As it grows it causes significant damage to a dog’s reproductive system. We have censored most of these photos because the effect is too shocking, but the images are important to show how serious this problem really is. We can look away, but it doesn’t change the fact that there are dogs suffering from this problem right now on the streets of Kathmandu as we speak.
One of the main reasons as to why this cancer is spreading so rapidly through the stray dog population in Nepal is the many years of unchecked breeding. Dogs that haven’t been neutered naturally want to breed more frequently and because of this we are at the same time working hard on our animal birth control program.
This isn’t the whole story however as this cancer can also be transmitted through direct transfer of cancer cells, for example when a dog sits in a particular area and the cancer cells from their bodies are left on the ground, and then are picked up again when a new dog rests there, or through sniffing/greeting other dogs.
CTVT first arose several thousand years ago and has been reported in dog populations worldwide; however, it spread around the globe only relatively recently, which ties in with the growth of stray canine populations around the world and the effects of globalization and urbanization on infectious disease. The more densely that people and animals crowd into cities, the easier it is for diseases like this to spread.