November 4, 2010
That was the date; the date that would change Rilley’s life. It was exactly two years ago today that Rilley began the experimental treatment that would eventually see him cured of cancer and in his own small way contribute to the field of cancer research. While there have been many other dogs in the trial, some with much more aggressive tumours than he and some who have lost the battle, they all deserve to be recognized for their part in this important study.
It’s hard to believe that so much time has passed since Rilley’s surgery. It is equally difficult to realize that his year-long participation in Dr. Ohlfest’s clinical trial ended a full year ago. Despite all the time that has passed, it still seems strange that we no longer need to plan return trips to the Twin Cities; it was beginning to feel like a second home.
Sure there have been some moments when we were concerned about his wellbeing, a couple of incidents involving focal and minor breakthrough seizures, but nothing that has caused us concern that the tumour had returned. A slight adjustment to his medication seemed to take care of these issues and all is well. Speaking of medication, he is still taking anti-seizure capsules three times a day and will remain on those for life. A couple of things have made this a bit easier to manage. The first being Dr. James' recommendation of a veterinary pharmacy out of Arizona that makes it a bit more affordable to buy this volume of medication. The second, which is of the utmost importance to Rilley, is the existence of Greenie’s pill pockets. This is where his boundless appetite works to our advantage. If it weren’t for these wonderful little morsels pill time would be much more difficult...and they now come in a peanut butter flavour!
Needless to say, our family is thrilled that Rilley is doing so well after all this time. He seems just as full of energy as any other dog his age, perhaps even more so. There doesn't appear to be any evidence to suggest that I won’t be sitting here two years from now writing another similar update.
Happy two years Rilley!!!!