Laryngeal tumors

From Dog
A large pedunculated laryngeal rhabdomyoma removed from a dog[1]

Laryngeal neoplasms are an uncommon disease of the canine larynx.

A breed predisposition has been reported in the Golden Retriever and Labrador Retriever[2]

Forms of laryngeal carcinoma include:

Affected dogs usually present with an inspiratory dyspnea, stridor, voice change (hoarse bark or loss of voice), coughing, exertional dyspnea[7], dysphagia and weight loss[8].

A presumptive diagnosis can be made on presenting clinical history, visualization of a laryngeal mass and ultrasonographic identification of localized tissue involvement[9].

Definitive diagnosis requires tissue sample biopsy and histological identification of neoplasia type.

A differential diagnosis would include laryngeal paralysis and thyroid carcinoma[10].

Treatment usually involves surgical debulking, use of chemotherapy if indicated in rapidly growing tumors and radiation therapy.

Thyroid carcinomas are frequently freely movable tumors that rarely metastasis and can be treated with surgical excision alone[11].


  2. Slensky KA et al (2003) Acute severe hemorrhage secondary to arterial invasion in a dog with thyroid carcinoma. J Am Vet Med Assoc 223(5):649-653
  3. Rossi G et al (2007) Granular cell tumour affecting the left vocal cord in a dog. J Comp Pathol 136(1):74-78
  4. O'Hara AJ et al (2001) Laryngeal rhabdomyoma in a dog. Aust Vet J 79(12):817-821
  5. Meuten DJ et al (1985) Canine laryngeal rhabdomyoma. Vet Pathol 22(6):533-539
  6. Pass DA et al (1980) Canine laryngeal oncocytomas. Vet Pathol 17(6):672-677
  7. Merck Veterinary Manual
  8. Wheeldon EB et al (1982) Neoplasia of the larynx in the dog. J Am Vet Med Assoc 180(6):642-647
  9. Rudorf H & Brown P (1998) Ultrasonography of laryngeal masses in six cats and one dog. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 39(5):430-434
  10. Tuohy JL et al (2012) Outcome following simultaneous bilateral thyroid lobectomy for treatment of thyroid gland carcinoma in dogs: 15 cases (1994-2010). J Am Vet Med Assoc 241(1):95-103
  11. Klein MK et al (1995) Treatment of thyroid carcinoma in dogs by surgical resection alone: 20 cases (1981-1989). J Am Vet Med Assoc 206(7):1007-1009