Taking steps to keep your dog healthy can minimize the incidence of terrible life-threatening issues. In addition, seeing your vet for routine wellness exams can help you discover health problems before they get out of control. Always watch your dog for any signs of illness. There are many health issues that can affect dogs. The following are among the most common:
- Canine Hepatitis: commonly known as Rubarth Disease is a viral disease that is often mistaken for canine distemper. Symptoms include high temperature, coughing, loss of appetite, depression, vomiting, pale gums, and abdominal pain. Symptoms of jaundice may occur as this disease infects the liver and kidneys. If you suspect that your dog has contracted canine hepatitis, contact your vet immediately. Don’t let him come into contact with any other dog and clear up his feces.
- Obesity: a common health problem seen in dogs. It’s also one of the most preventable. Obesity can lead to serious health issues like diabetes, heart disease, and orthopedic problems. Fortunately, obesity can be prevented and reversed through proper diet and exercise.
- Leptospirosis: caused by bacteria and is usually contracted from contaminated water, so try and prevent your dog from drinking out of any puddles, ponds, lakes, reservoirs, or canals. Symptoms include high temperature, loss of appetite, vomiting, lethargy, depression, muscle pain, diarrhea, and blood in the urine. Leptospirosis affects the liver and the kidneys so watch out for excessive drinking and urinating, yellow eyes, and persistent vomiting. Like every disease, make sure to contact your vet immediately.
- Arthritis: defined as inflammation of a joint or multiple joints in the body. In dogs, the most common form of arthritis is osteoarthritis, also called Degenerative Joint Disease. Osteoarthritis most often occurs in seniors, though it may also be an effect of old injuries or congenital disorders like hip dysplasia. If you suspect your dog has osteoarthritis, talk to your vet about the options.
- Canine distemper: caused by a very contagious virus. Puppies and dogs usually become infected through virus particles in the air or in the respiratory secretions of infected dogs. Infected dogs typically develop runny eyes, fever, a snotty nose, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and paralysis. It is often fatal. Fortunately, there is an effective vaccine to protect your dog from this deadly disease. The canine distemper vaccine is considered a “core” vaccine and is recommended for every dog.
Before you attribute your dog’s lack of action to laziness, it is worth checking that their enthusiasm failure isn’t due to a health condition. It could be that your furry friend is in pain or is feeling under the weather. The diseases listed above could all cause a lack of interest in exercise. Age could also be a factor if you have a veteran pooch. Swimming is a fabulous exercise for dogs with mobility issues so a trip to the nearest lake might be in order.
Furthermore, a good diet is also an essential part of keeping your dog healthy. Choose a high-quality dog food that will provide your dog with all the nutrients they require. It’s crucial that you feed your dog the correct amount and the right food.
All in all, by following your vet’s advice and checking your dog’s health regularly, many canine health problems are easily avoided. Best of all, your puppy will grow into a healthy adult dog that loves to enjoy your company for years to come!