In early October, 2011 Marti, our beloved beagle, was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer. An ultrasound performed by Dr. McCaw revealed suspicious abnormalities on Marti’s spleen.
Within an hour, Dr. Cloutier began the operation to remove her spleen. The biopsy performed on the abnormalities revealed the presence of the cancer. Without additional treatment, her life expectancy might have been as little as several months. We were devastated, because Marti had been our loving pet for 11 years.
Dr. Cloutier advised that we speak with Dr. Keene about chemotherapy for Marti. Within several days we met with Dr. Keene, who recommended that Marti receive a series of chemotherapy treatments in the hope of prolonging a high quality of life for her. The treatments were completed by the middle of January, and Marti was her old self. All ultrasounds and X-rays through the spring were negative, Marti remained vigorous and energetic, and we were becoming increasingly optimistic that Marti might beat her cancer.
The bad news came on July 18. An ultrasound showed an abnormality in a portion of her liver, indicating that the cancer had returned. Because of where the tumor was located in her liver, it was inoperable. After discussing the situation with Dr. Keene, we decided that Marti would receive a chemotherapy treatment. Dr. Keene spent considerable time trying to determine the best drug with which to treat Marti. Unfortunately, Marti did not tolerate the treatment well.
Dr. Keene then spent more time, including consulting with specialists in canine oncology, trying to find a solution that offered at least some hope for temporarily slowing the spread of Marti’s cancer. Although there were options, none provided any real hope. Even though Dr. Keene offered to continue searching, because Marti’s life was still high quality we opted to forgo any further treatment and allow her to live the rest of her life as comfortably as possible. Marti ultimately passed away on November 8, 2012 at age 13 years and 5 months.
We are very grateful for the wonderful, caring treatment that Marti received at the Veazie Veterinary Clinic and the interest and concern for her well-being shown by the veterinarians and technicians that were involved in her care. We are grateful to Dr. Cloutier for performing the operation to remove Marti’s spleen literally on the spur of the moment and especially grateful to Dr. Keene and those working with her to provide Marti’s chemotherapy treatment. Without their efforts Marti’s life might have been shortened substantially, and we would have been denied the additional time during which we were able to see her beautiful face and experience her loving disposition and devoted companionship.