Mast cell tumor dog life expectancy comes up often. In fact, mast cell tumors are commonly diagnosed in dogs and are benign half of the time. “Benign” means the cancer won’t spread to organs and tissues. As long as this common type of tumor is caught early, surgery usually takes care of the problem. Your dog could have a full life ahead of him. The stage and grade of the tumor will depend on how the veterinarian proceeds.
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This post is written to provide hope and inspiration. Mast cell tumor dog life expectancy is much longer than you’d think. If you’re reading this post, obviously you are in tune with your dog’s health needs. Mast cell tumors caught early have an excellent prognosis.
Could I Have Prevented Mast Cell Dog Tumors?
No. There’s nothing you could have done that would have changed the outcome. The reality is, a lot of dogs (especially middle-aged and senior dogs) develop mast cell tumors.
Mast cell tumors are a type of skin cancer, but not in the same way you or I might develop skin cancer. In dogs, it’s simply a matter of genetics and breed type.
The breeds most susceptible to mast cell tumors are brachycephalic. Any dog with the a “pushed in” type of nose is brachycephalic. Boston Terriers and Boxers are the two dogs most likely to develop mast cell tumors. However, any dog can get them, so don’t rule out the possibility if you spot a new lump on your dog.
Explain Mast Cell Tumors to Me!
Mast cell tumors (skin tumors or cancer) represent 14% to 21% of all skin tumors in dogs. (Statistics ACVS.org). Mast cell tumors originate from the bone marrow to blood cells. The affected blood cells circulate throughout the body. A mast cell tumor typically appears on the skin, and can appear anywhere on the dog.
This common type of tumor can look like just about any other skin condition or disease. Although it is a type of skin cancer, it’s not the same as something like squamous cell carcinoma. Squamous cell carcinoma is actually a rare form of skin cancer in dogs.
REMEMBER: Mast Cell Tumor Dog Life Expectancy is excellent. If the tumor is discovered early, surgery is usually the “cure”.
What Are the Symptoms of a Mast Cell Tumor?
A new lump or bump. It’s as simple as that. It’s important to pay attention as you groom or pat your dog. Take a look at the skin on the chest, belly, between the legs, and across the dog’s back. If you discover any new lump or bump, bring your dog to the veterinarian.
Dog tumors like this might be itchy, particularly around that lump. However, in its early stages, mast cell tumors don’t produce many signs other than the fact that a new lump is present.
Some lumps are found just under the skin, so don’t limit your examination to the skin’s surface. In addition, you might spot a lump that shrinks and grows on a day to day basis.
The Key to Mast Cell Tumor Dog Life Expectancy
The best way to attack a mast cell tumor is to know the truth. Face it head on. The sooner your doctor can diagnose mast cell tumor dog cancer, the better the outcome.
Making a Mast Cell Tumor Dog Cancer Diagnosis
The veterinarian perform diagnostics that include looking at sample of the dog’s skin tissue under a microscope. That might involve taking a small needle biopsy or scraping a sample of cells to use.
Once a diagnosis is clear, the veterinarian will talk to you about the tumor’s stage and grade. These two things are really important. The lower the grade, the better the outcome. More on this soon.
Blood tests to determine kidney and liver function may be ordered. Blood tests can also determine whether your dog is anemic and whether the mast cells are circulating around in the blood.
Checking out the Lymph Nodes
Not having affect lymph nodes is a good thing. The veterinarian might feel for enlarged lymph nodes in your dog, especially any that are close to the mast cell tumor.
Inflamed lymph nodes do not mean the cancer has invaded them. Flu and cold viruses (to name a few) can cause lymph nodes to enlarge.
Find out more about Mast Cell Tumor Dog Life Expectancy by visiting the National Canine Cancer Foundation.
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