Don’t take your lumps

By Connie Orcutt • Published: October 1st, 2013
Category: Animal Airwaves

Do you start hyperventilating when you notice a lump on your pet? Or do you just shrug it off as a harmless blemish?

The fact is that benign lumps, meaning those that don’t cause life-threatening problems, can look and feel exactly the same as those that are malignant, or cancerous.

The only way to really tell if a lump is benign or malignant is by diagnostic testing. In about 80 percent of cases, veterinarians can accurately determine whether a lump is benign or malignant by suctioning cells from a lump and viewing them under a microscope. In other cases, accurate diagnosis may require analysis of tissue, or a biopsy.

If a lump is cancerous, early detection gives the best chance for a good outcome. So don’t just take your lumps; be sure that any lump that remains on your pet for more than a few days is examined by your veterinarian.