Maggie Update

Veterinary-Referral-CenterAfter a month or so of tests and opinions, we took our family dog Maggie to Veterinary Referral Center of Malvern, PA. She had what looked like a small tumor on the front of her face/snout that we later learned to be much bigger then it appeared. Our choice was surgery, or wait and hope that the tumor (Squamous Cell Carcinoma) not over take her whole mouth, nose and head. Surgery on a dog that just turned 9 was not an easy decision, but we liked the people at the Veterinary Referral Center very much and they gave us reason for optimism, while still realistically representing the risks. Dr. Sadanaga performed what is called a rostral lateral maxillectomy. I did a ton of reading about what this procedure would be like, and how it could be very disfiguring. Essentially they take a giant piece of the dog’s top jaw including the teeth. I saw pictures of dogs with shaved heads that looked very, very bruised and sore. So, when I went to pick up Mags, I was ready for the worst. What I got? Really surprised me… In a good way! Maggie will have a little under bite on one side (pic below) but she is no where near the photos of some of the other dogs I have seen that had a rostral lateral maxillectomy procedure. (Some are really, really devastating.) She still has a way to go, but after a few days to recover in Malvern, we picked her up. When she saw us, this dog just out of radical surgery energetically pulled away from the nurse that brought her out to us, and even fresh from a big dose of sedative to calm her for the 2 hour ride home, she got up on both hind legs, excited, jumping up to see everyone. She was very happy to be going home. She was even happier when she got home. Here are some pics of her with her new jawline. When her mouth is open you can’t tell she had a thing done hardly. When her mouth is closed, which is almost never (she’s a talker/smiler), her lower right canine sticks out like a bulldog.

maggie4 maggie3 maggie2 maggie1




I was surprised she was in such high spirits, I was even more shocked how great her mouth looked considering what we thought it was going to be like. Again, she’s not out of the woods yet, she has a long recovery, etc. But in all honesty, she came home in worse shape after the anesthesia/xrays last month than she did for the rostral lateral maxillectomy. Thanks so much for all our family and friends for being such a constant support. Thanks to the great people at the hospital too! Please keep Maggo in your prayers! We’ll keep you posted!



11 thoughts on “Maggie Update

  1. Frankly, I think she looks kind of bad ass with that canine sticking out! Glad to hear she’s doing well.

  2. She’s kind of a creampuff and other animals and kids have ZERO fear of her, maybe the look will fool other people and she will take less crap now… She is still swollen, so the actual shape pf her face may not be exactly as it is here. We thought her head was getting shaved for the procedure! (Not the case at all.) Talk about Bad Ass!

  3. Glad Maggie is OK! I remember when she was a puppy and you were SO PISSED Tracie got a dog for her birthday after you received a lawn mower!

  4. Hey Tony!
    I didn’t even know she was under the weather! What a trooper! Glad to hear that things are looking up! Give her a big hug and a few extra treats from me!

  5. didn’t know she was ill. actually i’ve never met the kiddo, but glad she’s doing good. i think she would look extra bad ass with an earing.

  6. Yes, I remember getting little Maggo….I think Tony really missed out because I got Maggie, and full time use of his lawn mower too!! Maybe she was attempt to do away with my highly allergic boyfriend at the time(ha ha) He’s been sneezing every since!! She is a such good girl so he loves her anyway!

  7. We really owe a very special thank you to Dr. Amy Hinze at Winslow Animal Hospital who sent us to VRC. Without her none of this would have happened. Dr. Hinze even called today to see how Maggie was doing, she is a very kind and caring person.

    Mags is very happy to be home with her family, she just doesn’t want to take her Meds.

  8. I think Magger looks awesome! When I visited her the other day she was very happy to see Grammy and I. She wasted no time telling us all about her ordeal, while rolling over for her usual belly rub. I am really glad to see that she is recouperating so well and I am saying a prayer that this is the last surgery she will have to endure.

  9. Aww, I could only imagine the pain you must have felt after learning that. I wish my Penelope wouldn’t get one of those. I’ll be hoping and praying for Maggie’s wellbeing.

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