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Suburban Homesteader
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have a 14 year old dog, Ringo, with a mast cell tumor on his penis sheath. The vet said a couple years ago that she really wouldn't want to surgically remove the tumor due to its location and his age, and said that we could do things to slow it down but it's ultimately going to get the better of him.

He has been on Benedryl for the past year or so, which has slowed the growth of the tumor but not stopped it. The vet said as long as the tumor doesn't interfere with his daily life to try keeping him on the Benedryl as long as possible because the next step, cortisone, presents a lot of health risks, some worse than the tumor.

Over the past week or so the tumor has been growing at a faster rate but hasn't been interfering with Ringo's daily habits. This morning part of it started oozing/bleeding. I have a call in to the vet to see if I can get in ASAP but if the bleeding doesn't stop I will take him to the emergency clinic. The timing for an EC visit isn't very good but I can't let poor Ringo suffer. We've had the guy since he was 4 months old, but even more stressful is the fact he's DH's dog and DH is out of town until tomorrow.

Please keep our little guy in your thoughts, hopefully the bleeding will stop and I can get him in to our vet soon.
 

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Don't know what to say except, sorry you and your poor dog have to go through this. It is so hard to watch them get old and have problems. Here's hoping he can still be helped so you can have him awhile longer.
 

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Suburban Homesteader
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for all the support :) The bleeding appears to have stopped. He's a little "under the weather" but we are also experiencing a cloudy day and quite frankly ALL the animals are a bit subdued. Ringo ate his dinner after making a quick visit to the back yard, so I'm feeling a bit of relief.

We will have to discuss the cortisone option very soon though. The vet was very forward with her opinion that it will be the treatment of last option since it may very possibly cause problems, especially since he will be on it for the rest of his life and considering his advanced age and lessened ability to "spring back" from health challenges. My fear is that it might shorten his life even more than the disease. We lost a 14 year old dog last year to kidney failure that may have been caused by a medication prescribed for congestive heart failure. Although I know we made the best decision given the information on hand concerning the medication, it makes me very wary about going through that again with a drug that could possibly hasten the dog's end.

It is indeed difficult to watch a beloved pet age and deteriorate. We have three dogs between 13 and 16 years (plus a 16 year old cat). They've give us so much joy through their lives. Our vet calls our house the "senior center".
 

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Zone 7B
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Our thoughts and prayers are with you! Its so hard as they age!!
 

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Just read this thread...How is Ringo doing today? I hope he is ok.
 

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Suburban Homesteader
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks to everyone for your concern and good thoughts! We got Ringo to the vet on Monday. Although the vet was surprised with how large the tumor was (and how fast it grew), she was also quite surprised to discover despite the mass that it apparently is NOT growing internally, and his "boy bit" is not being impacted. It is not causing any pain as Ringo doesn't wince or twitch when the tumor is handled, another very good sign. She gave us the lowest dose of Prednisone recommended, plus an antibiotic ointment with cortisone since it was basically an open sore. The good doc suggested trying the ointment with the current Benedryl regimen for a few days just to see if a topical treatment will help. Happily, the tumor went down quite a bit over these past couple days, so we're clear to hold off on the Prednisone until/unless tumor starts growing again.
 
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