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Lump on dog's leg.

Species: Dog
Breed: Lab Cross
Age: 6-12 months
Hey Dr. Marie (and Happy Holidays!)

I noticed about a week ago while petting my dog that on her rear, right leg she had a small, palpable lump about the size of a pea. It was not visible at the time and she payed no mind to it before or after I was examining it.

I've kept an eye on it since then and I've now noticed that it's about the size of a finger-nail, it's now red, it's now quite predominant (protruding approx. 1/4 inch), it's rigid and "full" feeling. Over the last couple days it hasn't grown any larger and Ivy still pays no mind to it and it causes her no pain when I examine it and/or squeeze it a bit to see if she reacts.

I have taken two pics of the lump which I took this morning (which I will email to you with the subject line: Ivy's leg lump). I've done a bit of reading on your site from other's questions and perhaps its a sebaceous cyst but even though I work in the medical field, I am no expert when it comes to dermatology.

Please let me know if you need any more information from me re: this lump. I have her an appointment booked at the vet hospital but they can't see her for another week and if it's something that will eventually reabsorb, then I am ok with waiting as its causing her no pain etc.

Thanks in advance for your expertise.


Jay


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Hi Jay and thanks for your question.

Here is one of the photos that you sent me:

red lump on dog's leg

If this was my patient I would definitely be wanting to aspirate this lump and have a look at some cells under the microscope. As Ivy is still a young dog, there is a good chance that this is a histiocytoma and this type of lump will just go away on its own in a couple of months. They're nothing to worry about. But, something similar to a histiocytoma is a mast cell tumor. Some mast cell tumors are benign and are cured quite easily with surgery but others can be very aggressive.

A cyst is possible, but I am guessing it is one of the two mentioned above (with the less dangerous histiocytoma being more likely).

I don't think you need to rush in sooner than next week, but I do think she should be seen.

Hope everything is ok!

Dr. Marie.


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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 so much for your quick reply. I did a little research into histiocytomas and from what the descriptions are and the similar pictures shown, I would agree with you. We will keep an eye on it for now and note any changes between now and her appointment.

For now, is there anything that we would be able to do treatment-wise or is it better to just let it be? Like you (and many, many other sites) said, they go away on their own but I was wondering if we should do anything for it in the interim?

I appreciate this so much and I know where to go next time we have a question about Ivy. This has been very helpful and informative!!!


Jay


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

You're very welcome Jay.

If this is a histiocytoma there's really nothing you can do for it. They are quite mysterious. We don't know why they come up and what causes them to go away. There really isn't any treatment that would help.

I would definitely just keep an eye on it. If for some reason it starts to look or act bothersome then I'd try to get him seen sooner, but I'd be surprised if this happens.

Dr. Marie.



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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.