Harry the beagle was diagnosed with inoperable, metastatic Thyroid Carcinoma just a few weeks after his 10th birthday, in 2017.
Harry started experiencing extreme pain within a period of 24 hours, and presented with symptoms of IVDD. Dr Lynne admitted Harry and immediately took him off for a CT Scan to see what was going on. The results of the scan go to a lab in USA and they provide a full report on their findings on the full body scan.
Preliminary results showed that he had quite a few unstable vertebra along his spine, and some arthritis – which was normal for his age.
Harry was sent off with a huge variety of pain killers (7 a day!) and put on strict crate rest while we waited for the full results.
The results came back with the most shocking, and most awful news!
Harry had cancer.
We were devastated.
The CT Scan showed tumors on his thyroid glands, which you could only feel if you were really looking for them, and knew they were there. Cancer surgery was not an option for various reasons: his age, his current level of pain caused by his neck, and most importantly, the tumors were so close to his carotid artery that is just wasn’t worth the risk.
After many many tears, Dr Lynne and Dr Tim advised metronomic chemo, which is a tablet taken orally every day. We went home with a huge cloud over our heads, more pain killers, and our chemo tablets.
Within a week of chemo tablets, Harry’s pain started subsiding. The tumors were obviously inflamed and pushing against his unstable neck – but the chemo was calming things down in there. After about a month of really strict crate rest, he stopped crying every time he moved and was ready to be let off lead to do his own thing and slowly he became part of our pack of 3 beagles again.
Harry did not lose his appetite, or lose any weight, his muscle condition has not deteriorated and his joy for life is contagious.
It is now the end of 2018, 18 months after diagnosis… we have had a few bad days, but the majority have been GOOD DAYS!
When we received our devastating news in June 2017, Dr Lynne did not put a timeline on our precious dog’s life. However she later admitted to me that if she had been forced to, she would’ve given him weeks. She told me this a year after his diagnosis! The stubbornness of the beagle!
Since Harry has been diagnosed, he has also had two dentals (one of which was a whopping 2,5 hours – THANK YOU Dr Lynsey!!!) as he has notoriously awful teeth. He was under the watchful eye of his doctors for both surgeries, and he handled both of them like an absolute champ!
We are SO grateful to all at BHVH for their unending care, knowledge, patience, love and kindness. Without them, we know that Harry would not be such a wonderful happy dog, at our sides all these many months later.
We’ve since added a 4th beagle to our pack, and even at the ripe old age of 11,5 years old, sweet Harry still finds the energy to race around and play with the younger members of our pack.
(above photo by Ashleigh K Photography – Nov 2018
From left to right: Oscar – 11years | Summer – 5years | Eddie – 1year | and our star Harry on the right at 11,5 years)
Thank you Dr Lynne and team for allowing us to keep our family intact.
All our love, Peter and Tanya (and the beagles!)
EDITED – Harry the beagle lived for 3 years and 3 months after being diagnosed. This was probably 3 years longer than anyone could have ever predicted. Those 3 years and 3 months were an absolute blessing and we owe every moment to Dr Lynne and the team at BHVH. There are no words to express our gratitude for caring for our special boy.
When the time came for Harry to move on to heaven, at 13.5 years old, Dr Lynne came to our home, and gently & quietly helped him escape his weak body to be free and young and strong again.