5 Signs Your Pet Might Be Unwell
As a fellow paw-rent, I believe it is every pet owner’s nightmare to know that you may lose your furry friend one day. As much as we try to avoid the reality (ignorance may be a bliss), but prevention is often better than cure. Therefore, it is important that we recognise symptoms of our pets being unwell right away.
I remember how remorseful I felt upon discovering my bunny was sick for a while, only to find out that it was too late. The lack of knowledge about common symptoms your pet pal may be showing could cause you to lose your beloved fur-kid (as much as we refuse to touch this taboo subject). And because I do not want people to live in the same regret, these are some of the signs that may be keeping your pup-friend from being in its primal condition.
1. Excessive Drinking / Urination
More common in dogs, this intense need to quench its thirst may signal a possibility of these diseases: liver disease, diabetes, Cushing’s disease, cancer, diarrhea, fever, infection, and kidney disease. For dogs that may be suffering from diabetes, they get rid of the excessive glucose through urination (unlike human beings). Therefore, if your pup is drinking more than usual, it may be more than just being thirsty.
2. Appetite Change, Bowel Movements
It’s alright for a little one to have some food preference (consider it a quirk) — but under the finicky eating may be an underlying pancreatic problem. Some of the common reasons why your pet is not eating could be: gastrointestinal upsets, parasites, infections, problems with pancreas.
Also, if your bunny starts having diarrhoea, please do it a favour by sending it to a vet. If it stops eating all of a sudden, it may be too late to salvage the situation.
3. Sleeping more than normal or other behavior and attitude changes
As obvious as it sounds, out-of-the-norm behaviour could indicate that your fur-kid may be troubled by a physical discomfort (just like human beings). If it is usually running about, and suddenly it is sleeping all the time – there may be an undetected illness contributing to its change in behaviour.
Some of these illnesses include hypothyroidism and diabetes. Hypothyroidism, a very common dog disease targets the thyroid gland, which is responsible for its metabolism. Lethargy is a later sign for diabetes, which may be accompanied by excessive urination.
However, sometimes its sleepiness may simply be due to pregnancy or old age. Nevertheless, it is still important to bring your fur-kid for a check up just in case!
4. Coughing, Sneezing, Excessive Panting, or Labored Breathing
According to WebMd, “… it is normal for your dog to cough every now and then. It’s part of everyday life for an animal that can sniff 4 to 6 times per second.”
If your dog is displaying symptoms like “bouts of hacking, followed by gagging” with a “deep, honking canine cough”, it could be a sign of kennel cough. More uncommon causes of excessive coughing or sneezing may be due to heart disease, fungal and parasitic infections like heartworm disease, a collapsing trachea, and cancer.
To conclude, if your fur-kid is clearing its throat or showing signs of breathing difficulties, give it medical attention as soon as possible.
5. Dry, Red, or Cloudy Eyes
Cloudy eyes are usually caused by infection, cataracts, glaucoma, or a corneal scratch. Older pets (dogs over the age of 6) are usually more prone to developing cataracts. Cloudy eyes and cataract may look like a small problem — however, if an infection or glaucoma is not treated, it may snowball into bigger problems that may further affect your fur-kid! Dear paw-rent, please do not overlook the smaller details like cloudy eyes!
Of course, the symptoms above are non-exhaustive. So, as long as it is not behaving like its usual self or displaying physical discomfort, it should be a reason to bring your fur-kid to the vet! It should be every loving paw-rent responsibility to be aware of the possible illnesses that your fur-kid may contract for prevention is better than cure.