Cancer in Your Dog: Warning Signs & Treatment Options

30 October 2015
 Categories: , Articles


There is nothing that is quite as disappointing and heartbreaking and losing a beloved pet. They can become such an integral and important part of your life. Losing one to cancer can be especially painful, as when they suffer, so do you. That is why it is important to be able to recognize warning signs of cancer in your beloved dog and familiarize yourself with the number of treatment options that are available for you to peruse. Throughout the course of this article, you will learn of warning signs of cancer in your dog and various treatment options that are available.

Can All Dogs Get Cancer?

In a word, yes. All dogs are susceptible to cancerous diseases. However, this does not mean that some dogs are more susceptible to cancer than other. The fact of the matter is that, over the age of 10 years, your dog's chances of contracting cancer increases exponentially. In fact, about 50% of dogs over this age will contract cancer. Perhaps the most common form of cancer in dogs over the age of 10 is malignant lymphoma, a cancer that aggressively attacks the lymph nodes. Mast cell tumors and mammary gland tumors are also quite common in dogs after they ascend to the ripe old age of 10 years old.

What Are the Signs of Cancer?

It is important to remember that signs and symptoms are not necessarily completely indicative that the dog in question has contracted cancer. Rather, these might be red flags that your dog might have a cancer that is causing these problems.

One of the most obvious signs of cancer in your dog is that he or she is emitting a particularly foul odor. Dogs are not known for being the most pleasant smelling creatures in the world, but if your dog has an odor that is quite pungent emitting from his or her mouth, rectal area, or nose, the cause of this could be due to a tumor.

Do a monthly check up on your dog's skin. Be sure to check behind his or her ears and face particularly, as any unusual bumps or lesions on the skin can be due to cancer, especially if you find these skin abnormalities in numerous clusters.

Unless you have put your dog on a restricted diet as of late, if your dog is undergoing an ample amount of weight loss, you should contact your veterinarian as soon as you possibly can as rapid, unexplained weight loss is one of the key symptoms of cancer in your dog.

Likewise, if you've found that your dog has had an extreme shift in appetite changes as of late—particularly if his or her appetite was once quite hefty and now had dwindled down to a few meager scraps a day—then this is a particularly troubling sign.

How Can Cancer Be Treated

If you've found that your beloved dog has cancer, there are a number of options in which you can treat this phenomenon. Broadly speaking, all treatments that are available to humans are also available for dogs, as well.

Radiation therapy is becoming an increasingly prevalent form of treatment in dogs, as it is for humans. There are clinics throughout the United States that treat dogs using radiation therapy. However, perhaps the most common form of treatment of dogs with cancer is also the most common form of treatment for humans: chemotherapy. Many veterinarians offer chemotherapy treatment at their offices or clinics.

Finding out that your beloved dog has contracted cancer can be a horrifying thing to experience. Luckily, there are a number of options available for you to peruse; click for more info or assistance.