Pet Cover Direct

Your Dog’s health

Dogs can also mask illness so it is a good idea to regularly check them over yourself; you can follow the check list below to help you;

You should be able to see your dog’s waistline and there should also be a cap between their chest and hips, you should be able to only feel their ribs and their belly shouldn’t sag. Again sudden weight gain or loss should be checked over by a vet. Dogs tend to have bad breath which is due to either dental or digestive disorder, their teeth should be white without tartar and their gums should be pink or black. Their eyes should be clear and bright and they should shy away from bright eyes, if you notice eye problems you should be aware that this may be joined by flu-like symptoms. A dogs nose can change from black to pink through-out the year, this is perfectly normal, a cold nose is also very healthy but is doesn’t have to be really cold and wet.

Your dog’s fur should be thick; obviously this will vary for each breed, and glossy without sores or dandruff, depending on their skin pigment their skin will either be pink or black. Dogs moult all year round however you may find during summer and autumn that they moult much more, poodles don’t moult at all so be sure to get them clipped. Your dog’s ears should be clear and without a smell, long hair dogs tend to need cleaning more but be careful, deep or forceful cleaning could harm them.

Dog’s nails tend to be white or black and smooth, you must remember to check their dewclaws which will be found on the inside of their legs just under their waist, depending on the breed some may only have these on their front legs and some may not have them at all.

It is important to know your dogs eating habits, this will be difficult when you first get your dog, but gradually you will be able to learn them, if may also be hard if your dog is fussy. If you start to notice you dogs appetite increase or decrease it would be advised to take them to the vets. Your dogs waste should a normal colour, if you notice any difference it would be a good idea to take them to the vets. 

A sudden increase in drinking may be a cause for concern, also if your dog walks around with his tail down then this tend to be an indication that they aren’t feeling well, as is if they start to hide in corners or dig holes to lie in, also a change in behaviour may be noted, if these happens it’s a good idea to take them to the vet.

As with a cat older dogs need to be treated like elderly humans, they may pick all illnesses such as arthritis, sight or hearing problems, and tooth or gum problems, their energy levels will also drop and they will tend to sleep more in the day rather than at night, you will therefore notice they will eat less due to their slowing metabolism.

These signs will start to happen around the age of 7, and you may want to increase their checkups at the vets. Depending on the breed of your dog will depend on their life span; in general smaller dogs tend to live longer than bigger breeds. This is the also the same in pedigrees’ who tend to have a smaller life span than mongrels.