Epulids in dogs: symptoms and treatment

Epulids are benign growths that can form in a dog's mouth. Even if they are not malignant, regular control of your four-legged friend's gums and oral mucosa is important. This is the only way to identify the growths early and initiate treatment. Epulids in dogs: The treatment is done by the vet - Shutterstock / Best dog photo

Epulids can occur in all dogs, but especially short-headed dog breeds are very susceptible to it. The growths in the dog's mouth are quite noticeable and therefore easy to recognize. If you spot them, you should see a veterinarian immediately.

How to recognize epulids

The benign growths can look very different: mushroom-shaped, uneven, smooth, round or stylish - the shape varies greatly. Basically, three different types are distinguished: So-called fibromatous (consisting of soft tissue) and ossifying (bone-containing) epulids can be considered benign. The acanthomatous epulids, on the other hand, should be treated like a malignant tumor despite their benevolence: they grow very quickly, can cause inflammation and bleeding and, in the worst case, even damage the dog's jawbone.

But there are also other symptoms that can indicate the growths in the mouth of your four-legged friend. This includes, among other things, strong bad breath, but also a significant weight loss, because the tumors can sometimes severely hinder a dog from eating. Of course, you can also see that your four-legged friend has problems with food intake. If he doesn't eat properly, obviously has pain when chewing or even whines while doing so, you should definitely take a look into his mouth.

What does the therapy look like?

Before deciding on treatment, the veterinarian must be able to rule out that the tumor is malignant. This can be clarified with a tissue sample. But even if they are benign epulids, you usually cannot avoid surgery to remove the growths. In an operation under general anesthesia, the epulids are finally removed so that they cannot spread any further. In severe cases of acanthomatous growths, part of the jawbone may also need to be removed. If the epulids occur repeatedly, radiation therapy can also be an option.

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