If you don’t have a lot of experience with dogs, then you might miss some key signs that he or she needs a trip to the vet. If you spot any of these symptoms, it’s time to make an appointment. You might even need to find an emergency vet.
Shedding depends on the breed of dog you have. A malamute has a thick undercoat that can shed fur all year long. A shih tzus might not seem to shed at all, even as summer approaches and most dogs lose their winter coats.
Excessive shedding, however, can mean something’s wrong with your four-legged friend. Changes in the weather encourage shedding, but so does the stress that often accompany illness.
You already know that a fever means something bad. But do you know what temperature indicates illness in your dog. If her resting temperature reaches 102.8 degrees Fahrenheit, then your dog is almost certainly sick. If it hits 104 degrees, you need to go to the vet immediately.
Normal temperatures can vary by size and breed, so it’s best to know your dog’s usual temp. The next time you visit the vet for shots or a checkup, ask about your pet’s usual temperature.
Bad Breath is Sometimes More Than it Appears
Yeah, your dog always has bad breath, but really bad breath can indicate a serious problem. You can usually take care of regular dog breath with the kids of toys and treats that you can buy from a pet health supplier.
Pay attention to how the breath smells to decide how serious the problem is.
- Sweet, fruity breath is a common symptom of diabetes.
- Urine-scented breath could be a symptom of kidney problems.
- Rotten breath could be a sign of liver disease.
- Symptoms of diabetes means you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Urine-scented and rotten breath can require immediate attention.
Bloated Stomach, Pale Gums, Vomiting
Bloat (gastric volvulus) is a serious condition that has a 50 percent survival rate. If you notice that your dog’s stomach has become distended, then you should call an emergency vet.
Bloat occurs when the dog’s stomach fills with gas and fluids, a condition called gastric dilation, and then the stomach “flips.”
Unfortunately, you can’t count on the distended stomach. Sometimes it never appears. It’s important to look for other signs of bloat, including
- unproductive vomiting
- pale gums
- excess salivation
Moodiness or a Sudden Change in Temper
When you get sick, you probably don’t have the patience to deal with annoying things that you can usually ignore. Dogs are the same. That’s why it’s important to investigate sudden changes in temper.
Keep in mind that everyone can have a bad day, including your dog. If the change seems extreme and persistent, though, it’s worth a vet visit, especially if you spot other potential symptoms of sickness.
What other symptoms do you think dog-owners should know to keep their pets in good health?
Amanda is a freelance writer who is madly in love with her pitbull mix Charlie. She also enjoys playing and coaching volleyball.