Cancer is, unfortunately, more common than one would think in our animal companions with 75% of dogs over the age of 10 dying of cancer every year. Thus, it is crucial that you as the pet owner be diligent and not take the “wait and see” approach when it comes to lumps, bumps, or any other unusual physical exam findings or behaviors in your pet.
Knowledge is power and the earlier a diagnosis is made, the better chance of a cure! Most lumps and bumps can be sampled non-invasively in an awake patient with a small needle and you can often have an answer within 48 hours.
Once a cancer diagnosis is made, treatment can be tailored to your pet based on the type of tumor. Many tumors can be cured with surgical removal, while others may require additional treatment. Regardless, the sooner a diagnosis is made, the sooner you can get your pet back to their best healthy self. We are here to answer any of your questions or concerns.
Here are the top 5 things that you, as an educated pet owner, should know about cancer:
#1. Cancer predominantly occurs in dogs and cats over 7 years of age but can occur in animals of ANY age.
#2. Cancer is one of the “great pretenders:” it can masquerade as absolutely anything from a large mass to a small bump, from difficulty urinating to occasional vomiting. These are all symptoms that should not be ignored and brought to the attention of our team immediately.
#3. Large breed dogs are at very high risk for bone cancer and any limping or pain noticed in these dogs should be investigated by your veterinarian.
#4. Unfortunately, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and Boxers are at very high risk for cancer, and owners of these breeds should be very vigilant when it comes to noticing new lumps and bumps or any odd behavior in their pets.
#5. Some types of cancers can be cured, yes CURED, by simply removing the tumor itself. CANCER IS NOT ALWAYS A DEATH SENTENCE. It is important to know your treatment options based on the TYPE of cancer diagnosed!
If you have questions about cancer in pets or are concerned your pet might be showing symptoms, call us at 843-875-6303 as soon as possible. We are ready and eager to help!