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Cat breast cancer

Cat Breast Cancer

Feline breast cancer is usually in the form of tumors.

Tumors can be identified by a lump under the skin. Tumors are mainly of two types benign and malignant. Benign tumors can be surgically removed and reoccurrence is rare.

They also slow relatively slowly in size and are not known to spread to other areas. Malignant on the other hand is known to spread to other parts of the body and this spreading that takes place is known as metastasizing. The average age of a cat with breast cancer is usually 10-14 years of age.

Siamese cats are more prone to breast cancer as compared to other breeds. Unspayed cats are usually at a higher risk to developing breast or mammary cancer as compared to cats that were spayed before or after their first heat cycle. Spaying is getting an ovariohysterectomy done. This involves surgically removing the uterus and the ovaries in cats. There are several symptoms when it comes to identify breast cancer in cats. The most common are when a lump or mass is seen to increase in size, a wound or sore that takes time healing, when there is a change in bowel movements, also changes at times in gladder habits, unusual bleeding through any opening in the body. There is also known to be a strange discharge from openings in the body, other symptoms include weight loss mainly due to loss of appetite. The others are bad odor, difficulty found especially when either eating or swallowing and lameness or stiffness in the body over long periods of time.

At any point when a tumor is detected it is recommended that it is removed to prevent spreading all over the body. A biopsy and a histopathology help in identifying if the tumor is malignant or benign also to find out what kind of tumor it is. When a cat is detected with breast cancer some surgeons suggest removing the entire mammary gland chain. Chemotherapy is commonly used also with surgical removal of cat breast tumor. There are certain ways in which cat breast cancer can be avoided if cats are spayed before their first heat. The other is to avoid the use of progesterone drugs especially since they known to increase the risk mammary cancer. Lastly owners should take cats to veterinarians for proper checkups frequently and also check themselves at home for any lumps in their cats.

  Submitted on April 22, 2010  

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