Top Warning Signs You Should Take Your Dog to the Vet
Animals are naturally pre-disposed to masking any vulnerabilities they have, and this includes when they are sick or injured. This instinct is difficult for them to overcome, which makes it tricky for even the most conscientious dog owner to tell that their pet is unwell and needs to see a veterinarian. In some cases, it can be just as hard to decide whether to wait for a regular appointment or that your furbaby needs to see a vet as a matter of urgency, regardless of the day or time.
Fortunately, there are some obvious indicators to look out for. Here are some of the top warning signs that you should take your dog to the vet.
Unsurprisingly, breathing difficulties should always be considered an emergency and warrant a visit to your vet at any time of the day or night. Breathing difficulties can manifest as choking sounds, wheezing, and obvious distress. Some of the most common causes of breathing difficulties in dogs include something being lodged in the throat, a severe allergic reaction, heart disease, or a lung infection. If you suspect your dog has breathing difficulties, contact your emergency vet immediately.
While you may not monitor your dog all day long, you probably have a fairly good idea of how much your canine pal usually drinks in the day. If the amount of fluid they are drinking suddenly increases, it could be a sign that they are developing a health problem, such as diabetes or kidney disease. You may also notice that your dog is urinating more than usual. Your vet can run some checks to determine if there is an underlying cause for their excessive thirst.
Persistent Vomiting and/or Diarrhea
All dogs will be sick from time to time, especially when you consider that most aren’t all that discerning about what they eat and will sometimes chow down on something inappropriate or over-eat and make themselves unwell. Similarly, episodes of diarrhea from time to time are usually nothing to worry about. However, if either of these becomes persistent and your dog experiences multiple episodes in a 24 hour period, then it could be that they are unwell and need veterinary attention. This is especially true if they are passing blood from either end, or they have a fever. Don’t delay in speaking to your emergency vet for advice or an appointment.
Vomiting and diarrhea can be a sign of poisoning. Although you may think pet poisoning is rare, is it actually surprisingly common and a leading cause of trips to veterinarians. This is largely because there are lots of different substances that are potentially harmful to dogs, including some human foods, chemicals, medications, and even plants and flowers. It is very valuable to learn about the potential pet poison hazards that you have in your home, as this could help you avoid them. There are lots of different symptoms of pet poisoning depending on what your dog has consumed, including
- Breathing difficulties
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Rapid breathing
- Pale gums
If you have any reason to suspect that your dog has consumed something that they shouldn’t have, speak to your vet immediately.
If your usually happy and active dog suddenly doesn’t seem to want to move around, seems tired all the time, or is reluctant to exercise, there is almost certainly an underlying reason. It could be that they have been injured, but there are no visible signs for you to see, or there could be something happening internally that is making them unwell. For example, lethargy and reluctance to exercise are two of the most common symptoms associated with heartworm infestations. It may not be an emergency unless your dog is also in obvious pain, but it is still advisable to speak to your vet as soon as you can.