Hi stranger! Signing up for MypetMD is easy, free and puts the most relevant content at your fingertips.

Get Instant Access To

  • 24/7 alerts for pet-related recalls

  • Your own library of articles, blogs, and favorite pet names

  • Tools designed to keep your pets happy and healthy



or Connect with Facebook

By joining petMD, you agree to the Privacy Policy.

PetMD Seal

Wart Virus in Dogs

ADVERTISEMENT

Papillomatosis in Dogs

 

The term papillomatosis is used to describe a benign tumor on the surface of the skin. A virus, known as the papillomavirus, causes the growth. The general appearance is wart-like, raised, with the central surface having an open pore if the wart is inverted. In dogs, the warts are most commonly presented in a raised manner; however, inverted warts are not uncommon. The pigmented appearance normally presents as a rough surface that is flat in appearance and black in colour.

 

There are instances where the papillomatosis can progress, causing common forms of skin cancer. It is also possible for invasive cancerous cells to penetrate and begin eating the underlying tissues. They are usually located around the lips, mouth and tongue. In young dogs the wart virus may be present around the mouth, genitals or eyes. However, the skin can be affected at any age.

 

Papillomatosis can affect both dogs and cats. If you would like would like to learn more about how this disease affects cats, please visit this page in the PetMD health library.

 

Symptoms and Types

 

Symptoms related to this disorder include bad breath associated with oral papillomatosis, bleeding from the mouth, increased or decreased appetite, and excessive excretion of saliva. Dogs will usually develop the papillomas, which are oval or circular in shape, around the lower abdomen.

 

Causes

 

Papillomatosis is contagious in nature and is caused by the canine oral papillomavirus. There are some cases where the wart virus is genetically related by breed.

 

Diagnosis

 

Your veterinarian will take a biopsy of the lesions if the papillomavirus is oral in nature. When there is evidence that the papillomatosis has affected the skin, or there are visible changes to the skin and cellular structures, pathology tests will be required. Further tests associated with the immune system will establish whether viral antibodies are present within the lesions.

 

 

Treatment

 

Oral lesions will generally disappear of their own accord. Surgery may be performed to remove any oral tumors; however, your dog will not be able to eat comfortably for a period of time after the surgery. Your veterinarian will advise you on what foods will be most appropriate for your pet during the recovery process. Use of medication may also aid in the removal of warts, but this treatment will be discontinued if the condition recurs.

 

Living and Management

 

To ensure that malignant changes do not occur in the tumor, your veterinarian will schedule follow-up visits to further monitor the lesions for alterations.

 

Prevention

 

Due to the contagious nature of this disease, it is important to separate infected animals from those that are not infected with the papillomavirus. Oral vaccination can be administered as a preventative measure against this disease, and is routinely used in commercial kennels when outbreaks do occur.

 

 

Related Articles

Bacterial Infection (Pyoderma) of the Skin in...
When a dog's skin is cut or wounded, there is an increased risk of infection. Pyoderma...
READ MORE
Skin Ulcers in Dogs
Erosions are shallow defects in the skin that only affect the skin's upper layers....
READ MORE
Hair Loss in Dogs
Hair loss (alopecia) is a common disorder in dogs which causes the animal to have...
READ MORE
  • Lifetime Credits:
  • Today's Credits:
Hurry Before All Seats are Taken!
Enroll
Be an A++ Pet Parent! Take fun & free courses to earn badges & certifications. Choose a course»
Around the Web
MORE FROM PETMD.COM