We are committed to caring for your pet – while maintaining the highest level of safety for our Associates and pet owners. Face coverings/masks are required at all of our U.S. hospitals. We thank you for your continued patience and support. Learn more about our COVID-19 response and guidelines.

James Custis

DVM, MS, DACVR/RO
James Custis Staff Photo 2021
Veterinary Specialist
Oncology, Radiation Oncology
James Custis Staff Photo 2021

Dr. Custis received his DVM from Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in 2005. During his two years in a progressive small animal practice in Houston, Texas, he developed a particular interest in oncology. Thus, he then pursued a one year small animal medicine and surgery internship at Carolina Veterinary Specialists in Greensboro, North Carolina. Subsequently, he completed a dual program consisting of a Master of Science in Radiological Health Sciences, and a residency in veterinary radiation oncology at Colorado State University Flint Animal Cancer Center. He became board certified in Radiation Oncology by the American College of Veterinary Radiology in 2011. During his residency training at the Colorado State University Flint Animal Cancer Center, Dr. Custis became proficient in the utilization of new modalities such as intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and stereotactic radiation therapy (SRT) in an effort to improve local tumor control and decrease normal tissue side effects. Dr. Custis remained on faculty at Colorado State University until joining our team in 2015. His research interest's center upon the treatment of spontaneously occurring tumors in client owned animals with an emphasis upon the potential translational applications and the benefits of radiation therapy.

In his spare time, Dr. Custis enjoys the outdoors, golf, and running with his canine companion Huckleberry.

Oncology

What Is A Veterinary Oncologist?

A board certified veterinary oncologist is a veterinary internal medicine specialist who has also obtained additional training in veterinary oncology. A veterinary oncologist has specialized knowledge in the diagnosis of cancer, the staging of tumors, the development of treatment plans, and the administration of chemotherapy. When your pet is faced with cancer, a veterinary oncologist will typically work in concert with your pet's general practitioner veterinarian in order to obtain the best possible medical outcome for your pet. A veterinary oncologist can help your pet by developing treatment plans that incorporate one or all of the following options:

  • Surgery
  • Radiation
  • Chemotherapy
  • Immunotherapy

While your general practitioner veterinarian can diagnose and treat many health problems, certain diseases like cancer require the care of a doctor who has had specialized, intensive training in veterinary oncology.

Why Does My Pet Need A Veterinary Oncologist?

Just as in humans, a pet with cancer typically needs the help of an oncologist to help diagnose and treat the disease. Veterinary oncologists determine the most appropriate course of treatment and coordinate the treatment program for pets with cancer. They also frequently serve as consultants to veterinarians in private practice to ensure that their patients receive the best treatment possible for their cancer. You can be assured that a veterinarian who refers you and your pet to a veterinary oncologist is one that is caring and committed to ensuring that your pet receives the highest standard of medical care for his or her illness.

While in some cases, your veterinarian may be able to simply consult with the veterinary oncologist about your pet's care, in other cases it is necessary to actually refer you and your pet to the veterinary oncologist for more advanced diagnostics and treatment. Board certified veterinary internists/oncologists may also have access to specialized diagnostic or treatment tools that a general practitioner veterinarian may not have.

My Pet Has Cancer. Now What?

Cancer does appear to be becoming more common in pets, most likely because they are simply living longer. The most important point to realize about this dreaded disease, however, is that just as in people, many forms of the disease can be easily treated, managed, and even cured. Early detection and specialized care are leading to increased survival and cure rates in almost all the types of cancers that afflict pets. From surgery to chemotherapy to radiation therapy, veterinary cancer specialists can offer your pet the very latest diagnostic and treatment options and the best chance of survival. With optimal treatment, cancer in many cases simply becomes another manageable chronic disease.

If your pet is diagnosed with cancer, it is important not to become overwhelmed. Ask your veterinarian to write down the most important points for you to review later. Although the disease is serious, treatment decisions generally do not need to be made quickly. If your pet is diagnosed with cancer, however, you will either want to have your general practice veterinarian work in consultation with a veterinary oncologist, or be referred to one of these specialists for your pet's treatment.

  • Common Cancers
  • Skin tumors
  • Mammary tumors
  • Lymphosarcoma
  • Endocrine tumors
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Hemangiosarcoma

Will My Regular Veterinarian Still Be Involved?

In most cases, your regular veterinarian will still supervise your pet's veterinary care and will work in tandem with the veterinary oncologist, veterinary radiation oncologist, and any other members of your pet's veterinary health care team.

Did You Know?

Dogs and cats have higher age adjusted incidence rates for many kinds of cancers than do humans. For example, dogs are 35 times more likely to get skin cancer than are humans. They suffer from 8 times the amount of bone cancer and 4 times the amount of breast cancer. However, humans are more likely to get lung and stomach cancers than pets.

VCA Animal Diagnostic Clinic

4444 Trinity Mills Road, Suites 202 & 100

Dallas, TX 75287

Main: 972-267-8300

Fax: 972-267-8301

Hospital Hours:

    Mon-Fri: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

    Sat-Sun: Temporarily Closed

Fax Number:

972-267-8301

Are you a Primary Care Veterinarian? We have dedicated resources for you.

Loading... Please wait