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Dr. Christian K.
Dr. Christian K., Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 10146
Experience:  12 years of veterinary experience in canine surgery, medicine and behavior
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My dog was just diagnosed with an abdominal mass. Does that

Resolved Question:

My dog was just diagnosed with an abdominal mass. Does that mean she has cancer? What should I do?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Christian K. replied 7 years ago.


This is Dr. Christian. Welcome to JustAnswer. A few questions will help me get a clearer picture of this situation:

  • What symptoms does she show?
  • Where in the belly is it located?
  • Has bloodwork been done?
  • How big is the mass?
  • How old is your dog and what breed?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
A mass showed up on the x-ray. It is located between the spleen and liver. Bloodwork has not been done. She has cried out in pain when she has tried to poop and has been lying on the floor after she has pooped. Her belly is distended and the dr. could move the tumor or mass. The love of my life is a 12 year old Maltese. What can I do so she is not in pain when she poops? What should I do to help get her better? Thank you for you advice. She is my loving fur child.
Expert:  Dr. Christian K. replied 7 years ago.
Abdominal masses are not always a cancer that spreads to other parts of the body but in this case not enough is known about the mass to be able to tell what it is yet. A mass in that area could be part of the stomach, the liver, the spleen, the intestines, a lymph node or even the pancreas. Bloodwork would be helpful because it can tell you about possible infections that could cause a mass and also will tell you something about her liver. If her liver values are high then this mass may be affecting her liver and that could be a very serious sign. The best test to know exactly what this mass involves is an ultrasound. With the ultrasound it can be determined what the mass is attached to and even be able to get some biopsies. You can try adding 1-2 teaspoons of canned pumpkin (not pie filling) to her food to help with constipation if that is what is causing her pain. The fiber is a natural laxative. Make sure to ask your vet about pain medications that you can try for this situation. Tramadol is a very good one for instance. Until you have some more testing done there is no way to know for sure what this is or how serious it will be. If you have more questions please let me know.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for your response. She also has cushing's disease. Could that be causing the mass?
Expert:  Dr. Christian K. replied 7 years ago.
You are welcome. There are tumors of the adrenal gland that could cause a mass but they are honestly very rare and would not be in this area. So I'd have to say no, I don't think the two are related.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Can she live with a mass or does it need to be removed or what are some other choices so she lives a long healthy life?
Expert:  Dr. Christian K. replied 7 years ago.
Sometimes these masses can be removed and they never return but of course an ultrasound will help determine if that is possible. Since she is already showing problems with the mass, leaving it alone is likely to only cause things to worsen, especially as the mass grows. It will tend to press on more part of the abdomen and continue to cause more problems. Removal, if possible, is by far the best choice.
Dr. Christian K. and other Dog Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for your timely and honest answers.
Expert:  Dr. Christian K. replied 7 years ago.
You are welcome. Good luck. I hope everything turns out well.