A Sebaceous Cyst on My Dog


A canine sebaceous cyst is a dog lump caused by an oil producing gland.

The sebaceous gland produces an oily substance called sebum, which lubricates the skin. Sebum makes our pet's hair shiny, and provides a protective and moisturizing layer for the hair and skin.

A cyst in dogs occurs when a normal pore or hair follicle becomes clogged. They can become plugged up by dirt, debris, infection or scar tissue. Sometimes, normal sebum becomes too thick to move out of the pore. The sebum then builds up and forms a lump.


Canine cysts are benign, and unless they become large, they are non-painful dog skin lumps.

Cysts of the skin gland are usually white and raised. This type of lump on dog skin may disappear on its own. As long as they do not grow or open, they are best left alone.

Infected Sebaceous Cyst

If the cyst opens, it can become infected. Regular cleansing with a mixture of water and peroxide should keep it from becoming a problem.

A cyst can be drained if the skin is broken, but they may fill back up again.

Cyst Removal

Vets will not normally remove a cyst unless it is a bother to the dog or the owner. 

Surgical removal may done under local anesthesia. For severe cysts, a general anesthesia may be recommended.

Cure and Prevention

There is no cure for these common dog lumps, but a quality diet and regular grooming can help prevent them.



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