November is National Pet Cancer Awareness Month. Cancer doesn’t just affect humans, our pets can fall victim as well. Cancer in pets can be caused by a variety of factors, such as genetics and external factors.
Below are some signs that may indicate your pet has cancer. If your pet is exhibiting any of these symptoms, consult your veterinarian right away!
- Swollen Lymph Nodes – The lymph nodes are glands that are located throughout your pets body. The areas that are most noticeable in your pet are found behind their knees or jaw. Doing routine checks in those areas can help you notice a swollen gland early.
- Enlarging/Changing Lumps – If you spot a lump on your pet, make note. It can simply be a benign fatty tumor or something more serious. If you notice the lump appears out of nowhere or is growing rapidly this could be greater cause for concern. Keep a close on its size, texture and shape. If you suspect something is off, consider getting a biopsy test done.
- Abdominal Bloating – If you notice that your pet’s belly is becoming enlarged quickly, this could be a sign of a mass, a tumor or internal bleeding. Take your pet to the vet right away!
- Sudden Weight Loss – If your pet is rapidly losing weight and it is not because they are on a diet, this could be a sign of a larger problem. Consult your vet to make sure there isn’t a larger medical issue happening.
- Chronic Diarrhea or Vomiting – If you notice your pet is vomiting or having diarrhea for no reason, it is best to look into the issue. This could be non-life threatening or it could be a sign of a tumor in your pets gastrointestinal tract.
- Unexplained Bleeding – If your pet begins to bleed from their mouth, nose or private parts and it is not due to a specific injury, you should get your pet examined. It may not be cancer, but it could be something else serious.
Other signs and symptoms of cancer can occur, so it is crucial to keep an eye out for early warning signs. Keeping your pet on a healthy diet and exercise regime, knowing which breeds are more susceptible to cancer and being knowledgeable about the different forms of cancer are all ways to keep your pet healthy.