Warning signs your dog may be sick

pug covered with blanket on bedspread

Illnesses aren’t just concerning for humans, they’re even more alarming for dogs.

A sick dog is a scary situation. You might not always be able to tell if your dog is sick, but there are a few ways you can figure it out. If your dog needs to see the vet, there are some signs you can look for.

One way to tell if your dog is sick is to check their gums. If they are pale, it could be a sign of illness. Normally, a dog’s gums are bubblegum pink or something similar. Checking your dog’s gums when they are healthy can help you better identify if something is wrong in the future. Gums that are pale in color can be a sign of dehydration, bloating, or cancer. Looking out for other signs of discoloration in gums, such as purple, yellow, blue, or bright red can also be indicative of a problem.

Breathing that is labored or difficult is a bad sign in both humans and dogs. A healthy dog will take approximately 20 to 24 breaths per minute, and the breathing should seem easy or effortless. Some signs of difficult breathing are loud breathing, nostrils flaring, the chest and stomach moving more than usual, and breathing with an open mouth while not panting. Difficult breathing can mean a few things, such as pneumonia or foreign objects in the breathing passages.

Lethargy would be if your dog is less enthusiastic about an activity that normally excites them, it’s beyond them just being tired. If your dog is lethargic for more than twenty-four hours, contact your vet. Lethargy is a term used to describe a general feeling of tiredness, weakness, or lack of energy. This can be caused by various underlying health issues or medications. If you notice your dog is lethargic, it’s important to determine the cause and rule out any potential medical problems.

A temperature that is below 99 degrees or above 104 degrees may be more difficult to manage for dogs, as their average body temperature is naturally warmer than humans, typically falling between 101 and 103 degrees. Fever in dogs is caused by infection or inflammation, just like in humans. Taking your dog’s temperature can be unpleasant for both of you, but it is sometimes necessary. A rectal or ear thermometer is the best way to tell if your dog has a fever, and you can even find thermometers specifically for dogs.

A dog with a poor appetite should not be immediately reported to a vet. Sometimes dogs can just be choosy and stubborn. Give them 24 hours to see if their appetite improves before contacting a professional. A loss of appetite can be caused by many things, so it’s important to consult with a vet if you notice this behavior in your dog. They will be able to help you determine if there is an underlying medical reason for the lack of appetite, or if your dog is just being finicky.

If your dog is suddenly waking you up at night to go outside or consistently urinating in the house, something might be wrong. If your dog exhibits these behaviors over the course of 24 to 48 hours, it is advisable to consult a veterinarian. Other things to look out for include dark urine, discomfort while urinating, or a heightened sense of urgency.

These signs are not to be overlooked, always remember to keep your pets healthy by simply cleaning their favorite places and feeding them healthy food.