October 1, 2010

Beating Canine Cancer

The Ugly:     1 in 4 dogs will die from cancer.
The Good:   50% if caught early are curable!

Cancer is on the rise in dogs. Odd as it seems, it's partially due to the fact our pets are living longer and healthier lives. Oncology drug development, pet owner health education on prevention and early detection, better breeder programs with attention to reduced inbreeding are some reasons.
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Unfortunately, cancer has a higher incidence in some dog breeds. Mast cell tumors are the most common cancer found. The Morris Animal Foundation prepared a list of the top 14 dog breeds most likely to get cancer.

1. Bernese Mountain Dog
2. Boxer
3. Cocker Spaniel
4. Golden Retriever
5. Labrador Retriever
6. English Springer Spaniel
7. Pug
8. Shar-Pei
9. Greyhound
10. Rottweiler
11. Collie
12. Scottish Terrier
13. Chow Chow
14. Flat-Coated Retriever

Genetics are not the only cause though, the environment also plays a part in cancer development. Cancer prevention is not easy, as we don't really know how it develops but early detection is paramount to ensuring it's successfully eradicated.

Canine Oncology Advances

Veterinary oncology has come a long way in the last few years. Many cancers can be surgically treated,  facilities offering radiation therapy are becoming more available and drugs are continually being developed specifically for animal use. The first FDA approved canine cancer drug Pallidia, was developed in 2009 by Pfizer Animal Health Inc.
The new drug, Palladia, manufactured by Pfizer Animal Health Inc., has been approved to treat a type of cancer that accounts for about one in five cases of canine skin tumors.

Canine cutaneous mast cell tumors — the cancer in question — can appear small and insignificant when dogs have them, but while some are easily removed, others can lead to life-threatening disease, according to the FDA. ~ NY Daily News
A 13 Year Study into; Preventing Canine Cancer

"Morris Animal Foundation’s Canine Lifetime Health Project is a groundbreaking, 13-year study to learn how to prevent cancer and other canine diseases. The project will determine the genetic, nutritional and environmental risk factors for cancer and other diseases that affect dogs and is the largest and longest study of dogs ever undertaken."

Early detection is key, however diagnostic tests to spot cancer can run up to $1,000 and treatment anywhere from $1,000 to $15,000. This means health insurance for pets may also be on the rise as cancer becomes more successful with treatment. Dave Ruslander, a veterinary oncologist and past president of the Veterinary Cancer Society says 60% of cancers can be successfully treated.

National Canine Cancer Foundation

A non-profit organization aimed at funding important research grant projects dedicated to eliminating canine cancer.
The purpose of the Foundation’s Research Grant Program is to encourage and provide grant support for basic, pre-clinical and clinical research in high impact and innovative cancer research, which is intended to develop innovative approaches to a cure, treatment, diagnosis or prevention of cancers in dogs. The program fosters collaboration between basic and clinical scientists with the intent of enhancing the transfer of basic research findings to clinical usefulness.
The Foundation's website hosts an intensive Canine Cancer Library aimed at educating pet owners on early detection, research and treatment plans. The library contains valuable information on every known cancer affecting dogs.

Hope is knowing so many organizations, individuals, foundations are working together to reduce canine cancer. My wish would be for no one reading this to be in need of these resources. But if you are, I hope the following resources provide you the support and knowledge to successfully beat cancer!

Go Fetch!

The Smiling Blue Skies Cancer Fund (University of Guelph)

In support of cancer survivors, research and in memory of those who heroically lost their battle. Livestrong is about "Fighting to Improve the Lives of People Affected With Cancer". Livestrong Day is a world-wide event taking place on October 2, 2010.

Dedicated with love, to my Father who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer.


Ellen Whyte said...

Great post. Very informative.

Saw you at the Creek Cats and thought we'd visit.

We're hoping this day will help people, cats and dogs find good information and help.

Soggibottom said...

I agree. Really good post. I had to read every word. Then I read it again. x

MB (Embee Cavaliers) said...

Love this post. You do health issues well! Very easy to read and informative.

Debbie said...

Having lost two dogs to cancer this is a subject near and dear to my heart.

Remington said...

Great post! Thank you for sharing!

Pup Fan said...

This was a really helpful and informative post. Thank you so much for sharing this info!

Kristin G. said...

Good information here. Thanks for sharing!

Sammy the Cavalier said...

This was very helpful, and interesting, thank you!

Anonymous said...

It is a terrible paradox, isn't it -- that because we're not longer losing our pets early to parasites or rabies or pneumonia, they can live long enough to fall to cancer. Well, to heck with it: we're beating the others back, we can beat cancer back, too! A smart and inspiring post. Thanks!
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Art and Sew Forth said...

Good article. Only wish I had known these things a while ago. We have lost two labs to cancer. Great info!

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Thank you for stopping by to say hello.
We have the same passion,,, you and me,,, and my friends, and that is to kick cancer out of here!
Its already done too much damage.
Come back again

Banjo and Millie said...

Hi Miss Kodee! I'm so glad you stopped by Banjo & Millie blog, or else I might never have had the pleasure of discovering your blog. I really enjoyed reading your incredibly informative post on canine cancer. Thank you for the resource!

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Loving life with family and friends while exploring my passions; writing and photography. All with my two, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels in tow on day-trips along the Greater Toronto Area waterfront trails and local communities.

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