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Dr. Bruce
Dr. Bruce, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 17823
Experience:  15 years of experience as a small animal veterinarian
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MY MINI DOXEN HAS A LARGE TUMOR ON HER CHEST. THE VET HAS INDICATED

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MY MINI DOXEN HAS A LARGE TUMOR ON HER CHEST. THE VET HAS INDICATED THAT THEY DONT THINK IT IS ANYTHING BUT A FATTY TUMOR, AND SHE HAS HAD IT FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS. I SAW A DIFFERENT VET TODAY, AND HE SAID THE TUMOR WOULD LIKELY SPLIT OPEN EVENTUALLY, AND IT WOULD NOT HEAL. HE SUGGESTED WE DO SURGERY ON HER. MONEY IS NO OBJECT WHEN IT COMES TO MY DOG, BUT I DONT WANT TO SUBJECT HER TO ANESTESIA OR SURGERY UNLESS IT IS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY. SHE IS 9 YEARS OLD. I HAD NEVER HEARD OF THESE TUMORS RUPTUREING BEFORE TODAY. CAN YOU INFORM ME IF THAT IS A COMMON OCCURANCE, AND IF IT HAPPENS, IS IT LIKELY THAT IT WONT HEAL ON ITS OWN. WOULD YOU SUGGEST SURGERY IN THIS CASE, IF IT WAS YOU DOG, OR IN A CRAZY WAY OF ASKING, IF IT WAS YOUR CHILD, BUT YOU CHILD WAS VERY OLD, AND THEY HAD A SIMILAR SITUATION, WOULD YOU GO WITH SURGERY? THANKS!! BILL
Hi,

Welcome. I'm Dr. Bruce and I've been a small animal veterinarian for over 12 years. Thank you for your question Bill. You've asked a very good question. In a situation like this, the first thing that I'd recommend is an aspirate of the tumor and evaluation of it by cytology. It can give better information as to if this is a lipoma (the fatty tumor) or if it is something else. IF it is a lipoma, it should be a pretty benign tumor that grows slowly. This is the key unknown here. If it grows faster, it may eventually get to a big enough size to cause mobility issues in some areas. If this is the case, then removal when it is smaller would be ideal. Later, trying to remove an extremely large mass is much more difficult to do as more skin is involved. If this mass is growing very slowly, then more than likely if the aspirate is not concerning, then leaving it alone is a reasonable option. If the the mass was in the arm pit or groin, I would be more likely to remove it if it was growing as it may be an issue with mobility down the road. If it isn't growing, the chance of it "splitting" open is not likely. Fatty tumors don't just split open. Other tumors can.
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