Ten Signs of Cancer in Dogs

Divinity lost her battle with cancer on September 10, 2014. Since that fateful day, I’ve tried to post helpful information on this dreadful disease. Today’s post lists ten symptoms to watch for, that might indicate the presence of cancer in your dog.

“Catching cancer in its early stages can be the difference between life and death. As a dog owner, you need to be aware of the signs to watch for, especially if you have an aging dog or cancer-prone breed. Dr. Carrie Hume, VMD, DACVIM, veterinary oncologist at WESTVET, gave us the 10-signs to watch for in your best friend.”

Note: This is a partial repost from iHeart Dogs

#1 – Quick growing lumps

Lumps are easier to notice on short-hair breeds, especially if they are growing fast. That is why routine grooming of your long-haired breed is so important, so you can feel your dog and notice any lumps that appear and how quickly they are growing. If you take your dog to the groomer’s, you should still be feeling their body regularly, as your groomer may miss it, forget to tell you or assume you already know.

#2 – Unexplained weight loss

Cancer can eat away at your dog quickly. If your once sleek and well-muscled buddy is suddenly skinny and not gaining weight, no matter how much you feed them, you need to take them to the vet. It may not be cancer, but something is definitely going on that needs attention.

#3 – Sudden weakness

Some cancers affect the muscles and nervous systems, causing your dog to not be able to stand or walk well. If your dog is having trouble doing simple activities, like getting up in the morning or walking around the house, it’s time to go to the vet.

#4 – Coughing

This, of course, is a common symptom. Your dog could just have kennel cough, for example. Regardless, if your dog is coughing he needs to go to the vet.

#5 – Difficulty breathing

Age can effect breathing, as can past health issues such as phenomena. However, even if your dog has a history of lung issues and/or is a brachycephalic breed, you should still take notice if their breath is labored. Especially if they are not doing anything more than walking around or lying on the couch.

#6 – Persistent lameness

Lumps in legs as well as cancer in the bones or joints can cause your dog to be consistently lame. If your dog is having trouble walking, time to go to the vet.

#7 – Vomiting

Another symptom that can be caused by many things, a vomiting dog should always be taken to the vet, just to be sure. Even if it’s not cancer, it could be an obstruction, poisoning, or a number of other illnesses.

#8 – Diarrhea

Like vomiting, you should take your dog the vet if he is having persistent diarrhea, especially if it’s paired with any of the other symptoms. Might not be cancer, but it should be taken care of for your dog’s sake.

#9 – Decrease in appetite

Most animals with cancer have a decreased appetite. They don’t feel well, so they don’t feel like eating (just like humans). If your food hound is no longer interested in her favorite treats or is consistently leaving food in the bowl, time to see a vet.

#10 – Fever

Of course, many illnesses can cause a fever. Fevers in dogs are dangerous and you should always take your dog to the vet if you think they have one.

Note: To read the rest of Dr. Hume’s informative post, click the following link: 10 Signs Of Cancer In Dogs


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