I have about a 10 year old half lab, shepherd husky.
She has had problems with sebaceous cysts for years. One on her back that constantly gets clogged and infected. Off to the vet we go, he shaves the area, opens the wound, gives me antibiotics. It clears, then reforms again.
She also gets them at the back of the head. Usually those just come and go only rarely draining.
So far, the vet I've been seeing (for years now) and I trusted very much didn't want to remove these. He did to a test with a needle on the back fat blob and it was just fat. Not cancer. Said it happens, probably will all the time and just keep an eye on it.
Well that vet sold his place. The new one I saw with her latest infected back sore, put her on antibiotics and said after the swelling is down to bring her in and maybe get rid of these for good. The sore got better but this blob of back fat got huge. And now it's going down again.
So today I went back. The one on her back is no longer infected. The bulge doesn't seem to bother her at all. None of them do. Still that spot is constantly becoming infected so the vet talked me into getting it removed for good..
There is a small, oh, marble size lump on her head, may as well remove that too.
And sometime within only the past three or four weeks, a large one, sorry but the closest description what it looks like is a testicle. This one is on her chest, just in front of her armpit? Paw pit? That one is on sort of a stem and it's fast appearance has the vet concerned.
So today I'm trying to read up on all this and everything I see suggests to NOT remove them. Same as my original vet said. Deal with infections if and when they happen. So now I'm thinking of asking to not remove the one on her back or head. Still we should deal with that dangling one. At least find out for sure that it's not cancer.
While she is under anyway, I asked to have her teeth cleaned too.
Sorry this is so long, but my question is this.
Do those two on her back and head really need to be removed?
Three different spots, plus the teeth, and I have no idea if she has any major problems in her mouth. Doubt it but won't know until they get in there.
I'm worried that all those locations in one surgery may be too much. That perhaps I should ask to only remove the new dangling one and continue treating her back and head as before.
Of course I will call my vet tomorrow and ask. But meanwhile we have her scheduled for surgery next week.
Any advice or input would be appreciated. I have seen two different vets with two totally different attitudes towards this. Not sure what to do.
Oh, I actually have her sister too. She does have one fatty blob on her side. Had that needle tested long ago. Just fat. It's the only one she has and that never got infected. The cysts seem to be in the family. Thought that might be relevant.
I can understand your dilemma. If she is going under for a dental, that is a good time to do the others or at least the one that keeps recurring. My concern would be the one large one that just came up. I would definitely want at least an aspiration biopsy done on that. These cysts can still recur after excision. You might try brushing her more or adding some Omega 3 in her diet.
I hope this Vet does blood work before she gets anesthesia, especially due to her age.
And, with the dental and possible extractions, you need to discuss the cost with your Vet prior to these procedures before you end up with a whopping bill you didn't't anticipate.
Good luck and keep us posted.
I agree with Margot49 about the blood test. My dog is ten years old and has had those type cysts for 2 years and also pimples off and on for 2 years. Besides the cysts, does your dog have any other skin problems, dry/scaly skin anywhere on the dog or in patches or anything else?
Oh yes they plan on the blood tests. And I already got the estimate. anywhere from 5 to 800.00. I have the money. That's not the issue. I want what's best for the dog.
Other skin issues? Her rump, above and in front of the tail is usually slightly swollen. Years ago my vet said probably allergies but as long as it's not bothering her not to worry. It doesn't seem to at all.
Both my girls have dandruff issues. Not real bad but if you scratch them you get flakes.
In warm months I wash them out in the back yard and use sergents flea shampoo with oatmeal. Seems to do them both some good.
And yea, I do brush. Probably not often enough but I do. (looks like road kill on the ground when I'm done.)
For artheritis both have been getting glucosamine, salinium and fish oil.
(forgive the spelling.)
That seems to do them a world of good. If I get lazy and skip a day or two you can tell. So I know it helps.
I'm going to go call my vet now. See about getting that dangly one tested first. If it's just a fatty cyst that doesn't bother her, perhaps I should just leave it alone.
Oh... their teeth. Not really a problem. The vet looked and said they really don't look that bad. I scrap the front teeth if they start to look built up with tartar. And have been giving them dental bones and such for years. It seems to work. I just thought as long as she was knocked out anyway may as well get them cleaned. I can't get to the back ones myself.
My instinct would be to get the dangly one needle-aspirated (or an incisional biopsy -whichever the vet recommends in order to send samples to the lab.)and her teeth cleaned in one go. That's not putting her under too much stress at once.
The other fat deposits...sorry but I wasn't sure...are they Lipomas? Or are they sebacious cysts? The whole nature of cysts is this: they are like capsules, or tiny "balloons" in which deposits collect. They can be drained, but do often recur, as the capsule remains behind, and it's easy for it to fill up again. However, my dog had a few sebacious cysts that drained, and never recurred.
If they are Lipomas -then unless they are causing obstruction to either nerves or blood vessels, or are in danger of turning pre-cancerous, or malignant (in the vet's opinion) they often can be left alone! Again, Lipomas can be needle-aspirated, to check the condition of the fat cells in them.
This, if you wish, could be done at another time.
Or if they are sebacious cysts which continually recur and get infected, then full removal might be wise. But this can be done at a later date -say in a month or so, to give her time to get over the anesthetic for her teeth cleaning and biopsy on the "dangly" lump.
The vet wants to cut them all out in one go. He said the needle test isn't always accurate. Not as good as having the entire thing, cut it open and test that. I asked if all those spots being done in one time was too much and he said if after removing the three lumps she's been under too long they will skip doing the teeth. (Which again, aren't really bad.)
SO we're on.
That one on her back he said was a sebacious cyct. But... it's almost like she has two things going on right there. A fatty blob is right behind the spot that keeps erupting and getting infected. I THINK my previous vet called that a ganglioma. I have one of those myself and it's harmless. Unsightly but harmless. I don't think they will mess with it but I'll ask again when I bring her in.
I did ask about sebacious cycts just coming back again and what's the point and he said he is pretty sure he can remove the follicle that keeps getting clogged and would probably fix the problem for good. Since this one spot keeps having issues he assures me this is the way to go.
(Or they just bought a new veterinary hospital and need money.)
So that's where we stand. Surgery is set for next Wed.
Meanwhile, damn dogs!!!! I came home from the grocery store yesterday, and someone managed to get my reading glasses off my computer desk. (Probably the cats did that.) But the dogs mangled them!!!!! It's GOT to be little bear. She will chew on and eat anything. Now I have to worry about glass inside her too. Pretty sure I recovered all the glass for one lens but not enough to account for both. Gees louise!!! Now I have to watch poop for glass shards. Oh my. Pets. Gotta love um!
Gladyou have a plan I place and seems your Vet is working with you. He is right about trying to remove he whole ting and that large one might be a concern
Yep, damn dog's. Oe of mt Greyhounds got my glasses years aho and crushed the. All the stuff in this house and he took them off my night stand!
You might try feeding a little bread to the culprit there.
Oh psyco dogs. I could make a list.
First dog. A black great dane. For what ever bizarre reason she attacked park equipment. Rubber seat swings, sea saws. All have her teeth marks in them. Not to mention a huge chunk ripped out of my dining room carpet.
Next dog. Another great dane. This guy decided to remove the kitchen wall paper. WTH?
Next dog. A lab shep mix. DE upholstered all my kitchen chairs.
After that I started crate training my dogs.
Next dog, another lab mix. Sadly this guy was an escape artist. THREE different back door knobs he figured out how to open.
On a camping trip, and I have no clue how he did it, I had a locking clip but he figured out a way and got off his lead and would not come back. Found the freeway.
It was a very sad vacation.
These two I have now are really pretty good. Never completely ruined anything. (occasional shoe when they were puppies.) And little bear would gladly raid the cat pan if she could get near it.
My glasses were the first thing they really destroyed that makes no sense.
Really, how much fun is it chewing glass???
I still haven't noticed any shards in the poop. And no one seems in distress. Maybe the piece/s got pushed under my computer stand. (About a half inch space under there.) I found the mangled glasses right next to the thing.
Turns out all three cysts were simple sebaceous cysts. Even the odd one on her chest. So all three were removed, none needed to be sent in for testing.
There is a lump of fat right behind her back wound that the vet opted to just leave alone. Only fat.
They did not do the teeth. She was under too long.
So... she's been stapled up for about a week now. Had her on pain pills for about a day and a half after I got her home. She lets me know if she needs them. After a few days she seemed just fine.
next week we get the staples removed. Aside from a bad hair cut she's right as rain again.
I have a picture of my sisters on webshots.
This is a few years old but they don't really look much different.
Little bear, the one with the issues, is on the left.
Thanks for all the advice. Good to know this board is here.
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