Gabe Update…Black Labs, Vets, and Pills

Many have been asking about Gabe — thought I would dedicate today’s post to his current health and welfare.

First off, here’s a photo from the other day — he looks good, but his health continues to pose problems.


Gabe has liver cancer, and he’s just finished Day 141 post diagnosis. We’ve had two close calls – the first at the end of October, the second a few weeks ago when his face swelled up like a puffer fish and he had trouble breathing, all related to swollen facial lymph nodes.

He’s now controlled on Denamrin (for his Liver), Prednisone (steroid), Lasix (diuretic), Interferon, Resources CAS Options and Resources Blood and Energy supplements (for his anemia). He also takes Desaquin for muscle and joint pain, but frankly, I don’t think it does anything.

Over the past week, his breathing has become increasingly more labored, lots of panting and difficulty sleeping. We went for a short walk in the park across the street this morning and a 500 foot walk did him in for the day. But he has plenty of energy at home most of the day, is eating like a horse, and likes to sit outside in the backyard looking at the neighbor dogs. During the past couple weeks he has stopped playing. He has always lived for stuffed animals — tossing them around, chewing at them, and squeeking them for hours at a time. He hasn’t even looked at one of them in the past three weeks. I leave them scattered around the house, but he doesn’t give them a second thought.

The Vet is counting his remaining days in weeks, not months; but so far, he’s certainly proven to be the “miracle dog” that the Vet called him a few weeks ago. There is definitely no pain involved, and his golden days are happy and comfortable. It certainly attests to what good medication can do to prolong a dog’s life, beyond even what the Vet expected. He’s also getting spoiled and I basically let him eat whatever he wants — despite that, he’s lost about 8 pounds during the past two weeks.

I won’t update this unless there is a change in status, in which case there will be more to say. For now, thanks to everyone for thinking of us, and Gabe is hanging in there. He gives everyone a big dog bark and a lick.

One thought on “Gabe Update…Black Labs, Vets, and Pills

  1. Hi…
    I just about literally stumbled upon your blog because I was doing a search on Adray Camera (I work at the Dearborn store 🙂 ) and I clicked on your link about pets.

    First off, I am so very sorry to hear about your beautiful dog being diagnosed w/ liver cancer. I hope this message finds Gabe doing well!

    Our dog Sheiba was diag. w/ liver cancer about three years ago. She underwent an emergency surgery to remove over half of her liver, and the vets didn’t think she’d survive even a few days afterwards.

    My Mom is an absolute vitamin nut. Ever since then, we have been cooking homemade food for her and my other dog, and Sheiba has been getting Sam-E as well as Milk Thistle vitamins along w/ others. What a remarkable turnaround… she is like a new puppy!

    If you can get a hold of the book “Hope For Healing Liver Disease In Dogs”, (I think that’s the title) it may be of some help.

    I know how hard it is to watch such a great dog go through all of this. Best of luck to you and your four-legged friend!

    Carolyn Hendra

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