Canine Fatty Tumors

Lipomas And Other Canine Lumps And Bumps


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A lipoma is a growth of fat cells contained in a thin capsule, usually found just below the skin. Lipomas are most often found on the torso, neck, upper legs and armpits, but they can occur almost anywhere. Lipomas are the most common noncancerous soft tissue growth, although other lumps and bumps may appear on your dog, especially as he grows older.

I’ve been observing lipomas, lumps and bumps on dogs for 40 years and I’ve made some observations I’d like to share with you.


First of all, I want to make it clear that these growths are a sign of chronic disease and not an acute issue. Lipomas and other fatty tumors are the body’s way of ridding itself of toxins and other unwanted material but, because the body is out of balance, it can’t eliminate toxins through normal channels such as the kidneys, liver or intestines. When the endocrine and immune systems are not functioning at full capacity, the body does the next best thing and tries to encapsulate any unwanted material and eliminate it through the largest excretory organ of the body: the skin. Lipomas and other fatty tumors are like a lump of dirt that you would sweep under the rug when you don’t know what else to do with it.

Statistics show that 1.7 million dogs in the United States are treated for lipomas every year. This doesn’t include all the other lumps and bumps that appear on dogs as they reach middle age or older. I’m certain that close to a billion dollars or more is spent on the treatment of these various eruptions each year.

I don’t recommend surgical removal unless the lipoma is threatening the life of the dog. For every one of these bumps that are removed, more will return and require further surgical removal. As a surgeon for 25 years, I saw how removing one lump resulted in multiple lumps appearing later on in the dog’s life. This is because surgery removes only the tip of the iceberg. Surgery will do nothing to address the toxins causing the fatty tumor and will leave scar tissue behind and this blocks the point of discharge the body needs to release those toxins. Once the scar tissue is created, the toxins feeding the tumor are forced deeper into the patient’s body, causing damage to deeper organs and organ systems.

Once present, lipomas are difficult to treat so prevention is the best approach. In my experience, key contributors to lipomas include:

Poor Diet

Carbohydrates, chemical preservatives and other toxins found in processed foods all contribute to fatty tumor growth. Water is also an important part of your dog’s diet and tap water should be avoided as the chlorine can damage your dog’s thyroid and upset his endocrine system.

Drugs and Chemicals

The products used on dogs to control fleas, ticks, heartworms and other worms are not only toxic to insects and parasites, they are toxic to your dog. There are natural and effective ways to control these internal pests without toxic residue. Vaccines and other pharmaceutical products are also loaded with contaminants and should be avoided whenever necessary.


Your dog’s environment is a major source of toxins, especially if herbicides or pesticides are used in your area. In the spring and summer, the pest trucks are everywhere, spraying poisons to kill ants, fleas, ticks and everything else in their path, including you and your dog. I recommend you never use any of these products in your home or yard – ever. As for the bugs, they’re supposed to be there so, for the sake of our environment, leave them alone. When you walk your dog in parks or areas where there is a likelihood of herbicides and pesticides being used, wash your dog’s feet off with soap and water when you get home to prevent him from licking or absorbing the toxins through the pads of his paws.


My choice of treatment for fatty tumors is to first stop supplementing the toxins by avoiding those mentioned above. Next, you must help your dog to remove any existing toxins and aid his body in its detoxification and healing process. I recommend a natural diet, filtered water, no drugs, chemicals, herbicides, pesticides or vaccines on or around my patients. Treatment choices include classical homeopathy, gemmotherapy, aromatherapy, bovine colostrum, fatty acid supplementation and glandular therapy. All of these modalities will complement the body’s healing capacity.

Remember that surgery is a suppressive treatment and will only drive the toxins and disease deeper into the patient. It should be used only as a last resort in any dog, no matter what issue you are dealing with.

By Dr. Stephen Blake DVM  Dr. Blake graduated from the University of Arizona 1969 with a BS in animal science. He graduated from Colorado State University in 1973 where he received his DVM. He has practiced small medicine for the past 36 years in San Diego, California. The past 30 years he has specialized in alternative veterinary medicine, utilizing Classical Homeopathy, nutrition, glandular therapy, massage, Aromatherapy, Acupuncture, Gemmotherapy, Oligotherapy and Bach Flowers. Dr. Blake graduated from Dr. Richard Pitcairn’s first Veterinary certification course in 1993. He had been utilizing homeopathy in his practice for 13 years prior to taking the course. Certified in classical homeopathy by the Academy of Veterinary Homeopathy in 1993 and in acupuncture by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society in 1990. He now has a limited consultation practice in San Diego, CA. Dr. Blake has been a lecturer at the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association national conventions for the past 10 years. He has just finished writing and illustrating his first book, The Pet Whisperer, which is available at

The article was originally posted and shared by the Dogs Naturally Magazine  The magazine for dogs without boundaries.