Is it wrong to use chemotherapy to treat a pet with cancer? | The Tylt
Is it wrong to use chemotherapy to treat a pet with cancer?
Veterinary experts say chemotherapy for dogs and cats is much milder than it is for humans. 75 to 80 percent of dogs experience no side effects from chemo.
The goal of chemotherapy in animals is different than for humans, which is why treatment is less aggressive. With pets, the primary goal of chemotherapy is to provide your cat or dog with the best quality of life for as long as possible.
"We don’t treat them as aggressively. Their quality of life is most important. Unlike human oncology, it’s quality-of-life, not life-at-all-costs.”
Sure, most animals won't experience negative side effects but some will and, when present, typical side effects include loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Critics say owners are putting their own emotional neediness ahead of an animal's right not to be subjected to unnecessary suffering. And is it right to spend that kind of money on pets when millions of Americans lack access to basic medical care?
Just saw a quote from Joaquin Phoenix saying that being kind to an animal takes nothing away from a human. True, within limits. Example: chemotherapy for pets. I love my canine and feline critters, but... there are HUMANS who don't get that level of care. I couldn't do it.
Others say it's simply wrong to spend tens of thousands of dollars prolonging an animal's life. These are pets, not children.
In an era when people spend big on animal clothes, artisanal foods and medical intervention, and when medical science makes it possible to spend $5,000 so Jack dies slightly later than sooner, there is pressure to go as far as we can.
But others say critics are ignorant about the differences between chemo in animals and humans, and that vets absolutely strive to preserve a quality of life for animals with cancer.
Don’t listen to myths about pet cancer treatment or equate a person’s experience to a pet’s experience. Veterinarians are sworn to preserve both the extent of a pet’s life and the quality of a pet’s life. Because of this, veterinarians use less-toxic doses of cancer-fighting medications. Most often, pets do NOT suffer the same side effects as people do, and if they do, the veterinarian can dispense medication to treat those effects successfully.