Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum

It seems like forever since I was on my DK page.  I used to spend hour here and felt like I knew everyone!  But life changes.

We lost Mater to hemangiosarcoma in May 2018.  I can still be caught with tears whenever I think of him or someone mentions him.  More than our heart dog, he gave so much to others.  Thousands of hours of therapy visits with R.E.A.D. in school and with my husband at the VA every Tuesday for over 8 years. If you didn't know him, he is the big, shaggy red doodle in the photos.  Famous Mater people used to call him because he was so recognized even in a metro area as big as Indy.

And now cancer strikes again with Ozzie.  After three months of testing, we finally found it - T-cell lymphoma in his bone marrow and spreading to the liver.  He started CHOP in March and almost immediately went into chemically-induced remission. With 10 of the 16 treatments behind us, I was starting to feel pretty hopeful.  Then it came back, with calcium levels even higher than when he was diagnosed and platelets very low.  He was given a rescue drug that seemed to help, but only a few days later he completely stopped eating.  So this past Tuesday he was switched to a new (for him) chemo drug.  He still wouldn't eat anything for several days, and we were getting desperate.  I gave him some Cerenia even though he didn't act like his stomach was upset.  Even that was hard to get down him as he would lock his jaws to anything.  But it seemed to help enough that slowly we could begin to put him back on prednisone and his clotting medication and other meds, plus what the holistic vet had recommended.  He is eating again and back to playing ball.  So it was a close call, reminding us that he's living on borrowed time and to love him every minute we have him.  But we know he is terminally ill.  And isn't life terminal anyway? 

It's just an emotional challenge for us when we are still grieving Mater.

So one thing I want to say to ALL Goldendoodle owners is be sure to find pet insurance you trust and love!  Ozzie's diagnosis alone was over $8,500.00, and without insurance we could not have spent that.  With the diagnosis and chemotherapy we are now over $15,000. 

Our primary goal is to make sure Ozzie's quality of life remains good.  If it comes to where he is in pain, I won't allow things to progress.  I can't bear to think of him hurting.

So life has been interesting.  The craziest thing of all is that after losing Mater, I surprised Tom with a Golden Retriever!  Their cancer incidence is very high, the insurance on him is more and their average lifespan grows shorter each year that the cancer in them grows more dominant.  But Gus is sweet, and I now see where Mater got his loving nature.  He was an f1, and my personal thought is that multigene breeders need to breed more Golden Retriever back into today's dogs.  I hear of so many hyper and poorly behaved doodles, and that has typically been behaviors associated with smaller poodles.  Just my 2 cents.

I   hope all is well with our many other DK families!
My Ozzie


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Comment by Laurie, Fudge, and Vern on July 5, 2019 at 6:27pm

I am so sorry about Mater and hope Ozzie quality of life continues to be great!! 

Comment by Nancy, Ned, Clancy, and Charlie on June 28, 2019 at 5:26pm

Kathy, I am so sorry you are going through this with Ozzie. It must seem like a continuation of  Mater's illness.  We don't have pet insurance and would have to weigh the financial burden as part of any decisions for treatment.  I am so glad that you do have it.  I am sending hugs to you and prayers that Ozzie has a long, long remission.

Comment by J and Riley (and Luna) on June 25, 2019 at 5:47am

I'm so sorry to hear about Ozzie :( We lost Luna to lymphoma last May and had decided palliative care was best for her, she was gone 2 months after diagnosis.  

I've been trying to convince DH to get pet insurance as cancer rates in Bernese are very high.  So far not convinced though so we just have an emergency fund.

Comment by Lucy & AnnaBelle's Mom on June 25, 2019 at 4:51am

I am so sorry to read that you are going through this with Ozzie so soon after your loss of Mater.  Both such adorable doodles.  Ozzie's path sounds very similar to Sophie's path with Lymphoma.  Almost immediate remission, but it just didn't last.  Our biggest battle was getting her to eat as well.  We tried everything you can imagine to just get calories in her.  It always seemed she would eat something until it made her nauseous and then she would never touch it again.  She had a very unique knack for puking up the pills once we got them down.  I feel for you guys as it was one of the hardest things that we have ever gone through.  My thoughts are with you.

Comment by Pauline Rackley on June 24, 2019 at 3:52pm

Hi, Saw your post about Mater. I still visit this site after losing my Zeus in Sept 2018 to hemangiosarcoma. I agree it was a nightmare roller coaster ride. He was almost 11, but their lives are never long enough. I don't know if I will ever get another as I think I would live in constant fear of another cancer diagnosis. It is true that Goldens are over represented for many types of cancer. I agree with your opinion about insurance as we didn't have any as I work in the veterinary field and get generous discounts for most things.However this illness required board certified surgeons, oncologists etc and we spent many thousands out of pocket. Fortunately we were able to do this for him. But I definitely realize that insurance is a great idea. I now have insurance on my other dog, a 9 yo afghan hound. In case anyone is interested, Trupanion offers good insurance for a reasonable cost. I did take a high deductible since I was only interested in coverage for a catastrophic illness.


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