According to DogHealthGuide.org, canine stomach cancer occurs in about 1 per cent of diagnosed cancer cases and is most likely to strike male dogs older than 10 years old. Signs and symptoms of stomach cancer in dogs include lethargy, abdominal pain, vomiting, appetite loss, whining, growling, difficulty with bowel movements and changes in behaviour.
Stomach cancer can be one of four types--carcinomas, mast cell tumours, lymphomas and sarcomas.
Carcinomas develops from skin cells. Mast cells line the lungs and intestines, and can turn cancerous. Lymphomas arises from the lymph system. And sarcomas occurs in soft tissues such as the walls of the stomach.
Your veterinarian will order lab tests and imaging tests such as X-rays with contrast dye to look for tumours or masses. Once located, she will obtain a sample of the tumour by performing a biopsy, where she inserts a needle to withdraw some of the inside of the growth.
Chemotherapy and radiation aren't viable treatments for stomach cancer. If the stomach cancer hasn't metastasised, surgical removal of the tumour is the best option. When the cancer has metastasised, the location and type of cancer is individually evaluated to determine the viability of treatment.
Most dogs live about six months after a diagnosis of stomach cancer regardless of the type of treatment used.