Osteosarcoma in Dogs

Dog Osteosarcoma, Symptoms, Stages, and survival rate. Euthanize a dog with osteosarcoma

What is Osteosarcoma?

Osteosarcoma is a most common malignant (Malignant= Cancer cells ability to move or invade the other organs of the body and destroy them) tumor of bone. It is characterized by the formation of a bone matrix (which is formed before the maturation of bone tissue) or osteoid cells by malignant tumor cells. 

Osteosarcoma mainly affects the long bones of the body (75 to 85% of cases of Osteosarcoma occur in Limbs) but it may affect other non-bony tissues also. Osteosarcoma is more common in giant breeds like Great Dane, Mastiffs, Saint Bernard, Newfoundland, etc. The cause of Osteosarcoma in dogs may be Genetic or Environmental.

Symptoms of Osteosarcoma in Dogs

  •  Swelling is the first indication of any tumor.
  • As we know tumors can affect any bones of the dogs. If it involves jaw bone, you may find that your dog may have difficulty in eating the food or difficulty opening its mouth.
  • Dogs have difficulty walking if tumors affect the limbs of the dog.
  • Neurological signs like seizures can occur if a tumor affects the spine.
  • Nasal discharge may be seen if Tumour affects the nasal bone of the dog.
  • Breathlessness may occur if it affects the rib bones of the dog.
  • Drowsiness
  • Loss of hunger


What are the Stages of Osteosarcoma in Dogs?

There are three stages of Osteosarcoma in Dogs

Stage 1  Low-grade tumor without metastasis to another site
Stage 2 High-grade tumor without metastasis
Stage 3 High-grade tumor with metastasis

Tumors of the shoulder blade and jaw bone have the best outcome/course of the disease (=Prognosis) in dogs.

Tumors of the skull bone and spine have the worst Outcome/Prognosis. Large tumors and young age dogs also carry the worst prognosis.


Survival rates of osteosarcoma in dogs

The Dog Osteosarcoma Survival Rate depends on many factors such as Breeds, Environment, Genetics, etc. But in general, the Prognosis is sad. 🙁

  • Osteosarcoma in dogs is not a properly curable disease.
  • Survival rates of osteosarcoma in dogs vary and depend upon various factors. (Study)
  • For dogs with the treatment of osteosarcoma, the survival rate is less than 1 year but few dogs live for 5-6 years after a confirmed diagnosis and treatment of Osteosarcoma.
  • The Survival Rate of the Dog with osteosarcoma of Limb is Poor because this tumor is very aggressive in nature, especially for dogs of age less than 5 or more than 10 years
  • Early amputation and chemotherapy are proven to increase the survival of your poo.


When to Euthanize a dog with Osteosarcoma?

Dogs with more severe symptoms like difficulty in eating, intense pain, seizures, Severe breathlessness, low quality of life are the correct Indications to euthanize (Deliberately inducing death in an organism to free him from his incurable sufferings/diseases) a dog with Osteosarcoma
Generally, dogs are euthanized in the vet clinics, but if due to any reason you are planning to do it at your home then first, consult your doctor before doing it.


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