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Meet Dottie Lou! She is a sweet black lab mixed breed dog who was born December, 30, 2001 and adopted in the Spring of 2002 as a rescue puppy. She is , by nature, shy, reserved and a bit on the nervous side around strangers. To us, she is a happy, expressive and full of energy.

In August of 2009, a lump appeared on her right leg which I had checked out by our veterinarian in South Louisiana. He recommended immediate removal and testing which we did. It turned out to be a mass cell tumor (cancer). He believed it was fully removed but to be watchful for regrowth on her leg or any other lumps appearing. All seemed okay until September, 2011. A new lump had quickly developed in about the same spot as the first. A veterinarian did a biopsy and found it to be another mass cell tumor. Now what?

By this time, we had relocated to Monroe from South Louisiana and I searched for a new vet clinic. Luckily, I discovered Dr. White with Monroe Animal Health who checked Dottie out, looked at her history and asked me to work with his new vet on staff, Dr. Nicole West. Surgery was scheduled and completed quickly on October 18, 2011, but there was some bad news. There were still some cancer cells very close to the bone which could not be removed. Dr. West was wonderful to work with could see that we were not ready to throw in the towel on Dottie Lou. She gave me some options and consulted with a veterinary oncologist from LSU, where she had received her veterinary training. Together they came up with a treatment program for Dottie which could be administered locally at the Monroe Animal Health clinic. Chemotherapy treatments began relatively quickly and ran through much of the Spring. Dottie was a real trooper through all of the visits (mostly every other week), the shots and the lab work and sailed through those months with no sickness, hair loss or even loss of energy or appetite.

I am happy to report that Dottie Lou is doing well - happy and energetic and all signs are that the treatments were effective. She is watched closely, but I owe much to Dr. West and the staff at Monroe Animal Health for all that was done for her and the TLC that was provided, not only for the duration of the treatments, but still today. Dottie Lou is owned and loved by ULM President Nick Bruno and his wife, Linda.