Rescue dog detects cancer on Amherst woman’s nose and saves her life

A local rescue dog is being credited for saving an Amherst woman’s life. Lauren Gauthier’s one-eyed rescue dog, Victoria, persistently sniffed a red spot on her nose, prompting her to get the bump checked and she’s so glad she did. Turns out the bump was basel cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer.

“It really is amazing that my dog was so persistent in sniffing the area that was skin cancer,” said Gauthier. “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!”

Since the cancer was detected early on, it didn’t spread or cause further health issues. Victoria, who was rescued from a Kentucky shelter, saved her owner’s life by not giving up on showing her something was wrong. Had it not been for her intuitive pup, Gauthier may have never went to the doctor. She is now warning teens and adults alike to stay away from the tanning bed where she thinks the skin cancer may have stemmed from.

“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. 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,” she said.

Gauthier would also like to let everyone know that while her surgery has altered her appearance, she is feeling better every day.

“You will heal,” she said.

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