Ways to Reduce your Dog’s Cancer Risk

beagle looking up

Cancer is a horrendous disease that affects millions of people across the globe.
However, it is not just limited to the human population. It may surprise you to
know that cancer is the primary cause of death in dogs aged two and over, and
as many as 50% of adult dogs will die from some form of cancer.
However, this doesn’t mean that your beloved canine companion is guaranteed
to suffer. In fact, an increasing number of pet owners are now investing time
and energy in finding ways to reduce the likelihood of your dog developing
cancer, helping them to live a healthier, happier and longer lives.
In the case of most medical conditions, prevention is better than cure. So, what
can you do to help reduce your dog’s cancer risk? Let’s find out.

Excellent oral care

Poor dental hygiene has been linked to a variety of serious medical conditions
in both humans and canines alike. Studies suggest that a robust and regular
dental care routine can dramatically lower your dog’s risk of developing oral
cancer.

There are a range of dental products available to help you care for your dog’s
teeth including special brushes and pastes (human toothpaste should never be
used on your dog). Brushing your furry friend’s teeth make take a little practise,
but any responsible owner should take the time to find the technique that best
suits their pet.
You should also ensure that your dog attends regular appointments with your
veterinary dentist for check-ups and professional cleans.

Reduced use of tick and flea products

Fleas and ticks can be problematic for most dog owners, affecting almost every
canine at some point during their lifetime. However, many popular flea and tick
products contain permethrin, an insecticide in the pyrethroids family that has
been proven to be carcinogenic and cause liver tumors and lung cancer in
animals.
Similarly, the insecticide fipronil, which is found in Frontline tick and flea
prevention treatments, has been shown to cause benign and malignant tumors
during laboratory testing.

There are many natural alternatives to filling your pet’s bloodstream with toxic
insecticides and your veterinarian will be happy to discuss these with you.

Use non-toxic products around your home

A chemical-free environment can improve not only your dog’s health, but also
your own. Chemicals have been shown to have detrimental effects on all living
things, and products such as pesticides, herbicides and cleaning chemicals can
inadvertently enter the bloodstream and increase the likelihood of cells
changing and becoming cancerous.
One study found that dogs with malignant lymphoma are 70% more likely to
live in a home where professional-grade lawn pesticides have been used. If you
are a smoker, you should avoid smoking inside your home or around your pets,
as second-hand smoke also increases the chance of developing lung cancer.
By using natural products wherever possible and limiting the exposure of your
dog and your family to chemical compounds, you can help to minimize the
health risks associated with toxic chemicals.

Watch their weight

Obesity has been proven to contribute to a wide range of chronic and serious
health conditions. Cancers are no exception, and your pet is more likely to
develop specific types including mammary cancer and cancer of the urinary
bladder if they are significantly overweight.
Ensuring that your pet is a healthy weight will also help them to reduce their
risk of arthritis and maintain an active and fulfilling lifestyle.

These are just some of the ways in which you can reduce your dog’s cancer risk.
However, Bridge Park Animal Hospital will be glad to discuss your pet’s health with you
and work with you to determine the best methods for ensuring that your dog has
a long, happy and healthy life. Contact us today.