Canine Lymphoma

About Canine Lymphoma
Photo by Joel Mills

Canine Lymphoma refers to a group of cancerous diseases most often found in an affected dog’s Lymphatic system. It is Similar to non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in humans. At present, it is a life-threatening disease that affects 1 in fifteen dogs.

A dog’s lymphatic system is composed of lymph nodes, which are small glands connected to each other by lymphatics, small vessels that form a spider-like web throughout the body. Other organs in this system include the bone marrow, spleen, thymus and Gut-Associated Lymphoid Tissue (GALT), a lymphatic tissue associated with the digestive tract.

Lymph glands produce Lymph, a milky fluid that flows through the Lymphatic system. This fluid contains proteins, fats, and a white blood cell referred to as lymphocytes. Lymph is collected from the fluid of various tissues throughout the body, eventually returning it to the blood circulatory system.

As in human’s, a dog’s lymphatic system is essential to its life. It helps maintain a fluid balance in the body, absorbs and removes fatty acids and fats from the digestive system, produces and transports white blood cells (lymphocytes) to and from the lymph nodes into bones and other body tissues to fight infections.

There are more than 30 known forms of canine lymphoma, some are more aggressive than others. The most common canine lymphoma is Multicentric Lymphoma. It affects 80-85% of dogs diagnosed, manifesting itself through enlarged lymph nodes.

Canine Lymphoma