Dogs Get Breast Cancer Too!

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Many people in society think that humans are the only ones who may suffer from Breast Cancer.  Unfortunately, dogs can have Breast Cancer as well.  Breast Cancer in dogs is called Mammary Cancer.  That’s why spaying your dog is very important.

Spaying your canine companion will most likely eliminate any chances of Mammary Cancer occurring.  Spaying a dog at six months of age, before its first heat cycle, is the best way to go about it.  The longer you wait, the more risky it will be.  If someone is planning on breeding their pet, it is still best to get the dog spayed after the breeding process is finished.  This will help minimize any chances of the canine getting Mammary Cancer and many other reproductive issues.  Most veterinarians reccomend puppies to get spayed at the age of six months.  They will also usually mention this to the owner during the puppies first physical exam.

Many individuals choose not have their dog get spayed.  This is a big risk factor especially if the dog is over three years old.  Some individuals may notice a bump around the dogs teat.  In this case, the dog should be checked by a veterinarian to make sure there are no issues.  A veterinarian will perform a breast exam on the dog and may take some radio-graphs, if necessary.  Also, many times the veterinarian will take a biopsy of the lump to make sure the lump is not a cancerous tumor.  Sometimes the female dog will develop a tumor in that region but it may be benign (nothing to be to concerned about, not cancerous).  Blood work is usually done as well.  If a tumor is found,  it’s usually reccomended that it gets surgically removed.  That is if the dog has no other underlying medical conditions.  Dogs that are very old in age or dogs that have other underlying medical conditions may not be the best candidate for surgery.  Tumors that are ulcerated or that are deeper in the tissue usually have a poor prognosis.

Other symptoms of Mammary Cancer in dogs include:

         -Lumps in the breast area

         – Discharge from the nipple (includes a pus like discharge, bloody discharge)

         – Painful in the breast area

         -Inflammation of the breast area

The best way to prevent a situation like this is to spay the canine while its still young.  It will be worth it financially and emotionally in the long run.  Remember if there are any concerns or any questions, contact a veterinarian.