Having a sick pet can be a trying experience. Those tender eyes are looking at you for help, but they can’t tell you what’s wrong. Instead, you have to play pet detective and pay attention to behavioral signs and physical symptoms to see if your fur baby is sick, and figure out what to do about it. Following are some ways you can tell if your pet is sick.
Services like Kuddly.co let you ask a real vet questions 24 hours a day, seven days a week so you never have to wonder if you should get professional help for your furry friend or wait until opening hours to talk to a vet. Some problems can be life threatening, so if it seems serious, remember that it could be, and act before it is too late.
Change in Behavior
If your pet is acting differently, pay attention. This is one of the earliest warning signs that something is wrong. If your cuddly pal suddenly doesn’t want to be snuggled or your normally playful pet is sleeping all day, consider scheduling a check-up or talking to a vet online. Sometimes the cause of the change in behavior is obvious — many animals sleep longer after a big day at the dog park — but it can also be clue that something is not right.
Change in Appetite
A sudden change in appetite or change in drinking habits is also a cause for concern, especially if you notice other changes in behavior. Keep an eye on how much and how often your furry friend eats and drinks so that you can spot when the pattern changes.
Vomiting is of the most common signs that something could be amiss. While vomiting is common to a degree — cats hack up fur balls and puppies are notorious for eating random things and throwing them back up — if your pet vomits several times in a single day or is acting funny in other ways, you might need to get help.
Blood in Stool or Vomit
Gastrointestinal issues and parasites are common problems, plus animals sometimes eat things like sharp bones, toy soldiers, and string. If those objects become stuck along the way, your pet may try to vomit them up. Get emergency care if you pet vomits or excretes blood or what looks like coffee grounds. This is digested blood and it is a sign that help is needed.
Coughing is also another sign that your pet may be sick. Persistent hacking could mean something mild like kennel cough, or something much more serious like heart disease or heart worm. Even the unassuming kennel cough can progress to pneumonia with frightening speed in pets that are very young or very old.
Itching and Redness
Your pet may need medical care if it is itching, has redness, or is exhibiting another skin issue. Fleas and ticks are common causes, but so are yeast, fungal, or staph infections, ear mites, and endocrine problems.
The most important thing to remember is that if you think your pet is sick, you should never hesitate to contact your vet or talk to a vet online.