Mast Cell Tumors in Labradors: Symptoms and Treatment for Labs

September 30, 2010 | Labrador | Leave a Comment |

Causes of Mast Cell Tumors in Labrador Retrievers

  • Mast cell tumors in Labrador Retrievers are the most common skin cancers.
  • Mast cells are a perfectly normal part of the dogs immune system. They help fight off infections. It is when the cells start growing rapidly and out of control that they present medical issues for the pup.
  • The most common cause of mast cell tumors in Labrador Retrievers is heredity.

    Labs are a high risk group.

  • Most tumors are benign or can be removed with surgery.  A mast cell tumor diagnosis is not always a death sentence.

Mast Cell Tumors in Labs Symptoms

  • There may be itching, loss of appetite, upset stomach, gastrointestinal bleeding in the stomach or intestinal tract, emesis with either blood or coffee grind substance in the vomit, dark feces and stomach pain.

Treatment of Mast Cell Tumors in Labradors

  • Treatment for mast cell tumors in Labrador Retrievers are antacids and antihistamines to treat symptoms that are secondary to the tumors.
  • Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation are general courses of treatment.
  • Surgery can provide a cure if the cancer has not metastasized to other areas. Radiation is effective to localized growths, but can be extremely expensive for the pet owner.
  • Steroids may be used, as well as typical chemotherapeutic agents.
  • Increase supplements that give the dogs immune system a boost. Antioxidants assist in preventing radical, accelerated growth of mast cell tumors.
  • Dandelions contain an ample supply of important vitamins and minerals the body needs to fight off infections. It has vitamins A, B, C and D. It also contains iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc.
  • Echinacea is another natural herb that is antiviral, anti fungal, and antibacterial in nature. It helps to keep the dog’s immune system in tip top shape.

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