Scary but true! There are many incidents of greyhound cancer. Greyhounds, being long boned dogs do sometimes get osteoscacoma or bone cancer. Just as in humans, this is a terrible disease and I have first hand experience with it.
Osteoscacoma usually begins in the long bones of the leg. Greyhounds are very stoic and do not show pain easily. Therefore when they begin to limp and show signs of pain the cancer at that point has progressed. Most often the cancer has already invaded the lung when the diagnosis is made.
Bone pain can be excruciating and the only way to alleviate that pain is with amputation of the limb. This was the most difficult decision for us when we were told that Killian had osteosarcoma. At the time he was eleven years old and we knew that there would probably only be a few more years with him even if he was a healthy boy. We agonized over the decision as to what to do about this type of greyhound cancer. Do we put him through the surgery and recuperation only to find that the cancer had spread? Do we end his pain and let him go?
When we first decided to adopt a retired racer one of the things we wanted to keep them from was to become a medical experiment. So for us to turn one of our own into a medical experiment was not an option.
Our Vet, who is a wonderful caring person, explained what the surgery would entail and the recuperation as well. He also explained that we would have our boy for another year or so if this was successful. We have a great deal of respect and admiration for his integrity and his office.
Knowing that they had the best interest of our Killian was very comforting, but in the end we decided to give our boy his dignity and let him go.
If this had occurred when he was younger our decision would probably have been different. We have seen greyhound amputees and they are happy fun loving dogs. They don’t seem to realize there are only three feet hitting the ground when they run and not all four.Three Legged Pets
Three legged pets are not unusual in our home. Our first cat has three legs. We surmise that he may have been hit by a car when he was a kitten. He was brought into the Veterinary office where my daughter was working and no one was claiming him. He was destined to be euthanized but she decided he was worth saving. She adopted him so he could be treated.
Unfortunately there was too much nerve damage to save the leg so it was removed. That was sixteen years ago! He is still King Cat, although the years have slowed him down and he is a little confused sometimes but still a happy old man.Other Forms of Greyhound Cancer
There are other forms of cancer which can affect greyhounds and other breeds as well. Be aware of any lumps which may form on their bodies, this could be the beginning of treatable cancers. We have found a very good site called;
When you have serious concerns always call your own Vet but you can rely on quick answers at several good web sites.
Be aware of any limping or sore spots you find when you are walking or grooming your greyhound. If you notice something which is bothering them make an appointment to see your Vet. Most of the time it is nothing life threatening and a little rest will bring them back to being happy greyhounds.
But if there is something serious going on the sooner it is treated the better the end result will be.
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