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About a month ago, I noticed a hard lump appearing under the…

About a month ago, I...
About a month ago, I noticed a hard lump appearing under the skin on my dog’s left hind leg. Then another one appeared on the right hind leg a few days later. I can lift them up together with the skin, and can feel all the edges very well, almost felt as if a BB or something similar is embedded inside it, it’s about 0.3mm, doesn’t feel attached to the underlying tissues or muscles at all. It doesn’t cause her any discomfort. Since I found the two lumps, I try to keep the area clean everyday with colloidal silver soaked cotton ball and some coconut oil, and as a result the hair around the lump fell off, otherwise it was covered with hair when I first discovered it. It’s slightly pinkish-white in color, almost the color of her skin. But the one on her left leg did got a little infected after I first discovered it as I was feeling around the lump a lot, and it got a little red and some pus came out of it few days later, but even after the pus came out the hard lump stayed the same. Both lump hasn’t change in size but they feel dryer, and no more infection even when I was squeezing and feeling around them. Is this something to be concerned about? I’m a little worried about mast cell but they hadn’t grown in the past month. Could it be that grass seed or foreign object got in her skin and got embedded in there and walled off? Or perhaps a scar tissue from insect bites? As she loves to roll around the grass and the location of the lumps is where her legs will touch the grass when she rubs herself on the grass.
Here’s picture of the lump on her left leg: https://ibb.co/hnrcqS
https://ibb.co/e9aFc7And here’s the one on her right leg: https://ibb.co/g0UfAS
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Answered in 4 minutes by:
3/24/2018
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 33,266
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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Hi, Kerry. Give me a moment to look at the links, please...

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These are too small too assess properly in pics but they appear to be quite benign and likely to represent a bacterial folliculitis ("short-hair pyoderma" of Dobies) particularly because you've seen evidence of infection (the pus). I can't rule out a foreign body abscess but those areas aren't areas I would expect to be penetrated by plant awns; instead, interdigital spaces are over-represented. There's no evidence of mast cell disease or other neoplasms. I don't see a need to treat with anything more than an antibacterial shampoo such as one containing either benzoyl peroxide or chlorhexidine and then let the tincture of time resolve these. The scarred one appears to have already resolved. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
Thanks for your quick reply! Sorry but what do you mean by the scarred one appears to have been resolved? The lumps didnt really changed much in size since when I first discovered it, even after the infection it stayed the same size. I can still feel them and they can still be picked up with the skin. If it’s bacterial folliculitis, will it ever disappear? Or is it going to stay like this forever? I just found it weird that it happens on both her hind legs but none elsewhere (she does have one interdigital furunculosis on her front paw and one on her back paw though), that’s why I suspect insect sting or something as it was summer here in Australia, so lots of bugs and grass seeds on the grass.

You're quite welcome, Kerry. I see only scar in https://ibb.co/hnrcqS. There certainly can be inflammation underneath it (a microabscess), however. Yes, folliculitis eventually abates with treatment. Her pedal furunculosis is another manifestation of short-hair dog skin infections. It's thought to represent a sterile, persistent, immune-mediated, inflammatory response to keratin and triglycerides liberated from ruptured hair follicles, sebaceous glands, and the panniculus (fatty layer of the skin) and often becomes secondarily infected. I don't suspect insect bites...perticularly because you've seen evidence of infection. I'm betting on short-hair folliculitis. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
Thanks. I think the scar you see is the lump after it got infected (thus slightly more red), it’s still a lump, but you can’t really see the actual lump if you look at it from the top because it’s under the skin, and picture is taken when she is laying down. It’s more visible when she stands as the muscles on the outer side of her left leg pushes the lump out, here’s two picture taken just now while she’s standing:
https://ibb.co/d9Em0S
https://ibb.co/bTTRZn
As you can see it’s darker than the skin but doesn’t look inflamed or anything.The skin is also darker around the lump on her right leg, as that area too had gotten a little inflamed/swelled up not too long ago (I’ve tried to mix turmeric with coconut oil as a paste and put on it, but I think that’s what caused the inflammation around her right leg lump so I stopped that, probably a local allergic reaction?), and after I stopped the paste the inflammation settled, but the skin turns dark: https://ibb.co/eKnyfSThe lumps are still the same size though despite all the inflammation etc.

Yes, there's likely to be scar under the skin as well. The darkening is called post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. I don't know if tumeric/coconut oil should be incriminated; a simple folliculitis can cause all of these changes. Scarring can leave permanent bumps. Only surgical removal would be "curative" but unnecessarily excessive treatment.

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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
as long as it stays the same size I don’t have to do anything right?I think the turmeric caused the local inflammation on her right leg lump, but then her left leg doesn’t have such reaction to the turmeric paste. The area around her right leg lump started to swelled up few days after I put the paste on, here’s the pic taken when it was inflamed:
https://ibb.co/ivFOEn
https://ibb.co/jyX9n7Now that I’ve stopped the paste and coconut oil, and just clean the area with colloidal silver cotton ball 1-2 times per day, the swelling is gone and no more inflammation on both lumps. But again they are not reducing in size either.

Correct. You may see other areas arise, however.

Perhaps. I have no experience with turmeric applied to skin.

They won't change if they've scarred.

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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
Thanks. One more question, if the lumps had indeed now became scar tissue under her skin, is there a chance for it to get re-infected and gets all inflamed and swelled up again?

Unlikely, as scar usually represents the end stage of healing.

Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 33,266
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
Also just wondering usually how fast do cancerous tumor (like mast cell etc) grow?

Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it. I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.

You've picked the most unpredictable in terms of appearance and performance tumor! That can't be answered because cancerous tumors have a wide range of presentations. Suffice to say, any skin lesion that grows at an alarming rate (e.g., doubles in size in a few months), and/or bothers my patient or caretaker, needs the attention of a vet.

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Customer reply replied 28 days ago
Thanks Dr Michael. I will just monitor the lumps for now. Hopefully they stayed the same!

Now you're talking! Keep me posted, please.

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Hi Kerry,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Mika. How is everything going?
Dr. Michael Salkin
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Customer reply replied 25 days ago
Hi Dr Michael, the lumps are still the same, didn’t grow nor shrink. But I noticed another lump on her left eye lid, it’s not causing her any discomfort etc, and upon looking back at photos I found that the lump was there about a month ago, pic: https://ibb.co/cZyrpn
Do you think it’s related to the ones on her legs, aka bacterial folliculitis? Is this a coincidence that all these lumps seem to appear around the same time?

That's difficult to see but it appears to be a tarsal gland growth - a meibomian adenoma perhaps. It's not related to the others as it doesn't represent infection. Keep a watch on this as these can grow to the point that they irritate the cornea.

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Customer reply replied 25 days ago
Oh ok, just found it weird that all these bumps seem to appear about a month ago! Is it going to disappear on its own? Or will it just keep growing? Based from the pic, it’s about the same size as about a month ago.
Customer reply replied 25 days ago
Did some research on tarsal gland growth, the one on her eye isn’t “cauliflower” like, looks just like a oval smooth bump. Plus it says it’s common in older dog’s age 10+, she’s only 5, is it possible?

These aren't expect to go away on their own. They can turn into "cauliflowers" or just amorphous blobs. Or it can sit there and not change.

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Customer reply replied 11 days ago
Hi Dr Michael, just giving you an update. It’s now been over a month since I noticed both lumps. They are still pretty much the same, and she doesn’t seem to be bothered by it, I clean both area with colloidal silver soaked cotton ball at least once daily to prevent further infection etc. Latest pic of the one on the outer left leg: https://ibb.co/dzu9Gc
The one on the inner right leg is also pretty much the same, with the hyperpigmented skin remaining dark ever since the inflammation.

Thank you for the update. Suffice to say, if these haven't changed in a month they're of no significance. It's when growths enlarge at an alarming rate - double in size in a few months, for example - ulcerate, bleed, or bother either my patient or caretaker that they need to be removed.

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Customer reply replied 4 days ago
Hi Dr Michael. This morning I noticed a new bump forming right next to her lump on the outer leg leg, pic here (I’ve drawn an arrow showing the new bump): https://ibb.co/fc9chS
This bump wasn’t there yesterday as I clean the area everyday. The original lump hasn’t changed in size, but just this new one forming right next to it, almost as if merging with the original lump.
The lump on her right hind leg actually gotten smaller and flatter, can’t really feel it anymore.

Thank you for the good photo. A "short hair" pyoderma as I described earlier in Dobies is most likely. I wouldn't treat such a minor infection with anything more than a benzoyl peroxide-containing shampoo twice weekly.

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Customer reply replied 4 days ago
it’s normal for short hair pyoderma to keep appearing? I just find it weird that it happens right next to the original lump. Oh and she also has another one developed near her right paw recently: https://ibb.co/fFSmbn

Yes, such a pyoderma can be local or generalized, come and go, or need more rigorous treatment if it persists. The paw may or may not represent the same skin diosrder. It could simply have been traumatized. Regretfully, I can't assess it as well I would like to from here. It looks quite benign, however.

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Customer reply replied 4 days ago
Oh ok thanks! The lump near the paw first appeared quite inflammed looking, then I applied some general topical antibiotic cream from the vet before, now inflammation is mostly gone (thus the darkening of the skin). She doesn’t seem to be bothered by it though, so guess I’ll just keep monitoring.For documenting purpose I’ve include a clearer photo of the new lump next to the original lump: https://ibb.co/ja3jwnThanks again for your quick replies!

Your pics are terrific, Kerry. If only everybody could send such good ones!

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