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Recognizing Signs of Illness in Pets: When to Seek Veterinary Care

Recognizing Signs of Illness in Pets: When to Seek Veterinary Care

As a pet parent, you’re concerned about your animal. You always want to give them the best, and that includes veterinary care. Dogs and cats tend to be relatively healthy for the most part, and even some signs of illness may just be a passing discomfort expressed through diarrhea or vomiting. However, it’s important to pay close attention to your pet to recognize any signs of illness and know when it’s time to look for a vet:

Watch for a Hacking Cough

While you may see a dog sneeze every once in a while, this really isn’t cause for concern. They aren’t falling ill like humans when there’s sneezing present; as for dogs, this is a sign of excitement. However, if you notice that your pooch has a persistent, hacking cough, you’ll want to go and visit your vet.

There may be many reasons why your dog has a cough, some more serious than ever. The good news is that in most cases, there are great treatment options available, such as cough medication for dogs, for whatever it may be, whether they came down with Bordetella or the flu. The best thing to do is rule out any more serious conditions by visiting your vet as soon as possible.

Persistent Vomiting

Dogs vomit sometimes, and it’s not always cause for concern. They can vomit from eating grass or running around too fast. Maybe they ate their food in a jiffy or simply don’t like something new. However, if your dog continues to vomit after a brief period or they seem to have difficulty stopping, it’s time to bring them to the vet. Additionally, watch for blood, potty accidents, or other signs of discomfort. Make sure to clean up any mess as well to ensure that your other pets or children don’t get sick.

Lethargy

If you know that your pet is typically a pretty lively dog or cat but is recently showing signs of just wanting to sleep or do nothing, almost as if they were sad or depressed, you’ll want to bring them in. Lethargy is a tell-tale sign for almost any kind of pet emergency that you can think of.

However, be careful you don’t misdiagnose a sleepy day as lethargy. As your pet’s parent, you probably know their personality well enough to know when they just had a rough night, or they’re more lethargic than normal. If you have pet insurance, bringing them in for a visit is better when you want to be safe and not sorry.

When their Skin Looks Highly Irritated

Not every visit to the vet will be an emergency one. Sometimes, you just need to go to make sure that they stay healthy or to seek treatment for something non-life-threatening, but that feels uncomfortable.

Skin conditions can wreak havoc on your poor pooch when left untreated, so it’s wise to seek vet help when you notice rashes or redness that is causing your pet discomfort. Sometimes they may just need a special wash to help them get over it, while other times, they may need a shot for food allergies. Talk to your vet about the best treatment for your pet’s skin.

Changes in Motion and Mobility

A dog may have irritated paws, whether from allergies or from being outside for an extended period. However, if you notice that your dog’s gait has changed or they have difficulty with their balance, it’s important you don’t hesitate to get that checked.

There could be a minor injury that can heal quickly, or there may be an underlying cause that is a tad more serious, so it’s important to consider this when trying to decide if you visit the vet. Additionally, incorporating hip and joint supplements for dogs into your pet’s daily routine can be a proactive step to support their joint health and mobility. These supplements, often containing ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin, can help alleviate discomfort, reduce inflammation, and promote flexibility in your dog’s hips and joints.

Changes in Motion and Mobility

In Conclusion

New puppy parents tend to run to the vet at the first sign of vomit or diarrhea, and while it’s important to keep an eye on your pet, you’ll soon learn that they sometimes have discomfort. However, these signs above can help you understand when it could be time to take them to the vet.

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