Lymphoma in Dogs

Posted on January 8th, 2014

Lymphoma is a type of very common cancer that occurs in dogs and also other animals. Wikipedia reports that lymphoma in animals is caused by an out of control increase in malignant lymphocytes which can invade lymph nodes, liver, spleen and bone marrow. This is apparently the most common malignancy found in dogs.

Wikipedia also lists a genetic base for this disease to occur, including environmental causes that alter the endocrine immune homeostasis of the affected patient.

Wikipedia has also provided a list of breeds that seem to be more susceptible to lymphoma. They are as follows; Boxer, Scottish Terrier, Basset Hound, Airedale Terrier, Chow, German Shepard, Poodle, Saint Bernard, Bull dog, Beagle, Rottweiler and Golden Retriever.

I too have found with my clinical studies that when a breed becomes popular, often an excess of puppies are produced and if the endocrine immune genes of the parents are genetically too close, the “inbreeding” will create an endocrine immune imbalance which will allow for lymphoma to occur.

When this unfortunate imbalance has been created, it is simple to identify and correct, but chemotherapy has to be also administered, to help give the patient a chance to survive. Both need to be done at the same time.

What is this endocrine immune imbalance that is passed on from parent to offspring?

The imbalance is caused by a genetic imbalance or environmental damage that occurs with the middle layer adrenal cortex and its productions of active cortisol. When this cortisol imbalance occurs, the negative feedback to the pituitary gland is damaged and the pituitary gland continues to produce its hormone called ACTH. When this production continues, the inner layer adrenal cortex responds by producing high levels of damaging, adrenal estrogen.

Note: Total estrogen, including adrenal estrogen, is NOT usually measured in humans and in animals and this is why many allergies, auto-immunity and cancer patients are not diagnosed and treated correctly. In woman, only the three ovarian estrogens are measured and in men, only estradiol is measured.

The elevated total estrogen causes the following:

  • Total estrogen may bind the receptor sites for thyroid hormone, thereby causing the patient not to be able to use normal levels of thyroid hormone.
  • In people a Reverse T3 is produced that does this and it seems to work the same in dogs, but has not been proven yet.
  • Total estrogen will deregulate the immune system so that their immune cells will no longer provide protection for the patient’s body, and will lose recognition of self-tissue and react against normal tissue causing autoimmunity and probably cancer.
  • Total estrogen will also cause the B lymphocytes production of protective antibody to decrease, including the mucous membrane antibody referred to as IgA. When the IgA in a dog is below 58 mg %, malabsorption of replacement hormone will occur. NOTE: Malabsorption also usually occurs in humans when their IgA level is below 68 mg %.

For further information on this hormone antibody imbalance, please see other posts and articles on this website.

It is interesting that the literature indicates that prednisolone and other steroids help for a while, and that is due to the fact that the syndrome also creates a cortisol imbalance, but in a dog, without the use of thyroid hormone with a steroid, a resistance will develop and not allow the steroid to correct the lymphoma.

Unfortunately, Lymphoma in a dog, will not respond properly unless this endocrine immune is corrected and is used along with chemotherapy.

The following are a list of important websites that may help make a difference for the successful treatment of your lymphoma dog.


* Picture courtesy of