We understand that having a pet diagnosed with cancer can be emotionally draining and difficult to process. Our veterinarian can help owners better understand the diagnosis and choose a treatment plan that best works for them and their pet. In certain instances, we may refer you to an oncology specialist for specific treatments once a diagnosis is made.
Common types of pet cancer
Abdominal Cancer– Abdominal cancer in pets affects one or more of the major internal organs (e.g. stomach, kidneys, liver, etc). During annual pet exams, we perform routine tests to check for signs of abdominal cancer.
Bone Cancer – Bone cancer most commonly occurs in larger canine breeds, but can affect smaller canines and felines as well. Osteosarcoma, the most common form of bone cancer in pets, accounts for nearly all cases. Because it is a particularly aggressive disease, quick diagnosis and treatment planning are critical.
Canine Lymphoma – Canine Lymphoma is most notably a concern when your pet's lymph nodes are severely enlarged. If suspected, a number of tests can determine whether the lumps are cancerous. In some cases, a biopsy of the lump is necessary.
Feline Leukemia – Feline Leukemia attacks the immune system (immunosuppression) and can lead to cancer and other secondary diseases. Typically transmitted from close contact with another cat that has the disease, Feline Leukemia requires close veterinary care to help prolong the life of your pet.
Skin Cancer – There are several types of pet skin cancer, including mast cell carcinoma and melanoma. Having the appearance of an abnormal growth, a veterinarian can determine if your pet has skin cancer. When treated quickly, the cancer can be surgically removed; if it has spread over a larger area, radiation therapy might be necessary.
What pet cancer therapies are available?
Without an absolute cure for pet cancer, therapies are developed to make your pet as comfortable as possible, with the hope of prolonging life. Pet cancer treatment options include chemotherapy and supplements, radiation, and/or surgery. Treatment plans vary depending on what type of cancer a pet is diagnosed with, as well as the invasiveness of the cancer. Sometimes one therapy is used alone. Other times, multiple treatments are combined to attack the cancer in a multidimensional approach. The veterinarian will formulate a specific treatment plan for your pet based on their particular cancer and its development.
If you have any questions about pet medical oncology or therapy, please contact our office.