Dog Illness Symptoms

by admin on July 17, 2010

Just like in humans, dog will exhibit certain dog illness symptoms when sick. Most dog illnesses are minor, but as ever, observing the symptoms early is good. As the saying goes, however, better late than never!

Unfortunately, instinct thousands of years old means dogs with illnesses do everything they can to convince you that they are well. When dogs were in the wild, they were easy prey if they were sick so they made sure they didn’t show it. Obviously, they don’t have to worry about predators any more, but old habits die hard.

Although many of the symptoms will be subtle, don’t forget the obvious. Vomiting is a fairly clear sign that something is wrong. However, vomiting is a far more normal experience for dogs than it is for humans, and they may well just be clearing out last night’s dinner. If they vomit more than once in a day, or if it is bloody vomit, you should call the vet to be sure. It should be fairly obvious to you when it is a mild vomit to clear their stomach and when it is a bloody and forced vomit brought on by illness.

All dog owners know that their dog wouldn’t miss their food for the world. Food + walks = dog heaven. Therefore, it should be clear if your dog has lost their appetite, being such a dramatic change. Loss of appetite is a common one of the dog illness symptoms and fortunately one of the more easy ones to spot. Contact your veterinarian if your dog shies away from more than two meals or is unwilling to eat for two days on the bounce. It isn’t unheard of for dogs to skip a meal every now and then, however.

On the other end of the scale, a dog drinking plenty of water may not be as healthy as you might think. This could be a symptom of diabetes or kidney disease. Look out for increased urination or watery faeces.

Everyone knows their dog’s moods and it is normally obvious if they are not acting themselves. Look out for restlessness, or on the other end of the scale, lethargy (tiredness and, for example, unwillingness to go out on walks). On a physical side, weight loss or weight gain with little change to the diet could be a sign that something is up.

Finally, we recommend that you examine your dog’s faeces. As disgusting as that sounds, it is often a telltale sign of disease or illness. Healthy faeces is moist, firm and small. Dry and hard faeces are the result of either dehydration or a dietary problem. Although healthy faeces can vary, if the faeces becomes bloody or watery for an extended period you should see a vet.

There are many dog illness symptoms and with a bit of detective work you can identify them all. However, common sense never goes amiss: don’t overlook the obvious!

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Beazer December 3, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Thank you for the information it was greatly helpful.

admin December 23, 2011 at 4:34 pm

You’re very welcome. We’re always happy to answer questions.

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eac January 30, 2012 at 4:28 pm

my dog is a female maltese, she is 9 she started with red around her eyes, then all of a sudden all around her eyes was red and swollen, i gave her benedryl, and after a while it went away. I also noticed she was throwing up, usually yellow watery something, but also food, at other time. I noticed that on top of her neck, she has spot about 2 inches that feels harder or stiff like, the rest of her skin is softer when touched like pinching touch. Any idea what this might be.

Jennifer March 15, 2012 at 5:43 am

My puppy spyder is about 4-5 months old. She is lathargic, she has lost weight, her nose is dry. She doesn’t even budge for a treat. We have not been able to find her sister since she got out of the yard. In the morning she does not even want to go outside unless pulled. She walks down the hall like she is drunk-running into walls. Is she depressed because her sister is missing or is she really sick?

gary adams March 22, 2012 at 7:32 pm

Hi we have a bassett hound & his symptoms started yesterday. Its like he is coughing but not really. He is about 9 yr. old now. Thanks

Audrey Dunnavant April 14, 2012 at 2:54 pm

A friend of mine has a young pitbull that has had bloody diarrhea for two weeks and has recently began vomiting blood she is taking her to the vet but I was wondering what could cause these symptoms. She says the stool is thin and bloody with what looks like bloody chunks in it. She eats normally and is her usual playful self. She has been vaccinated for parvo. We are just worried about her.

admin April 27, 2012 at 3:11 pm

Since you have ruled out parvo other causes could include parasites in the stomach or intestine, sudden changes in food, internal injury to the rectum or intestines, or hemorragic gastro-enteritis.

admin April 27, 2012 at 3:59 pm

Coughing can be caused by a variety of different reasons: has he eaten something he shouldn’t, could it be allergies, something stuck in his throat. These are questions you should answer for yourself in order to determine how to fix the problems. Coughing in itself can be a symptoms of something needing medical treatment such as kennel cough, or it could simply be something harmless like a blade of grass tickling the throat.

admin April 27, 2012 at 5:31 pm

The stumbling around would not be a symptom of missing her sister. This is something that could neurological, injury to the ears, or other type of injury. You should see a veterinarian to determine the cause.

admin April 30, 2012 at 4:37 pm

This is something that would require a profession physical exam. The nature of the symptoms would probably need to be tested in a lab setting.

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