My dog was diagnosed with mast cell tumor – what can I do?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra,

I adopted “Easy” just a week ago after his previous owner passed away. During his preliminary medical check up he was diagnosed with MCT (mast cell tumor). We were in the process of getting quotes for an insurance policy for him. Now everyone is rejecting us. What can I do? I just wanted to give him a second chance at life but now in the first week of togetherness we’re faced with surgery expenses. I can’t give him up. He’s just finally settled in. He loves me and follows me everywhere. I can’t live without him either.
Please help!

Trishna Prasad


Hi – thanks for your email Trishna. I’m sorry to hear about your problem. You wrote that you recently adopted a dog that was diagnosed with Mast Cell Tumors during his initial examination. It doesn’t surprise me that you can’t get pet insurance for a pet with an underlying diagnosed medical condition.

I’d recommend that you talk to your veterinarian about your options and the cost of surgery.

An article that might be helpful to you is Mast Cell Tumors (Mastocytoma) in Dogs. This article discusses what they are and how they are treated. Many tumors respond well to surgery. Some can recur. This article gives you percentages on the success for the different treatment options that may help you make a decision.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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