Symptoms of Illness in Dogs, Definition of Dog Illnesses & Diagnosis, Canine

Learn how to spot canine & puppy illnesses…

Read our guide for the definition and symptoms and causes of illness in your dog or puppy and how to recognize and spot any problems early…

Symptoms of Illness in Dogs

Although we aim to provide a safe and healthy environment for our beloved dogs, feeding them the right diet with lots of exercise, sometimes we just can’t avoid our pooch from becoming ill, for whatever reason this maybe.

Causes of Illness in Dogs

There are many causes of illnesses in dogs including bacteria, viral and metabolic…the list goes on, but we have listed some of the causes of canine illnesses below…

  • Your dog may have inherited poor genes and not developed optimally.
  • Your dog may have specific allergies that have made him ill.
  • Is your dog receiving a good healthy diet with the right nutrients?
  • Poison, has your dog disappeared for hours on end and come back showing signs of being ill.
  • Is your dog receiving enough exercise.
  • Sleep is also very important for your dog to remain healthy and well.
  • Has your dog or puppy had the right vaccinations and/or immunisations.
  • Has there been a recent change to the environment, moving House or have you recently started a new job that leaves your dog on his own for periods of time, have you considered that it maybe dog separation anxiety.
  • Has your dog recently been bitten by a mosquito or tick, remember mosquitoes carry heartworm which is often fatal to dogs, and ticks also carry canine lyme disease.

Symptoms of Illness in Dogs

Sometimes it is difficult to diagnose symptoms of illness in dogs until the symptoms have become too advanced, this is certainly the case with health conditions like canine congestive heart failure and also heart worm.

  • Your dog or puppy may start vomiting or have diarrhea.
  • Your dog may pass blood in the urine.
  • Stools may also appear black with blood.
  • Does your dog seem himself, you are often the best person to diagnose any problems or concerns in your dog or puppy’s behavior that just don’t seem like your old dog or puppy.
  • Has your dog been losing weight or is your puppy failing to eat or gain any weight.
  • Is your dog coughing, if he is you might find our section on treating kennel cough symptoms useful.
  • Is your dog or puppy having problems breathing, this maybe the sign of respiratory  problems.
  • Your dog should have wet nose, a dry nose is often a sign of illness.
  • Is there any discharge from your dog’s eyes, squinting or redness.
  • Is your dog limping, if he is it might be due to a thorn in his paw or something more serious like arthritis, tendonitis, hip displasia or luxating patella.
  • Watch how much your dog is drinking as a dog that drinks too much maybe suffering from a kidney or liver problems, he may even have diabetes.
  • Does your dog have a healthy coat? If you notice your dog scratching or itching he may have fleas, ticks or dog mites.
  • Is your dog or puppy still eating or have they lost their appetite?
  • Is your dog exhibiting a nasty smell?
  • Is your dog suffering from constipation, check out our section on constipation in dogs for more information.

We hope you found our guide to spotting the symptoms of illness in dogs useful, but you may also find our sections on the cause of dog vomiting and how to cure diarrhea in dogs also beneficial. Remember that the information on this page should not be used as diagnosis tool, you should always get advice from your vet first.