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Dr. Ann M.
Dr. Ann M., Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4847
Experience:  ER and general medicine Veterinarian since 2005
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We recently took our dog to the vet. He is 13 years old, 55

Customer Question

We recently took our dog to the vet. He is 13 years old, 55 lb mix- think lab/collie/chow mix. Vet said he has an ulcerated tumor. He recommend we remove via surgery. It seems to better, not leaking any fluid. Our dog was constantly licking it but suddenly stopped last night. Curious what we should do? Are there other methods we can try before surgery?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It is on his hind leg, about the siZe of a quarter, maybe a bit bigger.
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 2 years ago.

Hi there and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed, internship-trained veterinarian with 10 years experience in general medicine and emergency and critical care medicine and I would be happy to assist you. Please be patient as there may be slight delays in responses as I research your pet's issue.

Did the vet stick a needle in it to see what kind of tumor it is (mast cell, lymphoma, etc)? How long has the mass been there? Did your vet start any oral medications?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
He did not stick a needle in it and he did not start any medications. He just recommend that we schedule surgery. Which would include blood work, a catheter, putting him under. He said if tumor looked suspect he would send it off to be tested. He is new to us, our previous vet has retired. I really appreciate your advice! The surgery is expensive, but want to do what's best for our dog. Read we should be cleaning it?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I can send picture if that's allowed? I wil be home w/in the hour.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It has been there one week that we know of. We noticed him licking and chewing last week.
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 2 years ago.

A picture won't tell me much because different tumors can look like anything. But I would really recommend having a needle stuck in it and the cells looked at under a microscope, because if this is a mast cell tumor, your dog should be on steroids and benadryl for a week before surgery. I definitely agree that it needs to be removed surgically, but it would be best to get as aspirate first to know more about what we are dealing with so that it is treated appropriately before surgery. I would ask your vet to do a "fine needle aspirate", and if it is a mast cell tumor I recommend steroids and benadryl prior to surgery.

I hope that I have answered your question thoroughly. If you still have questions, please reply. If you feel that I have provided anything less than excellent service, please reply to me first before rating my service and let me know how I can better assist you. Thank you for your question; it has been a pleasure being able to provide assistance. Best of luck.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
What are the risks if we don't complete the surgery? It doesn't seem to be bothering him anymore. If surgery is necessary in your opinion how soon do you recommend that we have the surgery?
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 2 years ago.

At this age, the most likely cause of this is cancer of some sort. Some of these cancers are completely cured once it is removed, as long as it has not spread. For that reason, the sooner the better! Risks include spread of cancer, pain, mass growing too large to remove. I would remove it even if it was not ulcerated and even if it never bothered the dog at all. Hope this helps.

Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 2 years ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about Buckeye. How is everything going?
Dr. Ann M.