Like in humans, cancer in dogs has a mysterious cause and if allowed to spread is deadly. To prevent cancer from spreading, it must be caught early.

Many cancers in dogs form detectable lumps under the skin. Regular grooming and bathing often allows the Doberman owner to feel these lumps. If a lump is found, it should be examined by a veterinarian.

These lumps appear in all sizes and types and do not necessarily indicate cancer. If removal is appropriate, the tissue can be tested for cancer. If cancer is found, further treatment can continue.

In older dogs, aggressive treatment is at times inappropriate. There are treatments similar to human cancer treatment, such as chemotherapy, used to fight cancer in dogs. As with humans, these therapies are painful and hard on the body. With the dog’s life span and their inability to understand the reason for treatment, older dogs are often allowed to go without cancer treatment.

Even when successful, these treatments can take years to fully work. An older dog undergoing treatment could easily spend its remaining years under this painful treatment with little improvement in health and significant reduction in quality of life.

A common cancer in the Doberman is bone cancer, which often forms detectable lumps on the shoulders or legs, or can be indicated by pain in the legs. Prostate cancer has a high occurrence in male Dobermans and for many years mammary cancer has been the number one killer of female Dobermans. Spaying female Dobermans has shown to reduce occurrence of this disease.

Other than finding lumps and recognizing symptoms of pain, there is no simple test to find cancer.