Hernia in dogs is mostly curable
Q: There is a lump on my three-year-old pet bull dog’s chest and I suspect it may be a mast cell tumor. How can I be sure? Bhawani Maitra
Since mast cell tumors do not have a characteristic appearance or texture the only way to accurately diagnose a mast cell tumor is by sampling the tumor. Because benign and cancerous skin lumps can appear similar, skin lumps can be sampled with a needle cells examined under a microscope to determine their significance. Once your veterinarian knows if a lump is cancerous, he can recommend an appropriate treatment. Since cutaneous mast cell tumors are locally invasive and can also spread to other parts of the body, treatment involves wide surgical removal of the lesion and surrounding tissue. All tissue removed should be sent to a lab for pathology analysis to ensure that the tumor was removed completely. Depending on the reported margins and grade (microscopic appearance of the tumor) further therapy involving additional surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy may also be recommended.
Q: I suspect my cocker spaniel has hernia. He is nine. Is it possible for dogs to get hernia? Shubhendu Dey
Dogs can get hernias, just as people can. Dogs can be born with them, or they can be the result of an injury. There are five common types of hernias seen in dogs. Umbilical: This is the most common type of hernia. These are congenital and most commonly seen in puppies. If your pooch has an umbilical hernia, you will notice that her belly button has been replaced by a squishy protrusion. Depending on the size, these can either heal on their own or can be surgically fixed when your puppy is spayed or neutered. Failure to repair the hernia, if large enough, can lead to serious complications. Inguinal: These hernias occur in the “groin” area, where the inner fold of the rear leg attaches to the body wall. These can range in size from small to large, and—if the opening is large enough—portions of the intestine, the bladder, or the uterus can become trapped within the hernia, causing a life-threatening problem. This type is considered congenital and often affects middle-aged female dogs, especially those who are pregnant. These should be surgically fixed immediately to avoid complications. Diaphragmatic: The muscle that separates the abdominal organs from your dog’s heart and lungs is called the diaphragm. A hole in the diaphragm allows the internal organs to enter the chest cavity, making it difficult for your dog to breath. These hernias can either be congenital or the result of an injury; most commonly, being hit by a car. Perineal: When the muscles of the pelvis tear, abdominal contents enter the area adjacent to the anus. Some breeds are predisposed to this type of hernia, and it commonly occurs in unneutered male dogs over the age of 5. Hiatal: This type of hernia develops when a portion of the stomach pushes into the diaphragm, where the esophagus joins the stomach. Hiatal hernias can be congenital or the result of trauma. You must take your pet to the vet to be sure.