In a prior post we talked about the Big C and gave you tips on ways you can eliminate toxins in your pet’s life that could lead to a cancer diagnoses.  You should be doing frequent exams of your pet’s body running your hands all over and checking for new lumps and bumps as part of your regular animal husbandry routine.

Here’s a brief guide on what signs to look for.

Any growing lump or sore that fails to heal

Drastic changes in weight or appetite

Unusually strong odors coming from the pet

Discharge or bleeding from any body opening

Difficulty chewing or swallowing

A new unwillingness to exercise

So if you find something unusual – what do you do?  Speak to your Veterinarian but be very careful of the potentially dangerous set of words “Let’s just watch it”.

Instead you’ve got four options to explore.Barkley

Insist your vet aspirates the growth and have the sample diagnosed or sent out for review by a specialist

Go to another veterinarian

Ask your vet for a referral to a local oncologist

Go to the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine to find a Board Certified Oncologist. In our area. http://www.acvim.org/PetOwners/findaspecialist

If your dog or cat has cancer another good site to go to is Vet Cancer Trials to see if your pet might qualify for a particular cancer trialwww.VetCancerTrials.org

RickyA cancer diagnoses is hard to hear.  Taking the appropriate steps now to limit your pet’s exposure to potentially harmful diets and environmental toxins can help as can early diagnosis. Fortunately there are many groups actively trying to find a cure and to support families whose pets have cancer.  The following sites might be helpful for you and your family.

www.2milliondogs.org does fundraising walks and is also a helpful pet cancer website

The Golden Retriever Lifetime Study is an exciting groundbreaking study of 3000 dogs over the course of 10-14 years. https://www.caninelifetimehealth.org/ – About/GoldenRetrieverLifetimeStudylittle stewie

The Dog and Cat Cancer Fund also helps defray some of the costs of cancer treatments. http://www.dccfund.org

Study mapping genes associated with two cancers common in golden retrievers could lead to better prevention and treatment of the disease in dogs as well as similar cancers in people. – Read more here!