5 Common Dog Health Problems and How to Prevent Them
A dog is one of the greatest and most loving companions you could wish for. They provide us with companionship when we need it. They love us unconditionally and accept our weird habits without judgment. Us humans can learn a lot from dogs! The downside to all of this unconditional love is that they can’t always tell us when something is wrong so we may be unaware of any dog health problems.
Like humans, virtually every breed of dog is prone to some kind of health issue at some point in their lives. It’s important to know what these issues are and what the signs to look out for are, so you can take action if your dog needs help sooner rather than later. Keep reading to learn more about common dog health problems, as well as ways to keep your pup happy and healthy for many years to come.
Prevention is better than cure:
Firstly, lets think about what you can do to be prepared for any health problems, both practically and financially.
Schedule Regular Vet Checks
The best way to keep up with the health of your dog is to keep regular vet appointments. This might seem like an unnecessary expense when you have a healthy dog, but the earlier you catch a health problem, the easier and cheaper it is to treat. Prevention is always cheaper than treatment, so keeping your dog on a schedule of regular vet visits is the best way to stay ahead of any potential health issues before they happen. Many vets offer health checks as part of a monthly subscription or when vaccines are updated.
Investing In Insurance
While you should be keeping tabs on the health of your dog, a great defence against additional stress if your pet is poorly is pet insurance. As soon as you adopt your new furry friend, have a look into your options. Be sure to keep an eye on the fine print of any pet insurance policy to make sure it covers the things you’re worried about. For example, many policies won’t cover pre-existing conditions, so it’s important to factor that into your decision. It can be challenging to find the right pet insurance for your dog as there are many insurance providers on the market. Purley Pets have tailored relevant pet insurance policies that you can look at. You can also use a comparison site. Other owners prefer to set up a savings account and build up their own emergency day fund.
5 Common dog health problems and how to help:
Here are some common health issues which can lead to health problems in dogs. Carrying out a regular home health check can help keep on top of these and notice any changes in your dog. If you do notice changes in your dogs health or behaviour, make an appointment with your vet to seek advice.
One of the most common yet overlooked dog health issues is gum disease. Bacteria gets in between the teeth and gums can lead to gum disease, which can then progress to require surgery to treat. This can affect any dog regardless of age, but it is especially common in older dogs. Brushing your dog’s teeth daily (or very regularly) is an effective way to keep bacteria at bay. Chew toys can also help. Make an appointment with your vet to assess the condition of their teeth for damage and discuss treatment options to help combat the problem.
Ear infections are another common health issue in dogs. They’re also extremely easy to prevent, provided you check your dog’s ears regularly.
- You should examine your dog’s ears at least once a week.
- Look for things like excessive wax build-up, a foul odour, redness and swelling, or any sign that the ears are itchy.
- If you notice any build-up, carefully and gently clean out the ears with a cotton ball or soft cloth.
- Be sure to use a dog-safe cleaning solution.
- If the build-up is dark and gritty, your dog could have ear mites and will need to go to the vet.
If your dog has an ear infection, they will likely be scratching at their ears quite often. Additionally, you might find them rubbing their ears on the floor. If you’re not sure if you’re dog has an ear infection, take them to the vet immediately. A vet will be able to let you know if your dog needs antibiotics or ear drops to clear up the infection. Keep an eye on your dogs eyes and ears as part of a home grooming routine.
Being overweight or obese can have serious health implications for dogs as well as humans. This is because it puts a lot of extra strain on your dog’s joints and internal organs, which can lead to other health issues and shorten their life expectancy. Your vet will be able to tell you if your dog’s weight is a problem, as well as provide advice on how best to manage their weight. You can prevent your dog from becoming overweight or obese by feeding them the right amount of food and making sure that they have the right amount of activity. Tips for avoiding dog obesity here.
Just like humans, dogs need their nails clipped regularly. If you don’t clip your dog’s nails regularly, they can grow too long, causing your dog pain and making it difficult to walk around. If your dog’s nails get so long that they start to curl under, it can also lead to infection. Your vet can clip your dog’s nails for you so that you don’t hurt them or visit a trusted groomer. However, you can also try to do it at home. If you’re not sure how to cut your dog’s nails properly, ask your vet to show you how, as they can also show you how to clip their nails safely.
Anal Sac Impaction
Anal sac impaction is a very uncomfortable and painful health issue that many dogs are prone to. It occurs when a dog’s anal glands become clogged. This will cause your dog a lot of pain and discomfort, which is why it’s important to get it treated as soon as possible. You can visit your vet for them to drain the glands. You can also try doing it at home by massaging your dog’s rear and looking for the small sacs, which your vet can show you how to do. Typically, if your dog has impacted glands, they will drag their rump along the floor as this is a way they can relieve some of the pressure causing them pain themselves. Getting your dogs anal sac checked during a regular check up will prevent this from happening.
Providing love and care to our beloved dogs will help to keep them happy and healthy!