Squamous Cell Carcinoma

Cancer is very common in cats with white ears and also occurs fairly commonly on the nose of white cats. On ear tips, the best treatment is to remove the external portion of the ear as far away from the cancer as is possible. Even though it radically changes the appearance of the affected cats, this is a fairly simple surgery and not very risky. It is worthwhile to consider this even if there is evidence of the cancer in other places, I think. There is some evidence that radiation therapy can be useful in slowing the progress of squamous cell carcinoma and if that is available in your area, you might consider it. Unfortunately, this is an aggressive form of cancer and often it will recur despite aggressive surgical removal of the visible tumor. Despite this, I really think it is worthwhile to have surgery done. It makes cats more comfortable and does seem to prolong their life.

Dr Mike Richards, DVM


Michael Richards, D.V.M. co-owns a small animal general veterinary practice in rural tidewater Virginia. Dr. Richards graduated from Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine in 1979, and has been in private practice ever since. Dr. Richards has been the director of the PetCare Forum...