Custom Search
 
 
Dog Breed Info Center(R) DBIC
 
 
 
Instagram
 
Dog Breed Info Center(R)

 
 
 

Mast (Mastocytoma) Cell Tumors in Dogs

Mast cells originate from the bone marrow and can be found throughout the body's connective tissue. They are normal components of the immune system, but can form into growths called mast cell tumorsn (MCT). About 20% of tumors in dogs are mast cell tumors, a type of tumor consisting of mast cells. Some mast cell tumors are malignant cancer, but some are benign. The tumors release high levels of histamine into the body. Mast cells also respond to tissue trauma. If you push on the tumor sight you can actually aggravate the tumor causing it to spore out and spread in other parts of the body. Mast cell granules contain histamine, heparin, platelet-activating factor, and other substances. The chemicals the mast cell releases into the body can cause itching, gastric ulcers, flatulence, allergic reactions, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, anemia and internal bleeding.

The tumor has deep roots. When they are removed about 3cm around the tumor must be taken out. For malignant tumors the borders around the tumor are biopsied to see if the edges are clean (cancer free).

Cancerous mast cell tumor above the skin

 
 

Cancerous mast cell tumor above the skin

Mast cell tumors can grow very quickly. They can also shrink and then grow larger. They have been nicknamed "the great pretenders" for their ability to appear in many forms. They can be outside the skin, under the skin or somewhere else inside the body, appearing like a wart or a soft subcutaneous lump. They can be red, pink or gray among other colors. They can have hairs growing on top of them or be hairless. They can be itchy or never seem to bother the dog at all. They may be isolated to one area or they can spore out and spread all over the body.

Cancerous mast cell tumor below the skin

   
   

Mast cell tumor on a Norwegian Elkhound

This picture shows two mast cell tumors on a Norwegian Elkhound. Her coat was shaved so the tumors could be more easily spotted. The tumor at the top of the neck had popped and scabbed over.

Two mast cell tumors on a Norwegian Elkhound

 

 

While any dog can develop a mast cell tumor the breeds at a higher risk are:

Beagle
Basset Hound
Bernese Mountain Dog
Boston Terrier
Boxer
Bulldog
Bull Mastiff
Dachshund
English Setter
Fox Terrier
German Short Haired Pointer
Golden Retriever
Great Dane
Jack Russell Terrier
Labrador Retriever
Pug
Rhodesian Ridgeback
Scottish Terrier
Shar-Pei
Smooth Fox Terrier
Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Weimaraner
Wire Fox Terrier

Bernese Mountain Dogs and Boxers are at highest risk of developing the tumors. Some studies have shown them to be an inherited trait. Boxers, Bulldogs and Pugs tend to develop a less aggressive form, while Labradors tend to develop a more aggressive form.

 

This is a dog's paw after a mast cell tumor was removed. Mast cell tumors can have deep roots. The vet had to cut out a big area around the tumor to ensure he got all of it. The dog has five stitches.

 

There are four stages of mast cell tumors.

  1. Stage 1 - refers to a single tumor with clean margins and no signs of spreading. Outlook and recovery is good.
  2. Stage 2 - refers to one or more tumors with or without regional lymph node involvement. Outlook and recovery is good.
  3. Stage 3 - refers to progressively greater signs of invasion, perhaps to local lymph nodes, demonstrating dirty margins, or presenting as multiple tumors. The prognosis is iffy.
  4. Stage 4 - refers to systemic metastasis to an organ or wide spread mast cell presence in the blood. The prognosis is grave.

For a dog who is prone to these types of tumors a poor diet, stress, illness and vaccinations can bring them on. When a dog is vaccinated a tumor will sometimes appear at the sight of the injection or on other places of the body. The dog's body often cannot handle what is in the vaccine. There have been cases of mast cell flare ups from the rabies vaccine, Bordetella vaccine (Kennel Cough) and flu vaccines as the dog's body cannot handle the stress. Some say mast cell tumors are caused by over vaccinating, while others claim vaccinating only causes the tumors if your dog already has a compromised immune system. What we do know is dogs who do get mast cell tumors have some form of compromised immune system. The argument is if the immune system weakness is the cause or the effect. It is possible that both can be correct depending on the dog, the amount of vaccinations given and the age they were administered. If your dog is prone to mast cell tumors ask your vet about getting a rabies medical waiver.

If you notice any type of lump on your dog it is important to get it tested. When caught early mast cell tumors can be treated successfully, however they can also spread with fatal consequences. Just because one mast cell tumor is benign, does not mean all of them on the dog will be. Each and every lump should be checked and tested as they appear. You may cut out a tumor and no others appear, but you can also cut out a tumor and have another reappear in the same spot or various other spots on the body. Do not ignore these lumps. Take your dog to the vet ASAP if you spot them.

 

Written by Sharon Maguire © Dog Breed Info Center ® All Rights Reserved

__________

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—Before the Surgery

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—1st week

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—2 to 6 weeks

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—7 to 21 weeks

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—22 to 29 weeks

Bruno's ACL and Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal: Corrective TPLO Right Knee—30 to 58 weeks

Bruno's Mast Cell Tumor Ordeal Continues

 

Mast (Mastocytoma) Cell Tumors in Dogs

Vaccine Reactions in Dogs

 

     

You may also be interested in...

     

 

Natural Dogmanship

It's a Way of Life

A Group Effort

Why Dogs Must be Followers

What Does it Mean to be Dominant?

Dogs Only Need Love

Different Dog Temperaments

Dog Training vs. Dog Behavior

Punishment vs. Correction in Dogs

Are you setting your dog up for failure?

Lack of Natural Dog Behavior Knowledge

The Grouchy Dog

Working with a Fearful Dog

Old Dog, New Tricks

Understanding a Dog's Senses

The Human Dog

My Dog was Abused

Successfully Adopting a Rescue Dog

Positive Reinforcement: Is it enough?

Adult Dog and the New Puppy

Why Did My Dog Do That?

Proper Way to Walk a Dog

The Walk: Passing Other Dogs

Introducing Dogs

Dogs and Human Emotions

Do Dogs Discriminate?

Speaking Dog

Dogs: Fear of Storms and Fireworks

Providing a Job Helps Dog with Issues

Teaching Dogs to Respect the Kids

Proper Human to Dog Communication

Rude Dog Owners

Canine Feeding Instincts

Human to Dog No-No's: Your Dog

Human to Dog No-No's: Other Dogs

FAQ About Dogs

Small Dogs vs. Medium and Large Dogs

Separation Anxiety in Dogs

Dominant Behaviors in Dogs

The Submissive Dog

Bringing Home the New Human Baby

Approaching a Dog

Top Dog

Establishing and Keeping Alpha Position

Alpha Boot Camp for Dogs

Guarding Furniture

Stopping a Jumping Dog

Using Human Psychology on Jumping Dogs

Spaying and Neutering your Dog

Submissive Peeing

An Alpha Dog

Who's More Prone to Fight, Male or Female Dogs?

Whelping: Puppy Nipple Guarding

The Truth behind the Pit Bull Terrier

Protecting Your Puppy from Dog Attacks

Chaining Dogs

SPCA High-Kill Shelter

A Senseless Death, a Misunderstood Dog

Amazing What a Little Leadership Can Do

Transforming a Rescue Dog

DNA Canine Breed Identification

Dog Bite Survey

Raising a Puppy

Stages of Puppy Development

Introducing a New Crate to a Puppy or Dog

Puppy Temperament Test

Puppy Temperaments

A Dog Fight - Understanding your Pack

Understanding your puppy or dog

Runaway Dog!

Socializing your Dog

Should I Get a Second Dog

Is your Dog Out of Control?

Illusion Dog Training Collar

Top Dog Photos

Housebreaking

Training your Puppy or Dog

Puppy Biting

Deaf Dogs

Are You Ready for a Dog?

Breeders vs. Rescues

Find the Perfect Dog

Caught in the Act

The Pack of Dogs is Here!

Recommended Dog Books and DVDs

About Dog Breed Info Center®

What's New on DBIC Newsletter!

* Email
 

Understanding Dog Behavior
Natural Dogmanship
What does it mean to be dominant?
Successfully Adopting a Rescue Dog
Transforming a Rescue Dog
Proper way to walk a dog
Raising a Puppy
Why did my dog do that?
Speaking Dog
Small Dog Syndrome
Dominant Behaviors in Dogs
Jumping Dogs
FAQ about dogs
Alpha Boot Camp for Dogs
The Human Dog
Ready For a Dog?
Dog Bite Survey
Dog Breed Popularity Survey
Dog Breed Quizzes
List of Dog Names
Dogs Caught in the Act
Those Amazing Dogs
Dog Care Training and More
Designer Dogs? What?
Pictures of Mixed Breed Dogs
Puppies vs. the Adult Dog
Chaining Your Puppy or Dog
So, you want to breed your dog...
Feeding Puppies and Adult Dogs
Corn in Dog Food. Really?
Collectible Vintage Figurine Dogs
Success Stories & Positive Feedback
 
 

Home

All Breeds - Purebreds - Hybrid Dogs - Understanding Dog Behavior - Raising a Puppy - Find the Perfect Dog - Dog Breed Quizzes - Pets - All Creatures - Care Training+ - Whelping Puppies - Photos - Submit a Picture - Breeders vs. Rescues - Spike the Bulldog - Maguire Farm - Scam Warning - Privacy Policy - Contact Us - Site Updates

Rescue

Successfully Adopting a Rescue Dog - Adopt a Rescue Dog

Breeders

DBI Advertiser Policy - Classifieds/Breeder - Puppies for Sale

 

 

 

   
 
Custom Search
 
 

The Material contained herein may not be reproduced without the prior written approval of the author. Contents & Graphics Copyright © Dog Breed Info Center® (C) 1998- . All Rights Reserved. Our work is not Public Domain.