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petdrz, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7325
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience caring for dogs and cats
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My 12 year old chihuahua has a growth hanging from his back

Customer Question

My 12 year old chihuahua has a growth hanging from his back leg. It's gotten larger, but he's never paid any attention to it until recently when he scratch it somehow. I think it might be infected, but I felt I needed to try here before seeing a vet.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

Hello. Welcome to JustAnswer. I am Dr Z. I'm reviewing your question now, and will post back with a reply ASAP.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Sounds great. Thanks! If calling is better for you. That's fine with me too. I can also send a pic shortly.
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

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.

This is definitely something that needs to be evaluated with a thorough physical exam by a veterinarian. It is impossible to diagnose most growths just by the way they look or feel, but there are other ways to determine the seriousness of the growth.

There is a test called a fine needle aspirate (FNA) which can be performed by collecting a sample of cells from the mass with a needle and then examining under the microscope. This can usually be done right in the clinic. It is not always definitive enough to let you know the exact cause of the lump, but it may help to make the decision of if anything else needs to be done, like surgical removal. Some growths are easily identified as benign and that is all that needs to be done unless the growth is of a size to be bothering the dog. if it is infected, your vet will also be able to determine if antibiotics are needed.

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 9 months ago.
He's still running around and eating and laying on it like nothing is wrong. But he is licking it. :(
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I sent a pic as I got your response...if you could just look. I knew all of that. But I understand there isn't much to be done via online.
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

Yes, that is definitely ulcerated and very likely will need to be removed. It would be best to have a biopsy performed as well so that the type of tumor it is can be identified to see if any follow up treatment is needed.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thank you!
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

You are most welcome. Good luck with him.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
If I have to wait 1-2 days, could that be harmful?
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I know that's a loaded question. :-/
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

Probably not as long as you try to keep it clean and keep him from bothering with it, but the sooner the better.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thanks so much! I appreciate your help! The clarification makes me feel a bit better - but more urgent. ��Cash says thanks, too.
Expert:  petdrz replied 9 months ago.

I love chihuahuas.