Every pet parent fears hearing the word “cancer”; however, not every development is malignant. It is common to feel afraid and concerned if your veterinarian has detected skin cancer in your dog or if you suspect your dog has a skin tumor or bump that could be malignant.
Consult your vet if you have worries regarding your dog’s health or skin. To better understand your dog’s possible problem, here are some details regarding dog skin cancer that you need to understand.
Types of Skin Cancer in Dogs
Dogs, like humans, have more than one layer of skin and, hence, more than one type of skin cancer. Tumors can develop in any part of the skin, at any layer, and some tumors might be malignant. Here are some of the most typical cases of dog skin cancer:
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
One of the most common types of skin cancer in dogs is squamous cell cancer. Skin cancer is more typical in senior dogs, especially Dalmatians, Beagles, Whippets, and white Bull Terriers. Most commonly located on the dog’s head, lower legs, rear, and abdomen, these tumors have a raised, wart-like appearance and are solid to the touch. One possible cause of squamous cell cancer is sun exposure, though papillomavirus may also contribute.
Mast Cell Tumors
Mast cell tumors develop in the dog’s immune system and are extremely common. These tumors can develop anywhere on the dog’s skin and internal organs. Mast cell tumors often form in the limbs, lower abdomen, and upper body. Any dog breed is at risk. However, 8- to 10-year-old Boxers, Pugs, Rhodesian Ridgebacks, and Boston Terriers are especially at risk for growing this form of skin cancer.
Melanomas are lumpy, dark-pigmented growths that typically develop on the dog’s lips, mouth, and nail bed. Melanomas are typically benign; however, they can be malignant. Malignant melanomas are a serious health issue. These tumors grow faster and are highly likely to spread to other organs. Schnauzers and Scottish Terriers, particularly male dogs, appear at a higher threat of melanoma than female dogs.
Lumps & Bumps on Your Pet
You’re probably worried about cancer if you’ve found a lump or stained skin patch on your pet. However, pet parents must remember that not all lumps and bumps are cancerous, and many are treatable if detected early.
Call your vet to schedule a checkup if you discover anything weird on your pet. Early diagnosis is crucial to improving treatment results. Check out this page to learn more about this.
Diagnosing Dog Skin Cancer
Your vet might carry out a fine needle aspiration to get a tiny sample of tumor cells for a test or a biopsy to collect a piece of tumor tissue to diagnose skin cancer in your dog. Your vet will give you an accurate diagnosis of your dog’s condition after these samples are checked out in a pet laboratory.
Veterinarians may recommend further diagnostic tests to know the severity of your dog’s cancer. By doing this, you and your vet can provide your dog with the best possible treatment and a more precise prognosis.
Treatment for Dogs Skin Cancer
The good news is that many cases of dog skin cancer are curable if caught and treated early, allowing pets to enjoy a quality of life for months or even years. Various methods, like surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, targeted therapies, or palliative care, might be utilized to treat your dog’s skin cancer.
The prognosis and treatment options for pet skin cancer depend on several factors, including the specific type of tumor, its location, and the cancer stage at which it was detected. You can visit vets like Cascade Veterinary Referral Center for more information.