How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Kara Your Own Question
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 15949
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Kara is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dog 10 year old golden has thyroid cancer. Her thyroid

Customer Question

my dog 10 year old golden has thyroid cancer. Her thyroid levels are very high. The tumor seems to be 6cm and its fixed. I have her at veterinary hospital for evaluate. So far they are recommending surgery. Everything I have read has said surgery is not a good fit. I am wondering if they are only recommending this treatment plan because they are a teaching facility and its not the actual best option for my dog.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Some lumps are serious and some aren't. Let's see what the Veterinarian has to say. What is the dog's name?
Customer: Verdi
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Verdi?
Customer: she has been losing a lot of weight = 10 pounds in a month and half
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 9 months ago.

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 9 months ago.

I'm sorry to hear that your pup Verdi has functional thyroid cancer (meaning that the tumor is producing hormones). Thyroid cancer in dogs is very rare in and of itself, and most tumors are NOT functional tumors.

Please be rest assured that veterinary teaching hospitals will never recommend substandard treatment. Their primary goal is to teach veterinarians that will be out in general practice. Thyroid tumors are not something a general practitioner would usually attempt to remove surgically. Given their location, with many essential nerves and blood vessels surrounding them, these types of surgeries would be referred to a board certified specialty surgeon. It would serve the students best to learn proper protocol based upon what is best for your dog. It is essential that these students learn to formulate a plan to give their patient the best outcome. It would not be prudent to teach them the wrong protocol.

Does your dog have evidence of metastases now?

Perhaps if she doesn't have metastases now the thought is to remove the tumor before the tumor has a chance to metastasize, and to try to minimize any further weight loss.

Treatment for thyroid tumors can be surgical removal (or debulking) of the primary tumor alone or more commonly combined with radiation therapy and possibly chemotherapy.

Once they remove your dog's tumor a pathologist will check the edges of the removed tissue to look for clear margins or evidence of tumor cells at the edges. Further treatment will be based upon whether the edges are clear of tumor cells and what type of tumor she has.

Best of luck with your girl. Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 9 months ago.

Hello, I wanted to make sure that you didn't have any further questions for me, and I'd like to know how you decided to proceed with your pup. If you could give me an update that would be great, thank you, ***** *****