Some dogs hide their suffering and pain better than others, so they can only count on your vigilance and that you will notice any unusual signs of the disease. Use the list below to examine your dog once a month. Find out what will help you notice symptoms of a potential disease or injury in time on smartdoglover.com
Check if your dog has an ideal body condition on a 1-9 scale (BCS), whether he is overweight or underweight. A noticeable change in dog weight can be a symptom of hidden health problems, so if you notice her, immediately consult a veterinarian.
Being a responsible owner of a dog also means regularly checking the condition of his body. Start by moving your hands on the sides of the dog and feel his ribs with your fingers. The dog’s ribs should be easily palpated, covered with a small layer of fat. Depending on the breed and length of the pet’s hair, you can also see them. Looking from above, you should see a marked hourglass waist of the dog, while on the side the belly should be arched, or lead in a straight line from the chest to the legs without noticeable fat.
Look into your dog’s ears and check for redness, itching or an unnatural smell. The ideal dog’s ear should be clean, free of brown or green earwax.
Some breeds are more prone to ear problems. Dogs with hanging ears should be tested regularly to keep their ears clean. In turn, short-haired breeds with erect ears (or those with white hair-tipped ears) are exposed to sunburn.
When cleaning your dog’s ears, remember that this is a very delicate and sensitive part of his body, so use products recommended by your veterinarian. It is also not advisable to insert ear sticks into the ear canal as perforation of the tympanic membrane may easily occur. To protect your ears from sunburn, which can lead to skin cancer in your dog, apply sunscreen to your dog’s ears on sunny and hot days.
If your dog constantly shakes his head, starts to turn his head to one side, or rubs one side of his mouth against the carpet or grass, it could mean a dog’s ear infection. In this case, the pet should be taken to the veterinarian for an examination.
The dog’s eyes should be light and clear without redness, soreness or tearing. Gently point the dog’s head (but not directly) towards the light and see how it reacts to it. If the dog narrows his eyes or refuses, then the light may hurt him. Also, check if the dog suddenly comes up with different things. If you notice any problems with your dog’s vision, consult a veterinarian.
A healthy dog will probably associate you with a cold, wet nose, but this is not a true way of confirming the good state of his health. When looking at the dog’s nose, make sure that he has no scabs, is not runny or leaking thick liquid or blood.
Some dogs have pink noses because the color of their nose changes – from black to pink and back again. This is perfectly normal, so don’t worry, but if your dog’s nose worries you, take him to the veterinarian for an examination.
Nobody wants his beloved dog to have bad breath, but in dogs, it is not only a social problem, but it can also actually be a disease symptom, for example with the digestive system or kidneys. The dog’s teeth should be white / cream without excess tartar (thick brown coating), and the gums pink or black, depending on skin pigmentation, but never swollen or bleeding.
Pay attention if the dog has problems with food, such as dropping food, reluctant food, excessive salivation, puts claws in the mouth or has bad breath. When visiting a veterinarian, always have a look at your dog’s teeth. Ideally, your dog should be used to cleaning the teeth at least twice a week, optimally every other day.
Dog’s skin and coat
Healthy dog skin should be pink or black, depending on the pigmentation of each breed or the genetic conditioning of your dog. Checking your dog for skin problems, use your fingers to separate his coat and see if there are scabs, scratches, scales, black or white pimples, and skin with infection or inflammation.
The dog’s coat should be thick (depending on the breed), shiny, without broken hair, bald patches, dandruff or fleas. Molting in dogs is something natural and lasts all year, but it increases in summer and autumn. For healthy skin and fur of your dog and your rugs, brush it regularly and invest in a decent vacuum cleaner. Non-limiting breeds, such as poodles, also require regular brushing, although they do not lose hair as much.
Dog’s paws and claws
Extreme weather conditions can cause a dog’s paw problems and damage them, so watch them regularly. After the winter walk, wipe the dog’s feet, as road salt may collect on the pads. It is toxic if your dog eats it by licking its paws. There is another threat in summer, the sun. Hot surfaces, including asphalt, can burn dog paw pads, so it’s best to walk with the pupil on the grass.
Checking the dog’s claws to see if they are smooth and fully developed. The claws can be black or white. If you notice a dog’s broken claw or missing claws or think the claws are rough, split or brittle, take your dog to the vet. Some dogs have it on their front legs, others on all four, and yet other dogs do not have wolf claws at all.