Once an animal hospital determines that your dog has cancer, you should try your best to keep them comfortable and to ease this time of transition. Here are four pieces of advice to care for yourself and your pup after learning of a cancer diagnosis.
What to Do If Your Pet Has Cancer
1. Find the Proper Care
Make sure your dog is getting the best care by working with an animal hospital you love. Look for a full-service practice that can care for you and the pup, provide correct diagnostics, and offer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation if needed. The practice should provide surgery in case your dog needs tumors removed, as well as palliative care.
2. Learn What You Can
After your dog is diagnosed with cancer, research their condition and severity. Look into the type, symptoms, potential treatments, and their side effects.
Some cancers require surgery to remove dangerous cells, while others are more severe and may have spread to multiple parts of the body. Work with the team at the animal hospital to understand potential options to extend your dog's life or offer support for the time they have.
3. Seek a Support System
Cancer is common in pets, and you likely know a few people who have had similar diagnoses for their family animals. Talk to loved ones about the situation or consider joining a support group online or through the animal hospital.
You should discuss your feelings of fear or hope with others who understand what you’re going through. Members may offer advice on how to adjust to this new diagnosis and what to expect.
4. Decide on an End-of-Life Plan
If your dog has terminal cancer, it’s often easier and healthier to discuss an end-of-life plan now than to wait until they’re struggling. Talk with your family about what treatment options you are interested in and how to keep the pup comfortable.
Discuss the possibility of using euthanasia to ease their suffering. Making these decisions ahead of time helps you have a clear head and know that your choices are in the best interest of your furry friend.
If you need compassionate care for your beloved pup, head to Cedarknoll Animal Hospital in Orange County, NY. The practice offers a full-service vet clinic featuring licensed and insured staff members who are passionate about animals and people. Call the Montgomery-area company at (845) 361-5404 or visit the website for information on their diagnostics, general exams, and dental care.