Dog Eyelid Tumor Removal Cost, Dangers, And Considerations

Last Updated on January 25, 2022 by Marco C.

Surgical interventions are always stressful. Eyelid surgeries, especially, can seem very frightening. So, let’s go over the dog eyelid tumor removal cost, dangers, and considerations you should know. Is this the type of surgery that you should keep in mind when getting pet insurance? How worth it is such surgery should the price be a bit too steep for your budget at the moment? Let’s cover those and the other key questions below.

What’s The Average Dog Eyelid Tumor Removal Cost You Can Expect?

So, how much does it cost to remove a tumor from a dog’s eyelid? You’d be happy to find out that such surgeries usually aren’t all that expensive. They sound like they should be given the proximity to such a complex organ like the eye, but usually, the dog eyelid tumor removal cost will be somewhere between $250 and $650 in the US. We can’t really vouch for prices outside of the US but they should be comparable.

The exact price will depend on a series of factors, including:

  • Your country, state, and city’s standard
  • What the general price range of the vet is as some vets just charge more than others
  • The type of anesthetic and the size of your dog as larger dogs need more anesthetic
  • The need for various other types of pre-operative work such as blood panels
  • Post-op treatments and recovery help such pain killers, a collar cone, and so on
  • The exact type and scale of the operation

Of those six factors, the operation itself often isn’t even the priciest factor. Most eye surgery tumor removals cost somewhere between $80 and $150. Instead, it’s the blood works, anesthesia, and the post-op that cost more.

An exception to that would be larger and more serious surgeries. The most extreme example would be an enucleation – an eye removal surgery. This type of procedure is usually only necessary for larger and malignant tumors, however. Domestic dogs should never be neglected for long enough to get such a bad tumor and it’s usually stray, abandoned, neglected, or just very unlucky dogs that go through such a procedure.

What Do Dog Eyelid Tumor Removal Procedures Include?

With enucleation aside, a standard dog eyelid tumor removal surgery is made via a V-shaped cut around the growth. This is called a V-plasty and looks horrible but is actually a pretty safe and manageable procedure.

Simply put, V-plasty is the cutting of a wedge-shaped piece of tissue under and around the tumor. After the cut, the eyelid is sawn around it. Naturally, this makes the dog’s eyelid a bit smaller at first, however, not so small as to hamper the dog’s vision. Additionally, with time the eyelid will stretch back to more or less its original size.

What Do Dog Eyelid Tumor Removal Procedures Include

Other Types Of Eyelid Tumor Removal Procedures

Some vets prefer cryosurgery to V-plasty, depending on the exact circumstances. This, also called cryotherapy, is a procedure that includes targeted extreme cold treatments that destroy the tumor tissue without cutting the eyelid. The procedure sounds very new and even sci-fi-ish but it’s been practiced for about 200 years.

Cryosurgery is done by a veterinary ophthalmologist as well and the standard veterinary ophthalmologist cost for cryosurgery is similar to that of a small V-plasty. The veterinarian chooses between V-plasty and cryotherapy on a case-by-case basis. Most of the time a vet will suggest cryotherapy for smaller bumps as they require less treatment. Larger bumps tend to need multiple cryo treatments which may be a problem that closes to the cornea of the eye.

In addition to V-plasty and/or cryotherapy, some malignant tumor cases may also require chemotherapy. As in humans, chemotherapy in dogs is used to stop the spread of the tumor cells through other organs as the surgeon can’t just cut out every tumor cell manually.

Needless to say, chemotherapy is neither fun nor a cheap procedure but it’s sometimes necessary. Like enucleation, chemotherapy too can sometimes bump up the overall dog eyelid tumor removal cost over the $650 margin and into the – usually low – thousands.

How Effective Are Eye Tumor Removal Surgeries?

Both V-plasty and cryotherapy procedures are highly effective as is enucleation. Chemotherapy can have some mixed results but that’s because only the more advanced cancer cases require it and they are sometimes just beyond help. But, in every “standard” case, dog eyelid surgeries are overwhelmingly effective. This is yet another reason why regular vet check-ups are important as they allow you to always catch problems in their infancy and treat them before they’ve gotten out of control.

How Safe Are Eye Tumor Removal Surgeries?

Every surgery has its risks so nothing is ever 100% safe. Overall, however, eyelid tumor removal is quite a safe procedure all things considered. Of course, other skin-level surgeries can be viewed as even safer because they are not as close to such a delicate organ as the eye. Even with the close proximity to the eye, however, eyelid tumor removal surgeries are very safe as long as you’re working with a qualified and experienced professional.

How Much Does The Recovery From Dog Eye Surgery Cost?

Most cryotherapies and V-plasty procedures have about 7-14-day recovery periods. More significant plastic surgeries and enucleations will require longer recovery, of course, but those are rare.

The eye will usually be covered by an absorbable suture material as most surgeons will prefer not to have to remove sutures from the eyelid. This absorbable suture will just dissolve on its own after a while and no additional procedures will be necessary.

Your dog will need to carry a collar cone for a while to stop it from scratching and harming the eyelid. An additional measure will be pain relief medications, typically NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) injections. These two are very safe when adequately prescribed and administered.

In Conclusion, What’s The Average Dog Eyelid Tumor Removal Cost You Can Expect?

Most of the time, this isn’t a procedure that should break the bank as it rarely costs north of ~$650. Even if you have a dog breed like the Labrador Retriever that’s likely to experience eye problems, that’s hardly a sufficient reason for pet insurance. If your account for the risks of other conditions, however, pet insurance may become a viable option.

Read more about: Growths On Dogs Eyes And The Immediate Action You Should Take