Our Last Hope…

Cody’s glands, especially the nasty one on his right side of his neck are huge. The others are slower to grow apparently but this one is getting bigger and bigger by the day. I hate them all but especially this big bastard. I nuzzle his neck and talk to it and tell it how much I hate it. Cody leans into me as if he is reinforcing what I am saying. “Yeah you tell ’em Mom!”

I talked to Dr Butzer, actually stopped int o talk to him yesterday,  and asked about the vaccine from the ImmuneFX company… he has been talking to them and it would cost about $1500.00. He says it will cost no more than that and that does include the surgery to take the node. The big bastard. And we are going to do it.  As I was leaving the office after scheduling the surgery with him he said as he was walking out of the room that he will have to be brave since it is Cody. I love this man, have I mentioned that? I know Cody is in the best hands there are, and that gives me all the confidence I need.

I have been meaning to make a diagram of where to locate your dog’s lymph nodes so that you readers can check them yourself, but I keep forgetting to do it. Here is a terrible one but maybe this will inspire me to make a better one… at least this gives you the idea:

And this is Cody’s node a few days ago, it is even bigger now:


Cody will go in Monday morning, Memorial Day, at 9am and in an hour he will be put out with gas, the node popped out and he will be sutured up. The gas is something that worries me but not like a shot since, if he has any issues the gas is removed and he wakes up within about a minute. Butzer says it leaves his body right away. I do not want him put out with a shot, I remember all too well the tranquilizer they gave him his very first chemo dose and I will never do that to him again. He HOWLED! He felt awful the entire rest of the day and it tore my heart out. The gas is quick and easy and again, leaves his body almost immediately.

Then we will put him on antibiotics and watch him for the next couple days making sure he does not scratch the sutures and heals ok. The nodes are shipped in a sealed iced container to Veterinary Oncology Services in Tampa and they use his specific Cancer to create a vaccine for him personally.

It is a long shot. It is most likely too new of science to really work… but they have been having great results apparently. But for me… it is my last hope. I look at this damn nodes when they come back and as soon as I notice them I start the clock ticking. It is about 6-8 weeks and then he goes… our time is now. The turnaround time for the vaccine is about a week or two. Perfect.

After this… I will have tried EVERYTHING. I will sleep well knowing I did everything to save him. I have to try… if not just for him and for me but for all you readers who have sent me emails or posts saying you are going through canine cancer as well. What if it works? It seems so sensible! Allowing the body to fight the cancer? Your OWN body fighting your own cancer! YES!

I can not help but be excited at the possibility. The chemo, although it gave us so much time, did not even give him a real remission. He has been a toxic doggie for almost a year and a half and this new treatment is non-toxic.   Again I have to try… and he wants to stay with me. He is not ready to go yet and I am again going to do everything I can to help him stay. I made him a promise.

So that is where we are… getting ready for surgery Monday morning and hoping for the best. I will keep you posted.

To read more about this procedure check the links above and this one too.


~ by Michelle Sammartino-Zeto on May 26, 2012.

23 Responses to “Our Last Hope…”

  1. I pray for Cody I truly do. If I could of done something like this to save Raven I would have.

  2. You truly have done everything you could. I hope that is of some comfort. Let’s hope this works. I”ll leave it there for now. xoxoxoxo Alex

  3. I’ve been thinking of you both all day, praying this procedure actually delivers the results of the promise . If so, I’ll make the drive to Florida myself! Wishing you and Cody the best of outcomes. Lynn

  4. what happened???!!..Murphy is in remission and I would really like to know. Michael in Sarasota.

    • Hi Michael, I just saw your comment so I am sorry for the delayed response. I am sure you have by now read on through my posting to see that Cody passed about a month after this post. As you read through, you can find in the posts that the vaccine folks mentioned at one point that Cody’s cancer was very “hot”… meaning very aggressive. I think if we had tried this treatment earlier when he was healthier he would have had a better response. I truly believe this is an amazing treatment and if you are interested you should absolutely look into it.

  5. Revised copy, (sorry)

    I am so very sorry to learn of your best four legged friend’s passing from last year. Our Boe, (German Shepard) was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma. Thank God it’s is only in his lymph nodes. I’m from a praying family and a God fearing family as well. My mother, got on her knees, and had a long talk with God, asked the Lord what she should do, let him go through chemo? What should she do, and the Lord spoke to her heart and mind and he instructed her to give Boe a diet of raw veggies, (no more dog food, nor heart worm medicines) period, no more because there is something they are putting in the heart worm medicines and dog foods that are causing too many dogs to get Cancer. Anyway, back to what I was saying, Mama has Boe on a natural, holistic diet, (though he’s on prednisone which has helped with shrinking the nodes a whole lot, and he’s taking herbal meds, one being Yucca extract, (which acts as a natural steroid itself), he’s taking vitamin C along with another organic pill to detox his body and a host of other things. He eats organic chicken, sweet potatoes, brown organic rice, no sweets of any kind, no seasonings. He recently had a hidden ulcer in his badly swollen leg that ruptured one night we never knew was there which explains why it was painful for him to walk on it. See, because of the size of the lymph node in right back leg, it cut off the circulation in that leg, causing the ulcer to rupture one night which killed a lot of healthy tissue in his leg resulting in dead tissue so he was taken immediately to the vet, the wound was cleaned out, a shot of antibiotics was given by needle, and bandaged up. The family had to soak his leg twice a day in Epson salt and dress it back up daily until the dead tissue fell off, and he has an appointment once a week to see how his leg is healing. At this moment, the Doctors are in AWE, at how well our Boe is doing overall, he’s almost like a totally different dog now and his leg, the wound is starting to close. There jaws are dropping to the floor because this is not the same Boe that came to them three-four weeks ago. I want to say, God is in all of this from the very beginning. I remember when I first learned of this condition our Boe has, I stood over him and prayed and a spirit spoke to me but in a telepathic way and told me that healing has begun. Boe had a lot of Christians praying for him. This situation happened to our Boe for a reason and it has been a learning experience simply by saying this to all readers, if you have animals, don’t trust the foods they are eating and do not give them heartworm medicine-(because there is something they are putting in cat/dog food that’s giving too many animals Cancer. I have never heard in all my years, how so many animals are getting Cancer, and people too I must say. We look for Boe to be cured, for this Cancer to be gone completely, but until then, everything the Lord has given my mother to do has worked and Boe is doing so remarkably well. God will be glorified once this is all over. God is real and will hear the prayers of his children. So, don’t give up on your four legged best friend, always give him/her a fighting chance and in doing so, and always, keep God at the top of your prayer list for your loved one, you will be shocked at what can and will happen.

    • Hi Dresia,

      I am so sorry for your Boe but so glad you are taking control and changing what you can to help him! Food is medicine and drastically changing his diet from processed dog food is essential for helping him battle the cancer. You may want to add some Tahitian Noni and some Chaga mushroom to his diet as well. Both are great cancer fighters. Also be careful with the born rice as grains can turn to sugar (glucose) in the blood and of course, sugar promotes cancer growth.

      Keep up the good fight and keep us posted on how Boe is doing!

      • Thank you so much for the insight on brown rice, i will pass that information on to my mother. yes, the mushroom, he is eating that, but never heard of Tahitian Noni and will look that up. Thank you again. We love our Boe. It’s not fair, our four legged friends get sick. what have they done to deserve such you know :( (about to cry) but i must be happy, because he’s doing so well. Will keep you posted.

      • Thanks be to God because he instilled in my mothers heart and mind on what to do. i’m so glad we did not go with chemo. he would be worst off and probably would not even be around. i just spoke with her and she told me she already knows that too much starch can turn into sugar. i know she is on top of his diet. it’s a 24 hour job but he’s doing so well the job is much less now. I was so depressed for a long time, crying days and nights over our Boe, not knowing he was going to respond so well to what’s being done for him. it also showed my faith was so small, (shame on me for not trust God more) so working on that now. will keep you posted.

      • to all readers, stop giving your dogs heartworm medicine. instead, give your dog a pinch of garlic every day, not alot, just a pinch.

      • Heartworm is actually prevalent here in Florida as it is a mosquito born illness. Being so humid and tropical here I cannot NOT give my dog heartworm, the risk is too great. That being said there are heartworm brands that do not have flea and tick control added, and I recommend using those if, like me, you really have no choice. The risk of heartworm is too great for me not to take preventative measures.

  6. i forgot to mention, i have a small bottle of this Noni Juice in my cabnet at home. didn’t know dogs can take it too. wow, it’s expensive but will do everything we can for our Boe.

    • You are doing great! Keep up the wonderful work! And continue to read my blog here, there is a lot of information about different supplements and treatments we tried. Changing his food and water (our water here in Florida is highly treated and was a big reason I believe Cody got sick, also pesticides on the grasses and in the air), adding vitamins and minerals and lots of love and fresh air is the way! Also here is some info on Noni: http://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatmentsandsideeffects/complementaryandalternativemedicine/dietandnutrition/noni-plant


      • o, and he just loves going for walks. he hoops up like a young bunny rabbit along with our other dog Angel. We call them the odd couple. she is all white, small dog, got her from a shelter, looks like she could be mixed with pitbull and another breed but she is so cute, loves to stick her head in your lap looking up at you so sad to give her table food which we don’t. their food is fresh and nothing added, just plan and backed chicken. thank you for your website and will keep in touch with that as well. also, do you have nother doggie now? u are not going to believe this, but this is the 7th dog we have had that came down with Cancer. back then we didn’t know what we know now but it’s like i was telling my mother, the answer is right in front of us, (what is causing Cancer) but we can’t put our finger on it! so sad, Cancer is spreading to humans and animals like wildfire anymore.

  7. forgot to mention, he’s also taking K-9 immunity. good stories and results from this.

  8. you know, my mother mentioned something about her next door neighbor having his grass treated and she thinks the chemicals blew over into our yard, air don’t know, but her water is also treated. they have that water system thing, soft water. will keep you posted and thank you for the good tips.

  9. he also takes antioxidants too.

  10. I have bad news, Our Boe slipped out on us this past Friday at home. He laid on the floor and went to sleep for good with his front paws crossing each other. We are all in shock, and are very heart broken, and very angry, why, JUST FREAKIN WHY HE HAD TO GET SICK IN THE FIRST PLACE AT 8 YRS OF AGE WHICH IS VERY YOUNG!!!!! Why was lymphoma allowed in his body in the first place? He has never done anything wrong, but be a dog! We prayed and we prayed hard for our Boe, because he was coming around and doing so well with his Holistic treatments my mother was giving him, and then all of a sudden, just like that, like a flicker of a light, gone from us, without warning until the very last min. She did all the right things through the direction of God, and even too she questioned her works, “was my works not good enough” where did I go wrong? Did I not do enough? and we told her, you did everything right, there was nothing left undone and if it had not been for the treatment/s he was receiving, the complete 360 turn in his diet, he would have been long gone. A family friend seems to think he had a stroke, because of the symptoms my mother witness before he died, and after he died, blood came from his mouth according to the family, (since I wasn’t there) and it was said, that came from his lungs! Whatever took him out, did it quick. The Doctor and another vet rushed down to our home after hearing about his dying process and felt his body and we were told he was swollen in his upper body and his good leg was beginning to swell again. Boe went through a lot and came through a lot but as my mother said, God took him home. Right now, I’m very angry and my mother with God, and yes, the family is asking why did this have to happen? He was so young! (though I know we shouldn’t be angry but grateful, it’s still hard to give thanks either way) but it’s normal to feel this way when you suddenly lose a pet or human, it’s devastating either way, especially to a dam illness that invaded a healthy body. Yes, I still want to know, WHY, why was this allowed in our Christian home, a God fearing family, a praying family who lives righteous and this evil was allowed into our home? There are lots of people who give their animals pork to eat, all the wrong foods, bones, but we fed Boe healthy and now this? Someone please explain to me because I am truly having a very difficult time with this passing of our Boe. This is the 7th animal that we’ve had to bury from Cancer. Where is this cancer coming from and why is it so rampant with humans and animals? Out of all the dogs we’ve love and had, Boe was a unique, special kind of dog, one that walked around with stance, a ruler, a protector, a genuine friend any man could have. I’m going to be hurt for a long time to come because there are so many good memories along with the bad, and though people say, try and remember the good times, well, they are what hurt the most because those memories was done with love, patience, humbleness and now we cannot continue those good times anymore. Healing is healing and dealing with the good and bad. You can’t help but think about how sick your animal became and how you the family
    Worked with your four legged friend to make him comfortable/healthy again, and it was hard work and paid off and then BOOM, a quick and unexpected sudden death. The day he died, some of the family members including myself went to the vet to say our good byes after they took him from our home on a stretcher. I cried uncontrollably, and I kissed mouth where his whiskers are, and I kissed his head several times and cried out loud his name, and kept telling him I’m so sorry this happened to you, several times. My sister in law was there to comfort me and my brother who was there when he passed at home, and the vet stood watching. Monday, after sunset, he will be buried. Angel, his companion, is also mourning. She is going around looking for him, sniffing doors and the toy box in the house, she sits alone, looking very sad, by herself. She is also mourning. When is all this going to end? I really want to know. Right now, I’m not going to lie, my faith is shaken, shaken really bad, and some family members mentioned the same thing. I know there is a God and why he allowed this to happen, I guess our broken hearts will find out one day. We can accept a pet dying from old age, but not a disease, and especially at such a young age!!!! No disease is good for any animal or human which runs rampant anymore. Maybe we will be able to talk about the funny times and special things Boe did once we get our new puppy, new playmate for our Angel, but right now, it’s too painful. I don’t look forward to the New Year’s anymore because the next year brings so many unexpected things, events, etc. I know I shouldn’t sound negative, but when so much negativity hits your home, you can’t help but think that way. Anyway, enough of me. Just wanted you to know our Boe passed away.

    • Dresia I am so sorry… it is never easy to lose a pet and especially so fast. Lymphoma is very aggressive in dogs, especially without doing chemo. Cody had an unusually aggressive form and in the end after 1.5 years of chemo and diet and changes, it took him fast. Cody went into renal failure the week he died, his kidneys just stopped. His cancer spread so fast it was all through him. No amount of chemo, diet, supplements or love could have stopped it.

      If you have experienced high rates of cancer in your area, you mentioned 7 animals? I would look at your environment more than anything else. There are toxic chemicals everywhere but especially on grasses, lakes, there is dumping in streams and waterways, powerplants… that is what would red flag it for me.

      Anyway, I am so sorry. At least Boe is no longer suffering or in any pain… he is free from it all now. Hang in there.

  11. we will continue to feed Ange, and our new four legged friend organic, healthy, all veggie, vitamins, antioxidants, K-9 immunity, Grape Seed pills, Yucca extract, Vitamin C to keep their bodies healthy. If your immune system is weak, anything can creep in and invade the body. Sometimes i feel like, we are forgetting about our Boe when getting another puppy right away but it’s not that, it’s just we were so loyal to him, and he to us, a special bond, one that is more prefect then gold, but now gone. We feel guilty replacing him but it’s important for not only Angel, but our healing process. it’s worked everytime we lose an animal because your new family pet will have his or her own personality, tricks, so i hope to see some of Boe in our new family member which will be joining us in a week, meantime, we the family look forward to seeing all our animals again.

  12. Thank you so much. I’ve been crying all morning. You too, know all too well, the pain of losing an animal. The next morning I’m told, Mama got up early, grabbed his toy, held it to her chest and started crying uncontrollably. All I can say is her faith is bigger than mine. Right now, I’m so fragile, I would lash out at any and every one that crosses my path wrong and I know that’s not good. A lot of people are going through pain more so then happiness. About this Cancer, I told my mother, the answer is right there in front of us, where this cancer is coming from but we can’t put our finger on it. I wish they would move to an area where there is more open land, like a country like setting but that house brings so many memories. 7 dogs can you believe that and we are tired of burying dogs from cancer. I need to talk to my mother and have her look into that, because I too believe it’s in the environment, it’s got to be. I’m so sorry for your lose too. our Boe, had this disease from Christmas of last year and the family never knew it because Mama and the vet wasn’t sure then and said to keep an eye on the lymph nodes they noticed back then. I wish they had done the biopsy back then because maybe we would have saved his life? We’ll never know now. The vet and Doctor told the family, Boe has done remarkably well from since they suspected this disease. I shared a video with the family I videoed tapped from Christmas of last year with Boe and Angel in it. It’s too painful to even watch that. But if it’s of any comfort to our mother, I will share it with her. Once our Boe is buried, she will have closure. I will post a picture of the new puppy once we get him which will be in a week. Our Angel needs another playmate and we need another companion. Mama has already picked a name out for the new family member, (Titus), which is a biblical name. (I don’t know what it means, but it’s the name she has choosen)

  13. i wanted to share this with you. The same day Boe died, I was sitting in the kitchen, and I kept hearing his walking around in the dining room. We know the difference between his walk and Angel’s walk. It was Boe walking around in the dining room, but between the living and dining room where he died. Then that same night, my sister and mother heard him walking in the room and stopped at the foot of the bed, and then walking around in the hall way. I guess that was his spirit coming back to let them know and me, he’s up and walking again and doing well, or it just could mean he went too soon and his spirit is not a rest, but we all heard it. Just wanted to share that with you that we also believe, their spirits come back to thank those who loved and took care of them.

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