Pet Wellness Care: Symptoms of a Sick Pet
Recognizing potential illness is an important aspect of pet ownership. Here are just a few common warning signs to watch out for, courtesy of Wadsworth Animal Hospital:
Inappropriate elimination – If your pet seems to have suddenly forgotten his house training or cannot pass urine without effort, he may have a urinary tract infection or an internal obstruction such as bladder stones — common yet serious conditions requiring pet emergency care. Watch for blood in the urine or signs of pain from your pet.
Staggering – Wobbly walking or staggering may indicate a neurological disorder of some sort. Labyrinthitis, for instance, a disorder of the inner ear that affects balance, sometimes afflicts senior pets. Inherited spinal diseases or heatstroke can also cause this symptom. Be aware that rabies sometimes makes pets stagger; contact animal control if you think your pet is rabid.
Vomiting/diarrhea – While vomiting and diarrhea point to an obvious illness, a wide range of underlying issues could be to blame. Viruses, parasite infestation or severe allergic reactions to foods can all cause these symptoms. Look out for potential toxins that your pet may have ingested, including automotive fluids, cleaning supplies, insecticides or even certain “human foods” such as chocolate. Heatstroke, the result of excessive exposure to the hot sun without adequate shelter or water, can also cause them.
Behavioral/attitude changes – A sick pet may seem to adopt different behaviors or even major personality changes. A normally sociable dog, for instance, may suddenly seem withdrawn and quiet if sick or in pain. Animals may also cry or make other vocalizations. Sometimes cats will instinctively go into hiding so others will not know that they are sick (and therefore vulnerable to predators).
Pet Emergency Care, Progressive Pain Management and Wellness Care
If your pet is sick or suffering from chronic pain, bring him to us. Our Lakewood veterinarian can provide progressive pain management or emergency treatment, while regular pet wellness care can prevent future illnesses.
Was your pet sick recently? What symptoms did you notice?