Dog Intestinal Tumors
Veterinarian Reviewed on March 29, 2014 by Dr. Janice Huntingford
Dog Intestinal Tumors
According to reports, as stated by the National Canine Cancer Foundation, only about 10 percent of all dogs are found to have intestinal tumors. Here is the breakdown of the different kinds of intestinal tumors that dogs have: lymphoma is estimated at 29 percent, leimyosarcoma at 23 percent, adenocarcinoma at 17 percent and small intestinal tumors estimated at just over 1 percent.
Some other kinds of intestinal tumors in canines that can affect your dog are extramedullary plasmacytoma, Dog Mast Cell Tumors, extraskeletal Dog Osteosarcoma – OSO and Dog Hemangiosarcoma. Veterinary and medical reports that come from Great Britain estimate that intestinal tumors are found in approximately 22 percent of dogs. However, it seems that the difference of dogs suffering from intestinal tumors between dogs in the United States of America and dogs living in other countries is usually due to environmental and cultural factors, as well as neutering and spaying practices between the countries.
Most intestinal tumors in dogs are usually malignant. However, some exceptions can and do exist. Most of these benign polyps or adenomas are usually found in the dog’s rectum. Yet, carcinomas can occur frequently in dogs as well.
Older male dogs that are between the ages of six and nine years of age are predisposed to intestinal tumors. The most common breeds to get this type of Dog Cancer are the German Shepherd Dog and Collie. The most common sites for tumors of the intestines are the colon, as well as the rectum. This is called ‘colorectal adenocarcinoma’ in which the rectum is affected the most often. On the other hand, gastrointestinal stromal and leimyosarcomas usually originate in the first portion of the dog’s small intestine.
Adenomatous (benign) polyps originating in the colon and rectum can begin as benign tumors, but as the years pass by they can turn into malignant structures that would be known as ‘adenocarcinomas’. However, even in their benign form they can still cause potential damage.
Sign and Symptoms of Intestinal Tumors in Dogs
If your dog has an intestinal tumor, it may exhibit one or more of the following symptoms: Dog Weight Loss, Dog Vomiting, less frequently tarry stools, Dog Diarrhea, Dog Anorexia and hypoglycemia. These symptoms may vary depending upon where the tumor is located in your dog’s body.
Treatment Options for Intestinal Tumors in Dogs
Surgery is usually the most common treatment if your pooch has an intestinal tumor. However, for dogs that have leiomyosarcoma and adenocarcinoma, metastasis will usually occur and the lymph nodes and liver are the most common sites that cancer cells will immediately infiltrate into. In some cases, sometimes the dog may actually die on the operating table due to peritonitis or sepsis, that is, when the dog’s whole body becomes inflamed with the cancer.
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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