Leiomyosarcoma of the Uterus
“Sweet Cheeks” was rescued from a breeder that went belly up in early 1997. The breeder reported that Sweet Cheeks was born in 1993 with a defect causing her to fall over and she was only able to take one or two steps at a time before tumbling. The breeder believed that Sweet had a lack of oxygen during the birth which may have caused her disability. Since Sweet was very compromised, she went to a shelter rather than placed for adoption. Another pig (LuLu) was selected to go with her to help her with the transition.
For the first time in her life, she had a yard that was not cement and an igloo to sleep in. She and Lulu were afraid of the igloo and took up residence in a fence corner where a tarp was rigged up creating a cozy rest area. Sweet and LuLu stayed busy excavating their new yard and each morning there appeared unfamiliar landscaping with new hills and valleys. Both pigs were fearful of people and would not let anyone close.
Upon moving the entire herd from the south to the north, many states away, Sweet and Lulu had a large enclosure within a pole barn with a private door going out into a large yard. She spent many happy hours grazing, sleeping in the sun and rearranging the soil. She learned to overcome her fear of people and enjoyed belly rubs and having her ears scratched. She continued to be shy of strangers, however. She liked living inside. She also liked the color red so she had a red plaid flannel shirt in her nest.
During her three years at this location, various homeopathic remedies were tried. Pau D’Arco was purchased from a health food store and this improved her ability to walk somewhat, but this could not be given over a long period of time. She finally was able to maintain her balance as long as she walked slowly and was not startled. She was happy with her friend, LuLu and formed bonds with other pigs in the herd, her back fence neighbors.
In late February, 1999, she appeared to want more attention but other than that, there were no other symptoms. About two weeks later after eating breakfast, she began bleeding profusely from the vagina and she passed over 3 hours later. The veterinarian did a “field” necropsy and photos were taken at the time showing a massive tumor and the uterine horns were filled with blood. The tumor was the size of a basketball and it had a pocket of hemorrhage within the mass. The tissue was pale except the center that was necrotic. The Histopathology Report showed the Histological Diagnosis to be Leiomyosarcoma.
LuLu remained depressed for months following Sweet’s demise. Sweet is gone but never to be forgotten!!