Warts can be found anywhere on the body. They are more likely to occur in the older pet but may also occur at any age. They grow from the bottom layer (basement membrane) of the skin. They can either have a rough surface or a smooth surface appearance to them. In most cases they do not have malignant properties and thus can be generally ignored.
If it becomes appropriate to remove a wart from the skin this is usually done under a local anesthetic with an electrocautery unit. In some cases it may be necessary to sedate or tranquilize your pet so that he/she remains immobile. The wart can also be removed with either scissors or a scalpel blade. Chemical cautery can be used to control most bleeding in this case. If all of the abnormal tissue is not removed the wart may re-grow.
In most cases no medication is required to be applied topically by you post operatively. The area is allowed to scab over and heal by filling in over time. There may be a small scar present when the healing is complete.
While it is possible that a wart may undergo a cellular change and thus become malignant this is not at all likely. If the wart begins to bleed, it is best from a pragmatic point of view to remove it. If you are disturbed every time you look at it or touch it, then it should be removed. There is no way to prevent warts from occurring and certain individuals tend to be prone toward developing them.
Norwalk Animal Hospital
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