Factors which influence owners when deciding to use chemotherapy in terminally Ill pets

Jane Williams, Catherine Phillips, Hollie Marie Byrd

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article

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Abstract

Chemotherapy is a commonly integrated treatment option within human and animal oncology regimes. Limited research has investigated pet owners' treatment decision-making in animals diagnosed with malignant neoplasia. Dog and cat owners were asked to complete an online questionnaire to elucidate factors which are key to the decision making process. Seventy-eight respondents completed the questionnaire in full. Fifty-eight percent of pet owners would not elect to treat pets with chemotherapy due to the negative impact of the associated side effects. Seventytwo percent of respondents over estimated pet survival time post chemotherapy, indicating a general perception that it would lead to remission or a cure. Vomiting was considered an acceptable side effect but inappetence, weight loss and depression were considered unacceptable. Owners did expect animals' to be less active, sleep more and play less, but common side effects were not rated as acceptable despite the potential benefits of chemotherapy. Based on the results, veterinary teams involved with oncology consultations should establish if clients have prior experience of cancer treatments and their expectations of survival time. Quality of life assessments should also be implemented during initial oncology consultations and conducted regularly during chemotherapy courses to inform client decision making and to safe guard animal welfare.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnimals
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2017

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Terminally Ill
Pets
pets
drug therapy
Drug Therapy
decision making
Decision Making
adverse effects
Referral and Consultation
questionnaires
Animal Welfare
animals
neoplasms
remission
vomiting
sleep
quality of life
animal welfare
Vomiting
Weight Loss

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Client decision-making
  • Oncology
  • Pets
  • Veterinary medicine

Cite this

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title = "Factors which influence owners when deciding to use chemotherapy in terminally Ill pets",
abstract = "Chemotherapy is a commonly integrated treatment option within human and animal oncology regimes. Limited research has investigated pet owners' treatment decision-making in animals diagnosed with malignant neoplasia. Dog and cat owners were asked to complete an online questionnaire to elucidate factors which are key to the decision making process. Seventy-eight respondents completed the questionnaire in full. Fifty-eight percent of pet owners would not elect to treat pets with chemotherapy due to the negative impact of the associated side effects. Seventytwo percent of respondents over estimated pet survival time post chemotherapy, indicating a general perception that it would lead to remission or a cure. Vomiting was considered an acceptable side effect but inappetence, weight loss and depression were considered unacceptable. Owners did expect animals' to be less active, sleep more and play less, but common side effects were not rated as acceptable despite the potential benefits of chemotherapy. Based on the results, veterinary teams involved with oncology consultations should establish if clients have prior experience of cancer treatments and their expectations of survival time. Quality of life assessments should also be implemented during initial oncology consultations and conducted regularly during chemotherapy courses to inform client decision making and to safe guard animal welfare.",
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Factors which influence owners when deciding to use chemotherapy in terminally Ill pets. / Williams, Jane; Phillips, Catherine; Byrd, Hollie Marie.

In: Animals, Vol. 7, No. 3, 07.03.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article

TY - JOUR

T1 - Factors which influence owners when deciding to use chemotherapy in terminally Ill pets

AU - Williams, Jane

AU - Phillips, Catherine

AU - Byrd, Hollie Marie

PY - 2017/3/7

Y1 - 2017/3/7

N2 - Chemotherapy is a commonly integrated treatment option within human and animal oncology regimes. Limited research has investigated pet owners' treatment decision-making in animals diagnosed with malignant neoplasia. Dog and cat owners were asked to complete an online questionnaire to elucidate factors which are key to the decision making process. Seventy-eight respondents completed the questionnaire in full. Fifty-eight percent of pet owners would not elect to treat pets with chemotherapy due to the negative impact of the associated side effects. Seventytwo percent of respondents over estimated pet survival time post chemotherapy, indicating a general perception that it would lead to remission or a cure. Vomiting was considered an acceptable side effect but inappetence, weight loss and depression were considered unacceptable. Owners did expect animals' to be less active, sleep more and play less, but common side effects were not rated as acceptable despite the potential benefits of chemotherapy. Based on the results, veterinary teams involved with oncology consultations should establish if clients have prior experience of cancer treatments and their expectations of survival time. Quality of life assessments should also be implemented during initial oncology consultations and conducted regularly during chemotherapy courses to inform client decision making and to safe guard animal welfare.

AB - Chemotherapy is a commonly integrated treatment option within human and animal oncology regimes. Limited research has investigated pet owners' treatment decision-making in animals diagnosed with malignant neoplasia. Dog and cat owners were asked to complete an online questionnaire to elucidate factors which are key to the decision making process. Seventy-eight respondents completed the questionnaire in full. Fifty-eight percent of pet owners would not elect to treat pets with chemotherapy due to the negative impact of the associated side effects. Seventytwo percent of respondents over estimated pet survival time post chemotherapy, indicating a general perception that it would lead to remission or a cure. Vomiting was considered an acceptable side effect but inappetence, weight loss and depression were considered unacceptable. Owners did expect animals' to be less active, sleep more and play less, but common side effects were not rated as acceptable despite the potential benefits of chemotherapy. Based on the results, veterinary teams involved with oncology consultations should establish if clients have prior experience of cancer treatments and their expectations of survival time. Quality of life assessments should also be implemented during initial oncology consultations and conducted regularly during chemotherapy courses to inform client decision making and to safe guard animal welfare.

KW - Cancer

KW - Client decision-making

KW - Oncology

KW - Pets

KW - Veterinary medicine

U2 - 10.3390/ani7030018

DO - 10.3390/ani7030018

M3 - Journal Article

VL - 7

JO - Animals

JF - Animals

SN - 2076-2615

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ER -