Symptoms of Bladder Cancer in Dogs

Urinary bladder cancer is a slow developing cancer in dogs. Some breeds, such as West Highland Terriers, are at a higher risk than other breeds. The most frequently diagnoses type of bladder cancer is called transitional cell carcinoma and usually occurs from the inside surface of the bladder or urethra. Bladder cancer is life-threatening and can result in obstruction of the urinary tract as well as spreading to the rest of the body.

Insecticides May Increase Risk of Bladder Cancer

The cause of TCC is not known, however, exposure to insecticide dips (to kill fleas and ticks) and sprays to control mosquitoes (in marshy, wetland areas) may increase the risk. Any cancer causing chemicals (carcinogens) may cause the cells to become cancerous.

Signs and Symptoms of Bladder Cancer

  • Blood in the urine, or brown colored urine
  • Difficulty or straining to urinate
  • Increased frequency of urination, usually in small amounts
  • Straining while defecating
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Difficulty breathing or coughing
  • Ineffectiveness of antibiotics for a suspected urinary tract infection
  • Urinary obstruction and bleeding is common once symptoms occur. Urinary tests will determine if bladder cancer is the problem.