9 Common Health Issues in Dogs
Owning a dog is one of the most rewarding decisions you can ever make. No one will love you as your dog does and it’ll be hard to find anyone as loyal. Unfortunately, though, they’re likely to experience some problems along the way and while many of them are preventable, some of them are due to genetics.
Certain breeds are more prone to certain ailments but there are common health problems in all dogs that unfortunately cannot be avoided. If you own a dog or are looking to buy one, keep reading to learn more about the various forms of common dog sickness.
Ear infections in dogs are common and can be easily treated when quickly identified. From scratching its ear to tilting its head, your dog will do its best to show you that it’s suffering from an ear infection. There are also plenty of preventative measures you can take at home, such as regular washing and cleaning dogs ears. Should an ear infection be left untreated or be a chronic issue for your dog, your vet may recommend removing the ear and sealing the ear canal altogether.
The most obvious sign of dog skin problems will be incessant scratching and itching. Should you notice any redness, flaky skin, inflammation, or just general soreness, it’s worth taking your dog to the vet to have them checked out. Your dog could have one of many skin problems that range in severity. While it might be just a simple and easily treatable rash, skin irritation could also mean parasite infections or be a secondary symptom to something a bit more serious.
Dogs vomit all the time and it’s usually not a sign for concern. For example, dogs with an upset stomach will often eat grass to make themselves throw up. Though you don’t need to take them to the vet every time they vomit, it’s worth keeping an eye on them in case it’s a sign of something more serious. If the vomiting accompanies other issues like diarrhea, lethargy, and weakness, be sure to take them to the vet as it could be something more troubling than a simple stomach upset, like a gastrointestinal blockage or toxicity.
UTIs in dogs are all too common and could be the reason why your pooch has started peeing indoors again. Puppies and dogs that have underlying health conditions are especially prone to UTIs. If you’re seeing frequent peeing, unusual behavior for urinating, and blood in their urine, take them to the vet as soon as you can as it could be a sign of something more serious like kidney disease or even diabetes.
All dogs have bad breath to some extent which is why it can be quite hard to identify dental disease in dogs. The mouth is the ideal breeding ground for all sorts of bacteria and given the unusual places your dog probably likes to put its face, dental disease is a lot more common than you might think. Periodontal disease will likely come as a result of poor dental hygiene and will seriously harm your dog’s gums and teeth.
Read more about: Dental Care For Dogs
One or two bouts of diarrhea shouldn’t be a cause for concern because it’s likely due to something they’ve eaten. Should they be experiencing it regularly or for reasons you’re unsure of, it’s worth taking them to the vet immediately to have them looked over. Diarrhea will make your dog progressively weaker and seriously dehydrated, which could be easily treated with some guidance from your vet. Ensuring your dog drinks plenty of fluids while experiencing diarrhea is important and is essential to making them feel better.
Parasites are pretty nasty and it’s usually something out of a horror story when we hear about humans having them. Since they live in places like bacteria-filled water or in the ground, it’s uncommon for us to contract them but very easy for your dog to do so. Whether it’s ticks, fleas, intestinal worms, or heartworms, these worm-like creatures can cause serious complications for your pet and can in many cases kill them. Thankfully, these are usually pretty simple to spot for your vet and can be treated quickly and effectively.
Though this one tends to occur as they get older, arthritis can affect your dog from any age. Arthritis is typically hereditary though it can be brought on through excessive use of the joints, general wear and tear, and past injuries. The most common form of arthritis is known as osteoarthritis and this degenerative joint disease can be managed rather well but may cause pain and discomfort for your pooch once in a while. Be sure to discuss physio and medication options at your next visit to the vet.
Obesity in dogs is quite the problem since many owners can’t help but ply their pets with treats or even the same meals that they eat. Though it’s a rapidly growing issue it’s likely the most preventable, since your dog should jump at the chance to get outdoors and exercise. The only problem will be changing their diet as they’ll likely have something to say about that. Obesity no doubt will lead to a shorter life and one that’s lesser quality for your dog as they’ll be prone to problems like heart disease, diabetes, and more.