Feline Bone Cancer Treatment With Chemotherapy for Cats

Feline bone cancer is a common variety of feline cancer. Typically, bone cancer in cats is treated with a combination of chemotherapy and surgery. However, before instituting a cancer treatment program or a regimen of chemotherapy drugs, it is helpful to understand the effects and symptoms of feline bone cancer.

Overview of Feline Bone Cancer

Most types of feline bone cancer result in the growth of a tumor on one or more bones, as well as the weakening or disintegration of bone tissue. The disease is aggressive but treatable if detected early enough. Typically, feline bone cancer is not as often fatal as canine bone cancer.

Recognize the Symptoms of Feline Bone Cancer

Before considering a chemotherapy treatment program, familiarize yourself with the symptoms of feline bone cancer. In most cases, cats suffering from bone cancer will display one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Limping
  • Stiffness
  • Pain in one area while walking, sitting or lying down
  • Lethargy

If your cat displays any of these symptoms for an extended period of time and without apparent reason, have him examined by a veterinarian. A typical bone cancer screening test will include a complete physical exam as well as blood work and x-rays.

Treating Feline Bone Cancer with Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is rarely used as a sole treatment option for cats with feline bone cancer. Your veterinarian will likely prescribe some form of surgery as well. In some cases, amputation of an affected limb may be necessary. Radiation is used to treat cancer that has not metastasized and will often be a second step in a feline bone cancer treatment program.

Chemotherapy is used to slow the spread of cancer once it has metastasized to another part of your cat's body. It is a painful and exhausting procedure, and chemotherapy side effects are wide-ranging and serious. Some of the common side effects of feline chemotherapy treatment include diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite and loss of bone mass.

A feline chemotherapy treatment typically lasts for 10 to 15 weeks. During the treatment, your cat will receive numerous intravenous injections of chemicals designed to isolate and kill cancerous cells. Side effects may occur immediately and may be present for several months after treatment has concluded.

Typically, veterinarians prescribe pain medication along with chemotherapy treatment, as the program may leave your cat weak and sore. The side effects of may also be treated with a variety of medicines, depending upon their severity.

Chemotherapy is a viable treatment method for feline bone cancer for cats with certain types of tumors and an otherwise healthy medical history. If your cat suffers from feline bone cancer, consult with a veterinarian about potential treatment options, including chemotherapy. Owners able to recognize and treat the illness quickly help their cats to lead longer and healthier lives, free of cancer.