The Norman Transcript


April 4, 2013

Dignity of an old, afflicted dog



Your story of Loki reminds me of a captive kit fox who deposited morsels of food around his cage mate who had died suddenly. As with humans, saving food can be a token of affection. For Loki, perhaps not gobbling the food he found in the street but bringing it home to eat in a civilized manner was a tribute to his preferred existence under your roof.

Dear Dr. Fox: I just lost my third dog to cancer. They were all about 10 years old. They all had a sudden onset of acute symptoms, followed closely with euthanasia after finding metastatic disease.

By the time the symptoms appear, it is usually too late for treatment. My heart is breaking for this most recent loss.

Is there any clinical way to prevent this?

— K.W., Tacoma Park, Md.

Dear K.W.: My sympathies go out to you and all those people in your situation, where cancer is discovered in a beloved animal and it has spread so much that nothing can be done.

Part of the problem is that it is not always easy to know when an animal is in pain or not felling well. Whenever in doubt, go to the veterinarian. Also go to the veterinarian every six to nine months for a checkup when you have an animal in the “old age” category and annually up to the end of middle age, which can be around 6 or 7 for some breeds and 9 or 10 for others.

Going in on this schedule, and not just when the animal needs shots or seems ill, can lead to early detection of cancer, which means that effective treatment would be better assured.

Send all mail to or to Dr. Michael Fox in care of Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106. The volume of mail received prohibits personal replies, but questions and comments of general interest will be discussed in future columns.

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Ceremony marks opening of community center

    A July 23 ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the addition of another feature to the Chickasaw Nation Carter service campus in Ardmore....

    July 27, 2014

  • Chickasaw Cultural Center a terrific place to visit

    SULPHUR — The Chickasaw Cultural Center is a magnificent tribute to a proud people and their storied heritage. Located an easy hour’s drive south from Norman, it’s among the finest travel destinations in Oklahoma. Set on 109 scenic acres, ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Prisoner re-entry planning for offenders with mental illness

    People leaving incarceration face a variety of challenges even without a diagnosis of mental illness. But for those who face mental health issues, re-entry into society can be troublesome. That is the topic in the first of the 2014 Fall ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Exhibit takes families on food expedition

    If your palate enjoys culinary diversity or if you’re interested in introducing new flavors to your family, join the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History in tasting international delights and create your own treat during Family ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Resident makes art in new home

    There’s an old saying about a picture being “worth a thousand words,” which took on a literal meaning recently....

    July 27, 2014

  • Parents should work on themselves first

    I absolutely love it when people begin to realize that the problems they’re having with a child are of their own making; when they begin to realize, in other words, that the child is not the problem — they are. All this time (however long ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Helping cat with first veterinarian visit

    Dear Dr. Fox: A stray kitty adopted me a couple months ago and has since been tamed enough that I have found a vet to neuter him and do some much-needed dental work. My fear is that the poor boy will be so traumatized by this ordeal that ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Veterans Corner needs volunteer to drive residents to OKC VA

    Veterans Corner volunteer of the week David Sudduth has been with us for the last eight years. He is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force who served during the Vietnam War. David and his wife, Carolyn, have had their home in the Newalla area ...

    July 23, 2014

  • Low-cost and free cell phone options for thrifty seniors

    Dear Savvy Senior, What are the cheapest cell phone options available today to seniors living on a shoestring budget? I only need it for occasional calls. — Seldom Calling Senior Dear Seldom, For financially challenged seniors who only ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Harrah residents at home in restored vintage camper

    Sulphur — David Wiegert was quick to help a couple of newbie campers at the Buckhorn Campground on Arbuckle Lake in the Chickasaw National Recreation Area. What Dave offered was badly needed advice on setting up travel trailers, where to ...

    July 20, 2014