Sunday, July 13, 2014

Top 10 Symptoms Pet Parents Overlook, Dawg Blogger Vet Survey.

I was asked by my friend and uber-blogger dog research expert extraordinaire, Jana Rade, who writes the mega successful blog "Dawg Business" the following question for her latest installment of the vet survey series.

Veterinarians Answer: 
10 Main Symptoms To Watch For In Your Dog

Here is my response;

1. Shortness of breath, breathing difficulty. People often miss this subtle slow onset as lethargy, or panting. But a pet with an extended head and neck, open mouth, or abdominal involvement in moving air, is having difficulty breathing. This is a medical emergency.

2. Distended abdomen. Most pet parents don't notice this either, but it is one of the most important clues in bloat, which requires immediate surgical intervention.

3. Gagging, retching, attempting to vomit with, or without producing vomit or liquid from the mouth. This is also another sign of bloat, or an intestinal obstruction. Both require immediate veterinary care and intervention.

4. Panting. Excessive panting can be difficult to distinguish from regular ordinary panting, but your dogs internal temperature can climb quickly and become life threatening. A panting dog, who becomes quiet, recumbent, and lethargic is in some cases a dying dog.

5. Excessive chewing. Some people think that having lots of rawhides, toys, chewies, etc.. around will keep their pet from becoming bored, but in some cases these dogs learn to become fixated on oral stimuli, which perpetuates more chewing, and chewing on objects that are not safe. If your dog is an excessive chewer I worry about intestinal obstructions. We have seen 2 and 3 year old's undergo multiple exploratory surgeries. Think about whether your pet is bored. Dogs need exercise, mental stimuli, and a safe happy engaging environment. Feed that, not the stomach.

The latest addition.
Found by the side of the road alone, but adapting well to  house with two small boys.

6. Persistent lameness. If your dog is limping and it either becomes more severe OR persists it is time for an examination, and at some point it is time for an x-ray, or even serial x-rays to identify cancer, osteoarthritis, and other possible soft tissue, or orthopedic conditions. The early these are diagnosed the better chance of successful treatment options.

7. Obesity. Many pet parents don't realize how those pounds creep up. Because they are with their pet everyday they don't recognize that their furry friend is packing on pounds that can lead to diabetes, cancer, osteoarthritis, other diseases, and premature death. Obesity is an epidemic in the USA for both pet and their parents. This is a preventable disease!

8. Head shaking, licking paws, scratching..and all of the rest of the ways our pets try to tell us that their skin is bothering them. All of these clinical signs tell me that your pet has a struggle with a bug..those bugs can be bacteria, mites, yeast, fungi, fleas, ticks, aka; nasty small blood sucking/chewing/biting parasites. Get to a vet before your pet is bald, bleeding, red, and so itchy that they are miserable.

9. Anxiety. As a parent it is our job to provide our kids with a safe household and the building blocks to become successful and acceptable members of society. If your dog barks, lunges, snips, bites, growls, snarls, harasses, challenges, cowers, urinates in fear, or is unable to deal with normal routine social interactions then your pet needs help. Don't just adjust your life to avoid, mitigate, or excuse the behavior, address it! Understand that you and your actions might be adversely affecting your pets ability to function appropriately and seek an unbiased credible third party to help. It is for the sake of you, your pet, and the rest of the members of society. Dog bites, attacks, and even deaths occur because people didn't pay attention to the many many warning signs their pet gave them.

10. Bad breath. Bad breath is always bad teeth, (well, maybe not 100% of the time, but enough for me to say,,,) If your pet has bad breath see your vet. Further, have a dental cleaning that includes thorough probing of all teeth AND digital dental x-rays. Your pets oral health is intimately tied to their overall health, especially heart disease. If your pet has a murmur take extra efforts to keep the teeth healthy and clean.

For the other participants answers please see Jana Rade's Dawg Business blog here
My sister and her family were here for the weekend.
We had beautiful weather and spent much of the time fishing and playing in the stream.
This is Lilly and Bandit.
If you have a pet question, or any additions to this list, please reply back, or find me on
Pawbly is a free open online community for animal lovers. We invite you to stop by, post a picture, share a story, ask or answer a question, and share your pets stories with us.

Or you can find me in person at the clinic, Jarrettsville Vet, or on Twitter @FreePetAdvice, squawking about all things pet.

Have a wonderful summer everyone!

No comments:

Post a Comment