Read these 7 Health Issues With Puppies Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Puppy tips and hundreds of other topics.
One of the worst things someone can do is to bring home a tiny new puppy and change its food. Unfortunately, many people do just that, especially if the puppy is eating an inferior brand of kibble. With its small body, any change in diet is simply too much for the puppy to handle, which leads to one of the most common puppy health problems - diarrhea.
If your puppy gets into food belonging to your adult dog or your cat or gets a hold of some people food, he or she will probably develop diarrhea. This condition can be quite serious, since it is easy for such a tiny animal to get dehydrated. Contact your veterinarian immediately if your puppy has loose stools. If you can't get a hold of your veterinarian, you should:
Lyme disease, named for the town of Lyme, Connecticut, is a particularly nasty tick borne illness that affects people and pets. If your dog will be hiking through the woods with you, romping in the grass, or doing other outdoor activities, you should worry about Lyme disease. Luckily, puppy disease prevention for this nasty illness is actually quite simple. To protect your puppy, you should:
When you look at that roly poly little puppy, it doesn't seem possible that it could have any problems with worms. After all, the puppy's mother seems like a very healthy, well cared for dog and worms only happen to dirty, neglected dogs, right? Actually, many veterinarians say that becoming pregnant and giving birth can cause a dog to develop worms that were lying dormant in its system. These worms can be passed on to puppies. Because of this, deworming puppies routinely is often recommended by veterinarians.
There are many common puppy health problems that are simply based on whether the puppies' parents have certain genes. These hereditary health problems can prove very costly and may mean your puppy's life will not be as long as it should be.
Before you buy a puppy, do some research on that breed to see which genetic problems are common. Then, ask the breeder if the puppy's parents have been screened to be sure they are free of these defects. For example, Standard Poodles are prone to hip dysplasia, Von Willebrand's disease, Hypothyroidism and Legg-Calve Perthes Disorder. If the parents have been tested and have received a clean bill of health, then the puppy is fairly likely to be healthy, as well. However, young parents could develop some of these disorders later in life, so there is not an absolute guarantee that your puppy won't develop a genetic illness.
You should also be sure that the breeder has a policy for hereditary defects. While you may not want to act on the policy because you have gotten too attached to the puppy, it is good to know that you have options, especially if your vet informs you of the condition hours after you bring your puppy home. For example, finding out that your puppy's entire litter has Demodectic mange and will have to get painful shots every week may simply be more than you can handle, while finding out you need to pay for a simple operation for cherry eye is annoying, but manageable.
When you buy a new puppy, you should know a few signs that can help you avoid getting a dog with one of the common puppy health problems. While many of these problems are curable, it is best to get a puppy that is healthy right from the start.
You keep hearing about heartworm prevention, but you have to wonder if it is really necessary or if you can spend the money on a cool new pet bed instead. The short answer is that if you live somewhere that has even one mosquito, you need to give your dog a heartworm preventative. Treating a dog for an illness that was completely preventable and has caused permanent damage to the dog's heart is not fun.
Heartworms are caused by a bite from an infected mosquito. As the name suggests, heartworms do grow in the dog's heart. However, according to the American Heartworm Society, the heartworms actually begin growing in arteries that are inside the dog's lungs and will eventually spread to the heart if the dog doesn't receive the proper diagnosis and treatment.
Keeping dogs from contracting heartworms is not just simple. It is delicious. A heartworm preventative tablet is given to a dog once a month throughout the year. Your dog will probably be unhappy that he or she is only getting one pill a month and may beg for more pills. If only all pet medications could be made to taste this good!
If you neglect to give your dog medication for a month or two, you should go to the veterinarian for a blood test to rule out any infections before you restart the medication. This is because it can be fatal to give a dog with heartworms the preventative without treating the infection.
People line up to get flu shots every year to avoid getting sick. You can avoid common puppy health problems with preventative medicine, too. To be sure your puppy doesn't become ill from a virus that is easily prevented, you should:
|Sheri Ann Richerson|