8-Year-Old Cocker Spaniel With Lump on Belly
Lily’s Lump Lasted Six Months
“Doc, there’s this lump on Lily’s side that’s been bothering me,” said the Cocker Spaniel’s mom.
“I know she’s had the fatty lump on her shoulder for years, and the other fatty lump on her chest that you check every year, but there’s a new, hard lump on her belly,” she said.
Indeed, Lily had a round, firm, non-moveable lump located along her mammary gland chain on her belly.
“I don’t want to do surgery if it’s something bad, I just want her to be happy,” said Lily’s person.
“Most people hesitate to authorize surgery, especially for a middle aged or elderly pet. What people fail to realize is, the veterinarian cannot guide you well without a diagnosis. Most lumps need a surgical sample, or the whole thing removed in order to diagnose the growth,” says Doc Truli.
At Six Months, the Lump Opened Up
If a lump hangs around for six months and does not grow friends to keep it company, it is more likely to be benign. Benign is a medical term that means the lump has not spread cancer to other parts of the body.
Lily’s lump pulled the typical trick of not exfoliating cells into a needle. Oh, sure, a few inflammatory cells. These are non-specific and really don’t guide the treatment or help predict future behavior of the lump.
After six months, Lily’s bump started to rot in the center and smell. Her human mom gagged just thinking about cleaning the center of the lump with a mild antiseptic solution.
“We should remove this growth and have it tested,” advised Doc Truli. “If it turns out to be cancer, then we can Stage the Cancer. That will involve chest radiographs, abdominal ultrasound, and maybe some specialized blood work.”
Lily’s Lumpectomy Surgery Went Well
Lily withstood surgery very well. In fact, a rotten molar was found when we cleaned her teeth. So, she got the stinky lump removed and the stinky mouth infection taken care of. She’s going to feel like a new dog!
The nurses placed an absorbent belly wrap for the first night after surgery. The next morning, Lily was up, wagging her stumpy little Cocker Spaniel tail and begging for breakfast.
Lily’s lump was a melanoma! What a surprise! It was located exactly where a mammary tumor would grow. Luckily for Lily, dog melanomas on the trunk of the body that are completely excised by an expert surgeon are less likely to metastasize than melanomas on the head or legs.
P.S. (May 2010): Check out the “Bumps” tag or these posts to see other “Bump” stories: