Looking after a pet requires some degree of mind reading skills. Obviously, there is a language barrier, and even with the extra intelligence dogs showcase, it takes some guesswork to figure out what they really want.
But like any mind reader, it’s really about body language and putting together signs. Read on to find out how to understand your pup better and know what is making them ill.
Spot the signs
There are a lot of signs that your dog isn’t feeling comfortable, so understanding them will help you to get to the root of the problem. Lip smacking is the most obvious sign, since it’s linked to a lot of ailments. Like humans, if the dog feels vomiting coming on, their mouth will fill with saliva, which the dog will have to get out somewhere. Drooling is another result of this. Gulping and generally panicking are also a sign that a dog is about to be sick.
If you’re worried that your dog is ill but isn’t about to be sick anytime soon, you might notice a loss of appetite, or that they are tensing their stomach when they’re touched, probably because it hurts.
If your dog is assuming the praying position a lot, with their arms outstretched and their tail in the air, you might need to worry. Dogs do this to relieve pain in the stomach.
Others are behavioral changes, like shaking, fatigue, changes in interaction like becoming clingy or withdrawn and restlessness.
What can you do about it?
We love our dogs, therefore there are loads of items on the market that can help with every possible pup problem, including digestive issues. There are loads of supplements available that can help with just about every health problem a dog can have, from stiffness in the hips and joints to bladder regulation, and even for things as simple as a healthy coat.
The best probiotic for dogs with digestive issues is one full of gut-friendly nutrients, including good bacteria and vitamins. Look out for supplements that contain psyllium husk, which is a powerful fiber that will help ease constipation.
You can also tweak their diet, to see if what they are currently on isn’t right for them. That might be due to aging, trying a new dog food or an ingredient.
When in doubt
Sometimes, supplements aren’t enough. They made for a good everyday treat for dogs that keep them healthy, but if you’re worried something is really wrong, it’s time to see the vet. The vet will be able to check your dog over and determine if it is something more serious that needs treatment.
You can make these visits to the vet a little easier on the wallet by taking out some pet insurance. This means you will have nothing stopping you from taking your pet to the vet if you’re worried about the bills. Pet insurance will cover emergency visits and many policies come with extras like dental care and covering costs if they get lost or stolen.