8 Common Diseases in Dogs

April 5, 2018
Recognizing the symptoms of certain illnesses is a fundamental part of preserving a dog's health, and even ensuring their survival, since there are pathologies that can be deadly.
Prevention and information are the best tools we have to help take care of our pets. If we know the symptoms and quickly take them to the vet, there are much higher chances that they will heal and improve. In this article, we are going to talk about the most common diseases in dogs.

Common Diseases in Dogs

It is essential that you pay attention to changes in your pet’s habits, since these signs often indicate that something is amiss.

The symptoms are not always visible, such as vomiting or diarrhea; sometimes they exhibit fatigue or an an unusual lack of energy, or begin adopting different habits at mealtime. Some of the most common diseases in dogs are:

 

1. Otitis

This type of ear infection is most common in dog breeds with long, droopy ears like cocker spaniels and bloodhounds, although it can affect all dogs that have been in contact with water or moisture.

Golden cocker spaniel in field with flowers

If your pet scratches its ears and moves its head side to side, or if you detect a foul odor when your pet comes near you and see its ears secreting a yellowish liquid, it is likely that he or she has otitis.

 

2. Distemper

Fortunately, there is a preventative vaccine for this disease, but it is highly contagious and becomes deadly in animals that are not inoculated or that are only a few weeks old.

There are times when distemper can not be diagnosed, which is why it is known as ‘the thousand symptom pathology’: coughing, sneezing, secretions, fever, diarrhea and nervous tics are just a few of the common symptoms.

 

3. Mange (Scabies)

Scabies, also commonly known as Mange, is a skin disease. It can appear in dog, cats, and even people. Mange is caused by microscopic parasites called mites that pierce and infect the dermis.

There are two types of mange frequently found in dogs: sarcoptic mange, which is contagious and transmitted upon contact with an infected animal, and demodectic mange. The latter is related to immune or genetic problems.
smiling dog with mange

 

4. Internal Parasites

The most common group of ‘worms’ that affect dogs are tapeworms. They are flat and lodge themselves in the animal’s intestines, feeding on whatever said animal consumes. This disease spreads through contaminated feces, or raw or undercooked food.

Brown pitbull scratching

It is essential that you deworm your pet using appropriate treatments, prescribed by a trusted veterinarian: puppies are not the only ones that need to be dewormed, since parasites affect adults just as easily. Sometimes, the worms can be seen and detected in the dog’s stools.

5. Arthrosis

So, this is one of the most common diseases in dogs that are elderly. And, it also occurs in certain breeds such as German Shepherds and Dobermans. What’s more, arthrosis is the inflammation and degeneration of the joints, mainly in the hips and elbows.

The animal’s risk of suffering this disease increases if he or she is obese or does not get enough exercise.

6. Parvovirus

This disease mainly affects the animal’s digestive system, but also causes a decrease in the number of red blood cells in their blood and prevents their heart and intestines from functioning properly.

sick puppy at veteranarian

The symptoms of canine parvovirus include vomiting, lack of appetite, bloody stools, fatigue, diarrhea, depression, lack of energy and dehydration. The good news is that we can prevent it with a vaccine. But, a veterinarian must administer it to them when they are puppies.

 

7. Gastritis

Well, it is more common than you might think. And in most cases, people do not realize that their pet is suffering from this disease. Basically, gastritis is the inflammation or irritation of the gastric mucosa. It starts because of a poor diet: inadequate food, overly copious portions or by the animal eating/swallowing its food too quickly.

The main symptoms are vomiting and abdominal distention (a swollen belly), but canine gastritis can also cause loss of appetite, weight loss, lack of energy and an excessive production of saliva.

 

8. Leishmaniasis

This disease spreads by mosquito and is frequent in certain areas of Spain and Europe. The symptoms of leishmaniasis are very diverse and the best way to avoid contagion is by eliminating the causative agent.

Do not leave containers outdoors with standing water in them (so that insects can not use them to lay their eggs), spray aerosol repellents on doors and windows so they do not enter the house, and apply mosquito-repelling medication to your pets with a pipette.