Osteosarcoma In Dogs (Canine) Symptoms, Treatment And Life Expectancy

Osteosarcoma is one of the most common bone cancers which usually affect the middle aged canines. Mostly it affects their limbs, then skull, ribs. The main clinical indicator of a dog suffering from bone cancer is lameness.

Osteosarcoma in Dogs Symptoms:

  • This type of lameness responds poorly to pain medications.
  • An obvious swelling might also be visible in the affected area.
  • Radiography results will show bone lysis (affected bones will appear to be moth-eaten).
  • Biopsy can determine if the dog has osteosarcoma and determine the stage of the disease.

Osteosarcoma in Dogs Treatment:

Radiation therapy can be administered to shrink the size of the tumor, as well as to eliminate the pain present during osteosarcoma.

  • Amputation is commonly done for cases of osteosarcoma occurring in the distal limbs of the dog.
  • Amputation provides a low level of complication, as well as the certain removal of the primary tumor.
  • Chemotherapy is usually administered after amputation in order to kill stray cancer cells and to prevent metastasis.
  • No treatment option: Some pet owners opt to euthanize the dog diagnosed with advanced osteosarcoma in order to end the animal’s suffering.

Osteosarcoma in Dogs Life Expectancy:

Usually, at the time of diagnosis, the cancer has already metastasized to other parts of the dog’s body, thus lowering the chances of survival.

  • Early diagnosis can therefore increase the chances of the pet’s survival.
  • Most treatment methods aim to improve the pet’s quality and length of life.
  • The average survival time with radiation therapy is 4-6 months.
  • Amputation alone has an average survival time of 6 months.
  • Amputation combined with chemotherapy allows for an average survival rate of up to 12 months.
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Middle-aged dogs are more susceptible to this type of cancer, but younger dogs can also develop the disease. Treatment of canine osteosarcoma can be any of the following: the reduction of pain, treatment of lameness, or completely cure the disease.

Bone Cancer in Dogs Symptoms:

  • Osterosarcoma in the limbs can cause a dog to become lame.
  • Occasionally, there is swelling at the site of the cancer.
  • Bone cancer in the mandibular area will make swallowing difficult.
  • Cranial tumors can cause neurological deficits.
  • Dogs with cancer in the pelvic area will have difficulty in defecating.

Bone Cancer in Dogs Life Expectancy/Survival Rate:

  • Prognosis for dogs that have bone cancer will differ based on several factors.
  • Dogs under 7 years of age will usually have a poor prognosis.
  • Other factors that can yield a poor prognosis include a large volume of tumor, osteosarcoma located in the forelegs, and the metastasis of the cancer.
  • An aggressive chemotherapy can raise the chances of survival by up to two years.

Bone Cancer in Dogs Treatment:

  • Amputation is done to prevent the further spread of the cancer to other tissues and organs; however, it is not a popular treatment option for many dog owners.
  • Chemotherapy, in combination with other modes of therapy, is categorized as a curative.
  • Surgery is usually done to remove the tumor from the dog’s legs.
  • Radiotherapy can be an alternative to chemotherapy.
  • Medications to alleviate pain can be administered, but they are usually powerless against the level of pain attributed to canine osteosarcoma.

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