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petdrz, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7325
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience in caring for dogs and cats.
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My cat was diagnosed with having a tumor near the base of s

Customer Question

My cat was diagnosed with having a tumor near the base of his tail. The vet thinks it's cancer, but regardless she is telling me the treatment would be the same; not to remove it due to the size and location and she said he would probably stop eating or the tumor would burst. It sounds like he is slowly dying. She did give me some steroid drops which are suppose to slow down the growth of the tumor and anti biotic drops. I wanted to get a second opinion on this. Thank you
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Some lumps are serious and some aren't. Let's see what the Veterinarian has to say. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about your cat?
Customer: My cat is still eating and drinking, just not as much. He has lost about 4 pounds. He sits in the corner of the room all day. I keep the food and the litter box near him. He uses the litter box to pee, but will poop on a nearby towel. Bowel movement seems to be normal.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 30 years of experience and would be happy work with you but need a bit more information in order to better assist you if you don't mind.

Did your vet do any sort of testing of the mass like a needle aspirate or a biopsy?

Is the mass under the skin or above it? Is it oozing or draining?

Has any blood work been done?

How old is your cat?

How long has the mass been present? Did it grow quickly?

Thanks and I will respond further after you reply. There may be a slight delay while I formulate and type a thorough response or I may be offline, but if so, I will respond as soon as I am able.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
she did take a sample, thinking it was an abcess with pus and instead it was blood. The mass is under the skin and is not oozing or draining. I decided to not have the blood work done, since she told me either way the treatment would be the same; she said because the tumor is large and where it is located, she suggested not to have it removed. My cat is about 10 years old. I have a feeling the mass has been there longer than I think. A couple of weeks ago our cat Buster was not acting normally (laying down in the corner) which prompted us to take him to the vet. The lump was kind of mushy. She gave him a shot to bring his temperature down (it was about 104) and I gave him some anti inflammatory drop.s We took him back about a week later since he didnt' seem to be getting better. Vet said the tumor had grown and seemed to be harder. Currently I am giving him an antibiotic once a day and a sterioid twice a day. No problem on waiting for a response, since I have to be away from my computer for about an hour. thank you
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the prompt reply.

Do you know if any cells were analyzed to determine what type of tumor it is? Did she mention that if may be a vaccine associated tumor?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No cells were analyzed. Vet said if cells were analyzed and whether it is cancer or not, they would not remove it. She said nothing about a vaccine. What type of vaccine and is this something I should ask my vet?
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

I was referring to a tumor that is formed secondary to a vaccine being given in the site, not as a means to treating the tumor. LINK HERE

Without being able to manually examine him and the mass, I really can't comment about the feasibility of having it removed or not. Some even very large masses can be removed, but may need the expertise of a veterinary surgeon if it is in a difficult location. If that were the case, know what type of tumor it was or even if it was a tumor would be more critical. Even some non-cancerous masses can grow very large. I am not clear why she would think that steroids would slow down the growth when we are not even sure what it is, but in any case she is right that if it is growing rapidly, at some point he will likely be uncomfortable enough that he may stop eating. If she feels is is inoperable, I would advise that your only course of action if you wanted to pursue another opinion would be to have him evaluated by a veterinary surgeon to see if that is in fact the case. If a specialist felt otherwise, then it maybe worthwhile to pursue further diagnostics to better identify the type of cancer and evaluate prognosis for quality of life post surgery.

I hope this is helpful. Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please reply so I can clarify for you.

My posted replies are for general education only and not meant as a diagnosis. Only after a thorough veterinary examination can a diagnosis for your pet be made and specific treatments be advised or medications be prescribed.

Dr Z

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
he did not have a vaccine, so the tumor is not vaccine related. I got the impression from the vet that she did think it was cancer, but didn't know for sure and again whether it would be cancer or not, the only option to proceed on either diagnosis was to do nothing, other than giving him the steroid and antibiotic. I think at this point I may just wait and see if his condition changes at all. At this point, he just lays in the corner, will eat a little,but that is about it. I don't really try to pick him up or try to examine the tumor. He doesn't appear to be in any discomfort but I guess cats can hid their discomfort.
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

Yes, you are correct that cats are very good at hiding their discomfort. You will have to monitor him closely to watch for subtle changes that may indicate it is starting to bother him. Good luck with him.