PAWS FOR THOUGHT AS SOUTHFIELDS LAUNCHES CANCER CAMPAIGN
A heroic Northern Inuit named Zeus is the poster boy for a new animal cancer awareness campaign by a leading veterinary referral centre.
Southfields Veterinary Specialists, in Essex, believes cancer hero Zeus is the perfect choice to launch its online #pawsforcancer campaign, as he’s successfully undergone chemotherapy treatment at the practice twice.
The nine-year-old’s first case was in 2016 when he was diagnosed with multicentric lymphoma. He made a successful recovery after treatment at Southfields, before this year overcoming a relapse of his lymphoma which, this time, affected his nose.
Southfields Oncology Residency Programme Director Aaron Harper, who is a European and RCVS Recognised Specialist in Oncology and also holds the RCVS Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice (Small Animal Medicine), said: “Zeus is a remarkable character who really epitomises what this Paws for Cancer campaign is all about.
“He is a Southfields cancer hero, one of the many patients we have undergoing cancer treatment here very successfully.
“His experiences were tough but help highlight the fact that here at Southfields, we are one of the UK’s best equipped cancer centres with a dedicated staff of experts delivering impressive results.
“Even in an advanced or complex case, where we may not be able to achieve a total cure, there are often treatments we can provide which will improve quality of life and extend the time with pets.
“We use many of the same treatments in pets that are used in people, such as surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, and this multimodal approach gives us the best opportunity to beat cancer.
“Our priority is always patients’ quality of life and, therefore, we do everything we can to minimise the side effects associated with cancer treatment as we strive for the best results.”
Southfields, part of the Linnaeus Group, is renowned as one of the leading centres in the UK for the treatment of cancer in cats and dogs.
It is one of only a few specialist centres in the country to have a linear accelerator for irradiating tumours, while using advanced imaging and planning technology to help identify and monitor cancer to ensure the maximum response to treatment and the best possible outcome in even the most complex cases.
Launching its unique #pawsforcancer campaign, Daniel Hogan, operations manager at Southfields, said: “Unfortunately, cancer is one of the most common causes of death in our pets. Statistics show one in four dogs and one in six cats will develop cancer during their lifetime.
“All patients undergoing treatment for cancer at Southfields will receive a ‘Cancer Hero’ bandana to wear with pride and highlight there are many options when curing, treating and managing cancer.
“We’re asking people to help us raise awareness by sharing photos on social media of their amazing cancer heroes wearing our bandanas, along with #pawsforcancer.
“Every month until January 2020, there will be a hamper available for the Cancer Hero who shows off the most on social media with them wearing their bandana with pride, with #pawsforcancer in the heading of each post.”
Zeus was originally one of Southfields’ complex cases, with his first bout of cancer being complicated by Addison’s disease which, at first, provoked an unusual and unexpected reaction to treatment.
His owner Laura Perry, a veterinary technician working with the Household Calvary in Knightsbridge, London, admitted it was a tough time.
Laura said: “Zeus was collapsing and really struggling at first and I think a lot of people might have given up on him at that point but my veterinary background helped me stick with it.
“I’d take his pulse, monitor him closely so I knew his vital signs were fine and he was actually still a happy dog most of the time – you certainly wouldn’t know he was battling cancer.
“I also realised it was important to go through the whole course of treatment and then assess the situation.
“Thankfully, at the end of it all there was no sign at all of any cancer, it was such a relief.
“Then this year it came back. I could hear he was snoring and snorting a lot and noticed his lymph glands were raised.
“We were referred to Southfields and, again, Zeus underwent a course of chemotherapy and came through it brilliantly.
“At the end, there was no sign at all of his nasal lymphoma and he’s now in full remission, which is wonderful. I can’t thank Southfields enough, their care and expertise were incredible on both occasions.
“Oncologist Slavka Necova dealt with Zeus both times and was absolutely fantastic. She has a wonderful way of explaining the situation to you, listening to your concerns and helping you and your pet through the toughest of times.”
Zeus also has his own dedicated Facebook page which can be found by searching ‘Team Zeus’.
Southfields also offers industry-leading specialist care in anaesthesia and analgesia, cardiology, dermatology, diagnostic imaging, feline medicine, internal medicine, neurology, orthopaedics, radiation and soft tissue surgery.
For more details on Southfields Veterinary Specialists, please visit www.southfields.co.uk.
More from Southfields Veterinary Specialists