Dogs, cats, rabbits and more! All of these furry friends are more like family members when they’re in the home. Unfortunately, when pets get sick, unlike humans, they can’t quite speak to us and let us know they need help. When something is wrong, they rely on us as their owners to determine a plan of action. Without the right action, they might be at risk of dying. So how can you determine when something is wrong with your pet, when can you take action at home, and when do they need to see an emergency vet?
Some signs that something isn’t right are obvious where others take a little more attention to detail. Keep a watchful eye out for these telltale signs something is out of the norm.
- Sudden collapse
If your pet suddenly collapses there are a number of issues that a trained vet can address.
- Noisy breathing
Sudden or gradual noisy breathing is a sign that it is a challenge to breathe normally. Excessive panting can be an example of noisy breathing and indicates a potential respiratory challenge.
- Coughing constantly
If your pet develops a repetitive cough, it could be a sign of a more serious issue.
- Coughing up blood
Any time your pet is coughing up blood is a serious issue, one that most of the time doesn’t resolve itself.
Pet bloating is not normal and when accompanied by a firm stomach indicates a potentially serious issue.
- Lack of appetite
When your pet is having problems eating, there may be an issue with their stomach but it could also be more serious than that.
- Digestive problems
If your pet’s stools are suddenly watery, very infrequent, or appear to be hurting your pet, there is an issue that should be checked out before it gets too serious.
Is your pet sleeping more and more each day? Do they no longer want to play? Do they tire very easily? These are all common when it comes to older dogs, but sudden onset might be a sign of something more serious.
- Any bleeding
If your bet has an open wound on their skin or is beading from their genitals, you shouldn’t ignore it.
If your pet is hotter than normal they could be overheating or running a fever. A quick checkup from the vet can make sure there is no serious problem behind the excessive heat.
- Strange odor
Not to say that your pet’s breath should smell like roses, but a foul smelling odor could be a sign of decaying teeth and should be checked out by a vet.
- They ate something they aren’t supposed to
If you notice that dinner that was on the table has mysteriously disappeared and a guilty looking pet is ready to greet you, this could pose a major hazard to your pet’s health.
- Lots of vomiting
Constant vomiting means your pet is at risk for dehydration and could potentially be deadly.
Veterinarians are trained to deal with a number of animal-specific issues. They spend their entire day evaluating animals. When your pet is exhibiting signs of illness, you might be able to call your normal vet, but when an emergency occurs outside of typical hours, your best bet is to see an emergency vet. Emergency vets operate at all hours of the day and night regardless of the day. You should take a trip to the emergency vet if you notice any of the above symptoms, your pet has been bitten by another animal, or if your pet seems like they are in pain. Even if it’s nothing, at least you can be sure you did everything right and rule out serious life-threatening problems.
Once you visit a vet, they might tell you your pet has an ailment that can easily be treated at home. They will give you advice on how to treat your pet, but it’s better that you went to the vet first to rule out any serious problems.
On the surface, treating your pet’s illness at home might seem like a good way to save a few dollars. On a deeper level, and as any great pet owner can tell you, treating a pet at home can open the door to a new level of issues. Here is why you shouldn’t treat your pet at home.
When you try to treat your pet at home to save a few dollars, you might end up making the problem worse than it would be if you had visited a vet in the first place.
Even if you think you know what is wrong with your pet, you risk being way off and causing a whole oher problem.
Animals like cats and dogs have much different inner workings than their human owners. The medications that work for us may not work for them, not to mention giving your dog something that is meant for humans is never a good idea.
Make sure when you take any pet to a vet, that you visit a trusted vet. When you’re in an emergency, you might not have the time but if you can, ask trusted friends and family for recommendations. When you’re in a bind, check online reviews. Once you arrive at the vet, both you and your pet should be comfortable. While your pet might be anxious about the location, the vet should be able to help calm them down easily.
Nicole Howe is a content writer at BreezeMaxWeb. When she isn’t writing, you can find her walking half marathons, biking, or watching Raptors basketball!