How Do I Know If My Pet Is Sick??

By: By Sally Smith, CKO
By: By Sally Smith, CKO

Sometimes it is obvious when your pet is not feeling well, but other times it may just be a feeling you have based on his or her behavior. Trust your instincts. As a pet owner, you know your pet a better than anyone else. If you think your dog or cat is “just not right,” chances are something’s amiss. Here are some signs to watch for:

  • Changes in behavior-suddenly hiding or acting aggressive, for example

  • Not eating well, picking instead of eating with gusto

  • Third eyelids showing (the third eyelid is the membrane that covers a dog’s or cat’s eye when asleep. It often rises up when the pet is awake, indicating illness.)

  • Vomiting for no apparent reason

  • Diarrhea without reason or with no diet change

  • Poor hair coat, hair that is suddenly shedding excessively between shedding seasons

  • Weight loss even though he/she eats well

  • Excessive drinking

  • Excessive urination elimination in strange places, or having accidents in the house

  • Pale mucous membranes of the eyes or mouth

  • Foul odors from the ears, mouth, or anal area

These warning may not indicate a serious illness, but the possibility of a serious disease exists if your pet should exhibit several of these symptoms. For peace of mind, visit your veterinarian and discuss the changes you have noted in your pet, even if all you can say is, “He’s just not right.”

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