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Saturday, 23 August 2008

How to Identify Symptoms of Dog Worms

There are five different types of intestinal dog worms, which your dog can be infested with. These include: heart worm, hookworm, roundworm, tapeworm and whip worm. It is recommended that you educate yourself on the different types of dog worms so as to be able to recognize the symptoms and characteristics, when they become evident in your dog.

Early worm detection is important because each type of dog worm requires a different form of treatment. You should also be fully aware of the fact that roundworm and hookworm can also be transmitted to humans. Some dog worm infestations may show little to no symptoms, whereas others can demonstrate severe symptoms, such as vomiting, diarrhoea and weight loss. Some dog worms can be seen by the naked eye while some cannot, therefore it is a good idea to ask your vet to perform a stool test for dog worms once a year.

Below is a list of symptoms of dog worm infestation, but you should keep in mind that these symptoms can also be a sign of a more serious problem. Always consult a veterinarian whenever your dog is not behaving normal.

 Dull coat
 Weight loss
 Appetite loss
 Pot-bellied appearance
 Coughing
 Low energy level
 Diarrhoea
 Vomiting

Roundworms: This is the most common type of dog worm, which affects the intestines and causes a pot-bellied appearance, mostly in puppies. Puppies are often infected before birth through the mother’s uterus or through her milk. Puppies can also contract these dog worms through the ingestion of an infected animal (such as a rodent) or infected soil. The symptoms of a severe infestation are: pot-belly appearance, diarrhoea, vomiting, dull coat and weight loss.
Puppies should be de-wormed every 2 weeks between 2 and 12 weeks of age, then monthly until he/she is 6 months old. Once your puppy has reached 6 months of age, he/she is less susceptible to contracting these worms but should continue yearly exams (or more often if considered high-risk).

Hookworms: Hookworm harbours in the intestines and can also be transmitted to humans. Hookworms can affect a dog at any age. It is a small, thin dog worm that hooks on to the intestinal wall and sucks the blood from its victim, which causes anaemia and perhaps death. Due to their sharp teeth, they also cause bleeding in the intestines. Hookworms are not visible by the naked eye, therefore should be diagnosed by a vet.

• Tapeworms: The tapeworm derives its name from its long, flat, tape-like appearance. It is yet another parasite that affects the intestines, and like the roundworm, can be seen by the naked eye. Broken pieces of this dog worm would be found in the dog’s fecal matter, which give it a rice-like appearance. Common symptoms of severe tapeworm infestation are abdominal pain, nervousness, severe itching around the anus, vomiting and weight loss.

• Whip worm: Whip worms are long, thin whip-shaped dog worms that live in the dog's colon and are not visible by the naked eye. They attach themselves to the intestinal walls and feed off of them which, in turn, cause intestinal bleeding. Common symptoms of whip worm infestation are anaemia, weight loss, flatulence, diarrhoea with blood or mucus in the stool and lack of energy.
Although whip worms are the most difficult to eliminate among the families of dog worms, there is effective treatment available.

Heart worms: Heart worm, although highly preventable, has the potential to be fatal, if contracted and left untreated.
Heart worm is spread by mosquitoes, mostly during the warm months when mosquitoes are most active. The mosquito becomes infected from biting dogs that carry the disease. These dog worms destroy the muscle and tissue of the heart, which can cause congestive heart failure and result in death. At this advanced stage, your dog would experience the typical signs of worms, such as pot-belly, coughing, lack of energy and dull coat.

Unfortunately, there are no symptoms for this disease until it has progressed to an advanced stage.

Contact your vet if your dog displays any symptoms after receiving worm medication.

This information is NOT intended to replace the advice of a veterinarian.Please be advised that the information provided on this site is offered for research purposes only.

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How to Diagnose Symptoms of Dog Poisoning

Dogs are curious by nature and they love to explore dirty places. This can make them have direct contact with poison insects, dead animals remain and toxic plants. Their indiscriminate eating habits often lead to poisoning. Unless you or another person witnesses the ingestion or exposure to the poison, diagnosis may be difficult.

Some of the potentially dangerous substances that can be consumed by your dog include:

Chocolate which contains a substance called theobromine which can cause your dog to develop symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, seizure, heart problems and even death. The illness depends mainly on the amount of chocolate consumed.

Plants such as sago palm, oleander, azalea, mistletoe and Easter lily etc. which are highly toxic and can cause your dog to exhibit symptoms such as rash, cramp, vomiting and kidney problems.

Rat baits contain inert ingredients that can attract your pet to sniff and eat.
Bleach can cause drooling, vomiting, and abdominal pain to your dog.
Human drugs can be dangerous to the dog if used improperly. Keep all the medicines out of your dog’s reach.

The symptoms of a poisoned dog are varied and may mimic other illnesses. The most common symptoms include:

Vomiting.

Diarrhea.

Lethargy.

Lack of appetite.

Staggering.

Difficulty in breathing.

Some poisons may cause hyper excitability.

Muscle rigidity or tremors.

Bleeding disorders.

Heart, kidney or liver disorders.

Sensitivity to touch.

Light or sound which may trigger seizures, and lead to coma and death.

Some poisons are inhaled or absorbed into the body but most are ingested. The effect of the poison is not always immediately apparent. Although most signs of poisoning appear within three days, the toxic substance may not cause illness for days, months, or even years. The prognosis depends upon what the poisonous substance is, how much of the poison the dog has been exposed to and how long it remains in the body before treatment is begun. Immediate treatment may prevent significant illness, but some poisonings may cause permanent damage or death even if treatment is begun right away. If your dog ingests a potentially poisonous substance but does not appear ill at the moment, don't assume he/she is okay. Call the veterinarian immediately.

If the dog has come into contact with the poisonous substance on the skin, a bath in warm water with soap is the best way to clean the dog and stop it from licking the poison off. Even if the dog is not showing any signs of discomfort with the poison on its skin or coat, it should be washed off immediately.

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How to Diagnose Dog Chocolate Symptoms


The problem, according to veterinary experts, is that eating a speck of chocolate leads a dog to crave for more. It can mean that your dog will jump at an opportunity to get any type of chocolate, not knowing that certain chocolates are more lethal than other types. Larger amounts of chocolate, particularly of the most toxic type, can bring about epileptic seizures in some dogs, and in all dogs, can kill.

Cocoa beans that are used in the chocolate production contain theobromine which can be toxic for your dog. Metabolize of theobromine in dog is very slow so it can stay in the bloodsteam for many hours which can affect and interfere with the central nervous system causing heart and kidneys problems.

As time passes, more theobromine will be absorbed into the blood stream which will now affects the central nervous system causing heart rate to increase, serious muscle twitching, a rise in blood pressure and hyperactivity. For worst case the dog may have heart arrhythmia, seizures, abnormally high body temperature or hyperthermia and death.

The symptoms of theobromine poisoning can be clearly seen within 4 - 24 hours after chocolate has been consumed by your dog. The early signs of chocolate symptoms that can be seen externally are excessive thirst for water, vomiting, urination increased, diarrhea and restless.

The danger from chocolate consumption varies on the size and health of your dog, quantity of theobromine eaten, and sensitivity to poisonous substances which varies for each type of dog.

Holidays are especially dangerous times, when large quantities of candy and other chocolate treats may be found in the home. Chocolate has a tempting taste that pets and owners alike can enjoy. Since our dogs are often considered members of the family, it is natural to wish to share our treats. But this is one treat that should be kept out of his or her reach.

Another fact that must be considered is that the quantity of theobromine varies in different types of chocolate. Some have small amount of theobromine; other types have a large amount and still another type contains an amount that is somewhere in between. For example white chocolate has the least amount of theobromine: 1 mg per ounce. Far on the other side of the spectrum is baking chocolate, which has a huge 450 mg of theobromine per ounce! Hot chocolate, 12 mg of theobromine per ounce; milk chocolate, 60 mg/oz; and up there near baking chocolate: semi-sweet chocolate with 260 mg/oz.

Knowing which chocolate is the most toxic is important, but leaves one wondering how much must be eaten to poison a dog. The list below should be helpful. Maybe you can post somewhere on your refrigerator?

• White chocolate: 200 ounces per pound of body weight. It takes 250 pounds of white chocolate to cause signs of poisoning in a 20-pound dog, 125 pounds for a 10-pound dog.
• Milk chocolate: 1 ounce per pound of body weight. Approximately one pound of milk chocolate is poisonous to a 20-pound dog; one-half pound for a 10-pound dog. The average chocolate bar contains 2 to 3 ounces of milk chocolate. It would take 2-3 candy bars to poison a 10 pound dog. Semi-sweet chocolate has a similar toxic level.
• Sweet cocoa: 0.3 ounces per pound of body weight. One-third of a pound of sweet cocoa is toxic to a 20-pound dog; 1/6 pound for a 10-pound dog.
• Baking chocolate: 0.1 ounce per pound body weight. Two one-ounce squares of bakers' chocolate is toxic to a 20-pound dog; one ounce for a 10-pound dog.
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How to Diagnose Dog Symptoms Dry Nose

One symptom that is often overlooked in dogs is a dry nose. Although having a warm, dry nose doesn't necessarily mean that the dog is sick, if you have noticed any other symptoms, you may want to look out for this common dog symptom; dry nose.

It is perfectly normal for a dog's nose to dry out in the sun, or go from cool and moist to warm and reasonably dry and back again. In the course of a day, this is perfectly normal. However, if the dog's nose stays dry for a prolonged period, there may be cause for concern.

If the nose changes its color or texture that is another issue. Also if your dog has light skin such as a pink nose you should talk to your vet. Dogs or any species for that matter can get skin cancer just like humans. What is more serious, however, is a change in texture to the dog's nose, such as it becoming flaky and crusty and covered with sores.

Other dog nose conditions that you should be able to diagnose include:

1. Allergies and sensitivities due to plastics and dyes that may also manifest as changes on the nose and muzzle area on pets fed from plastic dishes. It is recommended that you use stainless steel bowls for feeding to eliminate this potential problem.
2. Signs of discharge coming from the nostrils should be examined by your veterinarian. Coughing, sneezing and difficulty breathing can be signs of anything from a respiratory infection to a nasal foreign body to a tumor in the nasal passages.
3. Dogs are prone to sunburn and subsequent skin cancer on noses, ear tips, and around eyes. Light coated, pink-nosed animals are at greatest risk. Check with your veterinarian about providing sun protection for your pet if they are in this category of risk.

If you have recently observed any other symptoms, such as dog parvo symptoms, a dry nose may be part of them. However, if your dog has been well, he/she may have a dermatological condition, which should also be seen by a vet.

A dry nose is generally not something much to worry about. However, if the dog's nose is dry for a prolonged period, or you experience any other symptoms around the nose, the dog may be suffering from a skin condition. If in doubt contact your vet.
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How to Identify Dog Symptoms Vomiting

There are several signs that will tell you that your dog is vomiting. The true sign of vomiting is heaving of the belly muscles. This heaving is very noticeable if you happen to be nearby. Another sign is drooling, along with retching or gulping. The drooling occurs before the vomiting, and is considered a sign of nausea.

Your dog may also regurgitate solids and liquids from time to time. The food or liquid comes back up and move out. There is usually little or no effort involved, and you won't see dog's belly heaving.

Your dog may be dropping food or water, or continually trying to swallow. While the signs are easy to distinguish from those of vomiting, the difference between them and regurgitation isn't as easy to detect.

Gagging and hacking are more like a cough rather than a sign of vomiting. The chest may move a bit as the dog hacks up mucus, fluids or foamy material.

It's important for your dog's health that you know the signs of vomiting, regurgitation, dropping food and water,gagging and hacking. Each one of them is an indication that your dog may be having some problem or an infection.

Vomiting is not a disease; rather, it is a symptom of many different diseases. Many cases of vomiting are self-limiting after a few days. Less commonly, vomiting may result from a serious illness, such as cancer. Even when vomiting is caused by mild illnesses, it may lead to death of the animal if treatment is not begun early enough to prevent severe fluid and nutrient losses.

The actual cause of vomiting is rarely easy to pin point. But, there are a few likely suspects; ate a toxic morsel while you were not watching, rancid food, exposure to toxic cleaning agents, pesticides and insecticides, maybe even new flooring chemical residues.

Other overlooked causes include, eating commercial pet food over a long period of time. premature weaning of puppies compromising the immune system of the dog for life.

Once in a while however, every dog has a bout of vomiting or diarrhea. This may happen if a dog has eaten something disagreeable, eaten too much, too fast or exercised too soon after eating, is overly excited or nervous, or their body is reacting to any of a number of other non-serious conditions.

If your dog is not showing other signs of illness, observe your dog and after a period of 12 hours do the following:
• Remove the food and water from the dog to allow irritated intestinal you do not have to worry about dehydration. If the diarrhea resolves, after 24 hours, you may give your dog very small amounts of a bland food, such as drained, cooked hamburger mixed with an equal amount of cooked rice.
• Observe your dog closely. Check if the dog’s behavior and activity are normal. Try to identify the cause of the problem. Could your dog have eaten something (like grass, garbage, or a dead animal) that upset its digestive system? Has your dog been wormed lately? Watch how your dog vomits or eliminates so you can describe it to your vet if symptoms persist. Examine the stool or vomit. Collect samples if you believe you will need to take your dog in. Monitor the dog's weight for possible weight loss.

Call your Vet when you notice the following symptoms:
1. blood in vomit
2. vomiting accompanied by diarrhea
3. vomit looks and smells like stool
4. vomiting is projectile
5. vomiting is sporadic and there is no relationship to meals
6. multiple bouts of vomiting occur over a short period of time
7. ingestion of a poison (like antifreeze or fertilizer) is suspected
8. vomiting persists more than a day or two
9. stomach bloating occurs or your dog tries to vomit but is unable
10. dog appears listless
11. there is weight loss
12. dog showing other signs of illness such as labored breathing or pain

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Sunday, 20 July 2008

How To Diagnose Dog Symptoms Panting

If you notice your dog pacing and panting there could be something wrong. It might be a stress related problem or it could be physical. I would therefore need to try and find out what is happening.
Is the dog eating? Drinking? Going to the bathroom in a normal manner?

Your dog could be stressed over some noise it hears, or it could have been exposed to poison. Is the dog salivating more than normal? Does it have a temp that is higher or lower than normal? A normal temp for a dog is: 100.4 F to 102.2 F.

Panting can be a symptom of lungworm or heartworm, both of which require medical treatment, but more often frequent dog panting is caused by obesity or stress. An obese dog may literally feel crushed by his weight.
There are a lot of things panting could be related to, depending upon the type of symptoms it is displaying.

I t is important that you recognize signs and symptoms of illness or pain of your dog early enough to avoid high Vet expenses. It is more effective to treat the dog’s illness at an early stage than wait until it is too late. You should be able to keep accurate record of the symptoms your dog is exhibiting so as your Vet can correctly diagnose and treat the dog illness effectively.

The following signs and symptoms should be observed while keeping the dog record.
• A newborn puppy will have a temperature of 94-97º F. which will eventually reach the normal adult body temperature of 101.5º F. at the age of 4 weeks old. Excitement can cause the temperature to rise by 2-3º when the dog is actually in normal health. If your dog’s temperature rises beyond 105º F or falls below 96º F you should see your Vet immediately.
• An adult dog will have a respiratory rate of 15-20 breaths per minute (depending on such variables as size and weight) and a heart rate of 80-120 beats per minute.
• Any behavior changes that are not related to a change in the household atmosphere may be an indication of an illness. Signs of behavioral changes may include:
Depression, Anxiety, Fatigue, Sleepiness Trembling Falling/Stumbling
• If your dog shows any of these signs, he/she needs to be kept under close watch for a few hours, or even a few days, until positive signs develop or he/she has returned to normal. Do not try to exercise the dog or put him/her in any situation that may cause stress.
• Dogs that are in pain are likely to indicate that they are suffering by giving you clues as to where the area of discomfort is. For instance, a dog that has abdominal pain will continually glance toward their belly, bite or lick the area, and will not want to leave his/her bed.
• A dog that is in pain may also show signs of aggression.

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