Signs of Joint Issues in Dogs

How to Tell If Your Dog is Suffering from a Joint DisorderWhen most people think of joint issues, the first thought that comes to mind is arthritis and the second is pain. This is true whether they are thinking of themselves or their dogs. In neither case is this universally true. First, it may not be arthritis causing the pain, but some other joint disorder. Secondly, it may not be pain but discomfort. Pain usually doesn’t occur until a joint condition has gone undetected for some time. In many cases, pain can often be avoided, or at least ameliorated, if the joint issue is detected early. In order to do this, dog owners should be aware of warnings that precede pain.

The Difference Between Joint Discomfort and Joint Pain

Although there may be a fine line between discomfort and pain, recognizing the former can enable you to take your dog to the veterinarian before it escalates to the latter. Pain is intense, and the more the joint is used, the worse it becomes. Discomfort is noticeable, but it’s more of a background nuisance compared to pain. Those suffering pain describe it as sharp, burning, shooting, or stabbing whereas words like aching, lingering, annoying, pressure, and irritating are used when talking about discomfort.

Read more Signs of Joint Issues in Dogs

Don’t Eat That! 60+ Toxic Foods and Non-Food Items That Pets Shouldn’t Ingest

Healthy PetsMost people tend to think of their pets as part of their family. Pets provide company, friendship and will listen to our problems without complaint. In return, we reciprocate with companionship and provide them with a comfortable place to sleep, medical care and food. We also have a responsibility to keep them safe.

Read more Don’t Eat That! 60+ Toxic Foods and Non-Food Items That Pets Shouldn’t Ingest

Dog Hip Dysplasia, Signs & Treatment

dog=dysplasia-hip-joint-painHip dysplasia in a dog was once believed to be hereditary and then only in large strains. But now, it can, in fact, affect any dog.

This dog health issue can stem from over exertion at an early age in a dog’s life as the hip joint is still developing.

However, Injury at a young age could be another cause of dog hip dysplasia. Even repetitive movement in puppies could be a cause of hip dysplasia. Read more Dog Hip Dysplasia, Signs & Treatment

Common Signs of Illness in Dogs

Sick Dog in Need of CareTaking care of a puppy or dog means being responsible for their health. Those becoming pet owners for the first time may want to learn more about how to maintain their pet’s health and how to recognize the initial signs of a problem before adopting their new dog.

Understand more about common signs of illness in canines today.

Changes in Body Language or Behavior

Initially, a dog may not express signs of illness. However, a pet owner may see an alteration in body language that can be a sign of discomfort or illness.

A generally active dog that becomes more lethargic or one that is generally friendly but becomes more withdrawn may be experiencing constipation, discomfort or something more.

Soft or Watery Stool

Dogs can experience diarrhea and this issue can become immediately apparent to an owner. Pet owners should be aware that dogs can have small bowel or large bowel diarrhea. Small bowel diarrhea results in a dog making a large amount of softer stool a couple of times during the day, while large bowel diarrhea results in a smaller amount of stool that is watery.

In the second case, the dog strains to go and produces diarrhea frequently. Following special diets can help eliminate this common issue in a dog. See an experienced veterinarian for a case of diarrhea or vomiting that continues for more than a day.

Excess Weight and Health Complications

Many pets are not getting the nutrition they need. Dogs may have different nutritional requirements at different stages of life. Obesity, arthritis and high blood pressure do not only develop in humans, but in dogs as well.

Excess weight gain can be addressed an owner, as it is possible to weigh a dog and make changes to their diet. With overweight dogs, avoid feeding them table scraps regularly to reduce sources of additional calories. Some foods are also hard to digest which can result in a gastrointestinal problem.

More Serious Signs of Illness

Dog owners are advised to schedule an appointment with their veterinarian if these common signs last longer than a day:

  • Change in behavior;
  • Whimpering or resistance to touch in an area;
  • Nasal congestion or discharge;
  • Frequent panting or wheezing;
  • Excessive scratching;
  • Constipation;
  • Frequent urination;
  • Excessive salivation or thirst;
  • Weakness or lameness;
  • Lethargy; and
  • A poor appetite.

All such signs may indicate that a dog is sick or hurt. Some dogs may be in need of vitamin supplementation in their diet, whether with liver supplements, iron supplements, or other support medication. At other times, a visit to the emergency clinic is necessary, such as when a dog exhibits:

  • Difficulty breathing;
  • Pale gums;
  • Loss of consciousness;
  • Dizziness or circling;
  • A significantly bloated abdomen;
  • Loud and consistent crying or aggressive behavior when touched;
  • Seizures; and
  • A body temperature that exceeds 104° F or decreases to below 99° F.

Pet owners would do well to err on the side of caution, scheduling an appointment with their trusted veterinarian or taking their dog in for an emergency visit when certain symptoms arise.

New to Caring for a Dog

New dog owners are responsible for the general well-being of their pet. Dogs are known to have unique personalities and it becomes easier to notice subtle changes to their behavior over time. Average and larger dog breeds need more exercise than smaller breeds. A lack of physical exercise can lead to weight gain and destructive behaviors.

Dogs also require adequate mental stimulation and socialization. When these requirements are met, pet owners may expect a decrease in tendencies to behave in inappropriate ways and potentially ingest materials or chemicals that can lead to illness. Speak with an experienced veterinarian to understand more about illnesses common to a specific dog breed.

Traveling With Dogs This Summer? Follow These Tips

Travel with a dogTraveling with your dog can be a fun bonding experience, but dogs also make traveling complicated.

These tips can help you have a more enjoyable and less chaotic travel experience when you go on holiday with your dog.

Keep Your Dog Medically Covered

If your dog is on medicine, refill the prescription before leaving. Read more Traveling With Dogs This Summer? Follow These Tips

Tips for Choosing a Vet

picking the right vetOwning a pet comes with extensive responsibilities which include finding the right veterinary care. Any city might have several options for veterinarians that attend to popular pets, such as dogs.

We make plenty of choices for our dogs. What is the best dog food or the correct medications for an older dog? But choosing the right vet is one of the most important decisions a dog owner has to make when they adopt a dog.

The questions that immediately comes to mind is how does a responsible pet owner choose the best vet for a pet’s care needs. With these tips, people can determine which vet will best serve their needs.

Ask for Recommendations

There is no one right clinic or vet for everyone, so getting suggestions from friends and relatives who live nearby can be useful. Read more Tips for Choosing a Vet