Fatty tumours, or lipomas, frequently occur in dogs 8 years and older. While the tumours are benign, they often look like malignant mast cell tumours, so should be diagnosed by a vet. Surgical removal is an option if a fatty tumour is either interfering with your dog's movement or is in danger of becoming infected because your dog chews it. Many pet owners, however, spare their dogs the risk of surgery with fatty tumour home remedies including dietary changes, vitamin and mineral supplementation or homeopathic and herbal treatments.
Veterinarian Dr. Martin Goldstein considers fatty tumours in dogs a result of the same faulty fat metabolism that can produce obesity. He makes specific recommendations on treating fatty tumours with diet and dietary supplements. According to Dr. Goldstein, many dogs are incapable of properly metabolising fats because their systems have been compromised by the high-carbohydrate commercial diets they eat. He recommends feeding dogs a diet as similar as possible to what their wild ancestors ate, taking into account the fact that the digestive tracts of our domesticated dogs have adapted to commercial foods.
Dr. Goldstein advises using the mineral chromium picolinate and the amino acid L-carnitine. A 30-pound dog with fatty tumours gets 100 micrograms of chromium and 250 milligrams of l-carnitine daily to improve fat metabolism. If the dog doesn't respond to those, add B6 at a daily dose of 50 milligrams for a 30- to 50-pound dog.
Veterinarian Dr. Shawn Messonier suggests several nutritional supplements for treating fatty tumours in his book "Eight Weeks to a Healthy Dog." They include DMG, or dimethylglycine; CoEnzymeQ10; glycoproteins to help cells flush out toxins; proanthocyanidins (grape seed extract is an example); and bioflavonoids (plant pigments).
Homeopathy views the symptoms of disease as signs of an underlying imbalance that must be corrected if your dog is to recover. Because they treat underlying conditions and not just the fatty tumour, homeopathic remedies take time to work. A homeopathic vet will choose which remedies to apply to your dog based on the dog's individual symptoms.
Veterinarian Dr. Jill Elliot recommends treating your dog's fatty tumour with the homeopathic remedy Thuja 30C, administered at least once as an oral dose of three tablets. If your pet's overall condition appears to improve in the three weeks to a month after the first dose, she advises a second dose and further observation to notice if the tumours are shrinking.
Dr. Elliott mentions that many holistic vets believe fatty tumours may result from over-vaccination. Thuja is commonly used to treat dogs that react badly to vaccines. Dr. Messonier adds Viscum Album and Arsenicum Album to the list of homeopathic remedies.
Dr. Messonier also suggests a variety of immune system-strengthening herbs to treat dog tumours of all types. Among them are alfalfa, burdock, dandelion root, garlic, goldenseal and milk thistle. He also recommends using immune-strengthening mushrooms, including reishi.
Get guidance from a homeopathic vet before attempting to treat your dog's fatty tumours with homeopathic or herbal remedies. Locate a certified homeopathic vet in your area at the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy website.
- "Caring for Your Dog: the Complete Canine Home Reference"; Bruce Fogel, DVM; 2002
- "The Nature of Animal Healing"; Martin Goldstein D.V.M.; 2000