One of the greatest things that can cause heartbreak in life is the death of a pet. Everyone hates to see their pets sick or die. It is quite a complex situation to be in; the emotion and worries, the financial cost and other things required to take care of a beloved pet make it more difficult watching a pet die.
One of the most unfortunate circumstances that can cause this sad predicament is cancer in a pet. Caring for pets get harder as they grow with age; they tend to get sickly as they age. Cancer occurs in pets, not minding if you take care of them or not. So, here are some things you should know about cancer in pets.
1. Cancer is common
Cancer is a common health condition for pets. Some reports show that it occurs in pets at the same rate at which it occurs in humans. So, there is no need to panic if you find out any of the cancer symptoms in your pet; just make sure you reach out to a veterinarian immediately. As your pet grows older, the chance for getting cancer increases; cancer is common among older animals. However, it is common among some pets than others. For instance, the rate of cancer is greater with dogs than it is with cats.
2. Popular Symptoms
Interestingly, you can catch warning signs of cancer from your pets. They can be a lump or swelling in body parts, lame limbs without open sores, open sores that do not heal, unusual bleeding, offensive odour from open parts of the body, etc. These are just common indicators, and you can only verify your pet's case by visiting your vet.
3. Can be found anywhere on a pet
Cancer in pets is not specific to certain spots or organs in an animal's body. It can happen right on the skin or underneath the skin in places like lymphatic nodes, spleen, and bones. While some are visible and noticeable (such as a prolonged sore), others are not so easy to catch except when regular check-ups are done.
4. They appear as lumps
Truth be told, cancer takes various forms in pets. However, one of the most prevalent forms is lumps. When you notice lumps in your pets, it could be cancer. Lumps can appear underarms or under the legs of pets. They may also appear around the neck area.
5. Types of cancer:
You should also be familiar with the types of cancer that there are.
- Cancer of the skin: This refers to a tumour on the skin.
- Lymphoma: This is a growth in the lymph node of a pet.
- Mammary Gland: This is common to dogs. It is a tumour around the breast of your pet.
- Bone: Swelling in the bones is also a common form of cancer in pets. It can happen in the leg, joints, etc. It can cause lameness and pains in the legs.
- Testicles: It affects the testicle of male pets. It can be lodged in the scrotum and sometimes, between the abdomen and
- Abdominal tumours: Cancer occurs in the abdominal area of pets. However, it is hard to diagnose, especially early.
6. They are curable
That your pet has cancer does not mean the end has come. It is curable. However, the chance of getting a cure is higher when your pet is diagnosed and treated early. No reason to fret; your little buddy can still be around you for a long while.
7. Obesity is a precursor
Obese pets have a higher risk of developing cancer. Pets with uncensored diet and lack of regular exercises fall in the same category.
8. Pet spaying reduces the risk of cancer
You may have heard about pet spaying. When done before the first heat period of your pets, you have considerably reduced the risk of getting cancer. It is a common practice for female pets such as a dog, so as to reduce the risk of developing mammary gland cancer later.
Neutering, like spaying, is also used to reduce the risk of testicular cancer in males. Neutering can be done to both male and female pets, anyway, to prevent cancer.
10. Cancer Treatment
There are several treatment options for cancerous cells in a pet they include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. With advanced studies and discoveries, there are even, tumour vaccines, which stimulate a pet's immune system to destroy cancerous cells.
11. Consider a sunscreen
Pets don't like much sun the same way humans don't. They can get sunburnt (which makes cancer of the skin a possibility). Hence, you should keep them away from the sun or get a custom made sunscreen for pets.