Lung Cancer In Dogs: Symptoms, Treatment And Prognosis Of The Disease

Lung Cancer in Dogs

  • Lung cancer can be classified into 2 major categories: primary lung cancer and metastatic lung cancer. In simple terms, primary lung cancer originated from tumors in the lungs. Metastatic lung cancer, on the other hand, is a cancer that began in other parts of the body but moved or metastasized to the lungs through the bloodstream.
  • Primary lung cancer is rare in canines but does happen.

Lung Cancer in Dogs Symptoms

  • Early stages of lung cancer do not present any symptom.
  • Non-productive chronic cough or cough that does not produce phlegm or mucus. Still, there would be occasions when coughing draws out small amounts blood and phlegm.
  • Dyspnea or difficulty in breathing. When the tumor is large, it can compress the trachea. Compression could cause difficulty in breathing. Another reason for this is that fluids could accumulate around the lungs, making it more difficult to move and breathe.
  • Lethargy or malaise. Read also how to control german shepherd aggression towards other dogs
  • Unexplained weight loss.
  • Appetite loss even with their favorite food.
  • Lameness ??” this symptom is associated with the cancer metastasizing to the limbs.

Lung Cancer in Dogs Treatment

Treatment depends on

  • the type of cancer,
  • the size of the tumor,
  • the size of the affected area, and the part affected.

Thus, other types of treatment are used.

  • With primary cancer, surgery is done to remove the tumor. However, many times, even partial removal can be very dangerous.
  • Chemotherapy.
  • Radiation.
  • Metastatic lung cancer will need chemotherapy and radiation.
  • Sometimes, natural remedies could work as these can strengthen the dog’s immune system.

Prognosis of the Disease

Depending on when the ailment is discovered, the treatment given, and the extent of the cancer, prognosis can be as fast as 2 months or as long as 2 years.

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Lung Cancer in Dogs Symptoms

Chronic cough (which can be accompanied by phlegm or blood)

  • Intolerance to exercise
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Lameness, which can be an indicator that the cancer has spread elsewhere

Two Types of Canine Lung Cancer

  • Primary lung cancer and metastatic lung cancer
  • Primary lung cancer means that the tumors originally developed in the lungs.
  • Primary lung cancer is often a malignant form of the disease.
  • Metastatic lung cancer means that the tumors or cancer cells originated from other parts of the body and has spread to the lungs via the bloodstream.

Prognosis ( Life Expectancy)

  • Chances of survival are usually dependent on the type of lung cancer, how advanced the disease is, and whether the pet exhibited symptoms during diagnosis.
  • Prognosis is usually good if the disease is diagnosed early.
  • Prognosis is also good if the cancer is contained in a single small tumor and it has not yet metastasized to the lymph nodes or other soft tissues.
  • Pets in this group have 50% survivability; life expectancy is up to a year after surgical treatment.


  • Environmental factors can contribute to the development of lung cancer.
  • Exposure to second-hand cigarette smoke is identified as one contributing factor for canine lung cancer.


  • If lung cancer is not widespread, surgical excision is the primary treatment method performed to halt the progression of the disease.
  • Chemotherapy or radiation therapy can be administered as adjunct treatment after surgical excision has been performed.

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