Sick Dog

Common Dog Diseases And How To Prevent Them

At times disease gets out of hand when left untreated, they develop into infections that are fatal unless early treatment had been administered.

In most cases, untreated infections tend to lead to death, chronic illness or damage of organs. All thanks to the veterinary researcher that have developed various forms of treatment that reduce the effect of parasites and diseases and also the frequency of these diseases as well.

english bulldog puppy sneezing at another dog wearing a medical mask with reflection on white background

Dogs usually get sick from protozoa, bacteria, pests and fungus. Primary viral diseases that attack dogs are parvovirus, hepatitis, rabies, distemper, coronavirus, parainfluenza. The major bacterial diseases that affect dogs are leptospirosis, Lyme disease, and kernel cough. These infections can also be found in other animals too – diseases such as Lyme, lepto and rabies also affect the human.


Distemper is considered to be the greatest challenge to the world’s dog population. It is seen as fatal to about 50% of adult dogs and 80% of puppies that contract it. If left untreated it often results in a partial or total seizure and paralysis.

The primary symptoms of canine distemper include nasal discharge, coughing, congested lungs, and loss of weight, diarrhea and vomiting. This disease is highly contagious as it can be contracted by air, physical contact with feces, urine or a kennel cough from infected dogs or any object that may contain the virus.

Distemper in Dogs

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association AVMA, some researchers have investigated all dogs under a year old and suffering from this infection. This virus is very prevalent, and the symptom varies. All sick dogs should be taken to a veterinarian for proper diagnostic examination.

Mostly, distemper surfaces after six months of age and in adult dogs that have not been adequately vaccinated. There is the cure to distemper once a dog is infected. Treatment can be administered at this point to suppress the symptoms and to prevent dehydration. Victims of distemper often develop hardened nose leather and vision and nervous system problem.


The rabies virus is a deadly one once the symptoms surface. This virus is deadly to a human, dogs, skunks, cats, and other mammals. Whenever someone is attacked and bitten by an animal, the chance of rabies exists. This virus attacks the nervous system leading to encephalitis.

Saliva of The Dog

The virus is present in the saliva of an infected animal and is being transmitted to the victim when bitten. Before clinical sign develops it usually takes between two to eight weeks. Throughout this period the virus will keep shedding in the victim’s saliva.

The most common cause of rabies in both human and animals is the bite from a rabid wild animal. Currently, there are lots of infected cats than dogs; the reason is that the population of cats now surpasses that of dogs.


Unlike distemper, parvovirus can result in the death of dogs within first few hours of first symptoms. Parvovirus is a deadly and contagious disease that affects the intestinal tract and the leucocytes; it sometimes attacks the heart.

One can be contracted by direct contact with feces, hair, or feet of infected dogs. One infected dog at a congregate of dogs can spread the virus to tens or hundreds of other dogs exposed to the risk of contracting this infection.

The symptoms of parvovirus develop with four to seven days of exposure. The symptoms range from depression to severe diarrhea, the color of feces changes to yellow-gray or light gray and sometimes streaked with blood. Dogs below the age of six months are more exposed to the risk of contracting this disease.

Little Puppy With Parvovirus At Vets

Once the virus attacks the heart, animals rarely survive this; they can die within hours or live a couple of weeks. Doberman and Rottweiler are at higher risk of contracting the virus than any other breed.

Similar to distemper there is no permanent remedy for parvovirus; no treatment can eliminate the virus. Instead, antibiotics are taken to prevent additional infection; nursing could also be considered so as to ensure fluid losses are being replaced in case of diarrhea and vomiting, ensuring the dog is warm etc.

Parvovirus can survive for months outside its host. Therefore, thorough cleaning of the kennel or home is necessary to eliminate any form of disease around.

The occurrence of this disease has drastically reduced due to the development of vaccination against this disease. The NCSU recommends vaccination with a modified live vaccine.

Kennel Cough

This is general name for respiratory disease in dogs; it describes the action of infections including canine adenovirus-2, Bordatella bronchi septical, and dog parainfluenza virus.

Kennel Cough in Dog

Kennel a cough are communicable especially in the kennel, exposing a dog to pre-existing attacks from infected dogs. Proper ventilation in the enclosure can prevent this infection from prevailing, but the only positive preventive measure is vaccination.

A combined immunization against a kennel cough includes Bordatella in one dose of nose drop, CAV-2, and parainfluenza. The only symptom of a kennel cough is a severe cold; vaccination is recommended whenever the dog comes in contact with other dogs.

Infectious Dog Hepatitis

Hepatitis also referred to as CAV-1 or canine adenovirus type 1. When this virus is inhaled or taken in by the dog, it enters the blood stream and attacks the kidney, liver, eyes and the cell of the inner surface of the blood vessels.

Symptoms do not surface in some cases, but puppies may develop slight fever and recover quickly. Some cases can be deadly; animals develop fever, eye membrane and mouth turn red, then shock and death will set in, all this can occur within 24 hrs.

Hepatitis in Dogs

When infected with this disease, some puppies recover with weeks of exposure while others develop internal bleeding, liver disease, and nervous system problem.

There is no available remedy for this illness, but there are preventive and supportive treatments. Vaccines administered is usually a modified live vaccine or killed made from CAV-2


Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease contained in the urine of both domestic and wild animals. These bacteria can cause illness in both dogs and humans. These bacteria generate disease in dogs. The symptoms of this illness include vomiting, kidney inflammation, blood clotting abnormalities, reddening of the mucous membrane, fever. A fatal form of the disease can cause pneumonia, jaundice, and intestinal inflammation.

The antibiotic is an efficient way of tackling the bacteria attack, nursing of the victim dog is also require so as to ensure replenishment of fluid lost, proper dialysis of the kidney to prevent renal failure, blood transfusion if needed.

Dog With Leptospirosis Laying

Treatment with vaccines is not advisable unless there’s an invasion of lepto in the neighborhood. The vaccines help suppress and lessen the effect of the disease but do not prevent it. The vaccine does not have a long lasting effect as it wears away after six months. However, puppies can react to the vaccine and so veterinarians do not always recommend vaccination against leptospirosis. Heartworm:

Worms are parasites that grow and multiply infested the chambers of the heart, the arteries of the lungs. Symptoms show up regularly, mostly manifested handy fatigue, exhaustion, and a mild cough. If left untreated, it will eventually result in loss of life because of coronary heart failure.

Ringworm Infections

Of the entire dog skin problems, ringworm fungal infections are one of the most customary (although it is, as a rule, fallacious as being a symptom of dog dermis allergies). The epidermis will end up contaminated with fungi, which outcome in scaly skin and hair loss.

If seen quickly enough, which it tends to be often unless the affected skin is in a discrete part of the body, it is as an alternative without problems handled with ringworm medicinal drugs.

Retinal Dysplasia

This is likely one of the ailments that influence the dog's eyes. This kind of sickness can either be very slight or swiftly escalate to being very extreme in a short period.

Cute Puppy Eyes

If a dog is affected by a mild case of retinal dysplasia, then owners may just notice some folds in the retina. Somewhat other critical types could contain vision issues, though this may result in complete blindness or cataracts.


This is a terrible sickness that can transfer exceptionally swiftly, both in humans and in pets. Symptoms comprise irregular growths underneath the skin, as well as swellings that do not go away. Cancer may also show up itself through bleeding or bloody discharge (from the eyes, mouth, ears, or every other opening). This, mixed with crisis consuming, respiratory, urinating or pooping, will also be symptoms of cancer in many dogs.

Lyme Disease

Lyme is a bacterial disease that can be found in ticks. Ticks are responsible for the widespread of the bacteria. Dogs develop symptoms such as joint pain, lymph node enlargement, lack of appetite and fever when infected. Some dogs are immune to the disease and do not develop symptoms after they are infected.

This is a multi-symptom disorder that is transmitted to puppies by using ticks. Many dogs which might be exposed to Lyme ailment don't show any signs of sickness, however, may scan positive on screening assessments.

Lyme Disease in Dogs

In endemic areas (areas the place the disease is most normal) it is suggested that as much as 75% of puppies will test positive for exposure to Lyme disorder. It's believed that most effective 5-10% of these constructive validated puppies will ever show medical signs of the disorder.

These dogs may exhibit symptoms of lameness, lack of appetite, weight loss, vomiting, diarrhea, challenge breathing or fever. Your veterinarian will be equipped to diagnose and offer cure for your pet. Antibiotics are used for remedy of canine Lyme disorder, although recurrence is relatively viable. Vaccines are on hand for prevention.

Lyme is mostly treated with an antibiotic known as tetracycline. Vaccination is not usually recommended because the protection wears off after six months of inoculation. The case of Lyme disease is more critical in human than in dogs. It is therefore suggested that ticks be eliminated from dogs using proper chemical or biological means.

Corona Virus

Coronavirus is caused by a virus which brings about vomiting and diarrhea. It is sometimes confused for parvovirus. It is contagious and can be widely spread by direct contact with infected animal or its waste. Some dogs have antibodies and develop no symptoms after being exposed to the virus. Others get dehydrated; lose their appetite and so many more.

Treatment requires a supporting nurse for the replacement of fluids loss and the control of diarrhea and vomiting. A vaccine is available not widely recommended.


An additional dog ailment is an arthritis. Though not as life-threatening as cancer, arthritis in dogs is usually a debilitating illness that robs your pet of so much of the enjoyment of lifestyles.

Dog With Arthritis

Symptoms comprise predicament rising, stiffness, irritability or reclusiveness. You may as well become aware of that your dog's muscle tissues are atrophying as his effort level declines.


Diabetes is common among humans, but it's also long-established among dogs. You may also become aware of elevated thirst and urination, weight loss, weak spot, and increasing levels of lethargy and depression in a diabetic canine. Diabetes, if left untreated, can also be fatal. There is no healing for dog’s diabetes; however, it may be managed with insulin injections.


Mange is an inflammatory disorder in dogs that may lead to skin lesions, genetic issues, and hair loss..


Fleas are more than just a nuisance to us and our puppies. They can additionally pose a giant wellbeing danger to dogs and people because the bites of these parasites can result in health issues. Looking for fleas on your pet can be done by making use of a flea comb. Fleas are dark, copper-colored and the size of a head of a pin.

Additionally appear for "flea grime," which are truly flea feces. They appear as darkish specks of pepper scattered over the skin floor. In case you in the process of finding evidence of fleas, use your veterinarian's knowledge to seek out the newest remedy choices. There are presently new prescription medications which can be sooner or later taking the frustration out of flea manipulate and prevention.

dog with fleas

Sooner or later, cataracts are additionally customary in older dogs. The eyes come to be cloudy; the canine is unable to navigate around objects and stops retrieving objects. Observe, nonetheless, that ever puppy boost a graying of the eyes which is due to a hardening of the lens.

Frequently, this doesn't influence the old dog's capacity to see. Nevertheless, cataracts are a more critical that may eventually lead to an imaginative and prescient loss. As in people, canine’s cataracts may also be treated with surgery


Hookworms are probably observed in dog feces. If your dog enjoys eating feces, look ahead to this health problem. The symptoms of hookworms include loose stool or blood in the stool, bloating, fuel, and an exotic appetite. Also, the dog's coat may grow to be duller.


Roundworms are prompted when the dog ingests the egg of the roundworm. Also, pups can turn out to be infected with the help of their mom. Indicators to appear for that your dog has roundworms comprise vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, gas, and an unusual urge for food.


Heartworms most more often than not come from mosquitoes. This mostly occurs throughout the hotter months when dogs are uncovered to these pests. Heartworms are very damaging and, if left untreated, can kill your canine.

Lifecycle of Heartworm

Signs to watch out for incorporate lethargy, coughing, lack of urge for food, and obstacle breathing. You would also detect that your dog is becoming more worn out than normal after pastime. This situation wishes to be treated immediately with the aid of a vet.


Tapeworms occur when dogs consume fleas. While this is probably not a quality recreation, you must most likely examine the dog's rectum to peer if there are any white, rice-like parasites in the area. Should you, the canine is close to sure to have tapeworms. Signs of these worms comprise incapacity to digest food, weight loss, and belly anguish.


Whipworm happens when dogs devour worm-infested feces or after they step in feces after which lick their paws. A dog with whipworm will have a bloody stool, and individual urge for food, and can end up bloated, experience cramps, and have a dull coat.

Kidney Disease (Renal Failure)

This disease is a complication that develops in a dog; it results from medication or another disease such as lyme. Kidney sickness is also common amongst old puppies. If you happen to realize increased thirst, urination, coupled with weight loss, your dog is also suffering from kidney malfunction.

Tired Dog

Vomiting and blood in urine or poop are severe symptoms, and in case you detect them, contact your vet instantly. Although, these signs could be brought on through one of many ancient dog illnesses, together with inflammatory bowel disorder or bladder stones. Once more, see a vet right away.

Vaccine Alternative

There is no genuine alternative to the vaccine. Some dog handlers use alternative medicines, but there is no proof that these substitute medicine can successfully prevent the disease. However there are proofs that they can help dogs recover from their illness.

Some owners are mostly afraid their dog will react negatively to vaccines. Dog owners that are scared of their dog immune being overloaded with combined vaccines in a single shot can talk to their veterinarians to purchase vaccines for parvo and distemper and administer the shot differently.

Some dog owners carry out the test to ascertain their dog immunity level and therefore decide when their dog get inoculated based on the result of this test. The test is performed by drawing blood from the dog and checking the blood for titer i.e. a measurement of antibodies present in the blood stream.

The test is far more expensive than the vaccines as the titer must be tested for each disease. The titer is the measurement of the dog’s reaction to vaccines but does not mean that the dog would be covered against an active disease present in the dog system.

Recognizing A Dog In Distress

Dogs generally are considered human’s best friend, when they are hurting, you want to provide them with the possible best help you can give. Even though it is easy to pop a cough drop, chew a tum or takes a Tylenol when you are sick, it’s however not easy to know to help a dog to relief it's a pain.

Sick Dog Wearing Glasses and Holding a Thermometer

Some breeds will normally give you sign whenever something is wrong with them through actions like barking, yipping or acting funny. They may not be able to tell you they are in pain or a state of any form of distress. There are signs a dog is not feeling well. The symptoms include:

  • Change in breathing i.e. breathing faster or panting, breathing is noticed to be shallower than normal.
  • Drop in social activity
  • ​Increased heart rate
  • ​A change in energy level: A decrease in energy level is seen, and the dog might be unable to sit.
  • ​Biting or whining when touched or picked up.
  • ​A change in mobility might suddenly refuse to climb stairs.

Talk To Your Veterinarian

Book an appointment to see your veterinarian if your dog shows any of the above sign. Your vet might be able to determine what exactly is wrong with the dog or what might be responsible for the discomfort. Sometimes injuries are not noticeable as in the case of a broken bone or small wound.

Vet and Dog

The common issues that suffer dogs in general include:

  • Bone cancer
  • Ear infection
  • ​Arthritis
  • ​Sliding kneecap
  • ​Pancreatitis or gastritis
  • Gum disease

How To Make The Painless Severe

Of the modern drug a vet will usually recommend for your dog’s pain are the no steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs which works like the ibuprofen. These medications can assist in relieving pain; swelling and joint pain the dog may be feeling. Some NSAIDs that are specially developed for dogs include deracoxib, firocoxib, meloxicam, carprofen.

Nsaids For a Dog

Most NSAIDs drawn up for the human may be dangerous or poisonous for your dog; therefore it is not safe for your dog to use your pain medication. It will be wise to talk to your veterinarian first. The NSAIDs also have some side effects which include:

  • Eating less
  • Vomiting, diarrhea or tarry stool
  • ​Scabs or skin color change to red
  • Behavioral changes

Getting Rid Of The Pain For Good

Even though pain medication wears off after a short period, the best thing is to have a permanent fix for dog pain. A change in food can achieve a permanent fix. A dog may be relieved of its pain when it experiences a change in food. According to Dr. Donna Solomon in the Huffington post, products that have the high content of omega-3s can help eliminate pain and relieve joint inflammation.

Weight management is also a way to ease the pain. Extra weight results in severe health issues like pancreatitis. If your dog needs to lose weight, there are formulated drugs to help your dog shed a few pounds.

Giardia in Dogs

Another alternative is physical therapy. Consult your vet for physical therapy treatment so as to help your dog’s comfort when your dog is just recovering from an injury.

Giving your dog drugs from your cabinet is not a good idea, and should be avoided. Even though dog version of NSAIDs is very similar to the conventional over-the-counter medicines, the human version can be toxic and dangerous to a dog. This risk is as a result of the difference in dosage needed in human and dogs and the difference in metabolism. A pill could worsen the health issue resulting in death.

It is also not wise to give medication to your pet without consulting your veterinarian first. The vet that is familiar with your dog’s medical issue should be able to prescribe an adequate medication and dose to make sure your dog is relieved of its pain.

It is essential to be familiar with usual stipulations that will have an effect on your canine. The useful technique to support holds your pet healthy is to coach yourself. Your veterinarian will recognize your education and concentration to the wellness of your dogs’ friend. Proceed to remain informed and knowledgeable to optimize the proper being of your dog.

Different stipulations that may have an impact on your canine's health include Coccidian that are parasites precipitated via feces. Symptoms of this sickness incorporate unfastened stool, vomiting, loss of weight, and bloating.

cute golden retriever puppy with an ice pack on its head

A different parasite which will have an impact on pups is called Guardia. These parasites are found most likely in areas the place there's plenty of water. The ingestion of Guardia can motive loose stool, loss of weight, and bloating.

These infections can be prevented by injecting both adult dogs and puppies with vaccines.

Types Of Vaccines

These vaccines help in stimulating the dog’s immune system as a whole to produce some particular antibodies to fight against some disease. There are two forms of vaccines which include the modified live formulas and the killed or inactivated formulas; the former contains a weakened form of the disease while the latter include an additional substance known as an adjuvant added so as to boost the response of the immune.

Each of these vaccines has its advantages. Killed vaccines have a longer live span, are more stable and do not generate mild infection, unlike modified vaccine which can result in a slight case of illness but provides a longer lasting immunity.

Puppies can also get immunity from colostrums (i.e. a form of milk produced after few days of giving birth) if the mother is vaccinated. Our inability to know when immunity wears off and protected freedom become active make veterinaries recommend series of shots for puppies.

After the puppy shots, a booster will be administered to them at one year of age and subsequent booster after every six months, a year, or three depending on the type of disease and its occurrence in the neighborhood.


Vaccines sometimes can be given in combination or separately. Some dogs react to vaccines, leaving their owners wondering whether their puppy immune system have been overloaded with too many vaccines.

Researchers recently found the answer to these questions; they discovered some dogs are covered for more than a year with some vaccines while veterinaries recommend one-year interval or less for these dogs. Work is still going on these vaccines, and some universities and veterinarians have modified their vaccines recommendation. Vaccines are the first line of defense against these deadly diseases.

Some researcher’s study shows that immunity do no wear off in more than a year after inoculation, but pet handlers should discuss the dosage of vaccination with their veterinarian. Dogs that stay indoor may not need annual boosters, but dogs that participate in public events, training classes, daycare centers or boarding kennels should be vaccinated annually.

The publication was made in 2001 by the North Carolina State University known as vaccination protocol; it highly recommends a modified live vaccine against distemper but noted that some studies made us know that dogs are still covered for more than five years when attacked by the disease.

How To Save Our Dogs From Diseases

Early detection is the key to treating these sicknesses. If your dog displays any of the symptoms of the diseases listed here, ensure that you get it to your vet for a checkup. Additionally, make sure your dog receives average examine-united states of America this gives your vet the opportunity to check for presence on any these diseases by using stool samples.

energetic australian shepherd running on a grass field

It's normally better to err on the facet of caution and carefully watch your dog's habits and attitudes. If they alter in any respect, make an appointment with your vet to get the challenge identified and let treatment began immediately.

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