This is Shiva. He is three years old. He was hit by a car
when he was 6 months old and I had to save him. He's my best friend.
Dale Dae-Jin Pak
Monday February 2, 1998
Sigmund von Craig
On November 23, 2000 Sig went in to the Vet because of a swelling
on his front left leg. After x-rays and a biopsy, Dr. Karen Colson
diagnosed Sig as having Osteosarcoma (bone cancer). Karen referred
us to a specialist (surgeon) at Georgia Veterinary Specialists.
We met with Dr. Duvall on 12/4 and she recommended amputation
followed by chemotherapy. The surgery was done the next day 12/5.
The idea is to remove the tumor first and then try to slow the rate
at which existing cancer cells will reproduce or spread to other areas.
The surgery went well and Sig stayed the night after for monitoring.
Sig had the chemotherapy treatments on 12/27 & 12/28.
The first day was for the administration of Carboplatin and the second
day for Adriamycin. The first day didn't seem to slow him at all.
After the second day he showed a little fatigue but no nausea or
diarrhea. His lungs were x-rayed again on the first day and the
results were clear. The only worry now is that he may be susceptible
to infection in 2-3 days due to a lowered white blood cell count.
Dr. Derek Duval (the oncologist/Julie's husband) spoke very
optimistically about the overall results of these treatments
with dogs. Extensive research has been done in the past year
due to the fact that this type of cancer is the same as the
bone cancer (Osteosarcoma) that children get (ages 16-19).
There is an 75% that Sig will live more than 1 more year given
that he finishes the 3 add'l treatments and good chance that he
will live an add'l 2 years.
The shock of the potential loss of life of Sig helped me to
truly appreciate his pure and simple existence. It is extremely
difficult to overcome the selfish human emotions associated with
the sudden news of disease and potential loss of life.
Only through witnessing his personal touch with every person he
comes in contact with and the influence that he has on them do I
come to truly appreciate his simple existence. For a long time I
tried to expose or "push" my experiences and learnings on others
(non-dog types including family) while not realizing that all I
had to do was sit back and let Sig do his magic.
It has been said that by looking deep into one's dog that one
sees a reflection of himself. Sig has made me realize that the
reflection is purely all of the good minus every bit of the bad
and encompasses the good of everyone that he experiences. So now
when I think of Sig or the loss of Sig I also think of of the
people that he touched.