Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Pets Get Breast Cancer Too #Pet360

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so today I wanted to talk about it a little bit. Breast cancer is something I've dealt with in the past and am now dealing with again in my family. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer a little over a month ago. She hasn't received any treatments as of yet and we are still waiting to get her a surgery date.

But because this is a pet blog, I really want to focus on our furry companions - our pets. In December of 2011, we discovered a lump on my cat's belly. Her name was Kitty Kitty Meow Meow and you've probably heard me talk about her before.

Pets Get Cancer Too

Being a veterinary technician, I already knew that the lump was a bad one. I could tell by the way it felt. I took her to the clinic where I worked and the doctor confirmed that my cat had breast cancer. She recommended a full mastectomy, because with anything less the cancer would have probably just returned shortly after. There were also some other circumstances.

I'm sad to admit that even working at a veterinary clinic and having an employee discount for procedures, I still would not have been able to afford her surgery and treatment at that point in time. I decided to let Kitty Kitty Meow Meow live out her good ol' kitty days enjoying the stuff she liked most until it was her time. And she did.

She passed away just over one year ago on September 25th, 2012.

Cat Breast Cancer
Kitty Kitty Meow Meow's favorite napping place. 

All of this was before I was active in the online pet community and working as a pet blogger. Sometimes, I wish that I had known about some sort of support group or something. I mean, my blog readers and friends online were overwhelmingly supportive when I announced my mother's breast cancer diagnosis.

That's why today I wanted to share the Pet360 community for Pet Cancer Support. The group is a "support group for pet parents who are caring for a pet who has been diagnosed with cancer".


Pet Cancer Support

If there is one thing I've learned about people who love their animals since I've been a pet blogger, it's that they are some of the nicest and most supportive people out there. I wish I had known about a Pet Cancer Support group like this when I learned about Kitty Kitty Meow Meow. 

Even if your pet does not have cancer, I still think it's nice to stop by and leave words of encouragement to those who need it. 

You can also find many more wonderful groups at Pet360. It's a great place to network with other like-minded pet lovers and pet parents. 

Did you know that it's a good idea to check your pet for lumps and bumps on a regular basis? Here's a great video that shares some tips about checking your dog for lumps. This is a great way to be pro-active in your pet's health.

And for those of us who have lost a loved one to cancer or for any other unfortunate reason, these tips from Carol Bryant and Pet360 can help your pet grieve the loss of their friends. These tips are helpful whether the pet's loss is a human or a fur-sibling.

This post is sponsored by Pet360. I am being compensated for spreading the word about Pet360.com, but Pawsitively Pets only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers and everything in this post is truthful. 

40 comments:

  1. Great information Ann, will do regular checks on Mollie and Alf. Thank you for putting our shop on your side bar, your a star xxooxxx

    Mollie and Alfie

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    1. No problem guys. Like I said, I'd rather put yours there for now because the other is doing no good for me. I may change that section sometime, but I don't know when.

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  2. Thanks for this interesting post. Our fox terrier died in case of breast cancer. I will visit this site immediately :o)

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    1. So sorry to hear that Easy! I hope the site is useful for you...

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  3. A very good reminder about breast cancer in humans AND animals Ann.....I'm sorry about your Mom but I know with her family supporting her, she'll fight the fight! I have survived a cancer diagnosis and treatment more than once in my life (not breast cancer) and I know that love and hope are key. In the case of a pet, treatments can be incredibly expensive as can surgery and it's often difficult. All we can do is what we CAN do...and sometimes it's giving our beloved pet what we can in the way of comfort and love from the humans they know and trust.

    Pam

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    1. Thank you Pam. I'm sorry to hear about your cancer experience, but glad you were able to fight it off! Unfortunately, I know more about pet cancer than I would like to =/

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  4. So sorry to hear about your mum, hope its not too progressed. Mummy's friend has recently recovered from stage 3 breast cancer and has been given the all clear.
    Thanks for reminding us about pets getting it too, mummy will be checking me more thoroughly in the future!

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    1. Glad to hear that Misaki :) I mean about your mum checking you. I don't know much about my mum's cancer because I don't think the doctor's have told her much. They are working kind of slowly... at least to me anyways.

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  5. Again so sorry to hear about your mom. My mom can totally relate but so much good technology nowadays, she will be fine.
    Interesting how our mind works this week as we have an upcoming post about Breast Cancer too (a short one). You've share great information from Pet360. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

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    1. Thank you Sugar :) I hope she will be fine, but I'm sure things will turn out OK. I look forward to your breast cancer post.

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  6. The evil cancer is horrible for all species.

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  7. This is indeed good to know. Thank you.
    I am so sorry about your Mom and Kitty Kitty Meow Meow. I hope your Mom can get rid of the nasty cancer.
    Lots of purrs

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    1. Same here Texas! Glad I can help spread the word about this.

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  8. Sorry for the loss of your kitty. I did not know they could also get breast cancer. My thoughts and prayers are with your mom also. Thank you for this post.
    Sue B

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    1. Thank you Sue. I'm glad that I can spread the word about this for those people who do not already know.

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  9. Always good to remember and check our furry friends.

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  10. If you get a dog spayed before its first heat there is about a 99% chance that they will never get breast cancer, the chances increase with each heat and the dog's age. Another great reason to spay your dog! Mom checks ALL my breasts for lumps once a month, just like humans do since I was not spayed until I was a bit older.

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    1. You're exactly right Miss Emma. I have seen breast cancer in dogs that was just horrible. The sad part was that it could have been avoided if they had been spayed. They were all still intact and their tumors were just awful.

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  11. Thank you for these informations Ann. Sending prayers for your mother. xxxx

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  12. So sorry to hear about your kitty. I never thought that animals could get breast cancer too. See, they really are just furry lil people. How is your mom making out?

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    1. Hey Bren, it's been up and down I guess. Mostly having to do with stuff about her living situation... She was getting mad at her doctors too for a whole minute. Still no surgery yet. I'm not sure if they even have a date for it.

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    2. I can understand her frustration. My prayers are still with her.

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  13. We were hoping your mom would have found something out by now (especially a surgery date). We're sure this waiting has you all on pins and needles through every waking moment (and probably a lot of sleeping moments too). You're right about support being so important when cancer invades someone's life. Everyone needs support through it because it's such a big unknown, and minds can be all over the place with it. Keeping a positive focus on the job at hand is so important because those "what ifs" can be like poison no matter what you're dealing with in your life. Support groups like the one you're showcasing here help in innumerable ways. Animals are so lucky to have you on their side!

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    1. Thanks Vlad, Barkly, and Dee. Thankfully, my mom has found some great support from others besides myself. I'm glad there is some sort of support system for pets out there as well!

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  14. Oh Ann I'm so sorry for what your mother is going through! My heart goes out to you both!<3 Lots of Hugs, Francesca

    P.S. Kitty Kitty Meow Meow was so beautiful, and I love the name you gave her!

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    1. Thanks Francesca - regarding the cat's name, I cannot take credit lol... my brother actually named her ;)

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  15. This is great information, Ann, I'm so glad you shared it. I don't think I knew what had happened to your kitty, I'm sorry, and even more so that now you have to go through it with your Mom.
    Support groups are really a great thing.

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  16. I am glad for the update on your Mom, although sorry you are having to wait so long for a surgery date for her. Your information about breast cancer in pets was very informative; I did not know that pets could get breast cancer (although I lost a cat several years ago to a different type of cancer). After reading through the information I particularly appreciated Emma's response regarding late spaying and cancer. Hopefully most of my pets will be somewhat protected as spayed early, although I have one kitty (little Miss Lucy) that did come into heat once before I could get her spayed.

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    1. Yes, Emma is absolutely right about spaying. Sometimes I worry with my own dog, as she was spayed late in life. KKMM came to us spayed, and I have no idea what age it was done at. She just showed up on our doorstep one day so I don't have much history on her.

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  17. We check Allie regularly as she was spayed at just over 1 year when they dumped her at our shelter. Please don't feel bad about not treating KKMM - you know how radical that tx is, and how it has to be bilateral, and it always comes back. Plus, there's no way to explain to a kitty why you're putting them through all this pain and agony. It is totally reasonable to choose to let them live out their lives as you did!

    How is your mom holding up? And did you get a second opinion - and were you peased with the results?

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    1. Hey guys - thanks. The thing with KKMM is that even before the breast cancer, I wasn't sure how long she was going to live. She had some breathing issues one summer that really had me worried, but she pulled through that just fine.

      My mom is doing OK. Still no surgery date and no second opinion. I brought it up to her and she didn't like that idea either because she had already been waiting so long at this place. She has a hard head :)

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    2. MOL! Most humans do have hard heads, we've discovered (HA!).

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  18. So terribly sorry to hear about your mom, Ann. I have many clients and friends who lost their pets to cancer :-( It's heartbreaking!

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    1. Same here. Have had to assist in putting many people's cancer sick pets down. It's never fun :(

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  19. Thanks for the great information!

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  20. Thank you so much for sharing this info. Our hearts go out to you and your mother.
    My grandma was a breast cancer survivor and we'll be sending lots of healing thoughts your way.

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  21. great post Ann,nasty thing cancer in any shape or form,I have lost to many family members to it but some made a full recovery but not all,xx Rachel

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