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Common Canine Diseases Pet Owners Should Know About

Dogs often try to hide their illnesses from their owners, but it’s impossible not to notice any signs especially when you observe the eating habits. As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to keep the dog happy and healthy, but even with complete annual vaccinations, your dog is still vulnerable to diseases.

These are the common canine illnesses you should watch out for.


Your dog may have a worm infestation if it exhibits any of the following symptoms: changes in appetite, diarrhea, vomiting, and weight loss. The treatment will depend on the type of worms the dog has, but is usually treated with oral medications. Try not to treat it the dog yourself without consulting the veterinarian, because the same medication will not work on all parasites. However, prevention is easier than curing an infestation, especially in cases of heartworm disease.

Ear Infections

An ear infection may be caused by bacteria, yeast, mites, and other problems. Keep an eye out for the following symptoms, so that your dog can get treated as soon as possible: unusual odor from the ears, frequent head shaking or tilting, redness or swelling in the ears, ear discharge, loss of balance, and unusual eye movements. If the dog has chronic ear infection, it may be caused by a more serious health problem.

Kennel Cough

Coughing may be a symptom of allergies, asthma, distemper, flu, parvovirus, pneumonia, hepatitis, and heart disease. Kennel cough, however, is the generic term for tracheobronchitis in dogs caused by viral or bacterial infection. Kennel cough will usually go away after a maximum of 3 weeks, but if it persists, you should take the dog to a veterinarian.

Constipation or Diarrhea

Constipation may be caused by diet changes, lack of exercise, liver or prostate disease, worms, and stress. If a healthy diet does not eliminate the problem within a week, you need to take the dog to a veterinarian for a check-up. Diarrhea on the other hand, might be caused by worms, infections, parvovirus, and bad food. The dog should be taken to the veterinarian if the diarrhea persists for more than 24 hours, because there is a risk of dehydration. Look out for signs of bloody stools, vomiting, and fever as well.


It’s more difficult to treat a flea infestation than to prevent it, because of the flea’s ability to adapt to the environment and its speed of reproduction. Your dog will exhibit the following signs if it has fleas: scratching, hair loss, inflamed or red areas, allergic dermatitis, and flea dirt that look like black specks. Some fleas carry diseases and other parasites, that’s why you need to address flea infestation immediately with shampoos, sprays, and oral medication.

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