My 12 year old Maltese has been pretty sick.  They finally diagnosed it as they think pancreatitis.

She's been in the hospital two days, had a bunch of tests.  I might get to take her home today.  She's had about every test to the tune of about $2,400 so she's otherwise healthy.  She does have a heart murmur she's had since she was a puppy............was wondering whether to put her down at $500 a day in the hospital!  But she's going to make it I think.  Could live another 3 to 5 years. 

I would like to know others' experience with their dogs if they've ever had pancreatitis and if you have a Maltese how long they lived.


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I've been there.  I had a toy poodle.  Did great up to about age 13.  This was fifteen years ago, but you don't forget.  You put money into the pet.  You watch them be sick.  You feel awful.  Things get worse.  My dog was sick (cancer, had it cut out three times) for two years.  The dog was almost fifteen.  One particular Saturday morning was bad.  I ended up finding a vet open and took him and had him put to sleep.  It was horrible, for the pet and for me.


In your situation, the pet may live for another two years.  But that doesn't mean it will be a healthy two years.  You may get to a point where the pet is going downhill fast, and you keep spending money fruitlessly.  That is a decision that is tough to make.  For me, next time I will not let things get to that point.



I don't have a Maltese, but I just put a cat down that had cancer and I had him on chemo and other drugs to keep him alive as long as I possibly could.  I only put him to sleep when it was obvious there was absolutely no quality of life left.  Hard decision but had to be made.


If your doggie seems happy and there's quality of life, I'd say continue with treatment if, of course, you can afford it.  Money has to become an issue at some point.  It's a tough decision and brings tons of tears.  I'm sorry about your sick pooch, Kerry.  We've all been there and it's not fun.   Pets enrich out lives so much that it is worth every second we get to spend with them.

Good news.  I went to visit her and we got her to eat soft food from a syringe.  Her pain is much better so they are letting me take her home this evening.  She'll be on pain meds and anti-nausea meds.  I think I'll get away with about $2,300 total. But you know what's really good.............she's had all these tests and there's nothing else wrong with her anywhere, which is good to know.  If my dogs ever got cancer, I would definitely put them down before treating it with chemo or surgery............

Both my Maltese have been pretty darn healthy.  I feed them really good dog food and treats from the health food stores, no preservatives, no wheat/gluten, no chicken...........FYI, I just don't think chicken is all that good for dogs even though they love it.  Turkey is okay, though.

Thanks for your replies!

Let us know how the dog does.


For anyone reading, as the vet told me, most crap dog food is loaded with carcinogens.  I don't remember the name of the dog food I gave him, but it's still on the market.  It comes in a box and is packaged like a burger.  The vet told me animals like the food they eat because of additives to addict the pet to that particular food.

I gave my cat - FYI - chemo because all it is is a small pill every other day.  It's not like people chemo.  I also have another cat with cancer, as well.  He's on chemo too.  Makes me wonder what I've done wrong.  I changed the water to only filtered for everyone.  Who knows.  Anyway, my cats don't throw up or lose their hair like people.  If that was the case, I wouldn't do it.  Just didn't want you to think I would put my pets through such a horrible situation.


Even if I had cancer, I would never do chemo.  Unless, of course, it was just a pill and I felt fine afterwards.  But for us, that's not the case unfortunately.

My sister's dog had cancer.  Her dog is in remission after chemo.

I agree it is a hard call to make but sometimes it's worth it to do the treatment if the animal will have quality of life.

I strongly believe that for animals to get cancer, it is something toxic in their environment or something they are ingesting (possibly genetics can play a role in animals, too) that causes food.  Most dog foods, even the vet sold and vet recommended have stuff in them that are not good for cats.  I have always given my dogs food and treats with no wheat/gluten and no preservatives.  Just because it says "all natural" doesn't mean it's the best food.  I don't think chicken is good for dogs at all, don't know about cats on that.  I personally like this "Taste of the Wild" grain free dog food. 

Didn't know chemo was just a pill.   Guess it would depend on the age and overall health of the dog if I'd do it if they got cancer.

Kerry, my sister has researched the food angle and totally agrees with you.  She has put her dog on an anti-cancer diet.  My sister says that carbs/sugar feed cancer so she is making food for her dog.  All of her dog's tests are coming back as excellent even when she was on chemo.  She also got oxygenated water for her family and her dog.

I also am having almost the same problem with my dog, a Dahshund (sorry, I know I spelled it wrong.).  I spent almost $500 on testing to find out she has an enlarged liver and pancreas, along with a mild urinary tract infection (I didn't know dogs could get them), but that was back in September, so she's taken all her meds, but she still cannot walk up the stairs, I have to carry her, and she seems sad, not as active.  My husband said I should put her down, it's not fair to her.  My sisters have said not to because she's eating and going to the bathroom normal.  The only thing that scares me is that when she's breathing, she sounds like she has fluid in her lungs.  It reminds me when my mother was passing from pancreatic cancer and her breathing. 



I found this remedy online and made it for my dog.  Fennel seeds, fenugreek and parsley for pancreatitis.  I made some up tonight and gave her some.  I think it is helping.  I already know about these herbs and their uses and it makes sense.

Rosalie...the hardest decision you'll have have to make in your life, I swear.    People say 'you'll know.'     All I can say is they are right ...I knew in 10 seconds when it was time to put my mini schnauzer down.     I knew she no longer was enjoying her life...even though there were still some things she could do.     When we take our emotions out of it, and think only of our beloved pets, we know the right time.   It's never easy but it's  the right thing to do.

And to be frank...what helped me most was I came home from the vet and took the longest acting sleeping pill I could and went to bed for 8 hours.  I can't say I woke up feeling great, but it helped me past the hysterical stage.   Hugs to you!


My little schnauzer had chronic pancreatitis for years.  She'd gotten into chicken manure (full of rice hulls) and it was a difficult battle.  She was on a special diet from the vet (canned but mostly water content) and she did great.  Every once in a while I'd feel bad for her eating the same food every day and I would give her a 'treat.'  Then she'd get pancreatitis again.


The remedy is no food for 4 days, which means hospitalization typically or now you can take your pup in the a.m. to the vet, have them pumped full of fluids which dissipate over 24 hours, and do the same thing for 4 days.  Unfortunately it took me at least 4 hospitalizations and a very sick dog to realize this was happening, and let's face it...doggies get into things they shouldn't.   My little pup lived to be 15, even with all these episodes!   So follow the consistent and recognize any treat could upset the balance.


The other lesson I learned when my new pup was only 6 weeks   My new pup is now 12 and VPI Insurance has been a god send.    Way better than my personal health insurance!.


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