Being a pet owner can often be exhausting as you’re constantly worried about your dog’s health and whether or not you will be having to make an expensive and time-consuming trip to the vet. If you want to be clued up on the most common health problems in dogs so that you can spot any health conditions early, then have a read through this article.
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Cataracts is a common problem in dogs and one to watch out for. Just like humans, cataracts affect the way that dogs see and, if left untreated and unrecognised, can leave them with permanent sight problems. Cataracts mainly develop as a result of the aging process so it’s definitely something to watch out for as your dog gets older, but it can also come about as a result of trauma to the eye. Many dog breeds are predisposed to developing cataracts so watch out for this too if your dog is one of these breeds. If your dog starts to develop cataracts, surgery is really the only path of treatment to consider. Canine cataract surgery is very similar to human cataract surgery and afterwards your dog can regain its quality of life back in no time at all!
Joint problems are very common in older dogs but they are fortunately quite easy to spot. Watch out for if your dog is having trouble getting up from a sleeping position, walking upstairs or they are lagging behind on daily walks. If your dog is having joint problems, they will noticeably be far less active, but your dog can be suffering from joint problems and not have a noticeable limp. If you want to make sure that your dog doesn’t develop joint problems then consider these joint chews for dogs – YuMOVE has a quality range of dog supplements and joint chews for dogs that are specifically catered to supporting joint health and preventing joint issues such as arthritis. YuMOVE’s joint supplements come in the form of tasty chewable tablets that your dog will actually want to eat! Joint problems can also be prevented through regular and consistent exercise, so don’t skip out on those all-important walks!
Ear infections are incredibly common in dogs and it’s a condition that can be treated easily and effectively if spotted quickly by the owner. Ear infections are common in dogs that spend a lot of time outside as dust and dirt can become lodged in the dog’s ears whilst they are playing. This can be incredibly uncomfortable for your dog and you’ll notice them behaving unusually, like scratching their ears a lot and shaking their head from side to side. Ear infections are easily treated with a course of antibiotics which can be prescribed after a visit to your local vet. It’s essential to check your dog’s ears weekly, especially if they spend a lot of time outside, so that you can spot any ear infections early and reduce the amount of time your furry friend is in discomfort.
Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks are part of every dog’s life and something you will almost certainly encounter at least once in your life as a pet owner. Fleas can be treated easily with the right medication and you often don’t need to even visit a vet for this – you can find many products to treat fleas at your local pet store. Ticks can be a more serious matter. Ticks can carry infectious diseases, and when they burrow their heads into your pet, they can infect their bloodstream, causing serious health implications. If you notice that your dog has ticks, head straight over to your vet as this is not a problem you can treat simply with a visit to your local pet store.
Broken bones can come about for a variety of reasons. Your dog might have been in an accident and fallen in a twisted position from a height. Either way, you will hopefully be able to notice that something is amiss as your dog will be limping and appear to have less energy than if they were completely healthy. If your dog is in a big accident and has serious injuries, it will be obvious that you should take them straight to the vet but, just like humans, dogs can suffer from smaller hairline and stress fractures. These will often be less noticeable but will cause your dog a lot of pain and discomfort and still need to be treated by a vet before your furry friend walks on the injury too much and causes permanent damage.
Many pet owners don’t understand how to properly walk and feed their dog and, as a result, many dogs are sadly overweight. Walking your dog shouldn’t be a 15-minute activity that you squeeze in before or after work; dogs require proper exercise and simply walking once or twice around the block is often not enough. Obesity can creep in from years of poorly planned exercise and overfeeding. If your dog is overweight or obese, they risk developing all sorts of problems like heart disease, kidney disease and arthritis. If your dog is starting to look like they have put on weight, have a chat with your vet about changing the type or volume of food that you give to you dog and creating an exercise regime for you both to follow. Obesity in dogs is something that can be easily prevented with a proper and consistent diet and exercise, so be prepared to put the time and energy into frequent long walks if you want a happy and healthy dog!
Just like humans, many dogs will develop some form of cancer in their lives as they get older. Dogs can get all the cancers humans can get, including lymphoma, breast cancer, prostate cancer and melanoma. Just like with humans developing cancer, the most important point is to be sure to catch it early. Catching cancer in your dog in the early stages will mean that the cancerous cells have not spread throughout the body and with proper treatment, there is a high chance of survival. If you want to be sure that you’ll catch signs of cancer in the early stages, have a weekly or monthly scan of your dog for common signs. Common signs of cancer in dogs could include lumps or bumps on the skin, discolouration on the skin and spots on your dog’s eyes or inside their ears. If you think you have found something suspicious, then don’t panic, but head on over to your local vet for a professional opinion and a scan.
In general, it’s a great idea to have a quick scan of your dog for any health problems every few months. As well as that, there are many things that you can personally do to ensure that your dog is less likely to develop serious health conditions, like taking your dog on regular walks and buying the correct supplements to support joint and bone health. Don’t stress yourself out by constantly worrying about your furry friend, but if you notice that your dog doesn’t seem their usual, energetic selves, then book a trip to your local vet for a professional opinion.