We understand that a cancer diagnosis can be devastating for owners. Our oncology service aims to support clients in reaching an informed decision on how best to manage their pet’s condition and their quality of life.
Pet cancer management
Cancer management and treatment is a combined team effort between experienced colleagues in oncology, surgery, anaesthesia, diagnostic imaging and the excellent nursing staff. We are the largest dedicated oncology referral service in the South West and strongly believe that every client and every pet is an individual and needs our individual care, love, and attention.
During our standard 60 minute consultation we will review the clinical information available and results of any diagnostic tests (laboratory work and imaging studies) performed prior to referral (from the referring practice), take a detailed history, perform a physical examination, and listen to the owner’s priorities and concerns. In some cases, further diagnostics are necessary to confirm a provisional diagnosis or to clinically stage a tumour by identifying whether it has spread from its initial site. Diagnostic imaging, particularly CT and ultrasound, can provide crucial information.
Traditionally, cancer can be treated with combinations of surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Our recognised Specialists in surgery operate in outstanding facilities with the support of recognised Specialists in anaesthesia, who help care for patients both during and after a procedure.
Currently, we refer pets on for radiotherapy and have good working relationships with the UK’s radiotherapy centres. This allows us to discuss radiotherapy options if available and to streamline the process by performing initial imaging and assessments here prior to travelling. Our outpatient chemotherapy clinics take place most afternoons at the hospital and, in some cases, we can also support your primary care vet in providing some chemotherapy treatments closer to home.
A wide range of palliative care options can be discussed in individual cases including pain management, bisphosphonates to improve bone strength and manage hypercalcaemia, and interventional radiology stenting.
We believe owners and primary care vets are part of our team in treating pets with cancer and keep them informed and involved in all decisions. We are happy to see any cat or dog with an oncology problem, referred to us by veterinary surgeons. We endeavour to avoid ‘waiting lists’ and will make additional appointments as required.
We are very well equipped to deal with patients presenting with a wide variety of problems including (but not limited to):
What our clients say...
"Nele has been great with our little Tia."
"Dear Myles and everyone thank you so much for taking such good care of Scruffy, with gratitude, Caroline and Russ”
"Dear Myles, Nele and all the team at Cave Thank you so very much for the beautiful flowers that you sent us. Thank you also for everything that you all did to help our beautiful girl Summer. She’s greatly missed by us all and the house is empty without her."
"Dexter was referred to Cave by our vet in Plymouth last week after being very poorly. He was diagnosed with cancer, which was very hard news and we have decided for him not to be operated on. Dexter has been our baby since we got him at 8 weeks (now 9 years old) and family and friends have always commented on how much dexter is a spoilt pup and how loved he has been, not just by us but family and friends also. The care he has been given at Cave has been amazing, he wags his tail and trots off towards any of the vets or nurses when they come out to see him, even though he has been so poorly he seems to find energy to go say hi to them! Which is so heartwarming! To me this shows how much he loves being with them as much as his family, which I am pleased as it shows how well looked after he has been! I cannot thank Nele and Jess and the ward nurses enough for how well they have cared for Dexter and made him so comfortable and happy, how they have made us feel comfortable with the difficult decisions we have had to make over what has been a very emotional week and how no question has been silly! We have been kept well informed and updated through the week, and often more than once a day! Thank you for seeing us and our feelings equally as important as the care dexter has needed!"