Dog Papilloma Treatment

Papillomas, or warts, are small round benign skin tumors with a jagged surface resembling a cauliflower. Papilloma treatment is not always necessary, since the warts can go away with no treatment. Still, if you notice that they bother your dog, you should probably consult a veterinarian and have them removed. The procedure is quite simple: it involves a surgical intervention or they can be removed thorough freezing. 

Dog Papilloma Treatment

The papillomas are usually located in the area of the mouth: lips, tongue and muzzle but you can also find them around the eyes or between the toes. 

Dog papillomas are known to go away on their own without any medical intervention or drugs, especially in young dogs. However, in some cases, they might be so many that they cause problems to your dog. For instance, if they are located around the mouth, the dog might have troubles eating or breathing. The warts might cause discomfort when walking if located between toes. Sometimes, they can grow or get infected and this might threaten your dog’s health. In these cases it is best to have them treated by a veterinarian. Papilloma treatment usually consists of:

  • Surgical removal of the growths
  • Cryogenically removing the warts (freezing)
  • Crushing the papilloma
  • Medication

It is strongly recommended that you have a veterinarian do the above-mentioned procedures and not try doing this on your own.

Surgery to Remove Papillomas

The surgical removal is usually done by electrocauterization and it consists of destroying the papilloma tissue by heating it.

Cryogenic Freezing

Liquid nitrogen is the substance of choice when it comes to papilloma removal by means of cryogenic freezing. It is sprayed on the surface of the papilloma and in time it will fall off.

It has been noticed that crushing of several growths can stimulate the immune system of the dog which leads to a natural warts regression process.

Medication Treatment

Since papilloma is a viral infection, it can also be treated by administering anti-viral medication, such as interferon. This substance is used in humans, but it can also be prescribed in dogs.

Antibiotics might also be needed if the papillomas get infected to eliminate the bacteria or viruses.


There is also the possibility that the papilloma tissue removed by the veterinarian is used to make a vaccine which can be used to stimulate the immune system fight and remove other papilloma.

Causes of Dog Papilloma

Canine papilloma is a contagious viral infection caused by the papilloma virus which is most often transmitted through direct contact. This virus does not infect humans or other animals; it only passes from dog to dog and if only few papillomas appear, they do not represent a threat for the dog’s health. The virus has an incubation period of 1 to 2 months and it usually affects dogs with a weak or immature immune system.

The virus is believed to survive without a host between 2 to 6 months, depending on the environmental conditions.