Clementine – boxer kisses fully intact
Every month Clementine and her sister Maggie would come rushing into my office for their monthly acupuncture. Clem is great at wagging her whole body in excitement and giving boxer kisses and Maggie would run around looking for the treats.
After I had handed out treats and let them get some of the bounces out, I would hold my breathe as I would lift up Clementine’s upper lip and inspect the area underneath. Every month I would smile at their human Wendy and say, “looks good” and then we would move into putting the small acupuncture needles into the spots on her body that help to boost immunity and control cancer. For 12 months I did this and the finally time she came I smiled even more than normal. Clem had been in remission for twelve months – the oncologist had said that the cancer would come back in that time. It hadn’t, she had beat it with the herbal and natural treatments we had used to help her body fight back.
I had worked with Clementine or Clem as she was often called, for many years to treat a horrible skin condition that had made her hair fall out and her skin as thick as an elephants. She had responded wonderfully to herbs and a diet shift and now her skin looked almost normal. She had a small lump on her upper lip and when it suddenly grew larger we discovered it was a mast cell tumor. Boxers are pretty prone to these but it made sense to remove it and figure out how aggressive it was. Of all the cancers I treat mast cells are often the least invasive and the easiest to deal with but some can be highly aggressive so it is good to know what grade they are.
Clem came through the surgery wonderfully but when the biopsy results came back it was discovered that the cancer cells went to the edges of the tissue removed, in other words we had not gotten all the cancer. We also learned that the tumor was a grade 2 mast cell, which is not the most aggressive, but not the least either. Her veterinarian went back to do surgery a second time, taking more tissue and once again was not able to get all the cancer. Because of the location he was afraid to do a third surgery and referred her to one of the local oncologists. If we did nothing this tumor would definitely come back again but further surgery would probably involve having to reconstruct her lip area which for a boxer who likes to kiss is a big deal.
The oncologist recommended full diagnostics to make sure the cancer had not spread. After getting a clean ultrasound and lymph node aspirate we felt pretty certain we were just dealing with the one spot, good news!
The oncologist gave Clem and her family a few options
- Do nothing and it will come back within the year, probably much sooner than that
- Further surgery, which would involve reconstructing her lip, would be expensive and held no guarantee that we would get all the cancer.
- A series of 15 radiation treatments that would risk burning the healthy tissue, would require anesthesia and would cost over $5000. This gave us the best chance of remission, 95% but also held the most risk especially for a cancer that was not very aggressive. It also could leave her permanently scared and there was a risk of damaging her eyes as well.
- Chemotherapy, which only held about a 60% chance of preventing reoccurrence, would be expensive and potentially have side effects.
To her family and me none of these sounded that promising. I also felt like we had a really good chance to get remission without using anything toxic or harmful. I find that if we can get cancer down to a microscopic level that natural therapies can very often take care of the small amount of cancer cells that are remaining. Clem’s family agreed that natural options held a better chance of remission without risking hurting her body and we began treating her.
Clem was already on a raw high protein diet but her family started growing their own broccoli sprouts to add to that. Wendy did some online research and found that the broccoli sprouts were higher in the cancer fighting ingredients than mature broccoli was. In addition she was put on one of my main cancer formulas for mast cell tumors, Xue Fu Zhu Yu Tang in addition to Coenzyme Q10, IP6 and medicinal mushrooms. We also started her on monthly acupuncture treatments to booster her immune system and help her body to fight the cancer.
It has been a few months since I have seen Clem and I miss her bouncy Boxer ways. She has that sly way of boxer kissing that would knock you over if you were not careful. And these days she looks beautiful – she has a shiny coat, an extra bounce in her step and a sparkle of mischief in her eyes. You wouldn’t believe that this is a dog who is not only a cancer survivor but also was half hairless before. As much as I miss seeing her and her sister Maggie I’m happy that we reached that point where she doesn’t need my treatments anymore. And a while back the two dog sisters got to move to one of our northwest islands where they have more space to play and run through the fields and on the beaches. I often picture her and Maggie, two happy dogs running into the wind down a long stretch of beach without a care in the world.