As a member of your family, it’s important to treat your dog with the same respect and love as everyone else. But just like any family member, your dog also needs constant supervision and care to keep his health in check. Your communication with your dog is limited, as his lack of verbalization makes it difficult to understand when something is wrong. Knowing the warning signs of a dog in need are important to look out for and can catch any issues before they worsen.
An important indicator of potential problems arises in your dog’s eating habits. If your dog skips meals for two days then your dog needs to be examined. Changes in meal frequency, appetite, or what he eats can signify a larger issue and should be discussed with the vet. Changes in your dog’s thirst also could be concerning. If your dog is drinking too much water or more water than usual, he could be developing a kidney disease or diabetes. Frequent bathroom trips or accidents around the house are signs of excessive thirst.
A tired and lethargic pup could mean something is bothering him. The sudden disinterest in going outside, playing with toys, or moving around is indicative of a lethargic dog. Sometimes your dog may be fatigued from playing or has sore muscles, which is normal. But, if the symptoms last longer than two days, it is recommended you take your dog to the vet.
Stools and vomit are important when determining the status of your dog’s health. The most common stools among healthy dogs are solid, firm, and moist. Excessively runny or dry stools can be signs of gastrointestinal or dietary problems. It should be a priority to take your dog to the vet if the unusual stools persist. Vomiting is common when dogs eat foreign objects outside or in the event of a minor gastric upset. If the vomiting subsides within a few hours, be sure to keep your dog well hydrated. If it persists for over 24 hours or if the vomit contains blood, seek veterinarian care ASAP.
The philosophy, “The eyes are the window to the soul”, doesn’t apply exclusively to humans…it also applies to dogs. The status of your dog’s eyes let us know what’s happening internally. Red or cloudy eyes followed by discharge, swelling, or tearing could mean your dog has an infection, which can be treated if taken to a vet as soon as possible. Constant pawing at the eye or squinting are also indicators of ocular problems.
Difficulty breathing, called Dyspnea, can be displayed as raspy breaths, wheezing, coughing/ choking, or weak breathing. This can mean several things, such as the presence of a foreign organism or body, an allergic reaction, or heart complications. This type of issue is very serious and usually indicates severe health complications so do not hesitate to take your dog to the vet.
Dog seizures are a neurological condition and are common amongst dogs all over. Look out for shaking, loss of consciousness, loss of bowel control, and paddling of the legs. If your dog is diagnosed with epilepsy, then you may be used to the seizures and know that not each one is an emergency. In the event your dog has several seizures in one day, each lasting longer than a few minutes, your dog may need to seek medical attention. Epilepsy in dogs is manageable and should be maintained with the help of a veterinarian.
Our dogs won’t always let us know when something’s wrong. It’s our duty as dog owners to be observant and mindful of any and all behavioral changes. You know your dog better than any one else so don’t be hesitant to seek help. Looking to book a dog walk?