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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 32736
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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My 9 year old female chihuahua has a benign thyroid tumor (lump)

Customer Question

My 9 year old female chihuahua has a benign thyroid tumor (lump) in her neck.
It was discovered 6 months ago and my vet did bloods and a scan. Said its nothing to worry about and no need for surgery. Also, surgery would apparently be too risky with where it is and seeing as she is such a small breed.
However, over the last month she has got slower in herself. A husky cough and bark and her breathing is very loud indeed. If it continues to grow the I think this could interfere with her breathing. What are the options you would recommend?
Many thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
Suzy, it sounds as if this tumor is already interfering with Cheech's breathing. I would repeat an ultrasound scan at this time. I need to know that the tumor hasn't become malignant and metastasized causing Cheech's husky cough and bark and loud breathing. If not, surgical resection is still the preferable manner in which to address a benign tumor but due to the delicate area which might make surgical intervention too risky for the general practitioner, a specialist veterinary surgeon should be consulted. Please see here: ablation under ultrasound guidance is another consideration, however. This has been used most commonly in veterinary medicine for the minimally invasive treatment of parathyroid tumors but additional reports include benign thyroid tumors. No life-threatening or persistent complications have been observed following this procedure in dogs although transient unilateral laryngeal swelling/paresis (weakness) and Horner's syndrome can occur and tend to resolve within 1-4 days.Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.