If your pet is not feeling their best, it’s your duty to find and analyse what symptoms they have so as to take the right steps and offer them the help they need.
Guessing the potential health problems that your dog or cat might have is not as difficult as it might seem but before you get all concerned and go running to the vet, you should be able to do a minimum evaluation of your pet’s health at home. So here are signs that your pet has some health issues that need to be addressed:
1. Lack of Appetite
Lack of appetite by itself is not as alarming as it is when it comes with a lack of activity as well. If your pet is not so hungry once, you shouldn’t assume the worse instantly. But if they are not eating the entire day and they seem to sleep more than usual it might be time to take them to the vet.
This is a bigger concern when it comes to cats because if they stop eating they can get sick fast. A cat can develop fatty liver after a few days of not eating which is why you should pay attention to this sign and act fast in case you notice it.Coughing or odd breathing sounds
2. Coughing or Odd Breathing Sounds
Coughing should never be ignored as your pet shouldn’t have any minor reason to develop a coughing condition. Also, if you notice any particular breathing sounds that you are not familiar with, this is also a sign of alarm. If the cough becomes persistent this can be a sign of a heart disease, a lung condition or heartworms.
For a puppy, a chronic cough might even be fatal if it is not addressed in time and treated properly. If your pet presents some sort of a cough also look for other symptoms they might have such as a lack of appetite, fever or extreme tiredness. If you notice your animal has trouble breathing such as choking or heavily breathing, take them to the vet as soon as possible.
3. Digestive Problems (i.e Vomiting or Diarrhea)
The digestive system of your pet can signal a bunch of health conditions if you pay attention to it. Just like for humans, vomiting and diarrhea are signs that something is not being digested properly. However, in most cases these are not clear signs of a severe illness as both dogs and cats tend to vomit often. If your pet has vomiting episodes that happen once at several days, this is no sign for concern.
But if they vomit several times in a day that might be a sign that something is wrong with them. Also, look out for more alarming signs like blood in their vomit or diarrhea as these are red flags that you shouldn’t ignore. In severe cases, vomiting and diarrhea could be signs of gastrointestinal illnesses or parasite infections.
4. Urinating More or Less Than Usual
The most concerning reason when it comes to excessive urination and excessive thirst is a form of diabetes. However, if your pet is urinating more frequently this can also mean they may be suffering from a kidney or liver disease. Adrenal gland disease also has frequent urination as one of the symptoms. However, if your pet is urinating less that could be a sign of an urinary tract infection or bladder stones. If you suspect your pet suffers from any of these conditions, don’t hesitate to take them to the vet in order to give them the proper treatment.
5. Hair Loss or Skin Problems
The fur of your pet is an excellent indicator of their overall health. If you notice an increase in hair loss or itchy skin condition, your pet might suffer of fleas, ticks, mites or other insects that are damaging their skin and hair. These symptoms can also be signs of an yeast infection case in which your cat or dog will also start scratching their ears nervously.
Another sign is a brown discharge that might come out of their ears and you should always pay attention to it. Hair loss and itchy skin might also be signs of endocrine issues or different infections that should be treated as soon as possible. Overall, these symptoms shouldn’t be ignored, especially when they appear together and out of the blue.
6. Stiffness or Problems Moving
If your pet has problems moving or they have temporary stiffness moments, it might be a sign of a more serious condition. Some of the illnesses that appear with such symptoms are hip or spine arthritis, ruptured ligaments, disc disease, or hip dysplasia. Hip dysplasia is a disease that usually affects bigger dogs such as Labradors or German shepherds.
Little dogs are at risk of developing different forms of arthritis and an often state of stiffness or weakness in some parts of their body could be a clear sign of such a condition. The good news is that these diseases can be kept under control as long as the owner takes the pet to the vet from the first symptoms. In some cases, treatment can significantly better the pet’s life and increase their lifespan as well.
If your pet develops one or more of the symptoms presented above, you shouldn’t think twice before taking them to the vet. In most cases, timing is the best factor that can help a dog or a cat get healed or live a much fulfilling life, thanks to the treatment they receive. If you know your pet for a long time you probably find it easy to identify such symptoms so you will not have to guess much. Pay attention to their eating habits, activites, sleeping habits and take into account their urinating habits as well. All these could help you take the action that is so much needed in order to save your pet’s life and help them be healthy and happy again.