While often not externally apparent, cats and dogs are at risk of tumors inside their mouths. Representing a sizable percentage of all cancerous masses in pets, oral tumors appear in the bone, teeth or soft tissue of the upper and lower jaw, tongue or throat.
The key to successful treatment is early detection. Oral exams administered by an East Padden board-certified veterinarian will identify potential growths and determine the best treatment plan.
While tumors can be benign, their malignant counterparts necessitate that all oral growths be investigated. A biopsy is performed and the tissue is used to determine what type of mass it is. Tumors exist in a large variety of forms, each with specific characteristics. The most common types of oral malignant tumors are melanoma, carcinoma, fibrosarcoma and osteosarcoma. For the majority of oral tumors, surgical removal is the most effective treatment.
Oral mass removals depend on the type, size and location of the tumor. Depending on the circumstances, tumors may excised by themselves, or with a section of the surrounding area to ensure all malignant tissue is removed.
How can I help my pet?
Visual checks are a great, proactive way to discover oral masses in their early stages. Weekly inspections are recommended to note changes, if uncharacteristic swelling is observed please contact your East Padden veterinary specialist immediately.