Different Dog Skin Cancer Types and Treatments

Every pet owner fears hearing the word “cancer,” but not every growth is malignant. It is natural to feel troubled and worried if your vet has detected skin cancer in your pet or if you think your dog has a skin tumor or lump that could be malignant.

Consult your veterinarian if you have concerns about your pet’s health or skin. To better understand the possible condition of your dog, here is some information about 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, thus, more than one type of skin cancer. Tumors can form in any part of the skin, at any layer, and some tumors might be malignant. Here are some of the most typical types of dog skin cancer:

Squamous Cell Carcinoma

The most common type of skin cancer in dogs is squamous cell carcinoma. Skin cancer is more common in senior dogs, especially Dalmatians, Beagles, Whippets, and white Bull Terriers. Most often located on the dog’s head, lower legs, back, and abdomen, these tumors have a raised, wart-like appearance and are solid to the touch. One potential cause of squamous cell carcinoma is sun exposure, though papillomavirus may also contribute.

Mast Cell Tumors

Mast cell tumors are very common in the dog’s immune system. These tumors can form anywhere on the dog’s skin and internal organs. Mast cell tumors often develop in the limbs, lower abdomen, and upper body. Any dog type is at risk, but 8- to 10-year-old Boxers, Pugs, Rhodesian Ridgebacks, and Boston Terriers are particularly at risk for developing this form of skin cancer.

Malignant Melanoma

Melanomas are lumpy, dark-pigmented developments that usually grow on the dog’s lips, mouth, and nail bed. Melanomas are commonly benign, but they can be malignant. Malignant melanomas are a significant health concern. These tumors develop faster and are very likely to spread to other organs. Schnauzers and Scottish Terriers, particularly male dogs, appear at a higher risk of melanoma than female dogs.

Lumps & Bumps on Your Dog

You’re probably worried about cancer if you’ve discovered a lump or discolored skin patch on your dog. However, pet owners should remember that not all lumps and bumps are malignant, and many are treatable if detected early.

Call vets like Cascade Veterinary Referral Center to schedule an appointment if you find anything unusual on your pet. Early detection is vital to improving treatment outcomes.

Diagnosing Dog Skin Cancer

Your veterinarian might do a fine needle aspiration to collect a tiny sample of tumor cells for examination or a biopsy to get a piece of tumor tissue to diagnose skin cancer in your pet. Your vet will provide you with a precise diagnosis of your pup’s condition after these samples are checked out in a veterinary diagnostic lab.

Additional diagnostic examinations might be recommended to identify the severity of your pet’s cancer. This way, you and your vet can give your dog the best possible treatment and a more precise diagnosis.

Treatment for Dogs Skin Cancer

The good news is that several cases of dog skin cancer are treatable if caught and treated early, allowing dogs to enjoy life for months and even years. A variety of methods, such as surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, targeted therapies, or palliative care, might be utilized to treat your dog’s skin cancer.

The diagnosis and treatment options for dog skin cancer depend on numerous factors, including the particular type of tumor, its location, and the stage of cancer at which it was diagnosed. Follow this link to find out more about the surgery your pet might need.