Pets are valued members of the family, and pet owners work hard to provide safe, secure and healthy living situations for their companion animals. A good diet and regular exercise are essential to pet health, and pets also benefit from a strong relationship with their veterinarian. Routine vet visits are necessary to maintain pet health, but at times pet owners may have to call the vet when something is awry. Animals are very good at hiding symptoms that may indicate they are not feeling well. Pet owners must learn to recognize certain subtleties that may indicate a dog or cat needs to visit the vet. Here are some symptoms that may indicate it’s time to schedule a vet visit.
Animals that are jumpy or can’t seem to get comfortable may be experiencing pain or anxiety. If your typically docile kitty is now pacing the floors instead of relaxing, it may mean something is bothering her.
Physical appearance: Changes in posture or other physical changes may indicate something is wrong with your pet. Does he seem to be moving slower than usual or look pale? Is the pet avoiding eye contact? Gauntness or excessive weight gain may be linked to certain conditions as well.
More or less vocal:
Some dogs and cats are the strong, silent types, while others like to vocalize. If you notice changes in your pet’s vocalization, he or she may not be feeling well and trying to tell you.
Dogs and cats can suffer the common cold just like humans, but the viruses are different. Symptoms are quite similar to what people experience, including runny nose, watery eyes, coughing, and sneez- ing. If symptoms last more than a week, book an appointment with the vet.
Many pet owners learn something is amiss when their pets exhibit changes in their eating habits. Food may sud- denly sit uneaten in bowls. Dogs or cats may begin to drink a lot of water or leave the bowl untouched. If these changes persist, contact your vet.
Digestive issues also may indicate a problem. Be aware if pets are not eliminating as they normally do. Cats may not be using the litter box, or dogs may be unable to hold their bladder or bowel until they are outdoors. Frequent accidents or bouts of vomiting may not be indicative of a behavior problem, but rather a symptom of an illness.
Dogs and cats certainly do their share of napping during the day and night. But excessive napping may be a sign of something bigger. Illnesses can cause fatigue in animals, and sleeping may be their way to banish pain.
While symptoms such as bleeding, limping or rising temperatures are clear indicators that things are awry, many pets only show subtle symptoms when they begin to feel sick. Pet owners should keep an eye out for such issues to ensure their pet is not suffering in silence.