The purpose of this study was to provide an initial assessment of the potential biologic activity of toceranib phosphate (Palladia®, Pfizer Animal Health, Madison, NJ, USA) in select solid tumours in dogs. Cases in which toceranib was used to treat dogs with apocrine gland anal sac adenocarcinoma (AGASACA), metastatic osteosarcoma (OSA), thyroid carcinoma, head and neck carcinoma and nasal carcinoma were included. Clinical benefit (CB) was observed in 63/85 (74%) dogs including 28/32 AGASACA [8 partial response (PR), 20 stable disease (SD)], 11/23 OSAs (1 PR and 10 SD), 12/15 thyroid carcinomas (4 PR and 8 SD), 7/8 head and neck carcinomas [1 complete response (CR), 5 PR and 1 SD] and 5/7 (1 CR and 4 SD) nasal carcinomas. For dogs experiencing CB, the median dose of toceranib was 2.8 mg kg−1, 36/63 (58.7%) were dosed on a Monday/Wednesday/Friday basis and 47/63 (74.6%) were treated 4 months or longer. Although these data provide preliminary evidence that toceranib exhibits CB in dogs with certain solid tumours, future prospective studies are necessary to define its true activity.