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Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Thu May 26, 2011 11:38 am
by kaytenmags
maggie's already on a raw diet (kibble = tapass). she mostly gets wild game, because we had a good hunting season and it's all free lol

i was recently at a health seminar about preventing cancer (by dr. dobias. he's got a cancer spiel here: ... naturally/), and a healthy immune system was a high priority. i was told that cancer is basically defective cells, and the body can naturally deal with them in small quantities if the immune system is good enough. apparently everyone has cancer cells in them, but the body just deals with it. when the system is overloaded, the cancer cells reproduce too rapidly, and that's when the immune system basically goes into sleep mode and gives up. (i'm paraphrasing, but that was the jist that i got from the seminar)

stress, diet, and environment are all things i'm trying to do my best to control right now. maggie's bump on her chest seems to be smaller today than it was last week, but her last MCT went up and down in size a lot when her hysthamines were triggered. vet appointment's this evening, so i'll see what the vet thinks.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:04 am
by Megan
Well I am watching Gavin closely yet again. I noticed a small lump on his tail, near the location of the lump last year that was removed. He also had a lump on his belly by his rib cage I am keeping an eye on.

What makes it hard is the bugs LOVE this dog. You walk out side and the flies are attacking the poor thing. Mosquitoes love him at night, flies love him in the day. When he lays in the grass he is constantly being bitten on his tummy.

I can't tell if these two are actual bug bites, or if they may be something else. The past few days they've started going down, and are not as red...but the one on his tail looks similar to the lump we found last year.

Damn MCT for not having a specific shape or size to them. Anytime I see something different on his skin it sends me into a panic.

Because of the mess of allergies and sensitive skin he has... Does anyone know of a bug spray that can be put on him so the bugs will leave him alone, that is not filled with a ton of nasty ingredients?

We use a mixture of skin so soft by Avon (1 part) to water (2 parts) for the horses.. Do you think this would be safe enough on him to keep the darn bugs at bay?

We go into the vet June 23rd for his vaccinations and yearly check up so I will discuss the lumps with her then, and will keep an eye on them. If they start getting larger and don't continue to go down in size I'll see if they'll get us in sooner.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:52 am
by RescueAPBT
I'm crying as I type this. It looks like Isabeau has at least 3 more MCTs. I found two on the underside of her ribcage, and what looks like a very angry one on her vulva, and possibly a 4th one on the front of her neck. I haven't been to the vet yet, as I just found them tonight. I'm dreading taking her in. I'm dreading the diagnosis, particularly the one on her vulva. It's almost 2am...and I have no one to talk to about it, and I cannot sleep. I feel like I am literally going to puke at any moment. To top it off, after I shaved the area around the lumps on her ribcage, Isabeau started getting nauseated and gagging, then licking her legs and feet until they were bright pink (so I'm assuming they released histamine). Isabeau has been refusing to eat off and on, and has had nausea/vomiting off and on too. I had a feeling something wasn't right again. If you're reading this, please just say a prayer for Isabeau and me. We need it.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:56 am
by Nichole
Sending good thoughts and healthy-puppy-vibes your way. Go snuggle a puppy. Sounds like you both need a little snuggle therapy to get you through the night.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:15 am
by julie64
Big :hug: to you. Reading your post took me back to when I found out about Shay. Scared and weepy. If Isabeau is like Shay she is feeding off your emotions, she needs a strong and happy mom to get through this. It's been 2 years and Shay now has 9 mast cell lumps. Things are differant but she still has the zest for life. She also has days when she's down and and isn't interested in food, but they always pass.
There is no experation date set on Isabeau, enjoy each and every moment and make everyday a good and positive day.
You are both in my thoughts on your vet visit and please keep us updated. Smootches to Isabeau.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jun 07, 2011 12:33 pm
by kaytenmags
thinking positive thoughts for Isabeau!

maggie goes in tomorrow to get her latest lump removed. it's on her chest, and it's been there for a few weeks. the other day i could barely feel it, but it was swollen up again yesterday. the fact that it goes up and down in size makes me pretty certain it's an MCT.

i noticed a couple other random bumps on her this morning, but i think they're just hives from the grass. i hate having an allergy dog! freaks me out every time she gets bumps, and nine times out of ten they're just hives.

Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 8:54 pm
by PitBull-Lady
How are Maggie and Isabeau doing?

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:38 am
by kaytenmags
maggie's growth turned out to be NOT an mct. it had mast cells in it, but it wasn't considered a mast cell tumor. :thumbsup:

the explanation my vet gave me: "a reactive mass with chronic inflammation from pyoderma. There were mast cells (hence the changing size with benedryl), but it was not a MCT. No signs of current infection/inflammation, the pathologist wrote that it may have been started by an insect bite."

her new zipper

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 12:35 pm
Great news!

Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jun 14, 2011 6:33 pm
by PitBull-Lady
Zipper! lol
Great news!!!

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:59 pm
by tiva
Tiva's update is good--after her surgery for a new mast cell tumor in Feb., the cancer specialists at the vet school wanted to do both chemo and radiation, because her margins weren't clean. But her mitotic index was 0 (great news), and she's 15 years old, so doing a ton of very expensive, potentially painful medical work on her seemed like a bad choice. We were quoted $10,000 dollars, with no real chance of increase in her life expectancy, given her age.

So instead, after surgery, we chose to go the herbal supplement route, on the advice of our regular vet. 5 months later, Tiva is doing great--even though she's nearing 16! She had another lump show up that looked like a MCT, but aspirating it showed that it didn't have mast cells, which was great news. Her arthritis bugs her a lot more than anything else, but tramadol helps a lot. She still hunts gophers, plays with our younger pittie, and follows us around the farm.

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 10:19 pm
Great news :thumbsup:

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:59 pm
by Megan
Gavin went in for his yearly check up and we had his lump looked at. Due to its small size, she couldn't get a good aspiration on it--but with her messing with it changed colors and blew up twice its we are treating it as a mast cell tumor. Since he responded so well last year to the steroid injection, we opted to try that first and were able to do the procedure in the exam room. If it isn't gone in 3 weeks, he'll have to get it surgically removed. I am really hoping I do not have to put him through more surgeries and that this will work again.

I really wish we would stay lump free :( He made it almost an entire year with out any lumps . I just feel so bad for my poor boy!

Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 3:10 am
by sharron
For those that have received good news on their dogs not having MCT , I am happy for you and your beloved companions !

For those that have received this diagnosis and prognosis. We have something in common.

My Beau has mast cell cancer. He was diagnosed over a year ago.
It has spread already throughout his body.

Beau had a very rough start. He was abused in every way possible and used as a bait dog as a young pup.

After he escaped and was found on the streets bloody , starving and emaciated. Long story for another time.

Beau had a lump the size of a pea on his left back leg. It turned out to be cancer. He was operated on and it was removed. Over the years , Beau has had several lumps removed. Over a year ago there was another lump the size of a pea , on his penis.

At first it started as slow growth , then it grew fast almost overnight !!

Again it was cancer and Beau went into surgery. While in surgery, the vet saw there were three pea sized lumps under the one I could see . That's when I received the scary diagnosis and devestating prognosis of 6 weeks to a year !!!

Hearing this horrible news , my heart was breaking and I wanted to sit and cry. I didn't because my Beau was present and I didn't want him to feel or sense this heartbreak !!

The vet told me to enjoy Beau and to make his last days comfortable . I told the vet that I was a firm believer in 'keeping Beau's routine and schedule the same." This way , Beau would not sense anything was wrong and he could carry on , stress free !

Beau's appetite is still great. He keeps hydrated , and his energy level is good. Beau has never been overly active . lol !!

I have learned that continuing a regular routine and schedule with little ( if any ) change will keep your dog stress free and happy .

When I am alone and in another part of the house.....that's when I can cry my heart out ! Not for myself , even though I will experience this great loss one day. For now , I choose to live each and every day with my Beau
at my side . As long as Beau is not experiencing any pain ( I am very aware these precious dogs can tolerate high pain levels ) I am pleased to say , I know my dog and there is no sign of him being in any pain. However , I do have medication on hand just in case.

The vet agrees that Beau is doing well in spite of his cancer. Beau's spirit is tough and he enjoys his life !!

It will be extremely difficult....when it is time for him to go over the Rainbow Bridge....he will let me know , and as hard as it will be....I will not prolong his life.

Having said that. The last thing is. Love and enjoy the time you have been given ...time flies and their time with us is shorter than what we want. There is no greater love than a dogs love !!!



Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned

Posted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 4:30 am
by julie64
Sharron, loved your thread. That is something I had to learn dealing with Shays mast cell too. She has had changes but continues to live and enjoy everyday as it comes.
Hugs to Beau and lots of good thoughts he continues to kick cancers butt.