Pets are in many ways, similar to young children, but unlike children, they never learn to speak and that is why it is of the utmost importance for us to read their signs of discomfort and take action as fast as possible. On that note, here are five signs in dogs that act as warning signals, indicating that it’s time to take your beloved pooch to the vet.
Change in Eating and Drinking Habits
Dogs have varying eating and drinking habits depending on not only the species but even the particular dog in question, but if you find your dog not drinking water as much as he/she used to, or at all, it’s a sign that something is wrong and the same goes for food too. It should be noted that refusing to eat and drink is the primary reaction in almost all animals when something isn’t right with their health. On the other hand, a significant change in eating and drinking behavior is also a warning sign; for example, is your dog rummaging through the trash can instead of eating from the bowl like usual? Are you finding yourself feeling up the water bowl far too often?
Poor Coat Quality
It is almost surprising how much the coat of a dog can tell us about internal health conditions. Ideally, the fur should be shiny, soft and thick. If, however, you find your dog’s coat to always be matted and dry, with flaky skin underneath, it’s a bad sign. There are dozens of reasons that could be responsible for this, but allergies, malnourishment, ringworms, fleas, mange and other skin infections are the usual culprits.
Not all dogs are equally energetic but every species loves at least some exercise on a daily basis. That however, changes when the dog gets old or sick. Aging is a natural process and when your senior dog isn’t as energetic as before, it is normal, but if the dog is not old and yet is showing signs of lethargy (unwilling to play or walk) for any more than two days on a row, it is best to get it checked out at a vet’s clinic as the fatigue is probably a sign of underlying health issues.
Throwing Up Frequently
Throwing up isn’t as bad as it looks because dogs do it normally to get rid of stuff in their system that are not agreeing with them, but if it starts happening too frequently and/or is accompanied by a fever, consider it an emergency and rush the pet to a veterinary clinic or hospital as soon as possible. Blood in the vomit is even more serious and a sign that urgent attention is essential for the dog’s survival.
Poor Stool Quality
Admittedly, it isn’t the part that anyone looks forward to, but consistently checking the stool of your dog is necessary to determine if your pet needs immediate medical attention. Look out for diarrhea, bloody stool, stool with mucous, stool with worms and dry, hard stools.
Aside from these five, also keep an eye out for limps, scooting and cloudy/red eyes. The idea is to rely on your common sense more than anything else; if something seems off, it probably is.