Watch Out for These Unexpected Things That Make Dogs Sick

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Things that make dogs sick

There are thousands of things that can make dogs sick. Many pet owners often do not know about these things until an accident, injury, illness, or toxicity occurs. This article will review a few things that you may not realize can make your dog sick and provide tips on how to best protect your dog.

7 Common Things That Make Dogs Sick

Below are seven common things that make dogs sick.

  1. Household Plants – There are house plants and garden plants dangerous to dogs and have the potential to make them very sick or even be life-threatening. Most house plants cause irritation to the mouth, throat, esophagus, and/or stomach which can lead to symptoms that include drooling, gagging, pawing at the mouth, decreased appetite, vomiting, and/or diarrhea. Some plants such as the Sago Palm can cause severe toxicity leading to liver failure and death. For more information – go to Adding Some Green to Your Home? Reconsider These Plants Dangerous to Dogs. (INSERT LINK)
  2. Human Foods – Some human foods can be dangerous and can even be fatal to dogs if ingested. Almost any food can make a dog sick when fed in abundance and some foods can be dangerous when fed even in small quantities. For example, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, and chocolate are common foods that can be toxic to dogs even in small quantities. Foods high in fat can cause pancreatitis in some dogs.  To learn more about dangerous foods for dogs, go to Be Careful with These 5 Foods That Make Dogs Sick.
  3. Outdoor Dangers – The outdoors can be a dangerous place for dogs. Common dangers include being hit by a car, lacerations, dog fights, animal attacks, exposure to trash and toxins, increased risk of infections, and gunshot wounds just to name a few. Some things you can do to protect your dog is to keep your dog on a leash or in a fenced-in yard, ensure he or she is identified with a collar, tag, and microchip, and is fully vaccinated.  Learn more about common dangers and how to keep your dog safe in this article: Outdoor Dog Safety 101: Keeping Your Pup Safe in Nature. (INSERT LINK)
  4. Infectious Diseases – Dogs can acquire infections in a variety of ways and they can occur to different parts of the body. For example, some dogs will get ear infections that can be caused by yeasts or bacteria. Some dogs can acquire respiratory infections that can be viral, bacterial, or fungal.  Infections can be spread dog to dog, from other animals, from parasites and insects, and others can come from the soil. Infectious diseases in dogs include Lyme disease, parvovirus, bordetella (kennel cough), and canine influenza virus (dog flu). Many infectious diseases can be prevented by routine vaccines and parasite control medications. Get tips on Keeping Your Dog Safe from the Most Common Dog Illnesses.
  5. Parasitic Infections – A parasite is a plant or animal that lives upon or within another living organism.  There are many types of parasitic infections that dogs can acquire. Parasites can live in the intestines (hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, and tapeworms), in the ears (ear mites), on the skin (fleas, ticks, walking dandruff mite), in the respiratory tract (lungworms), heart (heartworms), or in the skin (mange). They can also migrate to other parts of the body such as the eye or heart. Each parasite has a very specific mode of infection and life cycle. Some dogs are born with the parasites, acquired from other pets, or from vectors such as being bitten by a mosquito (heartworms). Parasites cause disease that ranges from trivial to severe or even fatal. Parasitic infections are often most severe in immature puppies and kittens, sick or debilitated pets, or in pets with a suppressed immune system. Many parasitic infections can be prevented with good veterinary care that includes flea, tick, and heartworm prevention medications. Learn more about Parasitic Infections in Dogs.
  6. Genetic Diseases – Some dogs have diseases they are born with or to which they are genetically predisposed. For example, some dog breeds can acquire or be predisposed to hip dysplasia or arthritis. Other dogs are predisposed to heart disease or can be born with a heart defect. If you are getting a new dog that is known to have genetic abnormalities, discuss this with your veterinarian. Genetic testing can be done to determine if the breeding dogs are at risk for some diseases. Your vet may be able to point you in the direction of a good and reputable breeder as well.
  7. Dental Disease – Diseases of the teeth and gums is one of the most common diseases of dogs. Dental disease can be prevented with daily tooth brushing and routine professional dental cleaning with your veterinarian.

We hope these tips help you better protect your pooch from things that make dogs sick.

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