Dogs are more than mere pets, they truly become a part of the family and when they are ill, it can cause true panic. Your dog is not so different from you in that they can get a tummy ache, fever or suffer from bad dental hygiene. Like people, dogs sometimes need the service of medical professionals but in some cases, home remedies will work just as well. Your job is learning how to tell the difference and knowing how to treat them.
When your dog has diarrhea it is very apparent, particularly if they are an inside dog. There are many things that can result in a bout of diarrhea including change in diet or water. During the first day or two of diarrhea, you can give your pet a small amount of Pepto or other over the counter anti-diarrhea medication. Should the problem persist or other symptoms are present you will want to call your vet and make an appointment. Other serious symptoms:
- Lack of appetite
- Refuses water
- Explosive diarrhea
- Extremely foul smelling feces
Any of the above-added symptoms can be an indication of canine parvovirus, a deadly disease that carries a high mortality rate. Only with quick intervention can your pet be saved.
Dogs can also vomit for many reasons, upset stomach due to eating something that does not agree with them or internal parasites are both common causes. Generally speaking one or two instances of vomiting is nothing to be overly concerned about, ensure they have plenty of ingested to prevent dehydration and keep an eye out for other symptoms. Many veterinarians will suggest a period of fasting from all substances, allow 24 hours for the stomach to rest and recover from common irritants. During this time, you can give them small amounts of honey or syrup to prevent hypoglycemia. Just rub a little over their gums.
If your dog's vomiting is constant and shows no signs of easing within 48 hours or you see other problems then you'll want to call the vet as soon as possible. Watch for blood, froth, worms and other foreign materials.
Many people believe that if their dog's nose is slightly warm, they have a fever but this is not necessarily true. Dogs have a higher normal body temperature than humans, typically 101-102 degrees. The best way to get an accurate reading on whether your dog has a temperature or not is by using a specially designed rectal thermometer. It is normal for your dog to run a low-grade fever for up to two days after immunization.
Other causes for fever may not be so evident. If your dog is showing severe signs of illness such as lethargy, vomiting or depression get them checked out immediately.
There are times when you can treat your dog at home simply with rest and a few types of over the counter remedies. However, always keep a close eye on their progress as serious illnesses can escalate rather quickly at times. As with people, early intervention is often necessary to prevent debilitation or even death.