Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs: Symptoms, Treatment And Life Expectancy

Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs: Symptoms, Treatment And Life Expectancy in Canines

May 11, 2011 | Dog Diseases | Leave a Comment |

Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs and Symptoms

  • Mast cell tumors can affect dogs of all breeds, sizes, gender, and health conditions. Still, this affects the older population more than the younger ones.
  • These tumors are very common in dogs, comprising 20% of all skin tumors.
  • Although the exact cause of mast cell tumors is still unknown, it does originate in the bone marrow.


  • Symptoms of this ailment are:
    • Lack of appetite
    • Round and raised massed on the skin
    • Black tarry stools
    • Abdominal pain
    • Vomiting
    • It is important to watch out for signs of ailment and bring the dog to a vet as soon as possible.

      The tumors could be fatal especially if allowed to progress to advanced stages.

Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs Treatment

  • The first option for treatment is surgical removal of the tumors. Often, the tissue is sent to a pathologist to test if it is malignant or benign.
  • Medication can be given to help shrink the tumor size or to stop excessive growth.
  • Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are often necessary in advanced cases.

Mast Cell Tumors in Dogs Life Expectancy

  • Life expectancy actually depends on the extent of the ailment.
    • Stage 1: Most patients will have an excellent cure rate after surgery; chances of recurrence very low.
    • Stage 2: Good cure rate; about 20% chance of recurrence with aggressive surgery.
    • Stage 3: Low cure rate, with only about 10% of patients alive after 1 year.

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