Hello everyone. I am trying to raise money to help cure Buddy from a Spindle Cell Sarcoma. Any help is greatly appreciated.
Buddy is my three year old White German Shepherd that I rescued three years ago. He may have very well rescued me. Dogs are considered our children and our family but usually they aren't treated the same way when they become sick. Most people just give up on them because it's too costly, but if a human child had the same circumstances, money wouldn't be an issue. Buddy is more than just a dog; he is my family, my child, and my life. His previous owner said, Buddy was too much to handle and they could not continue to care for two dogs. I took him home for the weekend to see if we would get along. After just one hour with Buddy I knew he would be with me for life. We have been inseparable since the day I picked him up. I know everyone is partial to their own pet, and I know he is the best dog I've ever come across in my life.
When this tumor surfaced, I thought the worst, I just kept thinking, He is the sweetest dog on Earth, I give him unconditional love, and how can this be happening to him? I am overwhelmed with sadness by just the thought of my life without Buddy. This is an emotional rollercoaster knowing that the tumor is cancerous and there still are traces of it lingering in him. Buddy is a hard charger and he will continue to battle this cancer. I will remain by his side throughout this life altering event and continue to give him all of my love. You do what you have to, to save their lives. This is how most animals end up in shelters...or euthanized. The only hurdle standing in the way of Buddy getting better is my lack of financial means at the moment.
In June, I noticed an odd and hard bump on his right rear leg. After speaking with several Veterinarians, and due to the size and location of the tumor, I was referred to a board certified surgeon. Surgery was our only option to prevent the tumors continued growth. Initially we had hoped that it was just a hard fatty tumor. However, after surgery the surgeon expressed some concern that he believed that microscopic disease was likely left behind as he had to consider how much of the underlying muscle could reasonably be removed. The tumor was sent out to a Pathologist to determine whether or not the tumor was benign or cancerous. The results came back and confirmed that the tumor was a cancerous Spindle Cell Sarcoma. I was devastated. Because of all the variables the surgeon then recommended us to see an Oncologist post-surgery to get a consultation for radiation therapy to ensure that the remaining microscopic disease is removed completely. Some notes from Buddys Oncologist: Based on evaluation of Buddys histopathology report, the excisional biopsy removed the entire gross tumor with an adequate margin laterally. However the deep margin is clean but close at 0.5 cm Since this is a low grade sarcoma, the risk for metastatic spread of the tumor is relatively low (~10%) with the most common locations of metastasis being regional lymph nodes and the lungs. Given the location, additional surgery to resect more of the tumor would be very difficult without radical surgery (i.e. amputation) which is not recommended. Based on the margins reported, there is a possibility that the previous surgery could have been curative and the mass may not recur. However, Sarcomas that are removed with tumor cells extending to surgical margins have a high rate of recurrence (80-90%), with a wide range of time to recurrence but the usual expectation is 4-12 months. Radiation therapy is the most effective method to reduce the risk of recurrence for incompletely or narrowly resected soft tissue sarcomas based on many studies. From these studies, we estimate that >75% of dogs with incompletely resected soft tissue sarcomas treated with definitive radiation therapy will be disease free in 3-5 years. As Buddys tumor resection was clean but close rather than incomplete, his prognosis with radiation should be even better. Definitive radiation therapy involves 18 daily treatments, each requiring brief anesthesia to deliver doses of radiation therapy to the site. In Buddys case, we also recommend a CT scan of the region prior to treatment for radiation treatment planning to assess the underlying anatomy and carefully incorporate an adequate margin in the radiation field while sparing as much of the anus/rectum as possible.
The cost for his surgery was $2,553.82, of which I had to borrow because I am in school and working full-time just to make ends meet. The 18 treatments of a radiation therapy plan to complete Buddys recovery is estimated at $6,101.00. I am asking for your help assist me with the overwhelming costs of roughly $9260.00 (including the 7% for giveforward.com) to cure Buddy so he can live a long, playful, and healthy life. Buddy has saved me in more ways than one, and I want to do whatever I can to save him. I will continue to post updates of his treatment. Thank you for your support!