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Remove Dog's Entire Ear After Mast Cell Tumor Removal?

by Susan
(Granby,CT)

I have a 6 1/2 year old American Bulldog who had a Grade 2 mast cell tumor removed from her leg 2 1/2 years ago with clean borders. Recently she had another mast cell grade 2 removed form her ear (not metastasis). It was about the size of a quarter and edges were not clean. They also removed two smaller ones from the same ear.


They are now recommending removal of the entire ear because the edges were not clean. They have said there is no way to know if it has already spread and this may extend her life and keep it from spreading, if it hasn't spread already. They have also said even without the ear removal she could live another 4 years but...maybe not if it has already spread.

I'm very unsure what to do and how painful that procedure would be for my dog?

Would it extend her life if the cancer has not spread or would she possibly have the same life span even if it did spread?

Would she get sick quickly if it is in the lymph system already?

Thanks!!
Susan

Comments for Remove Dog's Entire Ear After Mast Cell Tumor Removal?

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Nov 12, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Remove Dog's Entire Ear After Mast Cell Tumor Removal?
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Susan,
Ideally, at the time of discovery of her first mast cell tumor 2 1/2 years ago on her leg, it would have been best to have treated it 'holistically'. Either with homeopathy or some combination of surgical removal PLUS immune support, good nutrition, and NO MORE VACCINATIONS.

Now it is 2 1/2 years later, and she has had THREE mast cell tumors, all appearing on the same ear! You did not state if these were at Stage I or not (Stage I is ONE tumor confined to the dermis without regional lymph node involvement and without systemic signs). Conventional treatment is by surgical removal.

You wrote,
"no way to know if it has already spread"

Are her lymph nodes swollen in her neck or armpits? Does she have any mast cells in her blood stream, or any atypical cells?

Even if there is no sign of any spread at this time, apparently there was no sign of any spread of the mast cell that was removed from her leg. And yet, here she is growing 3 more!

You wrote,
"I'm very unsure what to do and how painful that procedure would be for my dog?"

Of course, surgical removal of the ear is painful. The surgeon can give pain killers to help her post op. There can be complications if she scratches the surgery site, removes the bandage, causes bleeding, secondary infection, etc.

Also, I am inclined to think that if you DID have her ear surgically removed, what is to stop her from forming MORE on the other ear? Or some other location?

You wrote,
"Would it extend her life if the cancer has not spread or would she possibly have the same life span even if it did spread?"

In my opinion, if you DO NOT have the surgery done, AND STOP ALL vaccinations, transition her to a raw diet (NO MORE DRY DOG FOOD), start immune support with:

1. Missing Link Canine Formula
2. Immuplex from Standard Process
3. OrthoMolecular Specialties, Mega C Powder

And seek the help of a holistic veterinarian, to treat her with homeopathic remedies. She will probably have the same life span (or maybe a little longer), with these tumors possibly shrinking, or maybe staying the same, but without the pain of surgery.

You wrote,
"Would she get sick quickly if it is in the lymph system already?"

Not if you can start supporting her immune system and improving her diet!

I am not sure if I have helped you make a decision or not, but in my opinion surgery is not always the answer.

TO BE CONTINUED IN PART TWO

Nov 12, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Remove Dog's Entire Ear After Mast Cell Tumor Removal PART TWO
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Susan,
Here is the rest of my response.

Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is AVH.org.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

Related Pages:
- Canine Tumors (Dog Cancer),
- Dog Warts,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Canine Tumors/Dog Cancer Section

DISCLAIMER: The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

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