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Dr. Scarlett
Dr. Scarlett, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4110
Experience:  I am a practicing small animal veterinarian with 18 years experience.
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Dog Veterinary

Our dog has a lump between her anus and vagina. She had a

Our dog has a lump... Show More
Our dog has a lump between her anus and vagina. She had a similiar lump removed a year ago and the bio was a surface cancer.   The lump is back and about the size of a golf ball. It feels warm to the touch.   Should we put a 13 1/2 year old dog who already has problems getting up and walking, through another surgery?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
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replied 7 years ago.
Hi,
That is a tough question to answer. Euthanasia is a difficult decision to make and one only you can do. The main thing to consider is your dog's quality of life. Is that lump uncomfortable for her? Is she having a hard time sitting down, defecating, or urinating? Is the lump growing rapidly, where it could ulcerate and bleed? Are you sure it is the same thing or could it be an abscess instead?

What about the overall health of your dog--is she on any medication for the arthritis symptoms? Has bloodwork been done recently and does she have an problems with her kidneys, liver, or heart?

What is her behavior like--does she recognize you and still get excited when you greet her? Does she tell you when she needs to go outside or does she have accidents in the house? Is she still eating well? Does she still want to go for walks?

If you haven't had your vet look at this new lump yet, I would start there. If the original mass was a mast cell tumor (MCT), then I suspect this is a recurrence. But if it is warm to the touch, a fine needle aspirate would be good to do. MCT are fairly easy to diagnose on a slide, which your vet can likely examine in the clinic. If there is pus that comes out instead, then antibiotics may be all that is needed. If it is a MCT, if you decide not to have it removed again (they can come back more quickly each time), then starting your dog on an antihistamine (like benadryl) or prednisone can shrink the tumor up, at least for a period of time. I would also recommend having bloodwork done to see if internally your dog appears to be in good shape. If the bloodwork comes back normal, then I would certainly consider doing the surgery.

If your dog isn't currently on something for arthritis, I would talk to your vet about different options. Drugs like Rimadyl or Metacam (both non-steroidal anti-inflammatories) can be very useful, although can't be given together with prednisone. Tramadol is a pain medication that can be given with pred or Rimadyl. Glucosamine is a possibility, although it can take up to 6 weeks to see any noticeable results. I also like Prescription Diet J/D, which is high in omega-3 fatty acids. It usually takes 3-4 weeks to see improvement on the food.

Hope that helps!
Dr. Scarlett