Giving Dogs A New Leash On Life...One Click At A Time

Today is: Wednesday January 17, 2018

Signs That Your Dog Is Sick

It is important to know how your dog normally acts, his normal body temperature, how he smells, how much he weighs, etc.  When you know this information, it is much easier to recognize if he may be in trouble and needs help.

Healthy dogs have a temperature of 100.5-102.5 degrees F.  A respiratory rate of 15-20 breaths per minute and a heart rate of 80-120 beats per minute.  The gums are pink and quickly return to color when pushed on.  The ears should not have a foul smell to them. The skin is pliant. The eyes are clear and bright.

Call your vet if your dog exhibits any of the following:

  • Swollen eyes

  • Redness of the eyes

  • Discharge from eyes

  • Running nose

  • Discharge from nose

  • Discharge from ears

  • Odor from ears

  • Twitching of ears

  • Shaking of head

  • Coughing or repeated sneezing

  • Gagging or excessive vomiting

  • Irregular breathing

  • Shortness of breath

  • Prolonged or heavy panting

  • Bloody stool or urine

  • Parasites in stool

  • Change in bowel movements or color

  • Change in amount of food or water intake

  • Change in body weight

  • Change in frequency of urination, amount, or color

  • Straining when eliminating

  • Any suspicious odors

  • Excessive scratching

  • Dander

  • Hair loss

  • Bumps

  • Extreme fatigue

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Trembling

  • Stumbling, falling

Be sure to note when symptoms first appear and the frequency of them.

Taking Your Dog's Temperature

Normal temperature for dogs range from 100.5 to 102.5 degrees F. To take his temperature rectally, it is easier if two people do it together, with the dog standing up. Be sure to hold onto the thermometer so that it is not expelled or gets pushed in to far. It would be best to use a cover for the thermometer, to make clean up easier. Also, lubrication, such as K-Y jelly or vaseline, would make it nicer for the dog and easier for you to insert the thermometer into his rectum. With one person holding the dog up and stroking his back, the other person should gently grap his tail to expose his rectum. Gently stick the thermometer into the rectum about 1". Hold it there for about one minute or until it beeps if using a digital thermometer. A high temperature could indicate that your dog is sick. On the other hand, if the temperature is low, this could also indicate a medical emergency.

Giving Your Dog Medicine

When your vet prescribes medicine to your dog actually giving it to your dog can be an exhausting task.  Here are some helpful hints to make medicine time a little less painful for both of you.

  • Crush the pill and give it to him in his food or a treat

  • Coat the pill with butter, margarine, or peanut butter

  • Place the pill as far back into his mouth, close his mouth, and gently blow in his face

  • Place the pill as far back into his mouth, close his mouth, and massage his throat

  • Ask you vet or pharmacist if the medicine is available in meat flavor

This site and its contents are intended to serve as basic informational purposes 
 --not a substitute for-- 
professional veterinary care!


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