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Brain Tumors in Dogs and Cats

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At Southeast Veterinary Neurology, we have a team of skilled specialists with in-depth experience handling complex medical cases, including the management of brain tumors in dogs and cats. While the diagnosis of a brain tumor in your pet might come as a shock, our specialists and supporting staff are here to help you through the treatment process at every step.

Out of all the neurological problems that affect pets, especially older dogs and cats, brain tumors are quite common. Why these tumors occur in the first place is not easy to answer, as a combination of genetic and environmental factors can contribute to cancer development.

If your pet is showing unusual signs that could indicate a neurological problem, reach out to us today.

What are the Clinical Signs of a Brain Tumor?

The location of your pet’s tumor will dictate the kind of clinical signs you see, which may include:

  • Changes in behavior
  • Compulsive circling
  • Seizures
  • Weakness
  • Wobbliness
  • Balance problems
  • Blindness

Are Certain Breeds More at Risk?

While just about any pet can develop cancer in their older years, specific breeds do seem to have a higher risk. This includes Boxers, Boston Terriers, and Golden Retrievers.

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Types of Brain Tumors

Brain tumors in dogs and cats can be divided into two categories: primary and secondary.

  • Primary tumors develop from cells that make up the brain itself and the lining of the brain. These include meningioma (come from the coverings of the brain), glioma (arise from the cells that make up the support cells of the brain), and ependymoma (arise from the lining of the fluid-filled spaces of the brain).
  • Secondary brain tumors are tumors that develop elsewhere in the body and eventually spread to the brain.

Diagnosing Your Pet’s Brain Tumor

High-field MRI is the best imaging tool for viewing and diagnosing brain tumors in dogs and cats. We can clearly see the location, shape, and size of the tumor and get a much better idea of what kind it is and how we can treat it. Sometimes a biopsy is recommended for a definitive diagnosis.

Available Treatment Options

There are many treatment options available for your pet, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, and palliative medication. Once we’ve diagnosed your pet’s brain tumor and determined the appropriate next steps, we’ll do all we can to make their road to recovery as smooth as possible.

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