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Dr. John
Dr. John, Texas Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
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Experience:  Over 14 years of clinical veterinary experience
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My little dog has some kind of growth around her anus. It doesnt

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My little dog has some kind of growth around her anus. It doesn't seem to bother her, and doesn't interfere with bowel movements. It's about 3/4 of an inch in diameter, and sticks out about 1/4 of an inch. My vet said it isn't malignant and has been monitoring it for growth. It isn't growing much, if at all. Do you know what this is and if it can be fixed? My dog is 12 years old, with a slight heart murmur. Is there any way to remove it safely that wouldn't cause incontinence or other problems for her quality of life? Or any way to identify it, treat it or shrink it? I'm so afraid it will turn into something else.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. John replied 4 years ago.

Hello. Thanks for writing in.


How long has the mass been there?


How close to the anus is the mass?


Has your vet done a needle aspiration of the mass to see if they can identify the cells under a microscope?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
It has been there for about 2 years. It is right around the edge of the anus itself. It looks like a swelling. I don't think there has been any biopsy or needle aspiration.
Expert:  Dr. John replied 4 years ago.
Thanks for the information. If it has been there for a couple years without any growth, it is most likely an anal sac adenoma. These are benign masses. An adenocarcinoma is the cancerous form, and they are fairly aggressive. You cannot completely rule that out without checking either a biopsy or needle aspiration. Of course, a biopsy would be the best test, but you might as well take it off then. I would see if your vet can get an aspiration of the mass and send it in on a slide for the pathologist to look at. Typically, you can get a good result this way, but some adenomas can be pre-cancerous as well. As far as removing it goes, you definitely have to worry about anal incontinence after surgery. I usually refer all mass removals around the anus to a veterinary surgeon. That would be my recommendation if this is an adenocarcinoma and needs to come off. There really isn't a good way to shrink it besides chemotherapy or radiation therapy. But that is only if it is an adenocarcinoma that hasn't already spread elsewhere. With an adenoma, you can discuss possible laser ablation with your vet. They may know of someone in your area who has this capability. Please let me know if you have any other questions. Hope this helps.
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