5 Common Diseases Affecting Dogs

Dogs are among the most loyal, sweet and faithful companions we can have at home. And I guess many people will agree with me on that. As pets, they depend on us for their health and well-being. If you are a dog owner, it would be good to know some of the common diseases that can affect these animals, including their symptoms so that you can do something about it.

1. Dog Ear Infection

An ear infection is a common canine problem which could be caused by yeast, allergies, bacterial growth, ear mites and hair growth in the ear canal among other. Affected dogs could manifest symptoms like head tilting or head shaking, bad odor in the ear, vigorous scratching, redness or swelling on the ear canal, lack of balance, and a bloody or yellow discharge. If these symptoms are noticeable, you could take home remedies such as cleaning the affected area with a cleaning solution. If the symptoms still persist, bring your dog to the veterinarian for treatment. In some cases, surgery may be needed for chronic problems.

2. Worms

Hookworms, tapeworms, roundworms and whipworms are jut among the most common parasites that can infect your dog. While dogs having worms can be managed with some medications, certain types of worms such as hookworms can be fatal especially among puppies. Signs of worms include weight loss, diarrhea, change in appetite, and scooting on its bottom. You may also notice a dry or rough coat or fur especially among breeds or mixes like teacup Pomeranian which has a natural fluffy fur.

The best way to diagnose worm infestation is a regular visit to the veterinarian. Treatments normally depend on the type of worm. So don’t try treating worm infestation on your own without knowing what kind of worm you are dealing with.

3. Fleas

Fleas are a common canine problem that dogs can easily pick up on. However, flea infestation could also be easily treated once detected. Symptoms include excessive scratching, biting or licking of the skin, hair loss, and allergic dermatitis among others. There are especially formulated shampoos for dogs that can help get rid of flea. There are also oral medicines, topical liquid and sprays which your veterinarian may recommend.

4. Hot Spots

Although we commonly call it hot spots, they are really medically termed as acute moist dermatitis which is a kind of bacterial skin infection. If left untreated, it can grow larger and leave your dog uncomfortable and in pain most of the time. One of the most noticeable symptoms of this condition is excessive scratching or biting on the skin. Veterinarians normally prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs, antibiotics, topical medication or steroids for hot spots, depending on how severe the case is.

5. Vomiting

Another very common problem in dogs is vomiting. Possible causes for this include intestinal parasite, heatstroke, poisoning, kidney failure and pancreatitis. As there are a number of underlying conditions that can cause vomiting, it would be good to have your dog diagnosed and treated by a veterinarian.

This list is not all-encompassing. There are other common conditions that affect dogs, depending on their breed. One important thing to note is that whenever you notice any abnormalities in your dog, it could be a sign that something is bothering the animal. If you cannot determine it, have your dog checked by your veterinarian.