Ginger’s person of nine years had passed away and a friend of mine convinced me to try a weekend with Ginger to see if she would fit into my life. We all know once you say yes to a trial it is over.
The loss of Ginger’s person had taken a toll on her. She was ten pounds too thin when she walked into my apartment and I wasn’t sending her back to a place that wasn’t a home to her. It turns out Ginger was perfect for me and fit in with the rest of my pets perfectly. She and my new kitten, Miles Davis, became fast friends and my senior cat appreciated having a dog around again to divert the kitten.
Her weight loss was temporary. A month with me and she was back up to fighting weight. She enjoys dog parks and camping. She obsesses over little dogs to the point that I should probably pay for a dog bath to remove all the drool. She shivers when it is cold and loves to chase squirrels.
In March, Ginger and I took a trip to the local dog park. She frolicked with the other dogs and got dunked in the icy pond. I took her home that night to warm her up and bathe her. The next morning I was brushing her and found that her lymph nodes in her groin were swollen. My first thought was an infection especially after a chilly ducking. I set her up with an appointment and hoped for the best knowing that swollen lymph nodes usually meant lymphoma.
The diagnosis was lymphoma and confirmed by Michigan State University Vet hospital, top in the nation for cancer treatment. I cried for Ginger but also for the potential cost. I had spent the last few years getting out of debt from when my cat was hit by a car. It only took me a few moments to reconcile myself to the fact of going back into debt to give me a few months with healthy Ginger.
The Madison-Wisconsin protocol was what we started with right away. It requires a weekly chemo cocktail for eight weeks and then a bi-weekly cocktail treatment. The protocol immediately sent the cancer into remission. The treatment did not have the affect one sees in humans in Ginger. She took it well. She may have been sick a day, but right away she rebounded and was ready to go to the dog park.
I got a lot of support from friends and family. My work colleagues raised enough money to pay for one treatment. The act was powerful and gave me more time with this wonderful dog. I also found a great support system at the MSU Vet hospital and was thankful that this great resource was only minutes away.
Then we hit a road block, Ginger’s cancer came out of remission. Madison-Wisconsin treatment had lost its effectiveness and it was time to try a harsher treatment. The rescue protocol was started, Adria/DTIC: eight hours of Chemo every three weeks. This was a lot harder for Ginger but again only a few days after treatment and Ginger was back to her chipper self and the Cancer was back into remission.
After five treatments, nearly four months, Ginger is still in remission. I have come to the end of my CARECREDIT line and thankfully the Canine Cancer Awareness Organization has graciously donated the cost of one more treatment, which will give me at least three more weeks with my Ginger. To celebrate we are going camping. A long car trip, plenty of woods, and tons of treats, what dog wouldn’t want that?
Thank you to all the supporters and donators of Canine Cancer Awareness. Your help means so much to me and my four legged family.
The CCA Board of Directors has allocated $820.24 to help pay the costs of Ginger’s treatments. Please help Ginger continue to fight this disease. Any sponsor donations made on behalf of Ginger will be used to pay unpaid invoices and the checks will be sent directly to Ginger’s vet.
To help sponsor treatment, you can click on the PayPal donate button below or send a check to:
Canine Cancer Awareness, Inc.
44 Devoe Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
DONATIONS FOR GINGER: