Treating A Dog Stomach Tumor or Mass

by Brian A Anderson
(Evansville Minnesota US)

Reader Question: Treating a Dog Stomach Mass or Related Problem

My 11 year old Bulldog/Black Lab "Ebby" ate raw venison at a friends house that processes a bunch of deer, so it may have been just a little bit or maybe a ton. It changed her from a right by my side, stare you right in the eyes, spoiled girl into a slow, sad, will not even look toward you sad sack for the day. The next morning, wagging tail and happy again. Thinking lesson learned, no way she would do it

Same thing, one day sad, next day ok again. Both times I would rub her belly and it felt very full, round, tight. I did not keep checking after the first time since she was right back to normal, but the second it was like that again, I kept feeling it after she was back to normal and it didn't go away.

Now I am wondering if it was like that before the first time and somehow did not notice, but I really do not think so. She is my little baby, lol. With the attention I give her,... I highly doubt I would not have noticed or felt anything prior.

Off to the Veterinarian we go. I told her about the venison and told her she is a rock hound and I know she has chocked on one before, sometimes scoots a little but not much, and I jokingly say she is spoiled rotten. I am probably making her fat.

She comes back after X-rays and points out a "mass" in her stomach....outlining the size and shape of a football.. I got the tumor speech, expensive options.....nothing seemed good but I was... I dunno...I did not expect...did not want to believe...too sad to listen good.... :( I can't just do nothing...and will feel horrible if i don't at least do all I can do without going completely bankrupt!

What should I do? Could the "mass" be something other than football sized tumor? She does not act like anything is wrong at all.... Sad

Veterinarian Suggestion for Treating a Dog Stomach Mass


I’m so sorry for what you are going through with your dog. It’s important to realize that without knowing what the mass in your dog’s abdomen is, it’s impossible to know whether it can be treated effectively or not. A logical next step might be an abdominal ultrasound to see whether the mass is invasive (growing into surrounding tissues) or isolated and potentially relatively easy to remove surgically. Sometimes it is possible to draw off some cells from the mass using a needle and syringe (using the ultrasound as a guide) and send them to a pathologist for identification. With this information in hand, you can decide whether surgery to remove the mass would be in your dog’s best interests.

Best of luck,
Jennifer Coates, DVM

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