This year around 12 million dog and cat owners will receive heart-wrenching news that their pets have cancer.

And many of those owners will seek expensive specialty care after hearing that dreaded diagnosis.

Some pet insurance companies are covering cancer treatments. Even paying thousands of dollars for chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy, and surgeries.

VCA Pet CancerCare

VCA Pet CancerCare

VCA Animal Hospitals is tapping into that specialty market. The company just announced its launching 35 clinics specifically for pets with cancer.

The company is calling the brand “VCA Pet CancerCare.” There are locations across the U.S. and some hospitals are opening in Canada.

Chemo And Radiation Treatment For Your Pet?

A decade ago many pet owners thought getting cancer treatment for your animal wasn’t worth it. Why would you pay a ton of money to put your dog through chemo?

But it’s becoming more mainstream. Chemo has fewer side effects in animals. Some dogs and cats who receive treatment even go into remission.

A VCA survey found 58 percent of pet owners would do everything possible to make the lives of their pets with cancer more comfortable.

In a news release, the company said the cancer hospitals will be staffed with oncologists and teams of medical pros who will develop individual treatment plans for each pet.

Dog getting chemotherapy. Credit: VCA Animal Hospitals

Dog getting chemotherapy. Credit: VCA Animal Hospitals

“At VCA Pet CancerCare Centers, we are leading cancer care into a hopeful new era with longer lifespans and improved quality of life,” said Dr. Zack Wright, Director of Oncology at VCA Animal Diagnostic Clinic in Dallas, Texas. “Our dedicated oncologists across the network are committed to working with primary care veterinarians to make advanced cancer care accessible to pet owners, with the goal always being extended, high quality of life for our patients.”

What is pet chemo like?

VCA says it’s given through an IV and only about 20 percent of animals have side effects.

What is it like for a dog or cat to go through radiation? Check out Cody’s story which shows the process.

For a list of the VCA Pet CancerCare centers, go to their website.

Looking for more news from Watchdog Mary on Grit Daily? Check out her full column, here.