Common Dog Health Problems: Ways You Can Help Your Dog

Dog owners should know a bit about the various common dog health problems that their pet couild get over the course of their lives. There is an old wives’ tale that many people still believe that the way to tell if a dog is healthy is if their nose is cold and wet. The truth is that there is no basis in science whatsoever that when a dog has a cold, wet nose, that they are healthy and have no problems such as heart problems, worms, mange mites or any other canine health condition.

Responsible owners should disregard such beliefs without scientific basis and focus on looking at the overall condition of the dog including regular physical checks of the eyes, teeth, ears, mouth and skin for any abnormalities that could be signs and symptoms of a particular disease. A good dog owner needs to be sure they provide the care that their dog needs, including a healthy diet (some treats are OK), visits to the vet, and regular grooming so that their pets can enjoy long and healthy lives.   

Signs and Symptoms of Dog Health Problems

There are several dog health symptoms that signify certain canine health problems and particular diseases. Owners of dogs should be sure they know about these signals of potential health issues in their dogs so they can prompt action if needed.

* The dog’s coat should be shiny, soft and full. With wiry coated dogs, like Australian terriers, you need to be sure that the coat is springy and has thick strands of fur. Breeds with double coats should have no indication of thinning on the undercoats.

* Redness, sores, scabs, scales, flakes, lumps and growths on the dog’s skin can be signs of health problems. Your dog’s skin and fur should be free of parasitic infestation like ticks, fleas or mange mites. An overabundance of scartching or biting of their own skin could mean your dog is infested with parasites like mange mites.

* Just like us, bright, shiny eyes in your dog means good health. Around their eyeballs, dogs have an area that needs to be pink to show that they are healthy. This area is called the conjunctiva and a pale color in this area could signify some underlying health problems. Make sure there are no out of the ordinary discharges seeping from your dog’s eyes, particularly nothing green or yellow.

* A foul odor and some bloody discharges from the ears is indicative of underlying health problems. Its important to keep the ears clean and free of parasites like mange mites.

* Gums that have a healthy pink color which may contain some black pigmentation is a sign of good health. Pale or very light colored gums could mean your dog has anemia. Inflamed and bleeding gums can be signs of periodontal diseases while a foul odor emanating from the breath can be indicative of some underlying health problems.

* Remembering back to hearing about the belief about a dog’s nose, that a healthy canine almost always has achiily, damp nose but this is really caused only by a relatively clear and runny nasal discharge that is fairly common in dogs. If your dog has a bad smeling discharge coming from the nose, this could be trouble and you need to get your dog examined. Such discharges in young pups can be a sign of canine distemper and may prove to be fatal.

There are still other factors to consider and to look at to determine the health of the dog, and these include his weight, bodily temperature, the appearance of urine and feces. The most important thing is to understand these symptoms of dog health problems so that the minute you spot something out of the ordinary, you can take action right away.

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