Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Cancer Chronicles: Staying Well, Staying Positive

Last month's post and the news about Bow's tumor was grim, but it was encouraging to get so many supportive messages.

She had a seizure in early January which was hugely discouraging, but she was put on a low dose of phenobarbital (an anti-seizure drug) and prednisone (a steroid). Not only has she gone more than a month without a seizure (she has had only one to date), but her energy level and alertness were back to normal within barely 12 hours. Besides struggling a bit going down the stairs and having muscle wasting around her forehead, she is back to her old self.

My primary vet keeps using the term "Let's keep her comfortable for the time she has left." But she too has been very encouraged by how stable things have been the past six weeks. She got a blood test a couple of weeks ago, and all her levels are right where they should be, and we cut back the prednisone to half level.

Our life is happy for now, and we cherish each day together. This coming weekend we will take our Canine Good Citizen certification. Whether we pass or not isn't the biggest issue. The fact that we have come so far in training over the past two years is reward enough. When Bow arrived two and a half years ago, she was very dog reactive and would chew on her leash, spin and put up her basenji Mowhawk if we saw another dog even half a block away. Today she can pass even the yappiest Chihuahua with relative calm, looking at it condescendingly but not lunging and walking ahead on a calm, loose leash.

UPDATE: Bow passed the Canine Good Citizen certification today! We'll write all about it in next month's post.


  1. I always look forward to posts about Bow.

  2. It is so good to hear that Bow is doing so well on her meds and that you could cut the pred back by 1/2.
    We have our fingers crossed and tail curled that she passes her CGC after you both worked so hard to get where you are, she deserves it.

  3. Bow - Your old foster buddies Nubie, Harley, Little Debbie,Tim and Mom are routing for you. Can't wait to see if you past the test.

  4. I understand what you are going through and it's very difficult. My first B girl " Zinger" had liver cancer. She is now at the Rainbow bridge. She is an angel and I promise you she is rooting for Bow as am I.
    Our prayers are with you Bow and your family.
    Please give her a kiss from our 3 adopted basenji's : Sophie, Brody, and Roscoe