.
'Bodger' is my mums fourth Bull Mastiff, and she lost her original to Lymphoma when he was 8yrs, the 2nd to cancer at 8yrs, and the 3rd at 5yrs to bone cancer.

Tragic side to dog ownership sadly :(
Further thoughts on Chemo gratefully received
 

EAST KENT

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NOT a healthy breed then! Which would explain why an ex Bullmastiff owner....also lost the last one to Lymphona,is changing to a bull terrier.
 

millimoo

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NOT a healthy breed then! Which would explain why an ex Bullmastiff owner....also lost the last one to Lymphona,is changing to a bull terrier.
Thats whats so tragic - he's healthy and fit in every other way :-(
Love Bull Terriers, but they also come with their own complications from a health perspective.
Heartbreaking all round, although my mum loves the breed, and I suspect it wouldn't put her off another one day
 

PoppyAnderson

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6 January 2008
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No experience of chemotherapy (well, not for dogs anyway) but just wanted to say how sorry I am. Yes, it is heartbreaking and my heart goes out to you.
 

millimoo

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Thankyou all... He's still well, and so far is tolerating the Chemo.
I saw the vet when I popped in for some cat biscuits, and he's absolutely gutted - think he's got a bit of a soft spot for him.
We shall see how he goes, and as the vet says, the minute he stops being happy bouncy Bodger is the time to call it a day :(
Just feel gutted for my parents as he's so special - as in, you always love each and every animal you have, but there's always one that touches your life slightly more than all other others. He's one of them.
Anyhow, he's still here for now, and can at least appreciate every remaining day we have with him :)
 
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i understand your concern, bullys are wonderful dogs and deserve the very best we can give them. i hope your mums bully responds to chemo. but much as we love them we have to remember quality of life is preferable to length of it. i have recently lost my bully big red aged 8 yrs 3 months to lymphoma. he had nodes in his neck which spread to his kidneys and he became very ill. our vet said nothing more could be done for him and advised putting him to sleep. there were tears in my eyes when i agreed to this. it was the hardest decision i have ever made but it was the right one. these wonderful dogs deserve a peaceful death and your mums bully will let her know when its time to let him go. these wonderful dogs bring so much happiness to their owners, its a shame that they have such a short lifespan.
 

abb123

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9 May 2007
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My dog had chemotherapy for a skin tumour. Chemotherapy in dogs isn't as bad as it is in humans. He wasn't ill or sick with it at all and it helped to reduce the tumour to a size where it could be removed surgically.

I think it sounds like you are doing the right thing and trying it. As long as he is still happy in himself. When he starts to lose quality of life then you can re-assess.
 
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