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A lipoma is a benign tumor composed of fat cells. The tumors can vary in size from small nodules to very large masses, and they can appear almost anywhere. In some cases, they become large enough to interfere with normal movement or body function. The incidence is greater in obese pets and in females.

Diagnosis is based on symptoms, examination findings and laboratory tests. The only way to definitively diagnose a skin mass as a lipoma (versus something more serious) is through laboratory tests. All masses should be evaluated by a veterinarian. Early diagnosis is best when treatment is needed.

Treatment will depend on the size, location and nature of the lipoma. Large lipomas, or those that interfere with normal body function, may need to be surgically removed. Weight control may help prevent recurrence.


  • Use all medications as directed by your veterinarian.
  • All masses should be evaluated by your veterinarian.
  • It is important to follow all post surgical or other treatment instructions.
  • Monitor your pet's progress carefully and have him/her rechecked as directed by your veterinarian.
  • If weight control is needed for your pet, the medical team can help you with a diet and exercise plan.

If you have questions about this or any medical topic, please contact your Banfield hospital today.