Signs Your Dog Needs to go to the Vet

When your pet dog is a beloved member of the family, you want to do everything possible to keep him healthy and safe. While vaccinations and vet check-ups are important, there are also things to watch out for between regular visits. The last thing you want is for your dog to get very ill because you did not recognize the warning sign of a more serious problem.

Watch for these 10 warning signs your dog needs to go to the veterinarian right away:

Change in Eating Habits

Any change in how your pet dog usually eats warrants trip to the veterinarian. If your pooch is suddenly turning up his nose at regular food or treats, it could indicate anything from digestive issues to a serious obstruction in the intestines which would require surgery.

Drinking a Lot or Too Little

Not drinking enough water or failure to urinate can also indicates digestive issues. If your dog is drinking and urinating excessively, a veterinarian should check them for diabetes or kidney disease.

Difficult or Rapid Breathing

Every dog pants on a hot day or after exercise, but they should not have trouble breathing after a brief rest or a return to cool temperatures. While your dog may only have a cold or be experiencing allergies of some kind, at that can determine if there are more serious problems involved.

Vomiting or Changes in Stool

Throwing up their food once or having a bout of diarrhoea is not necessarily cause for alarm if the problem goes away quickly and does not become chronic. However, continual changes in stool can indicate digestive inflammation, a blockage, serious allergy or disease. This and especially vomiting could mean your pet ate something poisonous.

Lack of Energy or Lethargy

Although more of a concern in young dogs and puppies, lethargy and general disinterest in more active pastimes can be a sign that your dog is ill or has a physical complaint that is hurting them.

Poor Balance or Difficulty with Regular Movement

Whenever changes to gate, movement or balance are observed in your pet dog, you should make an appointment with the veterinarian right away. While a limp may be as simple as a strained tendon, balance issues and awkward motions can indicate neurological problems.

Irritated, Weeping or Red Eyes

Infection and irritants can change how your dog's eyes look. If they are red, tearing or producing excess mucus, you probably should get them checked out at the clinic. Other possibilities include a scratch or other injury to the cornea.

Rashes or Skin and Hair Changes

While many skin rashes, dry skin and dull coats result from food and other allergies, no one should let their dogs suffer along with irritations and itches that never go away. Veterinarians can help determine the cause of the skin and hair problems and come up with a solution to make your dog more comfortable again.

Wincing, Whining or Crying

All three of these actions indicate an injury or some kind of pain your dog is experiencing. If you start to pet your dog and they shy away from your hand or whine, you know there is something wrong. Your pet might need x-rays and a full examination to determine the cause.

Aggressive or Unusual Behaviour

Anytime your dog's behaviour changes for the worse, it is an indication that something is not right. Just like people get cranky when they are ill or in pain, your dog can have the same reaction. Do not assume that a sudden increase in barking, growling, pacing or other aggressive or restless actions are a behavioural problem. The first thing to do is to make an appointment with the veterinarian so the dog can be checked for illnesses and injuries.

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