It is the owner's responsibility to notice changes that might signify a sickness in your dog. It would be much easier if your dog could say to you that he feels bad, but he can't. It is up to you to notice changes in your pet's behavior that may be signs of some sort of sickness. This might include having no appetite, changes in stools or just being abnormally tired. The more information you have for your vet, the easier it will be for him to determine the problem. Most of the time, your dog will receive a basic exam and the vet will ask you many questions about your dog and his health.
One of the things your veterinarian will look at is your dog's nose. You have probably heard that dog's noses should be wet and cool. This is true for the most part, however a dog with a warm and dry nose is not necessarily sick.
However, if it's not, your vet will probably not be overly concerned. What will concern him is fluid, mucus or changes from the last visit. Your vet will also take a close look at your dog's eyes. Because eye diseases happen in many dogs, the vet will check to see if there are any warning signs that would warrant further testing. Not necessarily in this order, your vet will take a good look in your dog's mouth. He will be on the lookout for gum inflammation or tooth decay.
He can also check the blood pressure by simply pressing on your dog's gums. Pale gums can mean that you have an anemic pet, while a yellowish color can mean that your pet has a liver issue. Pink, healthy gums and strong teeth are a great sign. From here, your vet will also check the nails to see if there is damage in the nail bed or a wearing of one paw's nails. This can mean that the dog has an injury that is causing him to favor one leg.
Flaky nails also may call for further investigating for some sort of metabolic disorder. A healthy skin and coat will signify a healthy dog. However, a dull coat may mean that your dog has fleas, mites, or some other parasite. It can also mean that your dog has an infection somewhere else that needs to be found. Sometime during the examination, your vet will check your dog's genitals. For female dogs, the vet will check for discharge or irritation.
There could be some sort of reproductive or urinary problem. A male dog will also be checked for swelling or inflammation in the genitals to ensure good health. Through these different methods of checking your dog, your vet will be able to tell if there is some sort of condition that needs further looking into. Assuming that you have noticed no problems with your dog and each of these areas appears perfectly healthy, your vet will most likely present you with a clean bill of health for your four-legged friend!.
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