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In Dec. 2005 my brothers 9yr old GSD had his spleen removed due to this terrible cancer. They found it very early so they had no idea on life expectancy. No chemo or radiation was done. Rudi passed away just two months shy of his 12th birthday in July 2008. Goes to show it can happen. He lived a good quality life up to the last month of so of his life.
 

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My heart goes out to all of you who have lost a beloved dog to this monstrous disease.

I lost a much loved 4 yo rescue GSD. He had a tumor on his leg that actually showed up externally. Over Memorial Day Weekend, it went from golf ball to baseball size.

That's how fast & aggressive this monster is.

I had the tumor removed & had 6 more mos with my boy. He died peacefully, at home.

I am sorry for those of you who are dealing or have dealt with hemangio.
 

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Otis J

This cancer is a heartbreaker. My Oso picked me just over 10 years ago. He leaned into me and that was all it took. He was perfect in every way and we learned how to communicate without words. He went in for surgery to remove an abscess from a grass seed. The bleeding took a couple of days to stop post op. I thought that his arthritis meds had thinned his blood and perhaps gave him an ulcer. I only wish that had been the case. He insisted on going out with us to lunch a couple of days as he was first out the front door. As weak as he was, he would not take no for an answer. He hopped in the car and just sat under the table as we ate our meal with people making their usual comments about what a beautiful GSD he was. The next day, he hadn't moved when we woke up and we rushed him to the vet. where they put him on IVs to bring his temp. down and gave him fluids. At the end of the day, his RBC were still low so we took him to an ER vet. they gave him blood transfusions and then an ultrasound. The cancer was all over his spleen and liver. He was clearly out of juice and running only on fumes. We had to let him rest. The saddest day of our lives. But when you have had "the best dog ever", you have to let him rest. I can still see him on his bed panting and smiling at me. I miss him so very much. What a lousy disease.
 

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I'm so sorry yet another loved dog has syccumbed to this awful cancer.
Hugzzz and it does get easier to remember.
 

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We just got through a scare. We were lucky enough to have a good outcome and it was not Hemangio, proven by ultrasound for a good look. So sorry you are going through this. There is nothing worse than having a loved family member sick with something you can't cure or make better in any way for them. We just love them as long as we can and they love us right back:hug:.
 

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Hemangiosarcoma shattered our world

Hey everyone :( Just lost my 8 year old GSD on Tuesday, three days ago. Vet called today with results that all three biopsies were confirmed as HSA. He had gotten sick on Friday, wasn’t eating, and acted very tired and weak. We decided to take him to the emergency vet on Saturday. Regular exam and check up seemed to find nothing wrong and thought this was just old age. However to ease our mind, the vet recommended bloodwork, x-rays and ultrasound. Results were not good reporting the tumor appeared to be huge involving the spleen. Bloodwork wasn’t normal but also wasn’t that bad so splenectomy was recommended which would confirm the diagnosis but told us that WITH the surgery we would maybe get six more months but WITHOUT surgery he would bleed out at any moment. There was no way we were going to let that happen if he had a chance so surgery was scheduled for Tues and drs orders were to take him home and spoil him. So that is exactly what we did as well as take a ton of pictures with him, slept beside him every night and loved on him as much as possible. By the time Tuesday (surgery day) rolled around he was acting like he was a 2 year old puppy again. Jumping up on my kids, anxious for the car ride, and just happy and energetic as can be. So as you can imagine we never expected the events that followed not even two hours later. The vet called and said it had spread and surgery wasn’t even an option due to the size, location and risks involved. We had to make a decision on the spot and it was honestly the hardest decision we have ever had to make. Our children are older so they fully understood what was happening and we physically felt our world shatter. My son said that it was easily the worst day of his life and I would have to agree. We had to think about what was best for our GSD and not be selfish although we desperately wanted just one more minute with our big boy to say goodbye. But per our request, the vet never woke him up and he passed away peacefully. We are happy he was happy but it makes it harder on us because he didn’t seem to be suffering last time we were together. This all just happened so fast with no signs as everyone else is explaining. Now I wonder how long he was in pain and what we could we have done differently. He was such an awesome addition to our family and now we are all finding it difficult to even come home without him here. Our hearts are broken and we miss him so much :( If only we could have caught it sooner. I am reading some vets recommend GSD and GR get yearly x-rays after age 5. Not sure if my family can endure this pain again, but if we ever get another GSD, I will definitely recommend this to my vet. I have read all the stories on here and my heart breaks for all of you. This is very tough and I hope the pain quickly goes away and only the happy memories remain.:)
 

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I know and feel your pain. I lost my boy just shy of 7 years old. Please know this is a painless cancer and nothing you could have done would have changed the outcome.
I am so very sorry for your loss and in time you will be able to remember him without feeling all the pain of losing him but instead smile about the joy he brought you.
I too thought I couldn't bear losing another dog in the future. I did get another handsome boy and he is a joy and has helped to fill the void.
 

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Recon - I feel your pain. It is never easy to lose a loved one. But please know he was not in pain and he appreciated those last few days of spoiling and being close to you. He will always live on in your heart as German Shepherds leave paw prints on our hearts but know that one day you will meet again at the Rainbow Bridge. As for deciding whether to get another of the same breed, most of us do because we realize what a great breed it is and what wonderful hearts they have. It may not be something you do right away but GSDs are kind of like chips it's hard to have just one. One day maybe in the not too distant future, you will find the ability to love another dog and there are always dogs that need rescuing. Meanwhile, be kind to yourself and take time to heal. :hugs:
 

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I am so very sorry to hear of the loss of your boy. From your post, he sounds like he was a wonderful companion to you and your family. I hope that memories of happy times you shared together comfort you in the days ahead. It's never easy to loose a beloved pet. Take care of yourself.
 

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I just had to share my deep hearted condolences for your very painful loss! I shed tears over this!
I can't imagine how I would deal with this disease if it took my boy, Thunder.
 

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I Share Your Grief

6.1.15
Dear Klaus' Parent
I was just now looking through the posts and I ran across yours. My 13 year old, 85 pound gorgeous blond boy GoldenDoodle BECKET passed away in our home on December 11, 2009 from hemangiosarcoma. After I noticed that he was lethargic and not wanting to move in July, 2009 I took him to the emergency hospital where they ran tests and did an ultrasound and he was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma. It showed up as tumors in his spleen.

My Becket underwent chemotherapy and he tolerated it well and his quality of life was good. My vet told me that he would live maximum for another 4 months, and that the first treatments would discover whether he could tolerate the chemo and have a good quality of life. He did tolerate the treatments and we made the most of our last months with him.

The saving grace was having more time to be with him and also the fact that death from this illness is not painful (per the vet). We were told that in the end, Becket would collapse from exhaustion (due to an internal bleed), fall asleep and pass. I was with him after he came into the house after what would be his last romp in the backyard. He came inside and collapsed. I helped him to his bed and he closed his eyes, raising his head one last time to see me, rested his head back on the bed and passed quietly, peacefully and painlessly.

He passed with dignity.
 

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Response a long time after the fact...

Hi,
I wish I would have seen this when you first posted it, as I too have been in your shoes, twice. Two GSD half sisters (same father) one year apart litters. The oldest was age 7 and the picture of GSD health, the "picture". We played frisbee that morning and had a normal energy packed day. Several hours later I was upstairs when I heard my daughter screaming, as blood was pouring from Tesla's nose. We ran to the emergency vet who took some x-rays, other diagnostics and other tests after the bleed stopped and had us make an appointment with a specialist for the next morning. The emergency vet warned me she suspected Haemangiosarcoma, but up until that day I didn't have much experience. The websites I found that night were not very encouraging. I was devastated. The next morning the specialist redid tests and new ones and confirmed that my dog's spleen was shot essentially and not only that she was able to show me that my dog's entire insides were riddled with cancer. I had to let her go. She was only seven, I thought I had so much more time. It was absolutely gut wrenching. A year later I walk downstairs in the morning to see two giant puddles right next to each other, the smell was hideous (both were rectangle shaped puddles, about 2' in width and 6' long, about 6" apart. One was blood and the other was a golden colored granulated substance that looked like nothing I had ever seen before. I had two dogs left, and one looked fine but the half-sister to my other GSD who had died a year before looked a little bit drowsy, but other than that she was fine, she ate, she drank and had a day of play the day prior. Off to the specialist we went. I was shocked when we saw the images showing the same **** cancer, only in her, her whole spleen had actually dissolved. I had to say goodbye to her that day as well. I lost two perfect dogs (other than genetics) to that **** disease. I am so sorry for your loss and I remain paranoid with all my GSDs regarding this disease, one of so many that my breed of choice is prone to.
 

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Hi All,

I sadly join this group with a broken heart. I just put my beloved "Tinker Bell", to rest at 10 yrs 14 days. She was a Christmas Day babe and gave many years of loving and loyal service. She stopped eating on the Sunday night, I put it down to starting her on Gulcosamine. She went to the Vet, the next morning and I was told, most prob just upset stomach. Three days later all I could get her to do was eat out of my wife's hand. She still went for her walks and sort of played, but she wasn't 100%. I returned to the vet on the Thursday morning, not content with just an upset stomach. It was at this time the vet notice a sudden on set of AF. This then went to bloods, ECG and Xrays. 2 Hours later I was called to attend Vet office. I could see on the vet's face no good news. I read the Xrays and blood results, Primary in the spleen, enlarged heart with secondary in right ventricle and what looked like secondary in the liver, it hit me like a brick. I was so numb and cold. I asked for advice and was told my decision, but eventually told sooner rather than later and more like the following day. She was given "metacam", which made her comfortable, even though there was no sign of discomfort. She ate well out of the wife's hand, went for her walks albeit slow and deliberate, played some games and had her companion friend stay over for the night. The next day was long and hard, but as the time approached, it became unbearable. She was the perfect family member, so gentle, sweet, loyal protective and over the top loving to us. All her feline friends came out to see her. It took nearly 4 minutes after the injection, she fought so hard to stay, but I know in my heart that it was the only thing I could do to such a lovely, kind sweet family member. She will always be in out hearts and memories.

Lets hope some early tests can be found for our furry family members

FYI, regular check ups, best food possible, no toxins or other bad things and no hereditary issues, all her siblings, parents and grand parents had not suffered with this horrible disease . The Vet was outstanding in support and treatment.

Thank you for allowing me to vent
 

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Hi All,

I sadly join this group with a broken heart. I just put my beloved "Tinker Bell", to rest at 10 yrs 14 days. She was a Christmas Day babe and gave many years of loving and loyal service. She stopped eating on the Sunday night, I put it down to starting her on Gulcosamine. She went to the Vet, the next morning and I was told, most prob just upset stomach. Three days later all I could get her to do was eat out of my wife's hand. She still went for her walks and sort of played, but she wasn't 100%. I returned to the vet on the Thursday morning, not content with just an upset stomach. It was at this time the vet notice a sudden on set of AF. This then went to bloods, ECG and Xrays. 2 Hours later I was called to attend Vet office. I could see on the vet's face no good news. I read the Xrays and blood results, Primary in the spleen, enlarged heart with secondary in right ventricle and what looked like secondary in the liver, it hit me like a brick. I was so numb and cold. I asked for advice and was told my decision, but eventually told sooner rather than later and more like the following day. She was given "metacam", which made her comfortable, even though there was no sign of discomfort. She ate well out of the wife's hand, went for her walks albeit slow and deliberate, played some games and had her companion friend stay over for the night. The next day was long and hard, but as the time approached, it became unbearable. She was the perfect family member, so gentle, sweet, loyal protective and over the top loving to us. All her feline friends came out to see her. It took nearly 4 minutes after the injection, she fought so hard to stay, but I know in my heart that it was the only thing I could do to such a lovely, kind sweet family member. She will always be in out hearts and memories.

Lets hope some early tests can be found for our furry family members

FYI, regular check ups, best food possible, no toxins or other bad things and no hereditary issues, all her siblings, parents and grand parents had not suffered with this horrible disease . The Vet was outstanding in support and treatment.

Thank you for allowing me to vent
I'm so sorry, it's never easy.
 

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Fpath, heartfelt condolences for your very sad loss. Too many of us have been there with this disease. I'm so sorry for your loss.
 

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I sorry for your loss. I lost my girl from this almost 2 years ago. I don't think they feel any pain from it, we had just come in from a walk where she ran around and played, she had never had a health concern in her life until 20 minutes before she died :(
I too asked the vet if there was anything we could have done, he said even if you noticed it in the beginning, the prognosis isn't good and the treatment just causes more pain than good, and if the treatment is "successful", you only get an extra few months. He said with this disease, it really is best not to know. You get to enjoy each day with your dog, not knowing it's your last.
I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I have lost two to HS, 14 months apart, the most recent just last March (2015). Like Jax's Mom said, and three different vet's told me and literature I have read, the prognosis is not good. It's difficult not to try to second guess what you could have missed, done differently, etc but the fact is, it is an insidious and fast moving cancer. I hope someday they will find a viable way to test for it. Try to remember the good times you have shared with you beloved dog. It will honor her memory. Again, I am so sorry for your loss.
 

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We just lost our companion dog Juno to this horrible disease. He has been fine in the morning running down the arena after his beloved ball. In the afternoon after a ball toss across the yard he staggered and lay flat for a minute or so. It was awful feeling to see him go down and know something bad was going on I couldn't do anything about. We took him to the emergency vet and the basics checked out fine temp., heart beat in both legs etc. but chest x-rays showed an enlarged heart. They did an echocardiogram which showed the hemangiosarcoma at the base of his heart. We did decide to remove the fluid and they did in the morning and did another echocardiogram in the evening to see if the fluid (blood) was filling that fast. It had not refilled so they gave us a Chinese herb that might help stop bleeding. The prognosis was either PTS or soon he would collapse and die due to the enlarged heart or bleed out. We decided to make an appointment to PTS in a week. And were very fortunate that he did well the entire time. We went to all his favorite hiking areas for flat hikes shorter hikes, and he got all his favorite foods and was completely spoiled. It was so sudden and unexpected. He was in such great shape and we had thought he would be a 15 year dog, but he didn't even even make 9 years by a few weeks. That extra week put into perspective what a big hole was going to be left when he was gone. It is always too fast, this was just too short too. Hemangiosarcoma is a horrible disease.
 

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I am very sorry for your loss of Juno. I can't find the words to adequately convey my feelings since my 9 year old boy Traveler was diagnosed with this disease on Jan 6. We are giving him anything and everything he wants or needs. We can only take a little comfort in that we had/have some extra time with them- to give a little extra love and to receive a lot of extra love in return.

Lynn & Traveler
 

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Reading all these storied makes me cry my heart out. They are so touching and all of you have suffered such pain in losing your friend(s). I wish you all find solace over time.

I might be joining you soon. Malik, almost 11, just got out of surgery an hour ago. Yesterday he wasn't well, and after a long vet visit, my hb and I opted for spleen removal. He also has some mass in his liver. Vet said he is recovering really well. But he did warn us there is a very strong chance the results of the lab will be HSA. I am crying right now because I read your posts and feel that I will lose him soon.

I know it's premature, that tests may be negative, or if positive, that he may live a lot longer with a good treatment. I guess I'm preparing myself mentally in case he will not live and somehow your posts, if they make me sad, make me feel less alone.

Wishing you all well, and a long healthy HSA-free life to all our canine companions.
 

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I am so sorry to hear about Malik. You are definitely not alone. I will pray your boy will have a swift and sure recovery.

All we can do is deal with what we are given and love our pups for as long as we are allowed to.

Lynn & Traveler
 
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