Three medical conditions to watch out for in your dog


From fashionable bandanas to diamante studded collars, the latest toys, to the newest high-end food brands, chances are that if you are a dog owner, nothing is too much trouble when it comes to spoiling your pampered pooch. However, it is also essential to look after your dog’s physical health, by making sure they have the right diet, get enough daily exercise and keeping an eye open for any possible health conditions. As well as being susceptible to some of the same illnesses as humans, such as obesity and tooth decay, there are certain other conditions specific to dogs. Considering this, here are three medical conditions to watch out for in your dog.

1.   Parasites

Dogs regularly come across parasites in their day-to-day lives. These might be external parasites, such as fleas or ticks, or internal ones, such as heartworms and intestinal worms. In addition to it being a pain to deal with an infestation—no one wants to have to de-flea their entire home—parasites can cause your dog a lot of discomfort. Sometimes, as in the case of the aggressive heartworm, they can cause death if left untreated. Fortunately, parasites are easy to prevent by giving your dog a regular dosage of preventative flea and wormer medicines.

2.   Breed-specific conditions

Certain dog breeds are sadly predisposed to hereditary conditions due to the selective breeding processes involved in producing a purebred breed. Amongst the most high-risk breeds are bulldogs, who have been described as being the most extreme example of breed manipulation resulting in congenital health issues; German shepherds, who are prone to hip dysplasia; and cocker spaniels, who are likely to develop epilepsy, heart and liver diseases, and orthopedic problems. If your heart is set on owning a specific breed, always buy through a trusted breeder who will try to prevent these problems through screening. If you already own a purebred dog, find a trusted vet in your area, such as a veterinarian Midlothian VA, who will be able to advise you further on how best to care for your four-legged friend.

3.   Poisoning

Due to their past as scavengers and pack animals, dogs are, by nature, inquisitive and often food-driven—how many times have you had to wrestle a pair of socks from your dog? This natural instinct does have the drawback of leaving dogs more susceptible to eating something they shouldn’t have. From the aforementioned socks to toxic plants like foxgloves, lilies, and tulips, medications, and poisonous human foods, if a dog ingests something toxic to them, it can prove fatal if emergency veterinary care isn’t immediately sought. The best way to prevent poisoning is to be vigilant. Assess what might be a dangerous temptation in your dog’s environment and remove it. If your dog is showing a suspicious interest in a specific item, it is best to keep it out of the way to avoid any accidents. Also, remember to keep the socks tidied away!