Recently, Pets Wellness Direct, which is an online company dedicated to developing pets’ wellness products, has worked with American Veterinary Medical Association and revealed that cancer is the number one cause of death in household pets at the moment.
Statistically, cancer is one of the top causes of death in humans around the globe. There is a lot of medical literature and ongoing research on the development, treatment, and control of the disease.
However, when it comes to cancer in animals, research and knowledge are limited. While it has been established that the formation of cancerous tumors in humans can be due to many different factors including lifestyle, exposure to chemicals, and genetics, researchers are not sure about the importance of these factors in pets.
Till now, a number of studies in veterinary oncology have identified a number of contributors in the development of cancer in pets, which includes hormonal changes, pathogens such as viruses, and exposure to carcinogens from a canned dog or cat food along with from pollution.
The CEO of Paws & Claws Animal Hospital in Plano and a renowned Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Shawn Messonnier, states that cancer is as common in pets as it is in humans specifically in dogs. He adds that nearly thirty percent of the cats and fifty percent of the dogs are diagnosed with any different type of cancer after crossing the age of ten.
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The American Veterinary Medical Association and Pet Wellness Direct suggest early treatment to effectively control and treat cancer in dogs and cats. This can only be done if the symptoms of cancer are diagnosed on time.
The signs of cancer in pets can vary in accordance with the stage and type of cancerous tumor but there are also some symptoms are common in all forms of the disease. For instance, the first and most well-known sign of cancerous formation is a lump on any part of the body.
If a cat or a dog develops a lump that does not go away after some time and instead increases in size or gets painful, it is better to get immediate medical attention. In addition, another popular symptom associated with most cancers is sudden weight loss along with changes in eating habits.
Usually, a pet with cancer tends to experience loss of appetite, which, in turn, causes weight loss. Secondly, the pet may even become extremely inactive and may not be as playful due to fatigue and weakness from not eating. It may also lead to the pet having difficulting in excreting and urinating.
Some cancers also cause pets to constantly vomit and have diarrhea. Most of the owners confuse this behavior of their pets with unsuitable pet food but it is typically because of tumors in the digestive tract.
The sooner a pet starts treatment, the higher are the chances of survival and successful treatment but according to the majority of the vets, it is better to prevent the disease altogether by providing nutritional food and additional supplements recommended by a vet as the pet grows older.