Rex: The K-9 Hero Fighting Cancer
Team Member: Vincent Minervine
Adin Pfeuffer wrote -
Rex, an 8 year-old Belgian Malinois, is a true American hero who has served two tours of duty in Afghanistan as an Explosive Detection Dog. Taking part in combat missions, Rex saved countless American lives performing his duties detecting IEDs. While on a mission in Afghanistan’s Kabul Province in 2009, Rex was being transported in a military vehicle when a roadside IED detonated. Rex miraculously survived the explosion, but he was eventually retired because he was no longer able to work around loud noises and flashing lights.
Unfortunately, Rex has a new and deadlier enemy…CANCER.
Rex has served America, and now he needs your service via donations to fund the costly cancer treatments he requires. Let's form an army of 10,000 donors (or more) and start contributing to the care that this hero deserves. Any gift...$1.00...$5.00 or more will be greatly appreciated, and all proceeds will be put towards his treatment and care.
A news segment on Rex by WJLA in DC can be seen here:
People have asked about Rex's prognosis. Doctors at North Carolina State University's Radiation Oncology Department are hopeful that Rex's cancer was caught early enough that it can be treated to give him many more years. He is not out of the woods yet, but he is a very strong dog and will continue to fight this and beat it!
1/12/15: Rex seen at NCSU Vet School Oncology Department. He received 2 CT scans (1 of chest; 1 of head).
1/13/15: Recieved results of special stains test on the tumor that was removed from Rex's head. The results were inconclusive. Received the results of the CT scans from NCSU. The CT scan of the head showed the tumor along his tongue and throat to be 3.5-4mm in size. It also revealed another possible tumor in the muscle along the back of his neck. The CT scan of the chest revealed small spots in his lungs. It is unknown if these spots are indications of a spread of the cancer or if they are irritations in his lungs from the deployments overseas working in strenuous environments.
1/15/15: Received results of the C-Kit testing from the tumor in his neck. Indications are that the tumor is a sarcoma, but the tests were inconclusive. Rex received radiation (SRT) on tongue; 2 biopsies on spots on his neck. He is very groggy from the anesthesia, but he is doing well
1/16/15: Returned home to Virginia. Rex is doing well and recovering. Lots of sleeping, pets, and walks/runs in the dog park! We are awaiting results of the last 2 biopsies.
1/18/15: Rex is at home and recovering from the week of procedures. We are awaiting the results of the biopsies. He is tired but strong!
1/22/15: Biopsy results-SARCOMAS. Researching medical oncologists for a treatment plan for Rex's body for what looks to be the spread of the cancer.
1/27/15: Met with the oncology staff at Friendship Animal Hospital. Testing to determine type of sarcoma for chemo plan. Chemo to start as soon as we get the test results.
2/9/15: First round of chemo at Friendship Hospital for Animals in DC was today. Rex is doing well. Still a long road ahead! His next round of chemo is on Feb 24th.
2/12/15: Rex has been nauseous and had difficulty eating since treatment. Tough to see him this way! Changed meds & doing much better. Keep strong!
2/23/15: Rex is pretty much back to full energy level. He is still very picky about what he eats, but he is eating well. He has gotten into the habit of being hand-fed. Whatever it takes! Round 2 of chemo tomorrow...
2/25/15: Rex had round 2 of chemo yesterday. He is tired and his appetite is low. Overall he is good. Round 2 was much easier on him than the first! We will have 3 weeks before round 3.
3/2/15: Last week was tough. Rex would only eat by hand. His energy is high, but taste in food is constantly changing. He remains in good spirits and is doing well.