Mass Removals

Mass removals are a type of veterinary surgery commonly conducted at Sploot.

A “mass” refers to a lump under a pet’s skin. For both dogs and cats, masses can be benign or malignant. Our experienced vets will be able to detect and classify any masses that your pet may have.

At Sploot, we have experienced vets, a dedicated staff, and state-of-the-art facilities to ensure that all surgeries are carried out successfully and safely.

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Open 8am-8pm, 365 days a year... same day appointments and urgent drop-offs welcome!
Primary and urgent care, under one roof.
Easily book online or text us.
Modern, warm clinics with unlimited free treats.

Why Pets Get Masses

There are numerous types of masses a pet can get. Lumps can be caused by blockages in the hair follicle, bacterial infections, non-cancerous growths, or cancerous growths.

Although dogs and cats can develop masses at any age, some types of masses (i.e. non-cancerous fatty lumps or lipomas) are more common in older pets. Malignant lumps also have an increased prevalence in older pets.

Factors like diet, lifestyle, and genetics also play a role in whether or not a pet develops malignant or cancerous masses.

Identifying Benign vs. Malignant Masses

Typically, pet parents may feel unusual masses on their pet’s skin or deeper in the subcutaneous layer.

Fatty lumps or lipomas (which are non-cancerous) are usually:

Round, oval, or bulging lumps
Soft and squishy

Sebaceous cysts (which are non-cancerous) are usually:

Small, raised, and round bump (wart-like growth)
Hard or fluid-filled

Abscesses (which are not cancerous by themselves but can be a sign of cancer) are usually:

Swollen, pus-filled lumps
Soft or a bit firm

Cancerous or malignant masses are usually:

Can take on various appearances
Firm or hard to the touch

In some cases, benign (non-cancerous) and malignant (cancerous) masses can look and feel the same; the only way to tell the difference is by examining masses from a cellular level. It is always recommended to consult a veterinarian.

Why Mass Removal is Done

Address Discomfort or Malignancy
Veterinarians generally remove masses because of discomfort and/or malignancy. Veterinarians will be able to detect malignancy based on a cytological (cellular) examination of a sample collected through fine needle aspiration, which is done before recommending surgery.

Get a Conclusive Diagnosis
After a dog or cat undergoes mass removal surgery, the masses will undergo further histopathological (tissue) examination. This is the only way to conclusively diagnose a pet’s mass and determine the next steps in terms of needed care.

Ready to schedule your pet's Mass Removal surgery?

Preparing for Mass Removal Surgery: What to Expect

Before the Operation

Your pet will undergo a pre-operative appointment which includes the following:
A full physical exam is done (including blood work) to ensure your pet is medically fit for surgery.
Imaging tests may be used to see the location and extent of the masses.
You will be given instructions about when to start withholding food from your pet on the night before the surgery. (However, you can always give your pet water, regardless of the time.)
We will walk you through the procedure and post-operative care that your pet may need.

During the Operation

After dropping off your pet on the day of the surgery, they will stay with us until the procedure is completed and they’ve recovered from the anesthesia.
Through the entire procedure, our team will send live updates including texts with videos and photos for your peace of mind.

After the Operation

We will let you know when it’s time to pick up your pet. Before you go home, we will review the post-operative treatment plan with you and provide any medications your pet will need.

Got Questions?
We’re Here for You

Reach out to our Pet Parent Concierge Team with questions, whether it’s surgery, symptoms, scheduling, or something else!

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What is mass removal surgery for dogs and cats?

Mass removal surgery refers to the surgical procedures that remove abnormal growths (malignant or benign) under a dog or cat’s skin.

Why would my pet need mass removal surgery?

Mass removal surgery is necessary when a growth or mass is suspected to be malignant (cancerous) and/or causes discomfort and pain.

After removal, masses that are suspected to be malignant (based on prior cytological examinations) will undergo histopathological examination so that the veterinarian can reach a conclusive diagnosis.

Are all masses in pets cancerous?

No, not all masses in pets are cancerous. Some masses can be benign (non-cancerous). However, if benign masses cause discomfort or pain, veterinarians may recommend having them surgically removed.

Can mass removal surgery cure cancer in pets?

This depends mainly on the stage of cancer that the pet has. In some cases, complete removal of the cancerous mass can lead to recovery, while in others, additional treatments (e.g. chemotherapy and radiation therapy) may be needed.

Can pets have multiple masses removed during a single surgery?

Yes, it is possible to remove multiple masses during a single surgery.

How long do mass removal surgeries take?

Mass removals can take a few minutes to over an hour depending on the extent and the depth of the masses.

Does my pet need a pre-surgical consultation?

Yes. A pre-op appointment is a vital first step to ensure that masses are removed successfully and safely. During this appointment, the veterinarian will assess your pet’s health, locate the masses, and suggest the next steps. If surgery is recommended, the veterinarian will also assess if your pet is safe to undergo surgery. During the pre-surgical consultation, the veterinarian will also orient you regarding the procedure and the needed post–operative care for your pet.

How long do mass removal surgeries take?

Mass removals can take a few minutes to over an hour depending on the extent and the depth of the masses.

Are there risks associated with mass removal surgery?

Like any type of veterinary surgery, there are risks involved when doing mass removal surgery. Common risks include anesthesia complications and wound infection post-surgery. However, our experienced veterinarians take measures to reduce these risks and empower pet parents to provide great post-operative care once their dog or cat is ready to go home.  

Does mass removal surgery have any complications?

There are rare instances that complications may arise after mass removal surgery because all types of surgery have potential complications. In case you observe any unusual changes in your pet’s behavior or on the site of the surgery (e.g. swelling, discharge), our team is always here to answer your questions and recommend next steps.

Can mass removal surgery be performed on elderly pets?

Yes — as long as the overall health of the elderly pet is deemed safe for surgery. Our veterinarians determine this with a thorough physical examination and bloodwork before recommending any type of surgery.

Can the removed mass be tested for cancer?

Yes, if the mass is suspected to be malignant, it will be tested for cancer using histopathological evaluation. This is the only conclusive way to diagnose masses in dogs and cats.

Will my pet need stitches after mass removal surgery?

Yes, stitches or sutures are needed to close incisions made during mass removal surgery.

How long does it take for pets to recover from mass removal surgery?

The recovery time of pets after undergoing mass removal surgery depends on the extent of the procedure, the pet’s overall health, and post-operative care. Generally, it may take weeks for pets to recover fully.

Can pets go home on the same day as mass removal surgery?

In most cases, pets will be able to go home on the same day of their mass removal procedure. However, each case is different, and our veterinarian will set your expectations regarding your pet’s unique case.

Are there specific precautions I should take during my pet's recovery from mass removal surgery?

When it’s time for your pet to go home, our veterinarians will give instructions regarding your pet’s required medications, wound care, and, possibly, recommended changes to their diet.

In general, all pets that have undergone surgery need to have a calm place to rest and must have limited physical activity while they recover. They may also need to wear protective clothes (e.g. cone collar, onesie) to prevent them from licking or scratching sutures.

Last but not least, we advise pet parents to monitor their pets after surgery and get in touch with our team if they notice any strange symptoms.

Can pets develop new masses after mass removal surgery?

It is possible that pets will develop new masses after the surgery, especially if the extracted masses were diagnosed to be malignant. Benign masses (e.g. lipomas in older dogs) have a lower chance of recurrence.

Can I prevent the formation of new masses in my pet?

This depends on the kind of masses that your pet had removed. Our veterinarians will advise you on lifestyle changes for your pet and/or any needed ongoing treatment that will help prevent the recurrence of masses.

How much does my pet’s surgery cost?

The cost of mass removal surgery depends on the extent of the procedure. With Sploot, you can expect transparent pricing from the get-go. Reach out to our team today to learn more!

Does Sploot Veterinary Care accept pet insurance?

If mass removals are included in your pet’s insurance coverage, you may be able to claim a reimbursement from your insurance provider.

Please take note that not all insurance plans have the same scope of coverage. To make sure that mass removals are included in your pet’s insurance, please contact your provider.

When can I schedule my pet for surgical consultation at  Sploot Vets?

Surgical consultations at Sploot can be scheduled days in advance. We also accept same-day appointments and walk-ins!

What payment options are available in Sploot Vets?

To ensure the safety of our clients and our clinics, we only accept cashless payments. We  accept all major credit and debit cards, as well as CareCredit and ScratchPay.

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