How Fatty Tumors in Dogs Develop

Fatty tumors in dogs, also known as lipomas, are benign growths that are common in older and overweight dogs, though dogs of any age or breed can develop these soft-tissue tumors. Once a lump appears veterinarians usually examine the dog and take note of the location and size of the tumor, but generally these are not harmful.

Once one lump is present it is likely that more lumps will form over time. This is not a cause for alarm, but any new lumps should be examined by a vet.

Fatty Tumors Due to Overly Rapid Cell Growth

Fatty tumors develop slowly when certain cells grow too much, but do not spread to other parts of the body or other organs, unlike malignant tumors. Lipomas are benign lumps so they usually cause no problems and do not need to be removed. If the lipoma is near a joint and restricts your dog's movement surgery may be recommended.

No Definite Connection to Dog Weight

Though they are common in older and heavier dogs, there is no definite connection between weight and fatty tumors, but keeping your pet healthy and active is always a good idea. Some breeds are more prone to developing lipomas, including Doberman Pinschers, Cocker Spaniels and Shetland Sheepdogs. Females are also more likely to have lipomas than male dogs.