What We Learned About Cancer in Dogs

By: Britta Gidican, PR Director

When we heard that cancer accounts for almost half of the deaths of pets over 10 years of age (source: American Veterinary Medical Association), we looked into our data to see what else we could learn about pet cancer.

Among our database of insured pets, we found that dogs become significantly more prone to cancer starting at age 5. We also found that the expected cost to treat cancer increases by 30% each year. We have paid over $1 million in cancer-related claims since 2012, with the majority of the funds going toward dogs over 5 years old.


From our data, we found that though age plays a larger role, both environmental and genetic factors can also determine a pet’s risk of getting cancer. Among Trupanion-insured pets, the top dog breeds most prone to cancer include the Rottweiler, Boxer, and Golden Retriever.

Top 10 breeds most prone to cancer:

  1. Rottweiler
  2. Doberman Pinscher
  3. Boxer
  4. German Shepherd
  5. Great Dane
  6. Golden Retriever
  7. American Pit bull Terrier
  8. Labrador Retriever
  9. Beagle
  10. Jack Russell Terrier

We know that many cancer treatments available to humans are also being used to treat pets, including immunotherapy, surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and herbal therapies. We worked with veterinarians like you to update our core policy to make sure we covered all the treatments pet owners could need in their time of need. Trupanion’s enhanced core policy, announced in May 2014, now covers advanced and specialized cancer treatments like bone marrow transplants and herbal therapy. These treatment options can be combined to extend the duration and quality of life for pets.

For more information about the Trupanion policy's cancer-related pet medical coverage please visit Trupanion.com.

The information within this newsletter contains content that is current as of the publication date. Any information contained herein may have changed since the publication date. If you have questions, please contact VeterinaryUpdate@Trupanion.com.


Thank you for visiting Trupanion.


Unfortunately, Internet Explorer 7 and earlier versions are not compatible with some areas of our website.

If you wish to enroll or activate a certificate, we encourage you to upgrade to the latest version of Internet Explorer, use Google Chrome or Safari browsers to access our website, or you can simply call us at 855.591.3100.

Otherwise, you may continue browsing the rest of our website.