Although cancer is the leading cause of death in older pets, it is also one of the most treatable compared with diseases like heart failure or kidney failure. As with humans, there have been amazing advances in the treatment of cancer that can provide your pet with a high quality of life for years to come. A diagnosis of cancer in your pet is not a “death sentence.”

Unfortunately, cancer in pets is on the rise. For dogs over six years of age, 60% will be diagnosed with some form of cancer, and nearly half the deaths of pets more than 10 years old are from cancer. There are nearly 100 different types of animal cancer. The most common type in cats is leukemia, and the most common cancers for dogs are lymphoma and mammary gland cancer. With treatment advances, pets with cancer have a much better chance of survival than they did just a few years ago.

What is cancer?

Cancer refers to a group of diseases in which abnormal cells grow without control, invade surrounding tissues and ultimately spread to other organs throughout the body.

Tumors can be either benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous). Benign tumors typically remain localized to one place and do not invade surrounding tissues or distant organs. They are not usually dangerous but can cause medical problems once their size begins to compress on surrounding tissues. In contrast, malignant tumors contain cells that have the ability to invade neighboring tissues and to spread to distant organs via blood circulation or the lymphatic system, a process known as metastasis.

How did my pet get cancer?

You may not realize it, but pets get cancer at about the same rate as people. The cause of cancer in pets, just like in people, are many. There are certain breeds that tend to get certain types of cancers more often than others, such as giant breed dogs who get bone tumors. There are also environmental factors, such as exposure to the sun, household and garden chemicals, even food toxins such as additives and some preservatives. All of which may be associated with increased incidence of cancer. There is developing research indicating over-vaccination can also contribute to the development of cancer. Enough is known about the cause of cancer that it may be prevented by feeding wholesome food, adding supplements, avoiding toxins and avoiding unnecessary vaccinations.

What about treatment?

Early detection of cancer is critical. Physical exams, blood and other lab tests help your veterinarian to detect if and what type of cancer is present, how aggressive the cancer is, how the overall health of the pet is in relation to the cancer and, finally, what treatments might have the best rate of success.

Most of the cancers we see in dogs and cats are almost identical to the cancers that people get. Treating cancer in pets is no different than treating cancer in humans. Options for treatment include:
· Surgery
· Chemotherapy
· Radiation
· Cryosurgery
· Immunotherapy
· Combinations of the above

What about Immuno-Nutrition?

Progressive weight loss is frequently observed in cats and dogs with cancer. Cancer alters the pet’s sugar, protein and fat metabolism, which can lead to decreased quality of life, poor treatment response and shorter survival times.

Proper nutrition while undergoing cancer treatment is essential to maintain your pet’s strength, improve survival times,
quality of life and maximize response to therapy. Adequate nutritional support was shown to decrease the duration of
hospitalization, reduce post-surgery complications and enhance the healing process.

Cancer Early Detection and the Neoplasia Index

The signs of cancer are often nondescript and can mimic many other types of diseases making the diagnosis of cancer challenging, often invasive and expensive. Once diagnosed, veterinarians have had few tools available to effectively monitor the course of treatment or disease progression.

TK CANINE CANCER PANEL has been clinically proven effective on a wide variety of tumor types. When a suspicious mass is identified, or the dog presents with other indicators common with cancer, the cancer panel is used to detect the presence of neoplastic disease.

TK CANINE CANCER PANEL combines the information obtained from two independent measures of cellular irregularity; abnormal cell division and systemic inflammation. Thymidine kinase type 1 (TK1) is a measure of dysregulated cellular proliferation – a hallmark of cancer. C-reactive protein (CRP) is elevated in the presence of systemic inflammatory disease. United through the Neoplasia Index (NI), the test panel provides objective evaluation for disease.

TK CANINE CANCER PANEL has been clinically proven effective on a wide variety of tumor types. When a suspicious mass is identified, or the dog presents with other indicators common with cancer, the cancer panel is used to detect the presence of neoplastic disease.