The importance of checking out those lumps and bumps

Ruby is an 8 year old Boxer who is full of energy and loves life. She came in for her annual health check and vaccination and Dr Helen noticed that she had a red lump on her skin. Ruby's mum had noticed the lump being there for a month or two but it had not been changing and was not bothering Ruby so she had not been too worried about it.

Dr Helen recommended that she take a sample from the lump to try and determine what it was and if we needed to do anything about it. The sample was taken very easily with a small needle and submitted to the laboratory for the pathologist to check. The result was a diagnosis of a mast cell tumour which is one of the most common type of skin tumour in dogs and very common in Boxers as well as other breeds. This result meant that Ruby needed to have the lump removed, so a few days later Ruby was back in hospital for surgery. The surgery went well and the lump was removed.

The lump was submitted to the pathologist again to check what grade the mast cell tumour was and that it had been removed completely. The result was good - the mast cell tumour was completely removed and there is an excellent prognosis because it was found to be low grade.

This is a good example of why it is always a very good idea to thoroughly check your pet for any new lumps and bumps and have them checked by your veterinarian promptly.