Many people are surprised to learn that cancer is the number one disease-related killer of their pet. While pets of any age can be diagnosed with the disease, it is more common among older pets.
What exactly is cancer?
When an animal has cancer, its cells are growing and dividing inside its body at an unusual rate. When healthy cells grow and divide, they do so as needed. When cancerous cells grow and divide, they are uncontrolled and can continue growing and dividing even when they are not needing to. This is when tumors can begin growing.
I’m worried my pet may develop cancer. What signs should I look for?
There are many symptoms of pet cancer. Lumps and bumps, abnormal odors, wounds that won’t heal, abnormal discharges, weight loss, lethargy, change in appetite and depression. This list is not exhaustive, and only a veterinarian can tell for sure if symptoms are related to cancer or another type of disease. Wellness exams are a wonderful way to detect changes early-another reason that they are so critically important.
If you notice any symptoms, as mentioned above, or even have noticed “something is just not quite right” with your pet, be sure to make an appointment with your veterinarian here at Cedar Pet Clinic right away. The earlier cancer is detected, more options are available for treatment, improving both the length and quality of life for your pet.
Photo credit: Hands with stethoscope and bulldog | Thinkstock.com