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My mums greyhound (nearly nine) has a small lesion, about…

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My mum's greyhound (nearly nine)...
My mum's greyhound (nearly nine) has a small lesion, about the size of a cherry, on one of his toes of his front paw. The vet has used a steroid cream and wrapped his leg up with bandage and tape. My mum has covered this up with a plastic bag and sock when she walks Jo so as to not get his foot wet. The vet re-bandaged after a week and then after a further five days. The sore has not changed at all and is a very vivid red colour. He is now suggesting that Jo has this one toe removed and then a full biopsy can be done. He is a retired Greyhound and we have had him for nearly 4 years. The vet has always shown good judgment for all our previous dogs. He is unsure what the cause is but believes it is not malignant. Any advice you can give will be much appreciated.
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Dog
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Answered in 19 minutes by:
6/29/2010
Dog Specialist: Dr. Louis Gotthelf, Veterinarian replied 8 years ago
Dr. Louis Gotthelf
Dr. Louis Gotthelf, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2,438
Experience: Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Owner of a small animal clinic and an ear/skin clinic 35 years
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A biopsy of an unknown lesion is always a good idea if it does not respond to therapy. Amputating the entire toe if it is benign may be a little extreme. The issue is that if it is not bothering the dog and it does not seem to be malignant, then the dog may live in comfort doing nothing. In my practice I have a CO2 laser and I can easily vaproize this type of small growth from its base on the toes. Then I can send off the removed tissue for pathological analysis.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

I think he intends to remove the toe at the appropriate knuckle junction. So it will hopefully be about 1/2 a toe.

Do you think he would have a CO2 laser? Is it used routinely for this type of lesion?

Thank you,

Peter Daff

Dog Specialist: Dr. Louis Gotthelf, Veterinarian replied 8 years ago
I do not know if he has a laser or not...you could ask him. A laser is very useful to use in tight areas where a scalpel would cause significant tissue damage. It is easy to get a biopsy first and then if it is a malignancy, to amputate. If there is any change to the bone of the foot seen on an X-ray, then a wide excision and amputation may be necessary.
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