We are experiencing an epidemic in the pet world. Cancer. We know that it is one of the most prevalent diseases in people, as we see with Pink Month and other fundraising and awareness programs for humans. Our pets can be just as hard hit by cancer, and have few resources to address the issue.
Too many of our beloved companion animals are taken from us early because of this disease. Sometimes, people will take heroic measures, chemo, radiation, surgery, but more often than not, a care and comfort decision is made. Without insurance, the burden of treatment can be daunting, with even a positive outcome not yielding a long term benefit as, unlike humans who can have decades of healthy life after beating cancer, pets just don't live that long. Which leaves us with an agonizing decision when cancer strikes.
Like with us, our pets can benefit from a healthier lifestyle in trying to avoid diseases like cancer. Cleaner, healthier eating is never a bad thing for anyone. Adding in antioxidants and other "anti-cancer" foods into the diet never hurts. Superfoods, like blueberries, goji fruits, kale and the like are never a bad thing for anyone to consume, if you can get them to eat them.
Regular checkups for early detection are always a front line in treatment, some problems are easily manageable if detected early. Getting suspicious lumps and bumps checked can stop a small issue from becoming terminal.
I'm not saying there is a silver bullet cure for cancer in pets, far from it. But recently, there have been some new ideas come to light, adn many vets out there advising that you do not have to give up once a diagnosis is made.
The biggest buzz out there is about ketogenic diets and their role in fighting cancer. Basically, by removing non fiberous carbohydrates (starches/sugars), it is believed that you take away a primary fuel for cancer. Once the pet is relying on burning fat for fuel rather than sugars, it apparently
There are many online resources reporting on this, and many vets that are recommending that this is a viable treatment option. Many who had nothing to lose by trying this have found amazing results. People like Rodney Habib and Dr. Susan Becker (both easily found on Facebook, or using Google searches) have a lot of information about these new therapies, as well as ketopet.com, a website devoted to this therapy.
As always, it is important to work with your veterinarian when addressing any health issue. Some may not be comfortable or familiar with these new ideas, and it may be necessary to seek out one that is. There are a number of holistic or integrative vets now working in Winnipeg, and they are great resources for a second opinion on how to treat or even help prevent your companion from becoming a victim of cancer.