Keeping our pets safe: May is National Pet Cancer Awareness Month

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(Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images)

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – In recognition of National Pet Cancer Awareness Month, 13 News would like to showcase your lovable fur baby.

Send us your pets’ photos to possibly be included in our slideshow.

According to the Animal Cancer Foundation, cancer is a leading cause of death in pets and early detection is key to provide a better outcome.

ACF officials say pet owners should look for the following 10 warning signs to aid in diagnosing cancer in their pets as early as possible.

  • A foul odor can often be detected in pets with oral tumors.
  • Although straining to urinate and blood in the urine will usually indicate a urinary tract infection, if it does not resolve rapidly with antibiotics, cancer of the bladder may be the underlying cause.
  • Unexplained lameness can be a sign of bone cancer. This is especially the case in large and giant breed dogs.
  • A dry, non-productive cough in an older pet is the most common sign of lung cancer. However, ACF officials say pet owners should remember there are many causes of cough in dogs and cats.
  • Non-trama induced bleeding from the mouth, nose, gums or blood should be investigated by your veterinarian.
  • Unexplained vom­iting or diarrhea should also be investigated by your vet.
  • Make sure to have your pet check if they are losing weight.
  • A rapidly enlarged stomach may suggest a mass or tumor in the abdomen or indicate bleed­ing that is occurring in this area.
  • Any rapidly growing lump on a pet or one that is changing in texture or shape should have a biopsy.
  • Enlarged lymph nodes can suggest a common form of cancer called lymphoma.

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