Frankie the dachshund takes part in an experimental melanoma trial at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. John Donges Frankie, a 15-year-old brown dachshund with a gray muzzle and tired eyes, rests on a pillow and pink blanket on an exam table at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet). A catheter draws blood from her neck into a gray machine the size of a minifridge, which clicks and whirls as it returns clear fluid to her body through another tube. The dog is strapped down by a red leash, but the restraint hardly seems necessary; she looks like she could fall asleep at any moment. At least until veterinary internist J.D. Foster sticks a thermometer in her butt.
A black mass has engulfed Frankie’s bottom-right canine tooth—a melanoma that could eventually metastasize. If her owner had taken her to a traditional vet clinic, the […]