There’s nothing more concerning than cuddling your Vizsla, only to discover a suspicious lump or bump on or under their skin.
Due to how often we receive this question, we’ve had our resident veterinatian explain everything you need to know about skin bumps.
In this article, we will discuss the 9 most common skin growths and masses in Vizslas, and help you better understand what this can mean for your canine friend.
Table of Contents
Are Lumps & Bumps Common In Vizslas?
Many breeds are prone to developing lumps and bumps on their skin at some point throughout their life.
There are multiple types of growths that can appear on a Vizslas body, each of which are found on plenty of Vizslas every year.
Growths on a dog’s skin are common in general, but Vizslas are especially at risk of developing certain types of cancerous masses.
This means you will need to keep an especially close eye on your Vizsla’s skin as the years go by, as you never want to miss a dangerous lump as it grows.
Are The Bumps Serious?
Not all bumps on your Vizsla’s skin will be a major problem, but they should all be taken seriously until they are properly diagnosed.
Even the most skilled of veterinarians cannot determine what a mass is by simply looking at it, and will require diagnostic testing to know just how dangerous a lump is.
Lumps can range from something as simple as a benign fatty lipoma to a life-threatening tumor. Because of this, it’s critical to always visit your vet when discovering any new bumps on your Vizsla friend.
9 Lumps & Bumps In Vizslas Explained
Just like in humans, a lump on your Vizsla’s skin can point to many potential factors. To help you better understand the types of growths that can develop on your dog’s skin, let’s discuss some of the most common lumps and bumps in Vizslas below!
1. Vizsla Hives & Allergies
Some Vizslas can develop bumps on their skin as a result of an allergy from something in the world around them. Whether this is an insect sting or an irritation from a contact allergy, bumps on the skin can be a result.
Some Vizslas will develop hives, which are typically a patch of raised sections of the skin, almost having a rash-like appearance. Some will even grow one hard and raised lump in the irritated area, which can range in severity based on the dog’s allergy response.
Vizslas with skin allergies may require daily antihistamines until the reaction resolves, as well as steroid therapy prescribed by your veterinarian.
2. Papules & Pustules
Papules and pustules can develop on a Vizsla’s skin as a result of an underlying skin infection or irritation. They are often a result of an infected pore or hair follicle, leading to a round bump on the skin.
These bumps will typically fill with pus, and will often range in size based on the severity of the initial infection. Pustules and papules will often require antibiotics to resolve and may need to be lanced by your veterinarian.
3. Skin Tags
Skin tags are a benign growth that are most common in older Vizslas. Skin tags are usually harmless, as they are just a collection of extra skin cells.
While they are not dangerous, skin tags can be removed if they are causing issues for your furry friend.
For example, some skin tags will grow on a dog’s eyelid, causing them to paw at the area to the point of irritation. If your Vizsla’s skin tag seems to bother them, you can always speak with your vet about safe removal.
4. Sebaceous Cysts
Sebaceous cysts may look scary on your canine friend, but they are more gross than dangerous.
These cysts are just a clogged oil gland on your pup’s skin, resulting in pimple-like growths that can range in size.
Sebaceous cysts often go through a rupture process, leading to a thick white discharge when they do rupture. These cysts will eventually heal, but can repeat this cycle over and over.
Lipomas are likely the most common growth in Vizsla’s, as well as many other dog breeds. Lipomas in dogs are benign fat-filled tumors, often ranging in size based on how long they have been present.
Lipomas are usually completely harmless, but may cause a problem if they grow rapidly.
Lipomas can lead to mobility issues if they grow on the legs or in areas with high movement, leading to the need for surgical removal in some cases.
Histiocytomas are a common growth in Vizslas under the age of 5. Histiocytomas in Vizslas often appear in solidarity, and have a red and raised appearance.
They are most common in short-haired dogs, meaning Vizslas are particularly at risk.
These masses are mostly harmless, but can lead to irritation if they develop in bothersome areas. Histiocytomas can be removed if they cause an issue for your pup, but can resolve on their own if they don’t cause any irritation.
7. Mast Cell Tumors
Mast cell tumors are one of the most common cancerous tumors in our canine friends. These aggressive tumors often pop up out of nowhere, and can take the form of a hairless, raised bump.
These growths can vary in size from pup to pup, meaning there is not often a seat appearance to expect.
These cancerous tumors are filled with mast cells, which are white blood cells that play a role in immune response.
Not only is the cancer aggressive in itself, but the degranulation of the mass can lead to a full-body immune response. This leads to the spread of the cancer, resulting in ulcerations in other parts of the body.
Mast cell tumors in Vizslas are complicated and require experienced veterinary care to treat properly. Proper treatment and removal will vary based on whether or not the cancer has spread, but has a fair prognosis if it is caught early.
8. Squamous Cell Carcinomas
Squamous cell carcinomas are fairly common in Vizslas due to their short hair and light fur color. This skin cancer develops as a result of UV radiation exposure, and Vizslas don’t often receive the best sun protection.
These growths are usually quite firm and may develop open sores as they progress. Squamous cell carcinomas are typically aggressive, meaning they require immediate attention for the best chance at recovery.
Treatment options will vary based on whether or not they have spread to surrounding tissues.
Hemangiosarcomas are the last of the most common lumps and bumps in Vizslas. Hemangiosarcomas are unfortunately fairly common in our Vizsla friends and are devastatingly aggressive in many cases.
Hemangiosarcomas of the skin are the easiest to treat, with the other forms often developing in the spleen, liver, and heart. Hemangiosarcomas are a cancer of the blood vessels, meaning these masses often have a large blood supply.
This makes the growths extremely fragile, leading to serious complications if they are not treated properly.
The best chance of treatment with this condition relies on early detection, making it critical to have the lump checked by a veterinarian the moment you notice it.
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Typical Ages That Vizslas Start Getting Bumps
Lumps and bumps can develop on Vizslas at any age, but they’re more common in older Vizslas. As Vizslas age, their bodies undergo changes making them more susceptible to skin growths.
Younger dogs, however, aren’t exempt and can develop growths like histiocytomas. Regular health checks should be part of your Vizsla’s care routine, with extra vigilance as they age.
Do The Bumps Cause Discomfort or Pain
Many skin growths on Vizslas are benign and cause no harm, but they can still lead to discomfort. Skin tags or lipomas can irritate or hinder movement, causing distress.
If a lump appears to bother your dog, seek veterinary advice. Treatments can range from monitoring to medications or surgical removal, depending on the discomfort caused.
What Should You Do If The Bumps Change Physically
Changes in the size, color, or texture of a lump on your Vizsla should prompt immediate veterinary consultation.
Such changes might indicate that the growth is malignant or becoming aggressive.
While some changes might denote a benign process, any significant change should be evaluated to rule out serious conditions and establish the right treatment plan. Prompt action can ensure the best possible outcome.
When To See The Vet
As you can see, lumps and bumps in Vizslas can range in severity based on the diagnoses. Because of this, we always suggest visiting your vet any time you notice a new growth on their skin.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry when dealing with any changes on your Vizslas skin, as most serious growths depend on early detection for a chance at a full recovery. If anything, a quick trip to your vet can offer you peace of mind!
How often should I check my Vizsla for lumps and bumps, and what’s the best method to do so?
Regular checks for lumps and bumps on your Vizsla should ideally be integrated into your pet’s grooming or petting routines. While stroking your dog, use gentle but firm pressure to feel under their fur, covering all areas of their body including underbelly, legs, and face. If you notice any unusual growths or changes, consult your vet for further investigation.
Can diet and lifestyle impact the development of lumps and bumps on my Vizsla’s skin?
Diet and lifestyle can play a role in your dog’s overall skin health. Providing a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients and antioxidants can boost your dog’s immune system and potentially limit the development of certain growths. Regular exercise can also contribute to overall health and wellbeing. However, consult with your vet or a canine nutritionist for personalized advice.
Are there any preventive measures I can take to reduce the likelihood of my Vizsla developing skin growths?
Preventative measures to reduce skin growths include protecting your Vizsla from excessive sun exposure, particularly for those skin cancers linked to UV radiation. Regular grooming can also help detect skin issues early. Ensure your dog maintains a healthy weight as obesity can lead to increased risk of growths such as lipomas.
How can I differentiate between a harmless lump and a potentially dangerous one at home before consulting a vet?
At home, monitor the lump for changes in size, shape, color, or texture, and check if it’s causing any discomfort to your dog. However, it’s important to note that visual examination and pet-owner observation have limitations. Any new or changing lump should be evaluated by a vet for a precise diagnosis.
What are some of the most common signs of discomfort or pain that my Vizsla might show if a lump is bothering them?
Dogs may exhibit signs of discomfort or pain like excessive licking, scratching, or pawing at the area of the lump. They might also show general signs of discomfort like restlessness, lack of appetite, or changes in behavior. If your Vizsla shows any such signs, it’s advisable to consult a vet.
What are the typical treatment options for the different types of lumps and bumps, and what factors will determine the most appropriate course of action?
Treatment options for lumps and bumps vary widely based on the type and location of the growth, the age and overall health of your Vizsla, and the potential discomfort caused by the lump. Options can range from monitoring, to medication, to surgical removal. The most appropriate course of action will be determined by your vet after thorough diagnostic testing.
Lumps and bumps can develop at any time on our Vizsla pups. Be sure to review the information that we discussed above, and you can better understand any unusual growths going forward!
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