We all love our pets like family, and our family deserves proper medical care and attention when necessary. Cats and dogs are built differently from humans, their anatomy involves impressive self-maintenance and the ability to survive and thrive in wild habitats. However, just like us, our pets face health issues and diseases that can seriously harm them. Veterinary care centers in Vancouver are trained to diagnose and treat animals, but awareness and prevention is the role of responsible pet owners. Since animals are unable to communicate with us when they are sick, it’s important that owners can identify symptoms of common medical conditions and diseases in their pets.

Gastrointestinal Illness

Digestive problems in cats and dogs are relatively common and should be monitored carefully as they can be a sign of more serious illness. Both dogs and cats are susceptible to certain gastrointestinal illnesses such as colitis, parasites, or digestive system cancers. Some signs and symptoms to watch out for are vomiting, diarrhea, excessive drooling (in dogs), loss of appetite, dehydration, and bleeding.

Kennel cough or Bordetella

In dogs, kennel cough is a highly contagious infection that is commonly transmitted in places where many dogs congregate together, such as daycare and dog parks. The most obvious symptom of kennel cough is, well, a cough. Dogs who have contracted the infection will make an unusual coughing noise, making it more obvious than other illnesses that have no signs. Other symptoms include runny nose and eyes, sneezing, and loss of appetite. Kennel cough is also known as Bordetella. The term Bordetella is commonly used to describe respiratory infections in cats. In cats, Bordetella symptoms show as sneezing, nasal discharge, and coughing. Bordetella can be particularly harmful and, in rare incidents, deathly, to young cats and kittens. A veterinary care center in Vancouver will be able to answer any questions you have when your pet seems to be under the weather.

Hookworms, roundworms, and heartworms

Worms may affect both cats and dogs and can be harder to identify than other common animal diseases; some pets show no symptoms at all. Roundworms and hookworms are intestinal parasites that develop from larvae. They are a nuisance and can cause more serious health issues for animals if not properly treated. Worms can be visible on pets depending on the type, though a more visible common symptom in both cats and dogs is skin lesions and an increase in scratching.

Ringworm, a circularly shaped fungal rash, is a common skin infection in both cats and dogs. This disease, not to be mistaken with hookworms or roundworms, has no association with actual worms and gets its name from its appearance. Pets contract ringworm through other infected animals, or by touching something that has the fungus. Humans can also contract ringworm and experience similar symptoms. The treatment is straightforward and harmless for animals- if you notice any kind of unusual rashes on your pet, consult a veterinary care center in Vancouver.

Cypress Vet offers professional and knowledgeable medical and pet care services for people and their furry friends in the Lower Mainland. To learn more, visit Cypress St. Animal Hospital.