Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. Of course the type of cancer is very important to help evaluate survival time, and progression of disease. I would be happy to consult with you in more detail. If your veterinarian is proceeding with amputation, I would assume that no metastatic disease has been observed. ( cancer that has spread to other organs such as the lungs or liver). In many cases amputation can be curative, but again, it depends on the type and stage of your dogs cancer. Dogs recover amazingly well from digit, and even whole limb amputations, so that would be the least of my concern. Post amputation management such as chemotherapy would be my next consideration, and again would be based on diagnosis, stage, and metastatic progression.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

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Recovery of Foot or Toe Cancer in Dogs

In many cases, if you have found the cancer early and were able to get treatment right away, chances of recovery is good. Unfortunately, some of these cancers are fast moving and recurring so the survival rate may only be about 10 to 12 months.

Without therapy average survival time is approximately two months. This is primarily determined by the discomfort associated with the primary tumour. If amputation is performed the average survival time is increased to six and a half months with 2% of patients alive after two years.
Your veterinarian may recommend a toe amputation for your pet if trauma, severe infection, a tumor, or a conformational abnormality has affected the toe to the point that it cannot heal on its own. In these cases, amputation can stop the spread of the disease, reduce pain, and improve the quality of life for your pet.
Mast cell tumors are quite serious when identified in dogs. If untreated they can cause anaphylactic shock or if they progress into a more aggressive form they can metastasize and ultimately lead to death.
Your dog may attempt to lick or chew the affected toe(s) aggressively and you may notice missing toenails. These lesions are typically painful, and your veterinarian may prescribe pain medications.
Surgery is essential to treat a digital tumor. If the tumor is located on the toenail bed, the entire toe must be amputated. In some cases, benign tumors of the skin of the digits may be removed without removing the digit. Adjunctive therapy (chemotherapy or radiation) may be indicated for some malignant tumors.
The veterinarian will make a wide incision and remove the mass along with some normal tissue. In some cases, the entire affected gland will be removed. If your pet is diagnosed with a malignant mammary tumor, your veterinarian may recommend a procedure called a radical chain mastectomy.
As many as 50% of pets die of cancer. An estimated 6,000,000 dogs and nearly 6,000,000 cats will be diagnosed with cancer this year. In many of these animals, the malignancy will look and behave much as it would in humans, such as spreading to the same organs.
How much does a dog toe amputation cost? Dog toe amputation surgery costs $499. Preanesthetic blood work may be necessary and costs an additional $109. An additional fee will be applied for patients over 50 pounds.
Whilst amputation may seem a radical option to us, dogs do not seem to experience the same mental sense of loss as humans, and the vast majority adapt extremely well to the loss of a limb. Indeed there is a saying in veterinary circles that dogs have “Three legs and a spare.”
With surgery alone, the median survival (50% alive) is 6 months. With surgery followed by chemotherapy, the median survival increases to 12 months. In case of incompletely excised grade III tumors, we recommend either a second surgery or radiation therapy.
(Dogs with a mitotic index of 5 or less with a grade II tumor had a median survival time of 70 months vs. dogs with a mitotic index of >5 who had a median survival time of 5 months).
Untreated, the average survival time from diagnosis is about two months.
Cancer that originates in a dog`s toe can metastasize (spread). For example, cancer can metastasize to the draining lymph nodes — typically the prescapular or axillary lymph nodes up front, or the popliteal or inguinal lymph nodes if the cancer originates from the hindlimb toes. It can also spread to the lungs.
Melanomas may occur on the skin of the feet and on occasion beneath a toenail. They are found both on the soles and on the top of the feet. As a melanoma grows and extends deeper into the skin, it becomes more serious and may spread through the body through the lymphatics and blood vessels.
Maintain a Healthy Routine

Nutritious foods and regular exercise can be good for your dog while he or she fights cancer. Exercise is not only good for the body, but also the mind. Try to incorporate regular walks or playtime with your pup to maintain a healthy routine.

It depends on how aggressive or advanced the particular cancer is. By the time it`s detected, some dogs will live weeks to months, while others will live for years. Lymphoma patients, for instance, can live several years.
Although some animals may experience transient discomfort from therapy, treatment of most pets with cancer can be accomplished without major distress or taking away from your pet`s enjoyment of life. Just because an animal has been diagnosed with cancer does not mean its life is immediately over.
Consult with a cancer specialist.

It is important to start care with a specialist who is board-certified in veterinary oncology. Many general practice veterinarians do a great job at treating cancer, but they may not have the latest information on available treatments.

High-grade mast cell tumors can spread, invade healthy tissue, and may be fatal in the long term. The only way to determine a high-grade versus a low-grade mast cell tumor is through removal and testing with a pathologist.
If not found and arrested in time, cancer can expand and connect with the circulatory or lymph systems, and also can spread and infect other tissues in the body. Canine cancer is the leading cause of death for dogs 10 years of age and older.
In dogs, the most common type of malignant skin cancer is a mast cell tumor. These tumors are superficial lumps that can be painful. They often swell, frequently bleed and then scab over, only to bleed again a few days later. They should not be squeezed by the owner, as squeezing can make them swell even more.
Be aware of signs of pain, discomfort, and distress in your dog. These signs are often dramatic and can be a clear indicator that euthanasia should be considered: Labored breathing: Difficulty catching their breath; short, shallow breaths; or wide and deep breaths that appear to be labored. Lack of appetite, lethargy.
You will be kept comfortable and safe by your anesthesia provider. The anesthesia may make you sleep. Or it may just numb the area being worked on. The surgery will take about 30 to 60 minutes.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. Cancerous tumor in her toe needs to be amputated will she live
ANSWER : A. Of course the type of cancer is very important to help evaluate survival time, and progression of disease. I would be happy to consult with you in more detail. If your veterinarian is proceeding with amputation, I would assume that no metastatic disease has been observed. ( cancer that has spread to other organs such as the lungs or liver). In many cases amputation can be curative, but again, it depends on the type and stage of your dogs cancer. Dogs recover amazingly well from digit, and even whole limb amputations, so that would be the least of my concern. Post amputation management such as chemotherapy would be my next consideration, and again would be based on diagnosis, stage, and metastatic progression.

Q. He has a malignant tumor the size of a small grapefruit on the left side of liver what homopathyic steps can I take to help him or surgery an option
ANSWER : A. I’m assuming the tumor was diagnosed on ultrasound, and a needle aspirate was taken to diagnose the type of tumor? If that hasn’t been done it should be – lots of tumors, especially the big ones, aren’t malignant, and may not cause any big problems if left alone. So let’s start there – get a needle biopsy done if possible.

If you definitely have a diagnosis of “cancer”, and the tumor is confined to one area or “lobe” of the liver, it may absolutely be surgically resectable, which may provide a complete cure. I would discuss this option with a very capable surgeon, perhaps one who is board certified if available, and proceed if he/she thinks the whole tumor can be removed.

Unfortunately I can’t think of any natural or homeopathic treatments that could be helpful. I think first you have to know the tumor is dangerous and then consider removing it, if possible.

Read Full Q/A … : pharm nclex Flashcards

Q. Hi my dog breast is swollen what i do
ANSWER : A. If your pet is not spayed or was spayed after 1-2 years of age there is a chance that this swelling could be mammary cancer. Mammary cancer in pets is common and the chances of cancer are decreased an the risk of getting cancer is only 0.5% if spayed before the 1st heat cycle, 8% if spayed before the 2nd heat cycle, 26% if spayed by the 3rd heat cycle. After the 3rd heat cycle spaying a pet will not decreased chances of mammary cancer.
I would highly advise that you take your pet tot he vet to have this area examined. Typically mammary cancer lumps are firm and can be on multiple breasts.
Without seeing the lump myself, another possibility here is a lipoma (soft fatty tumor) or an abscess.

Q. My dog was fine yesterday and now she is limping. She had a grooming last Friday and was fine. I checked for tenderness and it appears to be the paw
ANSWER : A. Pain or injury to the foot can definitely cause a visible limp to appear on a dog. There are many causes such as sprains or strains in the joints including the ankle and toes (caused from falling, jumping or even just stepping wrong), breaks in the bones of the toe or ankle, or even infections such as bacterial infections, fungal infections (very common between the toes) and abscesses (an infection that forms under the skin and swells).

Common signs of this sort of foot problem include tenderness to the touch, redness, swelling, or heat with infection and dislocation with breaks. Bringing your dog into the vet is best if the symptoms do not subside after a day. An X-ray can be taken to look for breaks, and abscesses can be drained and then treated with antibiotics to allow healing. In minor cases such as breaks and sprains, your dog may just need a few days of bed/kennel rest with decreased activity, while in more serious injuries, the toes may need to be taped or casted together to allow healing. Your vet can also provide your dog with pain medication as needed to help her feel better as she heals.

Read Full Q/A … : Causes of Limping in Dogs

Q. My kitten has a very bloated stomach. Do I need to see a vet or do I buy a dewormer? we just found this kitten on the side of the road.
ANSWER : A. If it is a stray then you need to see your vet as soon as possible for a full examination. Yes you need a wormer but you need a good quality one from your vet, the over the counter ones are not as effective. You also need to treat for fleas and get vaccines. Your vet will be able to do all this and check that there aren’t any other medical problems that need attention.

Q. My 13 year old Shih-Tzu has just been diagnosed with bone cancer in his left front leg. There is a knot at the joint. What happens now?
ANSWER : A. Treatment depends greatly on how the cancer is progressing and what you’d like to do for quality of life. If the cancer has not spread, some vets may recommend amputation of the leg to prevent further spread and prolong a healthier life. Your vet may also recommend monitoring with X-rays and bloodwork to watch for spread of the cancer to other areas. In some cases, chemotherapy may also be recommended to stop spread or treat it. Speaking with your vet about your dog’s individual needs and issues is best in determining the course of action you’d like to take.

Q. If my dog has its leg amputated because of cancer how long is he likely to survive?
ANSWER : A. That depends on whether the cancer was localized, and the vet got it all, or whether it metastasized to other places in the body. If is was a tumor that had not spread, his lifespan should be what it was before the cancer was found. If it had, the time he has left would depend on what type and how aggressive the cancer is and where in the body it is.

Q. Can you put your sick 16yr cat down with pills, cannot afford a veterinarian.
ANSWER : A. If you are in financial difficulty, there are ways of still getting your pet treated by a veterinarian. Ask if they take Care Credit and apply online. This is a credit card specifically for medical, dental, and veterinary expenses.

Call a local animal shelter or college of veterinary medicine in your area and ask if they have a low- or no-cost veterinary care program.

GiveForward and Youcaring.com are crowd funding websites that help you raise money to help take care of your pets

Harley’s Hope Foundation is an organization that ensures low income pet parents and their companion or service animals remain together when issues arise.

Many breed rescues and groups have specials funds available for owners who need financial assistance, such as the Special Needs Dobermans, Labrador Lifeline, and Pitbull Rescue Central.

Banfield Pet Hospital has its own programs for owners that can’t afford their pet’s care.

Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance (FVEAP) works with seniors, people with disabilities, people who

have lost their job, good Samaritans who rescue a cat or kitten who may need financial assistance to save a beloved companion.

The Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance Program is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization that provides financial assistance to cat and kitten guardians who are unable to afford veterinary services to save their companions when life-threatening illness or injury strikes.

God’s Creatures Ministry helps pay for veterinarian bills for those who need help.

IMOM is dedicated to insure that no companion animal has to be euthanized simply because their caretaker

is financially challenged.

The Onyx & Breezy Foundation has many programs including helping people with medical bills. They are a good resource for information.

Brown Dog Foundation provides funding to families with a sick pet that would likely respond to treatment, but due to circumstances, there is not enough money immediately available to pay.

Some groups help with specific disease, such as Canine Cancer Awareness, The Magic Bullet Fund, Helping Harley Fund, and Muffin Diabetes Fund.

The Pet Fund and Redrover.org are great sources for help to care for your pet.

The Humane Society website has many links to other organizations that help with veterinary expenses.