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Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 12067
Experience:  Practicing small animal veterinarian for 17 years.
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I have a Labrador Retriever who got into the trash about 2-3

Customer Question

Hello, I have a Labrador Retriever who got into the trash about 2-3 weeks ago and I believe he ate a plastic Walmart bag but he hasn't passed anything. I've been paying attention to him, and everything seems normal, however I found a soft lump, the size of a tangerine on his belly. It doesn't hurt him, but it has me worried. What could it be?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

Welcome to Justanswer! I am Dr. Altman and happy to assist you both today!

So sorry to hear Jake has this lump! Although it is a new finding coinciding with the plastic bag ingestion these two items will not be related. The lump, however, can be concerning.

First and foremost, in order to determine if they are benign (noncancerous) lumps versus malignant (cancerous) lumps is to have your veterinarian evaluate and aspirate (poke with a needle) the lumps to evaluate the material under the microscope

This is really the only way to differentiate the concerning from the non concerning lumps definitively because a cancerous versus a noncancerous lump can appear identical on presentation

Evaluation under the microscope will be looking at the lump at a cellular level. Do the cells look normal, is it sebaceous or oil material that is benign or even fatty material indicating a lipoma or are the cells abnormal in appearance? This information is critical in order to diagnose the lump origin and whether it should be removed sooner versus later

Some tell tale signs that a lump might be more of a concern include whether it is rapidly growing, it is bothersome (scratching, licking), it is not easily picked up from the underlying tissue indicating it is attached to the muscle layer. This can be helpful but not 100 % definitive as a fine needle aspiration would be

I always advise photographing the lump with a ruler or coin next to the lump to measure the size weekly or in dark skinned dogs where it is not as readily viewable measuring with a ruler on a regular basis

Please let me know if this information makes sense and any additional questions I can assist with today

If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION at the top of your screen (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

I am glad you were able to view my responses. I am online another 20 minutes tonight if I can be of any further assistance to you both!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.

Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance to you both or if you have any questions after having the lump evaluated!

If you are satisfied with our chat please rate or accept with the stars on the top of your screen so I may be compensated for my time. If you are having any difficulties you can also state your rating (excellent, good, fair) in our chat as an alternative. Thank you!

Expert:  Dr. Altman replied 1 year ago.
Hi Zack,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Jake. How is everything going?
Dr. Altman