Primary skeletal tumors do not typically cause neurologic signs. Multilobular osteochondroma originates in the flat bones of the skull, usually in older medium- or large-breed dogs and appears as a firm, fixed mass. It may erode the cranium and compress, rather than infiltrate, underlying brain tissues. Radiographically, the tumor contains nodular or stippled areas of mineralization, resulting in a characteristic “popcorn ball” appearance. Local recurrence and metastasis are common. Vertebral osteochondroma is the spinal cord counterpart.
What can you do when your dog seizures? Note the time to determine how long the seizure lasts. Keep the dog as quiet as possible. Loud or sharp noises may prolong the seizure or make it worse. Other dogs should be removed from the area, as they may disturb or attack the seizuring dog. Should you attempt to comfort the animal? Opinions on this vary. My own dog is comforted by my presence and looks for me as he returns to consciousness. I make a point of calmly maintaining physical and voice contact with him throughout the seizure and during recovery.
The success of this single cell lineage, believed to be the longest continually propagated cell lineage in the world, can be attributed to the tumor’s mode of transmission in a specific host system. Although direct contact is generally not a highly efficient mode of transfer, CTVTs take advantage of the popular sire effect of domestic dogs. A single male can produce dozens of litters over his lifetime, allowing the tumor to affect many more females than it could if a monogamous species were the host. Understanding the epidemiology of CTVTs is hoped to provide insights for populations that may experience CTVT exposure and information about disease prevalence. Canine transmissible venereal tumors are more often found in temperate climates where there are large populations of stray dogs, but little is known about the details of transmission.