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Dog Eye Cancer

Veterinarian Reviewed on March 29, 2014 by Dr. Janice Huntingford

Dog Eye Cancer

Eye tumors can develop in several different places of this vital sensory organ in dogs. These growths can impair the dog’s ability to see, and can become dangerous to their health if they begin to affect the central nervous system. Common types of eye tumors and Dog Cancer in these dogs are found on the eyelid, with the most common for dogs being known as a Dog Squamous Cell Carcinoma. This mass begins as a small spot on an eyelid, and then continually begins larger and thicker in size. The most common for dogs is the meibomian gland adenoma and papilloma.


The typical sign of an eyelid tumor in all breeds of dogs is a mass that starts out small and continues to grow. The tumor may also have a discharge or may become ulcerated over time. In dogs, it is very common for the mass to be accompanied by Dog Pink Eye.


The mass must be biopsied and tested in order to make a diagnosis. Other common tests that may be performed to determine the extent of the disease and the dog’s overall health are x-rays of the head, eye ultrasounds, MRI, and lymph node cytology. Seeing a reputable Veterinarian that specializes in these types of diagnosis techniques is highly suggested. A second opinion would help to determine if it is indeed a cancerous growth.

Treatment for Eyelid Tumors

Surgery is generally the most recommended options for treating eyelid tumors in both dogs. The mass needs to be removed as soon as possible to help save the dog’s vision. The size of the tumor will determine the type of surgery performed. Large masses that cover over one half of the eyelid may need to be removed with reconstructive surgical methods. Cryosurgery is used if the tumor is able to be removed with this method. It tends to be less invasive, and can be performed no almost all dogs without regards to their age.

Dog Cancer Chemotherapy and radiation are other forms of treatment that may be used. Overall, the determining factors for treatment include the size, location, grade, and type of the tumor, as well as the life expectancy of the dog.


For dogs, tumors found on the eyelid are the most common, and most are benign. Most forms of benign eyelid tumors come with an excellent prognosis, as long as they are properly treated. Malignant tumors may be a bit more guarded in dogs, but the chances of them metastasizing is very low. It is common that a dog will develop more tumors in the future after having one.

Suggested Products

Cancer Support Kit for Dogs
Nu-Pet Vitamin and Antioxidant Wafers
Multi Essential Dog Vitamins

Additional Dog Cancer Pages

Dog Cancer | Dog Skin Cancer | Dog Lung Cancer | Dog Bladder Cancer | Dog Pancreatic Cancer | Dog Bone Cancer | Dog Cancer Prevention | Dog Cancer Diagnosis | Dog Gastric Cancer | Dog Mast Cell Tumors | Dog Squamous Cell Carcinoma | Dog Mouth Cancer | Dog Brain Tumor

Read also: Dog Kidney Disease
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Our Expert

Dr. Janice Huntingford
Janice Huntingford, DVM, has been in veterinary practice for over 30 years and has founded two veterinary clinics since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. She has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities. Ask Dr. Jan

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