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Ask Dr. Kara Your Own Question
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14830
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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All of us at home had respiratory infections.tye dog was

Customer Question

Hi all of us at home had respiratory infections.tye dog was coughing had a runny nose. Brought her to a vet he said her lungs sounded good and her nose is congested. He put her on baytrel as well as blood work. He didn't think a chest xray was needed only
"if I wanted it" he called next day and said her WBC 19k and her albumin was a little off "due to nutriton" I gabe her the med and she seemed a little better but coughing still here and there esp when jumping off furniture. Next vet said she had 104 temp lungs
and heart sounded good. Records from other vet said negative for heart worn, Lyme etc. He did a chest xray "just to make sure" there is a large lung mass just one he did a lateral xray and said he didn't see any others. Said her trachea is being moved over
by the mass. He put her on baytrel again for 1-2 weeks. She no longer feels warm and now only gets up once during the night and coughs . Her cough not as violent as before she is being picky with eating she is a brat ans prefers table food. My question is
are lung masses always 100% cancer in dogs or can a mass actually be benign or pneumonia
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry to hear that Asia has a large lung mass compressing her trachea.This could be a granuloma (calcified or fibrous scar tissue) secondary to a walled off bacterial or fungal infection or a parasite, including toxoplasmosis, lungworm or heartworm, or an inhaled foreign body. This could be related to previous trauma and bleeding.If this involves an entire lung lobe then a lung lobe torsion is possible too. Those are usually from trauma, but they can spontaneously occur. But in an older dog cancer is probably the most likely cause. Common types of cancer include adenocarcinoma and lymphoma, and depending upon the location if it is in chest, but not in a lung lobe a thymoma is possible too.Ideally this would be biopsied so you know what she has and it can be treated appropriately. If it only involves one lung lobe then removing that lobe may be curative.Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you.. Have you seen benign large benign lung masses in your experience. Do her symptoms sound like cancer to you. I know u cant diagnose. Runny nose a d greenish eye discharge and fever can it be am infection.possibly. Have u seen these in your practice and they came out benign
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I heard that primary lung tumors in dogs are rare and it may be metastatic. But I also heard one large tumor is better than alot of small ones. I ordered Immunocal for her to help her immunity have you heard of it?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Did you see my other questions??
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 1 year ago.
Primary lung lesions involving only one lung lobe are uncommon in general.
Pneumonia tends to affect multiple lung lobes and is usually a more diffuse disease. That means that this is very unlikely to be pneumonia.
Usually when we see a lung mass it is secondary to cancer spreading from other places in the body, for example mammary cancer often spreads to the lungs. But primary lung tumors do occur.
While multiple tumors carry a poor prognosis because they indicate spread of cancer, which makes it harder to treat a large tumor isn't good news either. If this is cancer then as a rule lung tumors that are greater than 2.5cm (about 1 inch) in size carry a poor prognosis and tend to NOT be benign. That means that even if we cannot see it yet if a tumor has gotten that big it is likely aggressive and has spread elsewhere in the body and will return even if the primary tumor is removed.
But lung lobe torsions can affect only the lobe that twists, and if this is secondary to inhaling a foreign body (like a grass awn or a chunk of food) then that can be only affect one lung lobe and be benign in that removal is curative.
I saw a dog with a lung lobe torsion when I was in veterinary school and although they never figured out why it occurred she did well after surgery to remove the torsed lung lobe.
I have seen a couple cats with single chest masses, but both had masses that were quite small and grew very slowly, and they died of other causes before the lung mass became a problem for them.
With a history of fever, some improvement with antibiotic use, and a nasal and eye discharge I would be most suspicious of a lung lobe torsion or a foreign body in the lung causing the lung lobe to collapse and a secondary bacterial infection in the compromised lung tissue.
Immunocal is a supplement for dogs that have cancer or other diseases that are stressful for the body. The science behind it is very questionable. I have not had any personal experience with it. While it may not hurt her, I don't believe it will help. I recommend trying Hills a/d diet. It is formulated for dogs that are recovering from surgery, have cancer or other debilitating diseases and is easy to digest, tasty and high in calories.