It is important that all dog owners fully understand common health conditions or injuries our beloved dogs are predisposed to. To help ensure our pets live a healthy and happy life, we must firstly educate ourselves on the general well-being of dogs and any specific dog breed related health issues or conditions. This will help us, as owners, to try our best to prevent injury and how best to treat health related issues.Listed below are five common pet injuries and how best to treat them at home.
This condition, also known as pink eye, affects humans as well as animals. Conjunctivitis can be the cause of a viral or bacterial infection and also; immune related. Symptoms to watch out for are spasmodic blinking, redness of the eye, squinting and any form of discharge, mucus or pus coming from the eye. The eye can also become swollen, which can be very painful if left untreated. Treatment of this condition largely depends on what type of conjunctivitis it is. You should always visit your vet if you’re concerned or your dog shows any of the symptoms. The vet may recommend changing your dog’s diet, if it’s related to any form of food allergy. Or they might prescribe an antibacterial ointment if the condition is bacterial related.
As our dogs age they’re more prone to developing conditions such as arthritis. As with humans, arthritis generally affects our joints as we age. There are ways we can help elevate the pain and make their condition more stable and manageable. Listed below are a few strategies you might want to try.
Adjust Your Home
You can provide supportive bedding and a pillow for your dog to rest on. You can also provide a carpeted area for your dog to walk upon.
This should always be a priority. If your dog is suffering with pain, they may become reluctant to go outside, but you shouldn’t discourage them from walking. Instead, provide them with some gentle exercise and a light daily walk to get their joints moving. You should never hurry them and let them take their time. Some dog breeds enjoy swimming, which is another great way to provide your dog with exercise.
Dogs love a good massage. This is a great way to help combat the pain, there are plenty of certified canine therapists that can help advice and work with you and your dog on managing their pain.
Cruciate Ligament Injury
This injury is one of the main cases of lameness in the dog’s hind. The dog’s knee is one of the weakest joints in a dog body and any form of rapture can occur for many reasons. Anything from stretching of the ligament, pressure of obesity or acute or chronic degeneration of the ligament. Some dog breeds are more susceptible of this condition than other dog breeds, but often, this condition develops in large to medium sized dog breeds at the age of four.
Surgery for this condition depends on the severity and the weight of your dog. If you do opt for surgery, your vet will help you with an aftercare plan to look after your dog at home. Aftercare can involve physical therapy, ice packs, certain exercise and prescribed medication to help reduce any inflammation and pain.
Skin Health Conditions
If your dog always seems to itch, rub or lick themselves, then they might be suffering with a skin condition. Treatment depends on what the condition is and what the vet considers to be the best form of action.
Listed below are a few common indicators that your dog is suffering with some form of skin condition and how best to treat it.
Signs of Hair Loss
This can also be caused by manage, infections or some form of allergen. If your dog is losing a lot of hair then this is not normal and they must be taken to the vet to be treated professionally. If the issue is not serious, the vet will prescribe an anti-itch spray, antibacterial ointment or antifungal shampoo. This will all help calm the itch and alleviate the symptoms.
Dullness of the Coat
There are many simple treatments that can help combat the dullness of a dog’s coat. You should look to add omega-3 to your dog’s diet as well as providing regular baths and grooming to help minimise old fur and any dead skin. You should also use a good quality shampoo for your dog.
Bacterial or Fungal Skin Conditions
For both conditions the best form of treatment is to look at providing a special diet, as well as treating the infection with a good quality shampoo that has antibacterial properties.
Otitis Externa (also known as an ear infection)
This condition is an inflammation of the dog’s external ear canal, which is very common amongst dogs. It can be caused by a reaction to a form of drug, foreign bodies, food allergies, autoimmune diseases or parasites. This condition can affect any dog breed of any age. Symptoms typically include on or more of the following: bad odour, scratching of the ear, head shaking or tilting and sometimes pain. If you do notice any of these signs you must take your dog to the vet immediately. The vet will prescribe a course of antibacterial drops for the ears and complete cleaning of the external ear. After, which your vet will advise for you to regularly clean your dog’s ears.