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Cancer in my dachshund?


New Member
Jul 18, 2012
Two mini dachshunds
Hey everyone. I am new to this forum, and thought this would be the best place to go for answers on my dachshund with potential health issues. I am an emotional wreck right now with a potentially serious health issue with my dachshund. She is 4-years old, and never had any health conditions except for dry skin. A few months ago, I noticed a small lump, about the size of a peanut below her ribcage on the upper section of her belly. During a checkup at the vets a few months ago, the vet had initially said not to worry because the small hard lump was probably just tissue left over from when she was spayed. However, I boarded her last Wednesday, and upon picking her up from boarding on Sunday, I noticed the lump had increased to the size of a grape. I was immediately worried. I visited the vet on Monday, and the vet wasn't sure what exactly it was and suggested a fine needle aspirate to look more closely. The vet examined the biopsy under a microscope and said that she saw some cells that she did not recognize. We are currently awaiting pathology results from the sample, but it is emotionally draining. My dog was spayed early on prior to the age of two. She is just 4-years old, applying some pressure around the grape-size mass does not cause any pain. In looking at common symptoms of cancer, she does not have anything else. The vet said her temperature was slightly elevated, although, being a short-haired black and tan and riding in the car on a 100-degree day could've contributed to that. Her stool is not black and tarry, and she doesn't have any trouble going to the bathroom. She still has quite an appetite, she is not fatigued and still wants to play constantly. There are no signs of swollen lymph nodes, she is not vomiting, no internal bleeding, and no other bumps are present. I am hoping the tumor comes back benign, but I'm extremely worried. If it is cancer, hopefully its localized and in its early stages so that a simple surgical procedure could remove the mass and we will be ok. Any thoughts on this? In the meantime, I am strongly considering making an appointment to have the mass removed regardless of cancer or not. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thank you for allowing me to share my story.
I'm so sorry to hear that! :( Cancer is such a scary thing... I have no idea what you should do. I would trust the vet and maybe get a second opinion on what to do.

I can tell you that my mom's dachsie (the dog is now 15 years old) has had big and small lumps in different parts of his body for years. Some have grown and some have stayed the same. The vets have told us that they're nothing serious, but of course we always wonder... But the dog doesn't seem to be bothered, they're not sore and he has already lived a long life. :) They have never examined these lumps, so I have no idea what they really are.
My springer had fatty lumps all over her body as she got older, starting with one on her flank when she was 3.

I hope that's all it is for your little one!
Most likely this is not cancer. But be sure to let us know the results of the biopsy. Your worry is normal. My cousin found a lump on the paw of his poodle and couldn't concentrate on his work or family until he got the good news. He laughed at his reaction because he works with people who a dealing with ill children and parents, but that doesn't change the way we feel..
It is not cancer!

I want to thank you all for your concerns in my post. We received the biopsy results yesterday, and the diagnosis is not cancer, but something more rare. The vet indicated the lump is not malignant in any way. It is a condition called steatitis. This is an inflammation of fat cells, or the term as the vet quoted "angry fat." Basically, the fat cells multiply and become inflammed. This most likely originated from a small hernia in which fat cells attached to. The fat cells can multiply at any time, causing the grape-size lump around the belly. It is not at all a life-threatening condition, and we were given two options. We are choosing the first option to put our dog on antibiotics and apply a warm compress to the area twice a day for 10-minute intervals, for a period of five days. The biggest worry with this condition is the potential for bacteria. Thankfully, the pathology results did not find bacteria around the mass. The other option, and a more risky option, is surgery. I think we will forego surgery at this point to see if it can be remedied through antibiotics.

This is definitely a huge worry off my shoulders! I have never felt a cancerous lump before, so as I felt the lump, it appeared hard to me. With the vet wanting to do a biopsy, that made me worry even more.

Moral of the story....the vets do a biopsy not only to rule out cancer, but to determine the cause. In this case, the fine needle aspirate was performed to identify the condition, as there are many different cells that lead to different conditions. Leave it to my dog to develop a rare condition! Thank you all again for your support, I very much appreciate it. By the way, my wife and I have two mini-dachshunds. This particular dog happened to be Miami, a four-year old black and tan, short-hair. We also have Aspen, a two-year old red, short-haired. They love each other, and we really couldn't ask for better dogs!