Like people, dogs can develop temporary, mild health problems or ongoing conditions that require special care. Dog ailments can suddenly emerge and be life threatening. When the beloved pet starts showing signs of illness, the dog owner may not know what to do. Being familiar with some common dog ailments can help the dog owner know how to react to certain symptoms.
The most important information about dog health is to be aware of the signs of a veterinary emergency. When a dog is experiencing any of these symptoms, the veterinarian needs to be consulted immediately.
Many times, a dog owner is hesitant to call after normal business hours, but these dog illness symptoms require immediate attention. The dog owner should never feel that they are doing wrong by serving the best interest of the dog.
Signs of a dog emergency include not breathing or labored breathing, unconsciousness and unresponsive to attempts to wake the dog, showing signs of pain like whining, vomiting or diarrhea for more than twenty-four hours, or a swollen abdomen. If the dog owner suspects the dog of ingesting something poisonous or the dog has collapsed or can’t stand up, these are dog emergencies.
Dogs can show signs of disorientation such as bumping into furniture. This also should be considered a dog emergency. If the dog owner is unsure whether or not to call the veterinarian, it is better for the dog owner to err on the side of caution and call to ask the veterinarian.
Heart disease can affect dogs. Though a dog owner may feel at ease about the dog’s heart if the dog doesn’t have heartworms, there are other dog heart diseases. The dog with heart disease may have a nagging cough that causes the dog to gag. Abdominal swelling and unexplained changes in the dog’s weight are other signs of heart disease in dogs.
Diabetes mellitus often affects dogs. A diabetic dog may be much thirstier than usual and subsequently urinate more. A diabetic dog can become lethargic or weak and may have weight loss. Treatment may include feeding the dog a special dog food that will prevent spikes in blood sugar levels. Daily exercise is part of the treatment for dog diabetes.
Sores or unusual areas of swelling can be signs of cancer. The dog may have changes in appetite or discharge from the mouth, nose, or ears. Cancer in dogs often is treatable if caught early. The dog owner should contact the veterinarian whenever there are changes in the dog’s appearance or behavior.
This article contains some basic information about some common dog ailments. The dog owner needs to have the dog examined by a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis. Treatment should be sought as soon as possible to improve the dog’s prognosis. Certain conditions can have dangerous affects on the dog such as a diabetic dog’s life expectancy being lower than normal.