Reducing Known Risk Factors
Reducing known cancer risks in your pets environment is a step toward cancer protection that you can take for the family members that are often the least able to avoid such risks. For example, by controlling your pets exposure to sunlight and ultraviolet radiation, you can significantly reduce the risk of skin cancer. The areas on an animals body that are most likely to develop skin cancer are those with little or no hair or those that do not have pigmentation . Therefore, the highest risk areas for skin cancer in cats include the eyelids, the tip of the nose, and the tips of the ears. For dogs, the abdomen is a vulnerable area. Animals with fair or white coloring are more likely to develop skin cancer than animals with dark hair. White or light skin or fur provide less protection from the ultraviolet rays in sunlight.
Among humans, smoking and other tobacco usage is a leading cause of cancer. Smoking is not only dangerous for the smoker it also endangers the health of others exposed to tobacco smoke . This means that anyone living in a home with a smoker has an increased risk of health problems, including cancer. Pets that inhale secondhand smoke are more likely to develop cancer and other health problems than animals that live in a smoke-free environment. An owners decision to stop smoking can, therefore, lower the chances that any pets living in the home will develop cancer.
Signs And Symptoms Of Lymphoma:
Often the dog with lymphoma will present with swollen lymph glands somewhere. Early warning signs to look for are: weight loss, disinterest in food, vomiting, fever, and depression. In some cases, there will be additional signs of increased thirst and urination, and an erratic pulse.
There is also a blood test that can be performed that is highly accurate in detecting lymphoma. This test needs just 1ml of blood and involves multiple bio-marker technology, which is used for detecting cancers in humans. This blood test has been developed by Pet Screen, and does not involve sedating your pooch. Your local vet should be able to provide you with more information.
Questions To Ask Your Veterinarian About Cancer In Dogs
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Treatment And The Importance Of Nutrition
Early detection of cancer is the single most important factor for successful treatment. Many cancers may be managed with chemotherapy and this can reduce the severity of clinical signs and add quality to your dogs life. Many dogs debilitated and who have undergone surgery benefit from dog foods with increased levels of protein and energy to help correct nutrient deficiencies and replenish body nutrient storage. The main goal of nutritional management for cancer is to markedly improve the success of cancer therapy and add to the survival time and quality of life for dogs with cancer.
The food your dog eats plays an important role in his overall health and well-being. Balanced nutrition is an essential part of an active, healthy lifestyle. When your dog has cancer, its even more important to feed the right dog food consistently. For accurate diagnosis and treatment options, always consult your veterinarian and ask them to recommend the best food for your dogs cancer.
Choose Golden Meadows Retrievers For Your Puppy
At Golden Meadows Retrievers, we have more than 25 years of experience breeding Golden Retrievers. We health test all our dogs before breeding them and offer a guarantee for up to three years against genetic health defects. If you want to get a Golden Retriever, reach out to Golden Meadow Retrievers today.
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Exercise For Dogs & Cats
You need it, and so does your pet. Exercise is one of the best ways to combat stress, and is also crucial for the health of the mind and body, whether human, dog, or cat. In their natural state, canids and felids roam large territories and hunt for a living. The more we can mimic this natural lifestyle, the better.
Play is wonderful, because it provides both exercise and the joy of fun and laughter . There is truly nothing more hilarious than the antics of a cat chasing a laser beam or feathers on a pole or string. Cats need exercise as much as dogs do, and regular play sessions are the ideal way to accomplish it. Or, try a kitty harness and go for walks. Introduce this activity gradually to increase the chance of acceptance.
Dogs are a bit easier to exercise, and a brisk walk can do you both good. A play date with another dog or a romp at the dog park can be great exercise as well as mental stimulation and stress relief. If your dog is a firm believer in staying home, then play fetch in the house, or find some other way to provide exercise every day.
Physical activity is vital for pets for weight control, digestive health, detoxification, immune health, muscle tone, respiratory health, and mental and emotional stability.
Most Common Types Of Canine Cancer
There are a handful of cancers that afflict canines most frequently. Those include:
- Lymphoma: Affects the dogs immune system, occurring in the lymph nodes and bone marrow. Progresses in five stages, rapidly if untreated.
- Hemangiosarcoma: More common in dogs than any other species, this cancer starts in the blood vessels but spreads without warning to the liver, spleen, heart, or other organs. Remains undetected until it is very advanced.
- Mast Cell Tumors: Very common in older and mixed breed dogs, this form of cancer affects areas of the body with high levels of enzymes and histamines, such as the skin, intestines, and respiratory system.
- Melanoma: This type of skin cancer usually starts in the dogs mouth and around the lips but is also seen in the eyes, nail beds, and footpads. It spreads through the deep tissue of the skin to other organs.
- Osteosarcoma: This bone cancer is most common in large breeds, is very aggressive, and spreads rapidly. It can present in any bone, but is most common in the limbs.
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Goldens Retrievers As Cancer Case Studies
The high incidence of cancer in Golden Retrievers appears to be a relatively recent phenomenon. Although the breed was neither over- nor under-represented in a 1988 health study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, a health report published 10 years later by the Golden Retriever Club of America identified cancer as the cause of death in 61.4 percent of their dogs.
Interestingly, cancer risk in European-bred Goldens appears to be significantly lower. A 2010 study put the mortality figure at 38.8 percent. Although much higher than average, the incidence is substantially lower than that found in North American Goldens.
Goldens in Europe and the U.S. may look similar, but there are enough DNA differences to separate the dogs into two distinct populations corresponding to their geographic regions. Gene pools on both continents are large, so breeding between the two populations is rare.
When studied in the lab, genomic differences suggest that risk for some types of cancer is related to recent genetic mutations in North American Golden Retrievers. And this could be good news: genetic differences between European and North American Golden Retrievers may be key to understanding the etiology of canine cancer overall.
What Are The Common Types Of Cancer In The Golden Retriever
According to the veterinary clinical trials program at the University of London, the Golden Retriever is more prone to four types of cancer. Further, the cases of cancer rise at the age of 6 and maximize at the age of 10 to 12. But after 12 years of age, these cases decline gradually.
However, there are four types of cancer most common in the Golden Retriever. And they are:
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Ways To Help Prevent Cancer In Dogs
Because there are so many risk factors,there is no one way to completely prevent your Golden from developing cancer.However, veterinarians and researchers are able to detect some cancers earlier,and there are also ways to decrease cancer risks.
Make sure that you are feeding your dog a well-balanced diet. This can be a commercial diet that meets AAFCO requirements or a home-cooked diet that has been formulated by a veterinary nutritionist.
There is no scientific evidence to support the feeding of raw diets at this time. In fact, current research shows that there is an increased risk of exposure to harmful bacteria like Salmonella and Campylobacter, and this can affect both you and your dog.
Grain-free diets should also be avoided because the FDA is currently investigating apossible link between grain-free foods and dilated cardiomyopathy. Golden Retrievers have been implicated as the most common dog breed affected by this3.
Many of the supplements available today contain ingredients such as glycosaminoglycans and omega-3 fatty acids. Glycosaminoglycans are sugar compounds like glucosamine, chondroitin, and hyaluronic acid.
These are all build blocks for cartilage, which acts as a shock absorber for joints, and have a protective effect on the intestines and urinary bladder. GAGs also help prevent inflammation in the body, as do omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s like EPA and DHA are found in fish oils.
4. Veterinary visits
Video Answer: How To Prevent Dog Cancer
The family-friendly Golden Retriever is popular for a reason.
They’re exuberant, sweet, smart, and hard workers.
They’re good at everything they do, whether it’s hunting, serving as guide dogs, or being devoted companions.
Goldens are easily trainable and they love to please.
Plenty of owners have Golden Retrievers who enjoy chewing anything and everything to pieces.
Boredom is often a key factor in dogs who chew incessantly.
Not devoting enough time and energy on your Golden Retriever puppy can mean the difference between a wonderful, calm family pet and an aggressive, destructive dog.
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Spaying Golden Retrievers And Cancer
Currently, there are new recommendations about spaying large breed dogs such as Golden retrievers. Experts believe that you should wait until your Golden retriever reaches at least 18 months old prior to spaying or neutering them. It would help if you waited for Goldens to reach this age to make sure they have fully grown through puberty. Recent research reveals that waiting for this optimum age minimizes the risk of bone and joint problems as your Golden ages. Aside from preventing your dog from getting pregnant, another reason for this recommendation is to prevent mammary cancer. What is the connection between spaying golden retrievers and cancer? Studies show that spaying your dog before the first heat cycle can dramatically reduce the risk of developing mammary cancer in old age.
Treating Cancer In Dogs & Cats
A diagnosis of cancer in your beloved companion requires many difficult choices. You will surely forget to ask many important questions when you first hear the dreaded word, so schedule a follow-up visit with your veterinarian to discuss the issues that are likely to arise. Try not to make any profound decisions until you have a chance to educate yourself about all the options availableboth conventional and alternative. Ask for a referral to an oncologist who can answer questions about conventional treatment methods. Find a holistic veterinarian, either in your area or one who will provide virtual consultations, regarding alternative cancer treatments. Cancer is serious business, and an integrative team approach is best.
Offer the chance for a better quality of life, even if it cannot cure the cancer. Holistic care aims to provide the animal with the resources its body needs to heal from within. Every case is different. There is no one way to treat any type of cancer, although the above suggestions can help no matter what type of cancer the animal has. There are also some basic immune-boosting, anti-inflammatory, and cancer-fighting nutritional supplements that can help in many cases.
Diet, of course, is fundamental. You can give supplements all day long, but if the basic diet is junk food, youre just throwing good money after bad, and needlessly stressing your pet.
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Is There Anything More Recent
A multi-breed study was carried out in 2020. This study was designed to aid decision making around neutering and time of neutering. An increase in the risk of developing cancer was only seen in 2 small breeds, the Cocker spaniel and the Boston terrier. The risk was only significant for the male Cocker spaniel, neutered before 1 year of age and the female Boston terrier, neutered before 2 years of age. The study found an increased risk of cancer in Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers and German Shepherd dogs when they were neutered. The authors conclusion was that there was an elevated cancer risk in relatively few of the 35 breeds studied.
Water And Hydration For Dogs & Cats
Depending on where you live, the tap water can range from decent to toxic. Distilled water is not suitable for long-term consumption because it pulls minerals from the body, but it can be useful in a short-term detoxification program. Filtered water is best, followed by spring water. However, bottled water can leach toxic chemicals from the plastic into the water. The animals water needs to be kept clean and fresh at all times. If your pet is not a great water drinker, try an automatic flowing waterer. Wet foods, including homemade and raw diets, are also an important source of moisture.
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Breeder Selection And Spay
Its a sad fact that certain beloved breeds, such as Golden Retrievers and Boxers, are particularly prone to certain kinds of cancer. Responsible breeders of these dogs screen their breeding stock for common cancers. If youre acquiring a cancer-prone breed, there are ways to help avoid a heartbreaking diagnosis down the line. Work with a responsible, registered breeder who has paid attention to cancer in their lineage and worked to exclude it. A good rule of thumb for welcoming any dog into your life is to verify that the breeder has performed health testing for the breeds commonly associated conditions.
Once your new puppy has settled in, another decision is whether or not to spay or neuter. And if so, when? Recent research by Dr. Benjamin Hart of the University of California, Davis, sponsored by the AKC Canine Health Foundation , indicates that spaying or neutering a puppy before sexual maturity can increase the risk of developing certain cancers. For instance, Dr. Harts 2013 paper found that spay-neuter could increase Golden Retrievers likelihood of developing certain cancers by up to three or four times.
However, its not as simple as just avoiding spay-neuter, or putting it off until your dog has reached sexual maturity. The procedures effects vary widely between the sexes and from breed to breed.
Its hard to predict which ones will and which ones do not have an increase in cancers with early spay-neuter, Dr. Hart says.
Can Diet Make A Difference
According to the National Canine Cancer Foundation, two of the main ways to reduce the risk of cancer in dogs is to keep your pup from becoming overweight and to feed them an anti-inflammatory diet.
The US National Library of Medicine suggests that between 30 and 40 percent of cancers are preventable, through choosing to feed your dog a healthy diet, and keeping them active. Cancer likes and feeds on the toxins and sugars from carbohydrates, which your dog, in fact, doesnt really need. Feeding your furry friend a diet abundant in protein and antioxidants will aid their overall health, and help to prevent the dreaded C word.
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What About Specific Foods And Cancer Risk
If you are reading my posts, you are interested in canine and feline nutrition and have likely read other websites that claim that kibble causes cancer or that there are cancer causing preservatives in pet food, but scientific evidence for these claims is very much lacking. These claims are also almost always made by either a distraught pet owner looking for someone to blame for unexpected cancer diagnosis or by a person or business trying to market their own special line of miracle cure-alls. Our old Labrador, Maggie, lived 14 ½ years eating primarily dry dog food , and ultimately died from a stroke-like event that hit her one morning. My 18-year-old cat Oliver is asleep next to me right now, has eaten dry commercial food his whole life and, other than his arthritis, is the picture of geriatric health while our 3-year-old cat Cosette had eaten a variety of canned and dry foods over her short life, loved eating cat grass every day, and just died from transitional cell carcinoma in her left kidney . I dont blame Cosettes once-a-day cat grass habit for her developing cancer nor do I attribute Olivers longevity and health to dry food cancer happens even to good cats and dogs.