9, Feb 2022
Dog Cancer: What to Do as Pet Owner

Dog Cancer: What to Do as Pet Owner

Hearing the news that their dog is detected with cancer could be overwhelming for any pet parent. No person wishes to hear that their fur baby will be fighting cancer, but it typically occurs to dogs more than ten years old; nonetheless, it does not eliminate the possibility of affecting younger puppies.

Like in people, canines are susceptible to getting different kinds of cancer. The good news is most of it can be treated, and the way veterinary oncology treats cancer in dogs is very much the same treatment used in humans.

Common Types of Cancer in Dogs

  • Mammary Cancers – are more common in female dogs that are not spayed or were spayed after two years of age. Mammary tumors make up 42% of female dogs’ cases; this risk is much higher than breast cancer for women.
  • Mast Cell Tumors (MCTs) – are common in dogs, accounting for about 20% of all skin tumors in dogs. MCTs can occur in any part of the body and vary in appearance. It can be very intrusive and often grow back even after surgical removals.
  • Melanomas – malignant melanoma is a type of skin cancer in canines; most take place on the mouth or mucous membranes, although 10% are found on parts of the body covered with hair. They tend to escalate and affect other organs such as the liver and the lungs.
  • Lymphomas – are a diverse group of cancers. This is also among the most typical in canines, accounting for 7-14% of all cancers detected. Lymphomas might likely affect any organ in the body however are most common in lymph nodes.
  • Hemangiosarcomas – are malignant tumors originating from the cells lining blood vessels. It’s prevalent in geriatric dogs making up around 5% of cancer cases. Hemangiosarcoma can develop anywhere where there are blood vessels.
  • Osteosarcomas – are malignant tumors of the bone. This cancer has the same look as human pediatric osteosarcoma. The long bones in arms and legs are most commonly affected, although the jaw, hips, and pelvis might likewise be affected.
  • Lung Cancers – are relatively uncommon in canines; of all the cancers diagnosed, lung cancer accounts for just 1% of the instances. This type of cancer has a moderate to high risk of metastasis.

Dealing with Canine Cancer

Recognize that cancer in dogs is common; about 47% of fatalities are due to cancer. Early avoidance is the key to cancer prevention; it must begin while the dog is very young. Your family veterinarian is still the best source of information when it concerns your dog’s overall health.

There are vets in Lexington KY, with a wide range of expertise that you can visit when your dog starts presenting symptoms beyond the reach of the regular veterinarian.

Cancer treatment commences with correct diagnosis and staging. Treatment could be a mix of chemotherapy and surgery, radiation, immunotherapy, and chemotherapy only. Facilities like the Bluegrass Veterinary Specialists + Animal Emergency are in the best position to chart the therapy options that would fit your dog’s condition best. 

When lung cancer is in its advanced phase, emergencies render the dog incapable of breathing. Other concerns like a malignant tumor pressing on critical tissue and your dog’s life hang in the balance; or when a blood vessel ruptures in case of hemangiosarcoma. In these scenarios, you need to bring your dog swiftly to emergency facilities for quick medical interventions. Check this out for more info regarding emergency facilities.


The advancement of veterinary oncology gives hope to so many pet animals. Vaccines are available for some types of cancer for canines. Spaying and neutering also lower the chance of getting some cancer. Treatment options to eliminate cancer abound.

Animals tolerate therapies like chemotherapy a lot better than humans. After treatment, some dogs have diarrhea or vomiting, yet most don’t experience side effects. Cancer research for animals is making good progress; ideally, this will translate to preventative, treatment, and cure soon.