Skin Tumors in Dogs
Definition of Skin Tumors
Skin tumors are extremely common in dogs. They can be caused by infection, cancer or the simple accumulation of fat, among many other things. Skin tumors include pimples, pustules, hives, hematomas, cysts, blisters, abscesses, lick granulomas and skin tags. They can be on the skin (cutaneous tumors) or in the soft tissue just underneath the skin (subcutaneous tumors). Fortunately, most skin masses are little more than a cosmetic nuisance. However, even harmless tumors can turn malignant, which means that they can become cancerous and spread to other parts of the dog’s body. Owners should be on the lookout for any suspicious bumps or sores on their dog’s skin and have them evaluated by a veterinarian, especially if they are new, bleeding, oozing or growing rapidly. Slow-growing masses usually aren’t particularly bothersome, unless the dog becomes busy licking and chewing at them from boredom, itchiness or discomfort. Malignant tumors can grow rapidly, ulcerate, bleed and become quite painful.
Skin tumors are among the most common tumors in dogs. Fortunately, most of them are benign. Skin tumors can be caused by many different things, including infection (bacterial, viral or fungal), cancer (neoplasia) or the simple accumulation and compaction of fat. Skin masses may be pimples, pustules, hives, hematomas, cysts, blisters, abscesses, lick granulomas or skin tags. Some of the most common cutaneous (within the skin) and subcutaneous (underneath the skin) masses that affect domestic
How a skin tumor will affect an animal depends mainly upon the underlying cause of the lump and its location. Slow-growing, benign masses tend not to be particularly bothersome, unless the dog becomes busy with licking or chewing at the area from boredom, itchiness or otherwise. Malignant tumors usually grow more rapidly and are more likely to ulcerate and bleed, which can be quite painful for the dog. Most canine skin tumors don’t cause much
Most skin tumors are first identified by the dog’s owner, when they either see a lump or feel it while petting or grooming their companion. Occasionally, skin tumors are identified by a veterinarian incidentally as part of a routine physical examination. Skin lumps and bumps can be something as simple as a pimple or an allergic reaction to an insect bite. On the other hand, some skin masses are much more serious. Wise owners will
Most pet owners will find a lump or bump on their dog sometime during its life. While skin masses may be harmless, sometimes they can be dangerous, requiring prompt and aggressive medical attention. The goals of treating a skin tumor depend upon whether the mass is malignant or benign, and whether it is painful or bothersome to the affected dog. The location of the tumor is also quite important when developing a treatment plan.The