How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask MsAM Your Own Question
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11430
Type Your Veterinary Question Here...
MsAM is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dog is about 13 years old with stage 3 mast cell cancer.

Customer Question

My dog is about 13 years old with stage 3 mast cell cancer. She had a huge ( size of a baseball) tumor removed about 2 months ago. it was on her neck. She now has two more tumors one the size of a quarter, the other is about 3 inches by 1 inch on her neck. She is on bennadryl , steroids and pain medicine. We have been referred to a canine oncologist. I want to be prepared, how long does she have ? Thanks you , Debbie
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  MsAM replied 11 months ago.
Hello Debbie, and welcome. I apologize that no one responded to you sooner. Different experts come on at various times. I just logged on and saw your question. My name is ***** ***** I'm a biologist with a special interest in canine oncology. I'm sorry to hear you and your dog are dealing with this diagnosis.I suspect the reason no one else responded to you is that nobody can really predict how long a given dog has. However, I didn't want you to think you are being ignored, so I'll try to help as best I can.Mast cell tumors are among the types of cancer that respond best to treatment, but they do often return. The oncologist may want to try a different treatment in conjunction with surgical removal, but that is something you'll need to discuss with him/her. If your dog is eating well and otherwise healthy, she may go on to live a normal lifespan for her breed,made spite the cancer. If the cancer has spread, or she is acting sick, the prognosis may not be as good.Age is another factor. If your dog is a larger breed (Labrador sized for example), 13 is an advanced age. When they reach that age, almost anything can happen at any time. Last year, I lost my elderly collie suddenly. One day, she was running and chasing rabbits. The next day, she suffered a stroke and was gone. It's very possible that something besides the cancer will affect your dog. That is another factor that makes predicting how much time she has very difficult.Smaller breeds, such as terriers, often have a longer average lifespan : 15-16 years is not uncommon. If your dog is in that category, the cancer may be the determining factor. Even then, it depends on the treatment chosen, the staging of the cancer, and your dog's overall health. The oncologist will be able to give you a more accurate prognosis after examining your dog and considering all of these factors.Cancer can be very unpredictable, in both dogs and humans. I have seen a dog given only a month to live go on for two years. In other cases, a dog given 6 months may only survive for one. The best thing to do is provide optimal care, and just love and appreciate your dog one day at a time. If you have more questions or concerns, just let me know. I'm hoping for the best possibly be outcome for your dog.Anna