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How Long Can A Dog Live Without A Spleen? 3 Key Factors

When you hear of a dog’s spleen, many pet owners may not know precisely what it does in the body. The questions and worry get worse when the vet suggests the removal of the spleen. If your dog is about to undergo a splenectomy, you might wonder how long can a dog live without a spleen.

Here’s all the info you need to get you started. 

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What does a dog’s spleen do?

Like in human beings, a dog’s spleen performs many vital functions within their body, such as:

1. Blood storage

The long narrow blood vessels inside the spleen make it the perfect place for red blood cells to get ‘lost’ on their way through your dog’s body. This means that the spleen can be a source of fresh blood should your dog suffer any massive blood loss.

2. Fighting infections

The spleen is part of the lymphatic system, a central part of your dog’s immune system. It contains lymph nodes that are involved in producing antibodies needed to fight infections.

3. Making new red blood cells and getting rid of old ones

The spleen helps your dog’s blood to remain pure through a process known as pitting. It happens when the spleen bites off sections of red blood cells that are not okay or too old. This way, the red blood cells that remain are always new, and the spleen immediately eliminates any damage before it spreads further. 

Reasons behind the removal of a dog’s spleen

The spleen is a vital body organ for your dog, but there could be valid reasons behind its removal.

One of the main ones is when the spleen develops a tumor and is in danger of rupturing. Tumors may start small but soon grow into huge masses. But how long can a dog live with an enlarged spleen? Unfortunately, a log can live for only 4 to 6 months in this condition. The enlarged spleen can rupture and cause your dog to bleed to death. 

Some of the symptoms to watch out for include sudden weakness, anemia, loss of appetite, and a swollen belly. 

A splenic tumor may because to have the whole spleen surgically removed as quickly as possible before it spreads to other organs. 

Another reason why a splenectomy may be necessary include when the dog suffers severe blunt force trauma to the spleen, such as being hit by a car

Also, the spleen might take its pitting job too seriously and remove too many of the dog’s blood cells, making it necessary to remove it to save your dog’s life.

How Long Can A Dog Live Without A Spleen?

While the spleen is essential, it can sometimes be what is making your dog sick. Even without a spleen, a dog can go on to live a full life. Your dog will likely recover from the surgery within a week and need to take an iron supplement to help them recover from the blood loss. The vet will also give you instructions on how to care for your dog as they recover and any medications they require.

Your dog’s life is very important, and sometimes removing the spleen may be the only way to keep them alive. Because of this, there is no need to worry about how long can a dog live without a spleen. Your vet can give you your dog diet after spleen removal to ensure your dog leads a comfy life after removing the spleen. 

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