Our pets really are like members of our family. Therefore, it can be heart-breaking when they are sick. This is made even worse by the fact that they can’t communicate with you to tell you how they’re feeling.
Luckily, however, there are ways to be able to tell if your pet is not feeling well, if you know what you’re looking for. Here are the signs and symptoms that your pet may have a health condition.
Changes in energy or personality
One of the main signs that your pet is in pain or otherwise doesn’t feel well is that their personality or energy levels will change. If your dog is normally very sociable and suddenly becomes withdrawn, or your normally energetic cat is lethargic for no reason, this may indicate a deeper issue. On the other hand, if your normally settled pet sudden seems hyperactive or agitated, this can also be a symptom.
Unusual, uncharacteristic aggression can also be a sign of an illness or injury. In particular, if your pet snaps or growls when you touch a certain part of their body it can indicate an issue there. Particularly when combined with other symptoms such as weight loss or loss of appetite, if you notice and personality changes in your pet, be sure to consult with your vet as soon as possible.
Strange looking eyes
Changes to the appearance of your pet’s eyes can be another indicator of a health issue. If their eyes look cloudy or red, or they are suddenly squinting, it is time take them to a vet. Unusual discharge from the eyes can also indicate a problem, as can dilated or constricted pupils, or one pupil that is dilated and another that is constricted.
Diseases and conditions related to the eyes can progress very rapidly in animals, so it is important to get them seen by a vet as soon as possible. This may be an infection that can generally be easily treated with medication. If not, they can become very serious and even cause blindness.
Sudden weight changes
Weight loss can be a good thing if your pet is overweight and you are helping them slim down through diet and exercise. However, if they suddenly lose weight for no reason this could indicate a health issue. Similarly, if your pet is gaining weight without any changes to their lifestyle this may be a sign of a problem.
If your pet’s weight suddenly changes, and sudden could be across a few weeks, you should take them to see your vet. For dogs, a loss of 10% of their body weight is enough cause for a trip to the vet.
Many animals, especially dogs, will naturally scratch themselves and this is not normally a problem. However, if your pet is constantly scratching or chewing on their skin they may be suffering from allergies. This may particularly be the case if the scratching is accompanied by other signs such as hair loss or their coat thinning in places.
Skin allergies are relatively common in dogs, and can be caused by allergens in their food or the general environment. Visionary Pet ketogenic dog food can help to manage allergies, but always make sure to consult with your vet to diagnose the exact issue.
Respiratory issues can be severe in pets and require treatment by a vet. Watch for potential respiratory illnesses by checking in with your pet’s breathing. Make sure they are breathing normally, and not heavier than normal, or panting when they haven’t been exercising or if it isn’t warm.
Similarly, coughing, wheezing and nasal discharge are other forms of respiratory symptoms that could indicate a respiratory issue. A more subtle indicator of breathing issues in dogs if they stand or lie with their neck stretched out and their elbows to the side. This could be simple issue like canine flu, or a more serious respiratory disease. Therefore it is important to take your pet to the vet at the earliest opportunity.
Problems with eating
When your pet suddenly changes their eating habits this may be a signal of a health problem. Most commonly, this will show as your pet suddenly having no appetite and not wanting to drink any water. In the same way, drinking much more water than normal or being excessively thirsty can also be a bad sign, as it could indicate hormone issues, a fever or kidney problems. Be sure to consult your vet if you notice such changes in eating or drinking patterns.