Lymphoma in Dogs

Common info

Lymphoma is a type of cancer that originates in the lymphocyte cell, which is a type of white blood cell that plays an important role in the body's defense system. The disease is generally seen in middle-aged to older dogs (median age, 6-9 years); It’s can found in boxers, golden retrievers, Saint Bernard, basset hounds, Airedale terriers, Scottish terriers, and bulldogs.


Although the cause of lymphoma (Lymphosarcoma) is not known, there is a potential that it may due to genetic factors, such as chromosomal disorder, environmental factors, and exposure to lawn chemicals. It also believes that dogs with weaker immune systems will be more prone to the disease.


Lymphocyte or lymph is functions as a fighter against the diseases that enter into the body through the veins in the liver, chest, gastrointestinal system, nose, spine and skin. This type of cancer originates from the rapid and uncontrollable replication of the white blood cell lymphocytes that have transformed into cancer cells and spread to several parts of the body, including lymph node, alimentary canal, liver, and lung. 


  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Weakness 
  • Lethargy
  • Weight loss 
  • Difficulty breathing 
  • Blindness
  • Seizures
  • Swelling on the face 
  • Swelling of the front legs
  • Swelling on the skin

Symptoms vary depending on the location and stage of lymphoma in dogs, but generally, the symptoms that are most commonly found include vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, loss of appetite, weakness, lethargy and weight loss.

Treatment and Prevention

There is no cure for lymphoma in dogs and relapses are common after chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Use of chemotherapy alone or with radiation therapy will be decided by your veterinary oncologist based on the stage of the disease, the age of the dog and its overall well-being. In dehydrated dogs, fluid therapy is given to stabilize the body fluids. In the case of abnormal fluid accumulation in the chest or abdomen, your veterinarian will remove the accumulated fluid.

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