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Wanting The Best For Your Best Friend: What You Should Do When You Think Your Dog Is Unwell

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When our best friend is unwell they can’t tell us what’s wrong. When you have concerns that your dog is sick it’s important to keep an eye out for specific symptoms. When you don’t know if it’s worth calling a veterinarian it’s usually best to err on the side of caution. But what can you do to make sure that you are doing everything you can to care for your dog when you think they are unwell?

Look For Changes In Behavior

There are certain changes that can be signs that your dog is unwell. For example, if your dog is coughing and it’s lasting longer than a 24-hour period it’s worth consulting a veterinarian. They may prescribe a painkiller. But if you’re wondering “can I give my dog Tylenol” it’s a different type of painkiller to the one that we would use. When your dog is coughing it could be a sign of heartworms or bronchitis. If your dog is not as active as normal, look at their temperature as they may have a fever (anything above 103 °F (39 °C) requires medical attention).

Look At Their Diet

If your dog is drinking too much or too little water you need to evaluate this over the course of a week. You need to make sure that they aren’t overexerting themselves or the weather is too hot. You also need to look at their appetite, especially if they’ve gained or lost weight over a short period of time. When a dog has little appetite it can be a sign of fever or stress. You also need to look at their digestion. If they are vomiting or have diarrhea over 24-hours you need to contact a vet. However, single episodes of vomiting or diarrhea are not a cause for concern.

Understanding When To Get Emergency Care

If your dog is trying to vomit and is not able to this could be the condition bloat. Look at the attempt to urinate. If they’re not able to urinate it can be the result of a blockage. Whenever you’re in doubt you need to seek medical attention. If your dog appears physically weak or has trouble standing, you may think that they are just tired, but even when a dog is tired they are able to stand and move as normal.

Ensuring You Don’t Panic

It’s incredibly stressful to see our best friend unwell. It can be a very stressful time for you but when you are concerned about your dog’s welfare it’s always a good idea to contact the vet if you’re not sure about anything. Sometimes our dogs can bounce back really quickly but when our dog is unwell and we have never been through this before the tendency to panic can override any common sense. Making sure that you remain calm is crucial. Make sure that you take their temperature and focus on keeping them calm. Any stressful situation can cause them to panic. We want the best for our best friend so make sure that you are a pillar of strength for them. 

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