We all hate the thought of our pup becoming ill, but sometimes that’s inevitable. That’s just the way it is. The best thing that we can do for our dogs, except loving them, is to educate ourselves about how their bodies work. The quicker the illness is found and diagnosed, the bigger the chance that our furry friends will completely recover.

Annual checkups are important, but is visiting the vet once a year really enough? It’s not, especially if we’re talking about canine cancer. The unfortunate reality is that dogs are susceptible to the same types of cancer as humans, but their tumors can metastasize much faster. Because of that, every dog owner should know to recognize the warning signs of canine cancer.

Abnormal swellings

You probably pet your furry friend often, and you sometimes probably feel some bumps and lumps under its skin. Most of the time they’re practically nothing, but they can be an early sign of cancer. If the bumps are bleeding, or if there’s a discharge of any kind, don’t let your dog suffer. The quicker you take your dog to the vet the better. If you ignore these things, then cancer will grow quickly.

Unusual smell

We all know that doggies can sometimes smell a bit weird, especially after they’ve been outside, and that’s perfectly normal just like “dog breath.” But, if you notice that unusually foul odors are coming from your dog’s nose, mouth, or rectal area, it might be due to a tumor, so get your dog checked out.


Nosebleeds are never normal, and they’re never a good sign, especially if your dog is old. A nosebleed can be a sign of cancer in the nose. If your dog is young, there’s probably a chance that there’s a foreign object somewhere in the nose, but if it’s old, it’s almost certainly cancer.


Diarrhea is not a sign of cancer in dogs. After all, they smell and eat all kinds of things when we’re not looking. But, if diarrhea persists or if you notice that your dog is always begging to go to the bathroom, you might want to get that checked out, especially if you see blood in the urine or stool.


Eye and nasal discharge can be a cause for concern. Excessive nasal discharge can be a sign of facial tumors, and eye discharge can signal an eye tumor which is incredibly hard to notice.


If you notice that your dog has jerking legs, foaming mouth, or that it suddenly starts champing and chewing uncontrollably, that might mean that your dog is experiencing seizures caused by brain cancer.


Sudden weight gain is never a good thing. If you notice that your dog is eating the same amount of food as before or less and gaining weight at the same time, you might want to take a trip to the vet.

However, it’s also possible that you’ve been feeding your dog with low-quality food, so don’t get worried just yet.

Weight loss

Loss of weight that can’t be explained by a weight loss diet is never a good thing. A common cause of weight loss is an intestinal tumor.

Difficulty eating

A simple lump in the neck might be preventing your dog from swallowing. It could be putting pressure on its esophagus. Check your dog’s neck by carefully touching it. Maybe your dog just doesn’t like the food you bought. Some dogs can be picky.

How to prevent canine cancer?

There’s not much that you can do to prevent your dog from getting cancer, but you can reduce your dog’s cancer risk.

  • Don’t allow your dog to become overweight
  • Reduce your dog’s exposure to toxins
  • Vaccinate your dog
  • Focus on good food

Food is probably the most important thing on this list. Eating healthy and quality food will improve and prolong your dog’s life, so don’t buy food just anywhere. Unfortunately, this can be costly, so do what most dog owners do. Find a good pet supplies store online, and purchase food at lower prices.

Cancer prevention and early detection are paramount. There’s no need to be paranoid or scared whenever your dog starts doing something unusual, but keep your eyes open, stay informed, feed your dog with healthy food, and visit your veterinarian more than just once a year.