Cancer is one of the leading cause of canine deaths in the USA. Most of the cancer cases are curable if diagnosed at an early stage. Above fifty percent of dogs over the age of ten develop cancer at some point in time. Some prevalent cancers are Lymphoma, Mast Cell Tumors, Oral Melanoma, and Breast Cancers (cancer of the Mammary glands).
Cancer is a condition involving an abnormal growth in the cells, which can spread and invade other parts of the body. This condition contrast with the benign tumors, and does not spread in other parts of the animal's body. There are several form of cancer which can affect the dog. Factors such as obesity, frequent contact with smoke, lack of physical activity, or poor diet among others can act as a catalyst in developing cancer in dogs.
The warning signs of cancer match that of humans.
1.A sudden lump or a bump
2.A wound that does not heal easily
3.Any kind of sudden swelling
4.Massive lymph nodes
5.Lameness of the bones
6.Abnormal or extreme bleeding
These points mentioned above are classic, but there are times when the animal will show little or no signs of cancer, at least in this disease’s initial stages. So if the owner bumps into any situation where he feels the dog isn’t well, he should immediately call the vet. According to one renowned vet, cancer can have as many signs and symptoms as possible. The specific signs which develops depend on the type of cancer and its place of origin in the body.
1.Lymphoma: It is the cancer of the White blood cells in the body, called as Lymphocyte. Dogs can suffer from different form of lymphomas. Enlargement of the Lymph nodes is the primary reason for this condition. Other modifications are Gastrointestinal lymphoma, Cutaneous lymphoma, and Nervous system lymphoma.
2.Osteosarcoma: It is one most the most prevalent form of cancer in the large breed of dogs. Tumors can even spread to distant parts of the body, such as the lungs or the lymph nodes.
3.Oral Melanoma: It is one of the most prevalent forms of oral cancer in canines. Dogs with darker pigmented tongues and gums are at higher risks of developing this condition. OM can locally invade different parts of the oral atmosphere.
4.Thyroid Carcinoma: These types of cancers are more common in older dogs. The owner can feel a certain lump in the neck of the dog while petting the creature. Or the vet may palpate the neck region of the dog and sense a mass in the area during a routine examination.
5.Hemangiosarcoma: It is the cancer of the cells of the blood vessels. The most common locations are the spleen, the right atrium, and the skin. Certain cases may also need an emergency surgical intervention.
Treating cancer will depend on radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery. Vet medicines have advanced a lot in the modern days, and now there are things like antibody therapy and immunotherapy. But these beforementioned treatments are less effective than the classic mode of treatments.
The prognosis of the condition will depend on several factors such as the type of cancer and the extent of the condition. Whenever possible, the vet surgeon will remove a part of cancer through surgical method, and the rest will be removed by either chemotherapy or radiation intervention.
Chemotherapy is a blanket term often used to denote certain drugs and can be administered through various methods such as orally, topically, intramuscularly, or intracavitarily.
Most of the dogs who are given chemotherapy drugs do not suffer much after the session. Most won't lose their fur after a course, but some specific breeds can develop thin hair after the surgery. Some dogs may get nauseatic, or can have a loss of appetite. Suppression of the bone marrow is another issue along with an increase in the chances of getting an infection.
The vet will tract the progression of the dog along with regular checkup of the animal. Depending on the intensity and the type of cancer, the vet may also recommend radiation therapy as a way of treatment.