Penelope, or Penny as we’ve grown fond of calling her, came to Black Cat Rescue from a high volume shelter. The shelter terrified Penny, and she was too nervous to attract an adopter in such hectic surroundings. Foster care has allowed Penelope to blossom in a quieter, low-stress environment. And blossomed she has! Penelope is very adventurous, fearlessly exploring every nook and cranny of her foster home. She is willing to check out any spot her poly-dactyl paws will take her! When her curiosity is satisfied, Penny is a chatty sweetheart who loves to cuddle and show off her belly.
In October, Penelope went in to the veterinarian for routine spay surgery. It was discovered that Penny was already spayed but had a small mass under the skin on her side. We immediately had the mass removed and biopsied. Penny went back into foster care with a cone and stitches while we waited for news. Unfortunately, the biopsy came back to show that Penelope’s mass was a malignant cutaneous mast cell tumor (MCT). The BCR team was devastated and eagerly awaited Penelope’s November appointment with an oncologist.
After a visit with the oncologist, Penelope’s prognosis is better than expected! There is a good chance the tumor won’t come back, and there’s little chance it would spread to organs. The veterinary oncologist felt absolutely nothing growing at the tumor site, and said she looked otherwise healthy. No immediate treatment was recommended since the mass has already been removed as much as possible.
Veterinarians believe that some cats are genetically predisposed to MCT’s. It is possible that Penny may have another mass at some point, but many cats get just one throughout their lifetime. According to the Veterinary Cancer Center, mast cell tumors account for 20% of cutaneous tumors in cats and over 90% of mast cell tumors are benign.
Penelope will need a re-check with the oncologist in January to make sure that the mass has not regrown, but we are optimistic! This sweet little fighter is still in the market for a forever home and will remain in Black Cat Rescue foster care until she finds one.
Adopt Penelope: http://goo.gl/y1SIlb
Donate to Penelope’s ongoing care: http://goo.gl/mcdM1k
More information on feline mast cell tumors from the Veterinary Cancer Center’s Cancer Resource Center: http://goo.gl/75Mmd3