How to Watch for Visible Signs and Symptoms in Pets?

Animals can’t tell us how they are feeling, so it is difficult to tell if our pets are under the weather or if they are just having a bad day. However, we can get a clue to if they are feeling sick by watching for some visible signs and symptoms.

Keep in mind that you are the best source of information for your veterinarian when your pet is sick. You know your pet like no one else does – you know how your pet behaves, how often it eats, how often it drinks, and how often it goes to the bathroom. Changes in any of these behaviors and routines can be caused by an underlying condition or illness.

Visible Signs and Symptoms in Dogs and Cats

Some of the most common illnesses in dogs include ear infections, worms, fleas, hot spots, vomiting, and diarrhea, while cats are more prone to illnesses that include vomiting, Feline Lower Urinary Tract Diseases (FLUTD), fleas, tapeworms, and diarrhea. Make sure to check out the symptoms associated with these common diseases, as well as some of the most common symptoms found in pets, as they can often be hard to detect in an otherwise healthy pet.

A lot of symptoms, whether they are obvious or concealed, are a sign that something serious is going on with your pet. Check out PetPremium’s list here of over 250 symptoms found in cats, dogs, and both, so you know what to keep an eye out for when playing around with your pet.

Most Common Symptoms in Pets

  • Lethargy
    Lethargy means more than just being sleepy. When your pet is lethargic, your pet is sleeping more than normal, but he/she is also probably not displaying the same zest for life that he/she normally does.
  • Changes in Eating
    Maybe your once voracious pet has a decreased appetite or no interest in food at all. Your pet suddenly becoming ravenous when they have not also become more active should be noted, too. Changes in eating and appetite often indicate an underlying problem.
  • Changes in Drinking
    If your pet seems excessively thirsty or dehydrated, or is just drinking more or less than normal, it can be a symptom of a disease or illness in dogs and cats. Pay close attention to how often you are filling your pet’s water bowl.
  • Difficulty Rising
    Difficulty rising is a common symptom of arthritis, a disease older pets are prone to. Pets experiencing arthritis are typically stiffer when they first wake up, and gain mobility throughout the day.
  • Behavior Changes
    A behavioral change is often one of the first signs that your pet is not feeling well. If your pet doesn’t want to be touched in a specific area of its body, seems depressed or suddenly becomes less active, or if your pet suddenly ignores everything that you say and becomes withdrawn, it’s time to go to the veterinarian.

The above are all symptoms of a sick pet. Your pet may display one or more of the symptoms at a time. No matter how many or how few symptoms you observe, always consult your veterinarian if you think something may be wrong with your cat or dog. Use this guide to check your pets’ symptom and keep him/her as happy and healthy as possible.

Go to our dog symptom checker or cat symptom checker here!

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