MY DOG HAS A BASEBALL SIZE LUMP ON HER RIBCAGE UNDER HER ARM. HER HEARTRATE SEEMS INCREASED AND I CAN SEE AND HEAR THE LUMP PULSATE WITH HER HEARTBEAT. IT'S ALMOST AS IF HER HEART IS STICKING OUT THROUGH HER RIBCAGE THE LUMP IS HARD. IT DOESN'T BOTHER HER WHEN I PRESS IT BUT WHEN SHE SEEMS TO BE LIFTING THAT FRONT LEG WHEN SHE STANDS. VERY LETHARGIC. NOTICED A CHANGE IN HER DEMEANOR ABOUT THREE DAYS AGO. FOUND THE GIANT LUMP TONIGHT. I JUST STARTED HER ON A NEW HIP AND JOINT FORMULA 3 DAYS AGO. COULD IT BE A REACTION? I'M TERRIFIED. CAN'T SLEEP.
Type of Animal: LAB / PIT MIX
Name of Dog: MACY
FOOD, WATER, WALK, LOVE, CALLED EMERGENCY VET THEY SAID THEY ONLY HANDLE DOGS HIT BY CARS ECT.
Hi there, this is Dr. Elaine\
Does the lump move under the skin or does it feel attached to the chest wall (ribs)?
Can you take her heart rate? (count for 10 sec then mult. by 6)
How is her breathing?
Did this just suddenly enlarge or show up?
Does she have other lumps or fatty lumps you know of?
The lump is like half a baseball it feels attached and hard
I don't have a clock withe a second hand but I can put my ear on the lump and loudly hear her heartbeat through it as opposed to other areas. I would say 2-3 beats per second. Seems very fast.
Breathing seems okay. while laying down but was panting loudly on walk ( it is hot and humid) but the panting was almost immediate.
It seemed to suddenly appear but It is 1/2 under her arm so It is hard to say but I tend to think it is very recent. Probably past day or two.
She has skin tags and at one point had a huge one the size of a index finger the vet said it was a giant skin tag that didn't require surgery. (no biopsy) It was soft and squishy. She ended up chewing it off.( The dog not the vet ) just trying to lighten the crisis.
Nothing that ever looked like this. It looks like a giant cyst or tumor.
I just started her on a new brand of hip and joint formula about 3 days ago. It seems to coincide with the change in her demeanor. might just be coinsidence.
She doesn't get much exercise lays on the couch alot while i'm at work and home.
There is no discharge or pimple head just a big lump. Thanks John
This could be a tumor that has suddenly taken off in terms of growth, or an abscess, or even a lump that just hasn't been detected.
In any case, it isn't her heart (just trying to lighten the crisis...)
The reason you can detect the pulse so easily is because it is on the chest wall, probably has quite a blood supply, and my guess is it is on her left chest wall, which would be the side to which the heart rests most closely. Also, because of the nature of it (firm, well-attached) the pulse is actually going to percuss through it visibly. The heart is really only about 2-3 inches on the other side of it.
It is not the new hip formula, although if she suddenly feels like doing more, maybe she has actually OVERdone it a bit.
You may sleep.
She may as well.
Please have it looked at reasonably soon.
Let me know if I may answer any further questions.
Thank You, XXXXX XXXXX that you can't give a hands on diagnoses on the internet but if it is a cyst / tumor / abcess are they usually easily treatable ? I know each diagnosis is different. I guess what i'm asking is is this common ? Is the outcome more positive or negative when it comes to my dogs chances? Are all tumors cancer? Thank You for your pending answers and the answers you have already given. I'm starting to feel a bit better. I will take her to the vet tomorrow. It's not easy to love a dog for 12 years and discover something like that.
I know what you mean--that is indeed pretty shocking.
An abscess might be the most directly treatable, although a fatty lump is as well, and a tumor can certainly be removed.
Your veterinarian will likely insert a needle into it--if fluid/pus...voila--"easy" fix (usually).
If fat cells--good deal. If cystic fluid likely excision. If suspicious cells then maybe biopsy first, go from there.
Try not to worry too much if you can help it.
B.S.; D.V.M.; Small animal emergency and general medicine for 24 years