Symptoms of Melanoma in Dogs

The symptoms of melanoma in dogs depend on the location of tumor.

Melanoma on the skin (cutaneous melanoma):
– Some tumors appear as dark or pigmented raised masses while others may be non-pigmented.

Oral melanoma:
– bad breath
– drooling
– difficulty eating
– bleeding from the mouth
– facial swelling
– loss of appetite

Melanoma on the toe or toenail:
– swollen toe
– lameness


canine toe melanoma, canine melanoma, canine toe cancer, digital melanoma dog

Canine toe melanoma (tunour on the 1st digit, missing nail)

(Photo: Pete Markham)

Diagnosis of Melanoma in Dogs

Fine needle aspirate of tumor – To collect tumor cells for examination under a microscope. This is a quick way for diagnosing melanoma in dogs.

Fine needle aspirate of lymph nodes – The presence of tumor cells in lymph nodes indicates metastasis has occurred.

Biopsy of tumor – This provides a definitive diagnosis of melanoma in dogs.

X-rays of chest – To check for metastasis to lungs.

Abdominal ultrasound – To check for metastasis to the abdomen (kidneys, liver)

Blood test

Read the next post on –> Canine Melanoma Treatment Options

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