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What Pet Owner's need

to know on Asbestos

Mesothelioma in Pets

Asbestos & Mesothelioma in Dogs, Cats and Pets

The Mesothelioma & Asbestos Awareness Center is committed to
providing the latest information on asbestos contamination.
And, how it coincides with the rare cancer known as

The founders of the Mesothelioma & Asbestos Awareness
Center have taken it upon themselves as volunteers and
writers to make the public aware of how this disease has
affected so many. The goal of the MAA Center is to provide
victims of mesothelioma and their families a resource where
they can find the most up-to-date information and external
resources on asbestos related diseases via the internet. MAA
Center supports mesothelioma victims and their families in
hopes that by using the resources on the website that they
can live longer, healthier lives. What makes the MAA Center
unique from other sites that contain information on lung
related illnesses is that it also has information regarding
second hand asbestos exposure to not only family members but
domestic animals as well.

The only way to develop mesothelioma is to inhale airborne
asbestos fibers through the nose or mouth. These particles
become lodged within areas of the body and can cause harmful
scarring and eventually develop into cancer. It is very rare
occurrence for individuals to think that their dog or cat
could be contaminated and affected by these toxic asbestos
materials. What most fail to recognize, however, is that
domestic animals are at just as high of a risk to develop
mesothelioma complications as any other member of the
household. Many years ago, workers in shipyards and
construction sites were exposed to this deadly material.
Little did they know that even their work clothing becoming
contaminated could pose a threat to their loved ones, and
ironically, their household pets.

Household pets such as dogs and cats, just like humans, are
prone to inhaling asbestos fibers that can be loose within
the air. These fibers can come from a number of different
areas. There have been times in the past where workers who
handle asbestos would come home with the particles on their
work gear or clothes. There are also instances where
asbestos has been used in areas around the home. If the
family is in the process of reconstruction or remodeling
areas of the home that contain asbestos fibers, the room
should be properly sealed off. What is even more dangerous
for pets and pet owners is for their dog or cat to bring
back asbestos particles on their furs or paws from areas
where asbestos may have been present.

Diagnosis for dogs is very different than in humans. Since
asbestos lodges itself in the pleural lining of the lungs
for humans it could take up to thirty years for symptoms of
the disease to develop. For dogs, on the other hand, the age
varies of when the disease can become contracted. No dogs
over the age of eight have been diagnosed with any
complications due to asbestos. Symptoms between animals and
humans contracting mesothelioma are in most cases the same.
If a dog or cat is experiencing shortness of breath after
many instances after certain activities it is important to
take him to the vet for diagnosis. It could also be a case
of something other than mesothelioma cancer.

If the pet owner knows that their domestic animal has been
exposed to asbestos at some point, it could potentially save
them time and money from running other tests that will not
determine a cancerous state that the animal may be in. To
treat an animal with mesothelioma can be very costly just as
with humans. Chemotherapy is often an option used on animals
because surgery is often times not effective for removing
certain unhealthy cells and retained fluid. Veterinarians
can discuss different options but the decision to go forth
with treatment is entirely up to the animal's owner. Just
like mesothelioma cases within humans, treatment is simply
to relieve the animal from pain and suffering during their
battle with the disease. There is no cure for mesothelioma
in animals or within humans.

The same type of precautions to keep humans away from
asbestos fibers also applies to domestic animals as well. If
a worker who has been exposed to asbestos has a fear that
they may have contaminated loved ones or pets, each member
of the family, including the person initially exposed should
have a complete physical. If the house that the family
resides in was built before the 1970s, there is a good
chance that asbestos was used in the construction or within
insulation. The family should have the house tested for
asbestos material in the air. It is also possible that pets
are able to contract asbestos fibers through different
locations in the area or community they live. Owners must be
sure that if indeed their pets are in a situation where they
have been contaminated by certain materials that seem toxic,
they should be washed down completely. If the animal has
been contaminated by asbestos, the fibers will be wet and
easier to remove. If in doubt, the owner should take the
animal to their local vet.

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