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Dr. Drew
Dr. Drew, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16844
Experience:  Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
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Dear Vet: I have a fawn boxer secured as a rescue in 2009 and

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Dear Vet: I have a fawn boxer secured as a rescue in 2009 and was diagnosed with a Mast cell stage II cancer and had his one ear removed because of an enlarging tumor. Vaccinations in 2009 we noticed a enlarging lump on the back hind leg that our vet is monitoring. Buster has several small skin lumps on the back. For the past few days he goes to settle into a rest pose and then all of a sudden jumps up like in pain and tries to bite at the back of his hind legs. The top part of the back end is tender to touch and the leg that the lump is on. I have a vet appt on October 23. The dogs eating habits, drinking water and bath room habits are fine and unchanged. I usually get yearly blood work. I am wondering is this a progression of the tumor on the hind leg causing spasms, myelopathy or hypothyroidism? Please provide some insight. Thanks Pat and Buster Jacobs

Dr. Drew :

Hello, thanks for your question today! I am Dr. Drew, and I am a licensed veterinarian. I'll be happy to help you in any way I can.

Dr. Drew :

Hypothyroidism would be an unlikely explanation for this sort of situation,

Dr. Drew :

but it is possible, in theory, that a mast cell tumor could cause some intermittent discomfort, as these types of tumors can release Histamine, which can induce inflammation.

Dr. Drew :

Usually there's signs of swelling and/or discoloration of the skin around a mast cell tumor, when histamine has been released, but not always.

Dr. Drew :

My most likely explanation, however, would be some type of nerve or muscle issues, as you've alluded to,

Dr. Drew :

that sudden, sharp appearance of discomfort, would be more consistent with something neurologically related or controlled.

Dr. Drew :

and I wouldn't typically expect a mast cell tumor to be associated with that.

Dr. Drew :

A pinched nerve, or inflammation around a nerve, could cause such signs,

Dr. Drew :

It would be reasonable to try a course of anti inflammatory medicine and muscle relaxants, to see if the problem is resolved,

Dr. Drew :

if not, then it's up to you whether or not to pursue additional testing, such as blood tests, and then an MRI of the spine.

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