Dog ate chocolate?

ask a vet

Black lumps in a cat's ear.

Species: Cat
Breed: Mix
Age: 8-11 years
I recently noticed two black spots in one of my cat's ears. They haven't always been there and I'm concerned that it could be melanoma. Would it make sense for it to be melanoma when there are two? They are both in the same ear and are not raised, they lie flat on his skin. Here are two pictures:

black spot on cat's ear

black spot on cat's ear


In the second picture you can see both spots, the second one is a little harder to see but it's near the bottom of the ear.

Need help finding a veterinarian in your area? Click here for Dr. Marie's advice on
finding a good veterinarian near you.
 

Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Thank you for the excellent photos. I am concerned by what I am seeing here. Now, keep in mind that obviously an in person visit with your veterinarian is going to be much better than having me look at photos. But, what I am seeing here would definitely warrant a visit to your vet.

These could indeed be melanomas. I can't say I have ever seen two pop up next to each other like this but it is certainly possible. Some melanomas can be low grade and would be cured by having them removed. However, these might possibly be difficult to remove!

Another thing that can cause multiple bumps in a cat's ear is something called ceruminous gland adenomas. These lumps are totally benign and don't need to be removed. However, they don't look like what I am seeing in the photo. They are usually more blue in appearance. But again, photos are not as good as seeing the lumps in person.

They could also be basal cell tumors which are usually cured by removing them.

I would definitely advise having your vet take a look. They will likely do something called a fine needle aspirate. This test should give us an idea as to how serious the lumps are.

I hope things work out ok!

Dr. Marie.



Check out our dog age calculator and cat age calculator.

QUIZ: Is your cat secretly planning to murder you?


Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Thank you for the response.

I looked back at some pictures of him and saw that he has had this spot for at least 6 months...I'm so upset at myself that I didn't notice it until recently. I'm extremely concerned to hear that you think it could be a melanoma, and I've made an appointment to have him seen this afternoon.





Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I should mention too that I have seen some cats that just have flat black pigmented areas that are nothing to worry about. The spots you have photographed do look like they are raised though. I hope all goes well!



Customer reply:

I agree that they look raised in the photo but in person I can't feel or see a raise in them. Maybe they are just black pigmented areas. Hopefully the vet will be able to tell this afternoon, I will hope for the best but I'm preparing myself for bad news too.

Can the flat black pigmented areas you mentioned show up later in life? I know he didn't have these spots as a kitten.

Thank you!


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Well hopefully they are just areas of pigment! Yes, it is possible that they have developed later on in life. Let's hope for that!





Customer reply:

Hi Dr. Marie,

I just wanted to give an update on Vinny. He saw his vet yesterday and the vet was not concerned about the dark spots. In fact he found a lump in Vinny's other ear that he was more concerned about, which he said developed because of excessive scratching due to an allergy and could grow if we don't identify and treat the allergy. He gave him Depo Medrol and sent us home.

He said he didn't think anything was cancerous but I'm somewhat uneasy that he didn't biopsy it.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Well that is good news that the doctor wasn't concerned! If the lump doesn't go away after the steroid shot then you could always have your vet biopsy it then. It's unlikely to be a concern if he didn't want to test it though!



Search for similar questions:

ask a vet

Popular questions...

Dog is licking where he was neutered. my dog is licking where he was neutered 3 years ago help asap... (5082 views)

ACTH Stim my dog went for acht testing on friday to look for addisons disease te vet isnt in... (5974 views)

Dog not urinating after neuter. Hi dr just wondering if you could help me. My 1year old American Akita diesel had... (18847 views)

Why is my hamster biting me? My hamster bites me only when I take him out of his ball or exercise wheel. Even on... (7672 views)

Wheezing then died. We adopted a cat from a family that could not keep him any longer because they just... (4524 views)

Pregnant cat question. Back in March approx. around the 9th my cat Faith went into heat. During this time... (14470 views)

Poop is sometimes solid, sometimes soft. Hi Dr Marie, I'm not sure if this is even an issue. Max poops first thing in... (49523 views)

Mast Cell tumor? This past Saturday afternoon I was petting my dog and I noticed a small bump under... (9511 views)

Dog has bone cancer. My dog has been limping for some time now. His toe has been diagnosed with Bone... (7514 views)

Cat is dying. I took in a stray that was living in a garage since his was little for years and was... (3094 views)

See all questions...

Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.