May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month and this week is the American Veterinary Medical Association’s annual celebration of National Pet Week. We thought it was a perfect time to call attention to a wonderful veterinary story from the Ohio State College of Veterinary Medicine about Linda Becker, a retired pediatric nurse and owner of 5-year-old Doberman Keela.
Linda noticed an enlarged lump on Keela’s leg that was not improving. As a responsible pet owner, Linda took Keela to her local veterinarian where she was diagnosed with probable osteosarcoma.
Her veterinarian suggested contacting The Ohio State’s Blue Buffalo Veterinary Clinical Trials Office to ask about clinical trials that Keela could potentially qualify for. Linda called that same day and headed to the Veterinary Medical Center the very next morning where Keela was diagnosed with osteosarcoma of her left leg. She enrolled Keela in the clinical trial on Tuesday, January 31, 2017, and her front left leg was amputated just 3 days later. Keela did very well through the trial with little to no problems and continues follow-up evaluations and lung scans every eight weeks.
Linda expresses how unbelievably supportive the doctors and staff at Ohio State have been with both her and Keela, “I have bred and raised Dobermans since 1968 and Keela is my soulmate. I have never had a Doberman like her. I’m thankful for every day of quality time that she and I share thanks to the clinical trial. I would have lost her two years ago without it. I am a retired pediatric nurse and feel very hopeful that this study might help children who are faced with osteosarcoma as well.”
The Integrated Oncology Service at Ohio State’s Veterinary Medical Center is comprised of a team of cancer doctors with specialties in medical, surgical and radiation oncology, working together with clients and their family veterinarian, from initial consultation and diagnosis, through the prescription and implementation of a treatment plan. There are less than 10 veterinary schools to offer this type of care for patients. Clinical trials are a vital part of the Integrated Oncology Service and are managed by the Blue Buffalo Veterinary Clinical Trials Office (BBVCTO) at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. These clinical trials provide innovative treatments and procedures across all specialty services for pet owners who are interested in enrolling their pets.