Cancer is common in dogs & it’s the cause for half of all deaths in dogs aged more than ten years. This disease occurs in all parts of the body like gastrointestinal tract which includes stomach and bowels, skin, urinary tract covering bladder & kidney, nervous system, breast, blood and bones. The aim here for us will be to provide as much information as possible about various types of cancers and their symptoms so that you can take steps at the right time and get your dog for treatment.
Common Tumors Seen in Dogs
We will now look at some of the most common type of tumors which are found in dogs:
1. Lymphoma: This kind of cancer affects dog’s digestive functioning and the symptoms include lethargy, diarrhea and vomiting. The cancer affects liver causing yellow tinge to appear on the skin as well as in gums. If the cancer affects chest then it results in breathing difficulty and coughs.
2. Mammary Gland Tumors: It is seen that female dogs in the higher age group are more prone to getting this type of tumor and also those which have not been spayed. As much as fifty percent of tumors occurring in dogs are these tumors. The common symptom is development of lump in breast tissues.
3. Abdominal Tumors: It is difficult to find early symptoms of these tumors. However, some of the things to keep watch of would be weight loss, pale gums, vomiting, continuous diarrhea, enlargement of the abdomen and weakness.
4. Testicular Tumors: These tumors are most prevalent in intact male dogs. Symptoms of cancer in dogs with this kind of tumor are enlargement of one of the testicles, lack of appetite, loss of weight and weakness.
Types of Cancers and Their Symptoms
In this section we will go through some of the types and symptoms of cancer in dogs at initial as well as advanced stages of the disease.
Liver cancer: There are two types of liver cancer found in dogs, one is called primary which refers to liver tumor and the other is metastatic where tumor grows from other organs in the body. The symptoms manifest only in the advanced stage in this type of cancer and include things like blood stools, anemia, vomiting, frequent urination, weight loss, lethargy and increased thirst.
Bone cancer: Osteosarcoma or bone cancer is seen to occur in jaw, legs, spine, ribs and skull. During early stages symptoms of cancer in dogs are swelling in that section with pain. But with progression of the disease severe pain starts and makes the dog lame in cancers such as bone cancer.
Lungs cancer: This type of cancer is caused by environmental pollutants and also by spread of malignant cells present in other sections of the body. Symptoms include chronic cough, breathing difficulty, blood in cough, weight loss, fever and fatigue.
Stomach cancer: This kind of cancer occurrence is much lesser compared to other types of cancers and is found to occur more in male dogs. Some common symptoms are problems in bowel movement, weight loss, inactiveness, rapid breathing, scratching, vomiting and body pain.
Prostate cancer: The symptoms of this type of cancer are prostate gland enlargement, pain while urinating, swelling in abdomen, fatigue and frequent urination.
A Final Note
Finally we would like to say that if you find a lump that seems to be growing, sores that do not heal, changes in bowel movement, problem in defecating and urinating, unknown bleeding from body parts, appetite loss, loss of weight, breathing problems, lameness, offensive odor and problems in swallowing then these will indicate that your dog has problems and you need to consult a veterinarian. A proper diagnosis using different methods such as blood as well as urine test, x-ray, ultrasound checkup, CAT or MRI, cytology and surgical biopsy will result in better treatment and faster cure.
Hip dysplasia is a condition associated with hip sockets abnormal formation. In its severe form hip dysplasia can result in painful hip arthritis as well as crippling lameness. This type of condition is the result of polygenic genetic traits and is affected by different factors which are related to the environment the dog is in.
Hip Dysplasia in Dogs
Some of the most common symptoms of hip dysplasia in dogs are soreness after getting up from a resting position, not willing to exercise, bunny hopping, while running legs moving together instead of alternative swing motion, lameness, not being able to get up on its rear legs, climb stairs, hip joint dislocation, unable to jump up, subluxation and reduction in hip area muscle mass.
By performing X-ray (radiographs) symptoms of hip dysplasia in dogs can be traced but in few dogs radiographic features do not show up till they are 2 years old. So X-rays may not be the option to use for knowing symptoms of dysplasia in dogs for some breeds in which the problems starts by the age of 7 to 8 months.
Few of the other symptoms of hip dysplasia in dogs which you should know about are moderate lameness which all of a sudden worsens, while walking dogs with back problems along with hip dysplasia sometimes scuff toenails, their gait is uncoordinated and their rear limbs are weak.
Conditions Replicating Hip Dysplasia Symptoms
There are several conditions with symptoms which are very similar to those for hip dysplasia and at the time of diagnosis these should be kept in mind:
- Ligament tears (cranial cruciate)
- Arthritic conditions (for rear limbs)
- Lower back problems (syndrome – cauda equine)
- Osteochondritis dissecans
Diagnosis of Hip Dysplasia
Diagnosis is done using hip scoring as well as through X-rays. The X-ray diagnosis also involves analyzing how the dog moves to find why the problem has occurred. The spine and legs are checked as the soft tissues in these areas could get affected by hip dysplasia and would help to confirm existence of problem.
Treatment of Hip Dysplaisa
It is a inherited and degenerative disease and therefore treatment involves regular review of existing symptoms to cure the problem. Treatment could in the form of medication if the problem is minor and can be controlled with medicines, however, in serious conditions surgery may be required. The surgery could be of two types, one where the joint is reshaped for improving movement and reduce pain and the other where damaged hip is totally replaced.
1. Non surgical Treatment: In non surgical treatment there are three parts, exercises, weight control and medication. This kind of treatment makes use of anti-inflammatory drugs and nutritional supplements to improve the condition in dogs. If you prefer a natural treatment instead of traditional pain medication, NuJoint Joint Supplements offer support for dogs suffering with Dysplasia NuJoint helps reduce pain and inflammation in the joints.
2. Surgical Treatment: It includes femoral head ostectomy where head of femur is removed. Another option is hip replacement which gives the highest success rate and an artificial hip is used to replace the original one.
A Final Note
Hip dysplasia is a common problem in dogs and sometimes it is hard to diagnose the problem as the dog may have been affected since young age and is now used to pain. So knowing the symptoms is important for proper diagnosis as well as treatment of hip dysplasia.