ATTN Vets-possible mast cell tumor?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by SarahBeth9394, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 23, 2008
    After a round of antibiotics that didn't help I'm taking my dog back to the vet today. Her paw is still swollen and I've been reading about mast cell tumors and such. Because this has to do with histamine and mast cells I have to ask this. My dog is always scratching here and there. I was thinking it was the fleas and that they bother her more than the other dogs. But after reading about histamine and mast cells I'm wondering if could this scratching be a sign of skin disease? Of course I'm going to ask the vet today. But I really want a practical answer. If it is cancer I will be putting her down. I had a dog as a kid with a bad skin condition. Watched him constantly go to the vet for treatment only to have to have him put down. I don't want my dog to be miserable like my Max was.
  2. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

    Aug 3, 2009
    I have an 11 year old English Setter who was diagnosed with mast cell cancer about 14 months ago. Mast cell carcinoma CAN cause itching(it did with my dog). We had the large tumor surgically removed(they were unable to get it all) and she was then put on 2-20 mg Benadryl tablets, 1 Tagamet and 1 Prednisone a day-this helped with the itching considerably and to this day, she is doing remarkably well.
    I took my dog to Texas A&M Vet Hospital to an oncologist(about 5 hours away) to get what I consider to be the best treatment option available and they totally agreed with the current therapy she is taking.
    If this is in fact mast cell carcinoma, I wish you good luck with your dog!
  3. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 23, 2008
    Just curious about the cost of the meds for the Setter but real curious about the treatment at A&M.
  4. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

    Aug 3, 2009
    I get generic Benadryl($1.97 for 20) generic Tagamet(around $2.00 a box) and about $15 a month for the Prednisone from my local vet.
    She did not receive any treatment at A&M, just an assessment. They offered chemo which was going to cost around $4000(and make her feel awful) but the prognosis wasn't all that much better than with the treatment she is currently receiving. They also suggested a deeper surgery to remove the tumor my local vet was unable to get(VERY expensive).
    Just as an aside, my Setter's cancer had not spread beyond her hip(which was confirmed with blood tests). Apparently mast cell tends to spread to the lungs and spleen.
    There is a new treatment for mast cell called Palladia-checked with A&M when it came out on the market and the oncologist told me the side effects are pretty rough and that was a last resort drug and that as long as my Setter was responding to her current therapy, she would not recommend it.
    More info than you asked for, but I just wanted to share anything I could with you to help out you and your dog.
  5. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 23, 2008
    Oh I appreciate all the info. I'd rather know what the reality of it is from the dog owners perspective. I've known vets that talk about surgery as if it were as simple and cheap as a vaccination. Just because it's possible doesn't mean it's always what's best.
  6. Brindlebtch

    Brindlebtch Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2009
    I have had several mast cell tumors removed from my dogs successfully with no recurrence. The most important thing is to have them removed early with a wide margin. I did not catch one in time on one of my dogs and she had to be put down after some months. If it is indeed a mast cell tumor on your dog, have it removed immediately or resign yourself to watch your pet die a slow painful death.

    You can take your dog to the vet and have them aspirate the lump and do cytology on the aspirate.

    You might also research canine histiocytoma.

    Itching problems and skin issues usually aren't that hard to deal with with a little research on your part.
    Dogs having to be put down because of their skin issues are few and far between.

    You have no need of a dog if you are not committed to its care or cannot afford it.
  7. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 23, 2008
    Quote:Excuse me but that is a ridiculous thing to say. Thirty years ago vet care was completely different. Dogs were dogs and not humans and people weren't looked down upon because they didn't raise their dogs up to human medical care standards. If this takes a months groceries from my family then guess what the dog will be put down because my children eating comes first. Could I whip out a credit card and pay for it. You bet. But right now I have all the bills I can afford. I'm just real bummed because a year ago this wouldn't have been an issue. But as in life stuff happens and a lot did. You don't know what that stuff is. I will make the most informed decision that is best for my entire household thank you. Thanks for kicking me when I'm down. I hope you feel better about yourself now.

    No mast cells present yet still a possibility of amputation and or a different cancer that might require a second surgery which is one reason why going forward might not be a good idea. They do need to do at the least an xray and exploratory surgery to find out if there's a foreign body and if the bone is involved. They gave me an estimate and said they couldn't do it till next week so I could take her home and think things through over the holiday.
  8. dinahmoe

    dinahmoe Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 19, 2009
    central georgia
    i am sorry about your pup.
    i think maybe you need another vet.if they even think there is a possibilty of cancer they shouldn't have sent the dog home and tell you to come back next takes 5 minutes to shoot an xray and it will tell you right then if its cancer.goodluck.
  9. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 23, 2008
    I think they wanted to wait till they sedated to xray. They did check the blood for mast cells and there were none.
  10. CaGoatLady

    CaGoatLady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 10, 2009
    Auburn, CA
    My Sheltie had a few mast cell tumors on the back of her neck; we found them back in 1996 and they gave her a few months to live after the surgery to remove them. Maggie was 16 when she died in 2008, from old age.

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