Featuring Demian Dressler, DVM and Susan Ettinger, DVM, Dip. ACVIM (Oncology), authors of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide
topic

Biopsy

Dr. Dressler: an Introduction to The Dog Cancer Vet

Dr. Dressler is “the dog cancer vet” and author of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide. Here’s his own True Tail of how he came to be a pioneer in education and treatment of dog cancer.

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How Can I Help My Dog with Cancer? Read Chapter 1: Your Role in Dog Cancer

How can I help my dog with cancer? It’s the first question dog lovers ask. Dr. Demian Dressler answers it. Warning: his answer might not be what you expect.

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Is My Dog Dying Right Now? Read Chapter 3: Three Common Questions About Dog Cancer

Is my dog dying right now? Why didn’t my vet catch this earlier? How did this happen overnight? Dr. D answers the three most common dog cancer questions.

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How Do You Know If Your Dog Has Cancer for Sure? Read Chapter 9: How We Diagnose and Stage Cancer

How do you know if your dog has cancer? Well, no one can tell by look or feel. You have to test. Learn how veterinarians diagnose and stage cancer.

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How to Use the Mitotic Index to Make Decisions About Mast Cell Tumors

Is using the mitotic index mast cell tumor diagnosis useful? In some cases, not as much as others. But when it’s useful, it’s REALLY useful!

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lumps on dogs

Lumps On Dogs: When To Get Them Checked By A Veterinarian

Finding lumps on dogs is scary, but waiting to get them checked is a terrible idea. The sooner you know what it is, the better. Get the guidelines now.

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Was There Anything Else I Could Have Done?

Was there anything else I could have done? This is an inevitable question we all face. And the answer is always the same.

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Video: Lump on Dog? Here’s What You Need to Know

Don’t wait — aspirate. Dr. Susan Ettinger helped Dr. Andy Roark with this excellent, informative video about WHY we should ask our vets to test each bump or lump.

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Don’t Forget Your Dog at the Veterinarian

When booking a new consultation with me, pet Guardians often ask if it is necessary to bring their dog to the appointment. From their point of view, they are often concerned about the stress of the visit on their pet, or maybe the travel itself. But from my point of view, a consultation without the…

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Do You Need an Oncologist on Your Dog Cancer Team?

Do you really need an oncologist on your dog cancer team? Sigh. As always with dog cancer, the answer is not the same for everyone. Dead Set Against Conventional Treatments? No Need. If you already know that you would never, ever, ever use surgery, chemotherapy or radiation to treat your dog’s cancer, hiring a specialist…

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How Important Are All Those Expensive Diagnostic Dog Cancer Tests?

You could easily spend over $1,000 just to diagnose your dog’s cancer. Are any of those tests worth it? Which ones?

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Dog Cancer Mistake - Paying for Tests You Don't Need

Common Dog Cancer Mistake: Doing Too Many Diagnostic Tests Before Seeing the Oncologist

When you first hear your dog has cancer, you may panic and feel that everything must be done, and now. It’s true, cancer is an urgent situation, and it’s a great idea to find out as much information about your dog’s cancer as is possible. But how many diagnostic tests should you have your vet…

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Common Cancer Mistake: Starting Your Dog with Lymphoma on Prednisone Too Soon

It happens all the time, so don’t beat yourself up if you’ve done it. But if you can, avoid the use of steroids (such as prednisone) before chemotherapy, or before the diagnosis of lymphoma is confirmed. Now, I’m not bashing prednisone across the board. Steroids are used for many things in veterinary medicine. For example,…

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Five common mistakes with cancer surgery, and how to avoid them in your dog

Mistake # 1: Watching and Waiting Don’t: Watch the bump or lump. Do: get an aspirate or biopsy. I’ve blogged about this before, but it deserves repeating. No one, not even a boarded oncologist like me, can look at a skin mass, or a mass in the spleen, liver, or lung on imaging, and tell…

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Primary Lung Tumors, part 2

Unlike people where lung cancer is one of the top five cancers and the leading cause of cancer related deaths worldwide, primary lung cancer is very rare in dogs. Dogs are often diagnosed with lung cancer as in incidental finding during a routine geriatric screen. Lung Cancer Symptoms in Dogs Often dogs have NO clinical signs,…

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Uncommon Tumors: Primary Lung Tumors, Part 1

As a boarded oncologist, I see not only the common cancers in dogs like lymphoma, mast cell tumors, osteosarcomas, hemangiosarcomas, and mammary cancers. But I also see the uncommon ones. Recently I have been seeing more of the uncommon tumors, and what’s even strange to me, I am seeing more that one within a few…

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DogCancer.TV: Mast Cell Tumors- What You Need to Know About Your Dog’s Cancer

Dr. Ettinger and Dr. Dressler talk about the detection, diagnosis, and the Full Spectrum Care Approach to treatment of mast cell tumors in dogs.

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DogCancer.TV: Should You See an Oncologist for Your Dog’s Cancer

Dr. Ettinger and Dr. Dressler discuss the decision as to when and why a veterinary oncologist should be seen and how to find a veterinary oncologist.

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DogCancer.TV: Getting a Second Opinion on Your Dog’s Cancer Diagnosis

Dr. Ettinger and Dr. Dressler talk about the importance of a second opinion in managing your dog’s cancer as well as when to ask for a second opinion.

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DogCancer.TV: Dog Cancer Surgery When is Surgery a Good Option

In this video, Dr. Dressler and Dr. Ettinger discuss their perspectives on surgical treatment of dog cancer and the different types of surgery that maybe performed.

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DogCancer.TV: Nasal Tumors – What You Need to Know About Your Dog’s Cancer

Dr. Dressler and Dr. Ettinger discuss the detection, diagnosis, and Full Spectrum Care Approach to treating nasal and nasal sinus tumors in dogs.

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DogCancer.TV: Soft Tissue Sarcomas- What You Need to Know About Your Dog’s Cancer

Dr. Dressler and Dr. Ettinger discuss the detection, diagnosis, and Full Spectrum Care Approach to treating soft tissue sarcomas in dogs.

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Osteosarcoma and Amputation: myths and facts

In my last blog, I gave my recommendations about osteosarcoma (OSA) work up. Now it’s time to talk about treatment. Conventional treatment for OSA targets: The primary tumor with local treatment (surgery and/or radiation) The likely micrometastasis with systemic treatment (chemotherapy) Today, I am going to talk about amputation. The Goal The main goal of…

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DogCancer.TV: Diagnosing Dog Cancer with a Biopsy or Fine Needle Aspirate

In this informative video, Dr. Dressler and Dr. Ettinger discuss and describe fine needle aspirates and biopsy as techniques used by veterinarians in the diagnosis of dog cancer.

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Dr. Sue’s Recommended Tests for Osteosarcoma Diagnosis and Work up (pre-surgical biopsy optional)

As I discussed in the previous blog, the first sign of osteosarcoma (OSA) that a pet Guardian sees is usually limping, or refusing to put weight on the leg involved. This is because bone tumors hurt, especially when the bone bears weight — so your dog will be lame or will limp. You may see…

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How Long to “Watch and Wait”

Last week I told you about two recent cases in which the tumors were too big for surgery by the time they came to me. I also promised to give you some guidelines about how long to wait when your vet says “let’s just monitor this.” Too many lumps and bumps are being monitored for…

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Waiting and watching — but for how long?

Have you been told to “just watch” a lump or mass on your dog by a veterinarian? I wouldn’t be surprised if you have. I too have advised that to my pet Guardians.  But how long is ok? What size is too big?  Are there actual guidelines? In my veterinary training, I was taught that…

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Mast cell tumor treatment: surgery and radiation

We’ve spent a number of recent blogs understanding how MCT behave, how to confirm the diagnosis, MCT grade, what staging tests to consider, and what the prognostic predictors are. Now let’s talk treatment. First, let’s think about the three main conventional tools oncologist use to treat tumors: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. In general, it is…

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Staying vigilant with mass aspirates

I am a huge advocate of aspirating every lump and bump on your dog, even though many turn out to be benign cysts or lipomas (fatty tumors). The story below will illustrate why I’m so vigilant, but first, a little about aspirates. Aspirate: What Is It? When there’s a lump or bump on the surface…

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Cancer Blood Testing in Future for Pets?

A new test is being developed in human medicine which allows for breast and a type of lung cancer testing with a blood sample. This exciting development may be a sentinel for testing in pets that is so needed.  Dog cancer is now the number one killer of dogs in the US, and early intervention…

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