Karen – the goofy and gentle chocolate lab

Karen, the chocolate lab
Karen, the chocolate lab

I adopted Karen (named Cairn originally) from Wayside Waifs in May 2014. She was estimated to be 7-years old at the time.

In August 2016, Karen became lethargic and was rushed to North Austin Animal Hospital where they found that her spleen had ruptured likely due to hemangiosarcoma (blood vessel cancer). She had an emergency splenectomy later that day to remove her spleen and the attached growth. She can home a day later and resumed normal activities within a few days.

The pathology report came back and confirmed the growth was hemangiosarcoma. Hemangiosarcoma is an aggressive form of cancer which spreads to the heart and lungs quickly. For this reason and for Karen’s comfort, I decided to forego chemotherapy treatment. I did consult a specialist who suggested I start a high-protein diet and turkey tail mushroom supplements right away.

In early-November after a few slow days, Karen lost interest in food and day-to-day activities. I made the difficult decision to say goodbye to Karen in November 2016. It was reassuring to know what a great life she had in her short time with me. I was also happy that she would get to meet Sage and Ruby after crossing the Rainbow Bridge.

Karen was described by those who knew her as a gentle soul. She was a sweet and goofy chocolate lab who loved squeaky toys and cute handkerchiefs.

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