Boudreaux, an 11-year-old Australian Shepherd, is the type of dog who leaves an impression everywhere he goes, and everyone remembers him after only meeting him once. A true ambassador of goodwill and kindness, he is also fearless, loyal, and will try anything asked. His fur-mom chose him specifically looking for an approachable, smart, working dog as he would be constantly by her side and active in all sorts of canine events, including nose works.

When Boudreaux began to lose weight despite a good appetite in March of 2022, he was seen by his primary veterinarian. Bloodwork was taken and revealed elevated liver enzymes and anemia. An abdominal ultrasound was performed and a suspected liver mass was identified. He was referred to the Animal Medical Center of Seattle’s surgery department for a consultation to discuss his options and schedule surgery to removal of the tumor.

A full abdominal exploratory surgery was performed on Boudreaux and a large, five-pound left liver lobe mass was identified and removed in a procedure called a liver lobectomy. There were also small nodules in other liver lobes, so a sample of this was taken and submitted with the liver mass for further evaluation.

Boudreaux did very well in surgery and after a night in our ICU he was able to go home to finish his recovery. He continued to get better and better every day while his fur-mom anxiously awaited news on the histopathology results. A week later those results came back that the mass was Hepatocellular carcinoma. The good news was that his surgery completely excised the cancer, and there was no evidence of spread to other liver lobes. Since hepatocellular carcinoma is slow to metastasize, complete excision can be curative! The other nodules biopsied came back as acute necrotic hepatocytes, which could have potentially been caused from the pressure of the large liver mass.

We are happy to report that Boudreaux has made a full recovery and his fur-mom is grateful to everyone at the Animal Medical Center of Seattle who helped make this possible. He is now back to dragging bull kelp on his walks at the beach and climbing anything he can.