Dog and cat

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month.

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Pet parents know how difficult things can get when their cat or dog gets ill. Even the thought of losing your furry companion is too painful and can bring you to tears. But, pets teach us to love, show compassion, and be patient. Without them, we would be lost. They are selfless and are always thinking about the people who care for them.

Pet Cancer

There are different types of cancers, and the rate at which they affect cats and dogs is different. The most common pet cancer results in neoplasia, abnormal and uncontrolled growth of tissues or cells in the body. Also known as a tumor, these growths can be malignant or benign. Some cancers, such as lymphoma, are more frequently found in cats than in dogs.

According to Animal Cancer Foundation, an organization created in November 2005 to raise awareness among pet owners, cancer is the leading cause of death for cats and dogs.

So, it is your responsibility to keep an eye on your pet and make sure he is not showing any of the following signs:

  • Difficulty eating
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Rapid weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Not interested in exercising or playing
  • Abnormal stiffness
  • Difficulty with urination or stool
  • Masses along the tooth-line or jaw
  • Abnormally firm swelling
  • Unusually foul, strong odors
  • Severe lethargy
  • Increased thirst
  • Blood coming from rectum or mouth
  • Respiratory changes

Animal Cancer Foundation (ACF)

The field of diagnosis and treatments for pet health problems is still a little behind. Many people lose their pets because of a rare form of cancer. ACF aims to bridge the gap between oncology research and human and pet research to find a cure that will help every living being. As a non-profit organization, ACF is only interested in receiving grants that will assist them in perfecting the treatments so that pets can live a long and healthy life.

Types of Pet Cancers Commonly Treated

  • Brain tumors
  • Bone tumors
  • Histiocytic sarcoma
  • Malignant melanoma
  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Mammary gland carcinoma
  • Nasal tumors
  • Mast cell tumor
  • Oral cavity tumors
  • Transitional cell carcinoma
  • Sub-cutis and skin tumors
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Soft tissue sarcomas

Treatment Options

Below are the existing treatment options for pet cancer:

Medical Oncology

  • Chemotherapy that destroys quickly dividing cells
  • Immunotherapy
  • Clinical trials to carry out tests for novel cancer therapies
  • Palliative therapy that manages pain
  • Bone marrow transplantation (BMT) with the help of hematopoietic stem cells

Radiation Oncology

Crafting different individualized treatment options using a linear accelerator

  • 3D radiation planning
  • Bone marrow ablation
  • Total skin irradiation
  • Stereotactic radiation therapy
  • Intensity-modulated radiation
  • Definitive Radiation Therapy (RT)
  • Palliative Radiation Therapy (RT)


  • Debulking masses, followed by chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or radiation therapy
  • Curative surgery
  • Radiation surgery (Pre or Post-Op)

Once your pet is diagnosed with cancer, you should be there for them like they have been there for you. You might face a huge financial challenge due to treatment costs and managing them along with your emotions can be difficult. Join a support group with people going through the same problem, and you will have peace of mind that you have someone you can talk to.

Your pet will need you more after their treatment. We wish you the best of luck with it. Hire a professional force-free dog trainer to help you with your dog’s post-treatment rehabilitation and cooperative care training for those veterinary visits. For dog training in Miami, visit the website Dances with Dogs. They offer in-person and online pet training for both cats and dogs. To learn more about their services or to schedule an appointment, call on 786-299-1552.