Victoria is a one-eyed pup rescued from a Kentucky animal shelter. She was brought to New York to live with her new human companion, Lauren Gauthier. Lauren credits Victoria for saving her life.
The pup continuously sniffed at a red bump on her nose. She did it so often, Lauren finally decided to go to the doctor to have it checked out. Good thing she did. The bump was actually basal cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer.
“It is amazing that my dog was so persistent in sniffing the area that was skin cancer,” Lauren told SweetBuffalo716.com. “The surgery itself has changed my face, and if my dog had not picked up on it, I may have ignored the spot, which could have risked further disfigurement. Hounds have a keen sense of smell but I never thought that I would personally benefit from it!”
Day 1 post Moh's. If you're squeamish keep scrolling. But as I awaited my #mohssurgery I had little to go on except instagram and blogs to help me prepare. This is my reality right now and I'm hoping it encourages others to #wearsunscreen and get annual #dermatology checks. #skincancersucks #skincancersurvivor #healing #brave #girlswithscars #basalcellcarcinoma
Thankfully, the cancer was caught early, so Lauren didn’t experience any other health issues. Her cancer didn’t spread, which is common if not detected early.
Victoria was persistent in showing Lauren something was wrong. Her situation could be much worse if it weren’t for her pup. “I am so thankful for Victoria. She and I have always had a close bond and she senses when I’m upset or stressed; I had no idea she’d be able to detect that I had cancer lurking underneath my skin,” Lauren told Love What Matters. “What is particularly rewarding is that I adopted her through the rescue that I founded, (Magic’s Mission Beagle & Hound Rescue, Inc.) and devote much of my life to saving hounds who have been abused or neglected. It seems Victoria and her keen skills are the way that the hounds decided to give back to me.”
To prevent anyone else from suffering this diagnosis, Lauren is warning everyone to stay far away from tanning beds. She believes this is how she got cancer.
For any following my #skincancer journey, here I am 2 weeks post #mohssurgery and removal of #basalcellcarcinoma on my nose. My #plasticsurgeon did such a wonderful job to see the #healing in a short period of time. Once the swelling dissipates I will be in good shape! #skincancersurvivor #skincancerscar #girlswithscars #brave #battle
“My advice for teenagers and others considering tanning bed use is – don’t. There are many other options available, like spray tans, to help improve cosmetic appearance,” she said. “The cost and the damage you do to your skin is way too high, and even though growing older seems a world away, once you are older, you will pay a price for tans and tanning beds.”