Unfortunately our pets can suffer from many of the same forms of cancer that humans do. Our vets are trained in both the diagnosis and treatment of all forms of cancer in pets and are consistently updating their skins in new forms of treatment including chemotherapy, radiation oncology, surgery and immunotherapy.
Recently one of our practice owners, Dr Ben Brown, commenced treatment of an aggressive form of skin cancer in a 13 year old Poodle Cross, with a new form of cancer treatment in collaboration with Royal North Shore Hospital, The University of Sydney and the CSIRO.
Samples of the dog’s cancer have been used to create a vaccine to stimulate the immune system to kill cancer cells. This treatment is much cheaper, safer and carries less side effects than conventional cancer treatments. It has also been shown in preliminary trials to be highly effective for certain kinds of cancer.
Results of these new treatments in pets will be used to determine if similar treatments can be used in humans in the future. We all have our fingers (and paws) crossed for our patient Pepsi to make a full recovery!
Our vets also treat cancer using the latest chemotherapy protocols in conjunction with specialist oncologists. It is important to point out that the doses of medications that our veterinarians administer to pets for chemotherapy are much less than those used in humans. This is because our pets have a shorter natural lifespan compared to humans and so we are trying to achieve remission of cancer (i.e. no active progression of disease) rather than cure of cancer (elimination of all cancer cells from the body, as is done in many human cases).
This means that many of the adverse side effects associated with chemotherapy treatment in humans are not experienced in pets e.g. pets do not suffer from hair loss and often feel much better during treatment of their cancer than they did prior. The goal of all our chemotherapy treatments is to consistently improve both quality and quantity of life both during and after treatment.
If your pet has a strange lump or bump do not wait to see what happens, get it checked by one of our team to ensure your pet stays happy and healthy. www.sydneyanimalhospitals.com.au