Dog health issues range from infections to terminal diseases, and it is our responsibility, as pet parents to keep our dogs healthy and happy by knowing and understanding some common dog health problems.
Some health problems are more prevalent in some dogs than others, depending on their size. For instance, small dogs usually deal with breathing disorders whereas big dogs tend to suffer more with bone and joint problem. Each dog breed is unique, but it is important to understand the common dog health issues that may affect your dog.
Below are three (3) of the most common health issues among dogs unfortunately undergo. Take some time to read through and get to know the causes and the symptoms of each health issue.
- Worms – Worms in dogs can cause and lead to a lot of other health problems. There are a lot of types of worms in dogs, and each can bring about a different infection or symptoms:
- Roundworms: These usually spread in feces, during pregnancy, or when nursing, and may cause a serious infection in dogs, and may even be fatal for puppies. They eat the food of their host, and thus, may cause diarrhea.
- Hookworms: These mainly live in small intestines and suck the blood of their host, and may cause weakness, malnutrition, and in extreme cases, fatality. Puppies can be infected from their mothers, and adult dogs through their skin or when they are cleaning themselves.
- Heartworms: These live in the arteries that carry blood from the heart to the lungs, and thus, may lead to blood clots and greatly affect how the heart functions. Symptoms include coughing and having trouble breathing. They are spread to dogs through mosquito bites.
- Tapeworms: These attach to the intestines of dogs, and absorbs some of the nutrients from the intestines. Dogs get these from licking themselves and unintentionally swallowing fleas which carry the very small tapeworms.
- Fleas – These are more than a thousand different kinds of fleas, but it only takes a single kind of flea to cause a dog health issue. Dogs get fleas from the environment where there are female flea laying eggs that are eventually rained off into the surroundings These eggs develop into adult fleas and jump onto your dogs. Fleas on dogs may cause allergy, one of which is the common flea allergy dermatitis. Because they are injecting saliva into the skin of dogs, their salivary proteins that are often allergenic causes dogs to itch.
- Diarrhea – This is characterized by frequent liquid or loose bowel movements, and other symptoms include blood or mucus in stool, vomiting, decreased appetite, among others. It can be caused by different things. It can be caused by a change in diet or a more serious disease. It may last just for a day, may go on for weeks, or may occur on and off. Usually, diarrhea does not cause a great concern in dogs, but if it persists for more than a day, it may indicate an underlying health problem, or it may lead to dehydration.