Identifying The Most Common Pet Issues with our Council Bluffs Veterinarian
Just like humans, animals require preventative care as well as treatment for a variety of health issues. When cats and dogs receive regular health care, preventative treatments such as vaccinations and are given a healthy diet with plenty of exercise, they are more likely to live long, healthy lives. It's also a good idea to know what constitutes and emergency and to be prepared with the number of a veterinarian in Council Bluffs who is available for emergency care.
What Health Issues Are Common For Cats?
Typically, cats are low-maintenance. They keep themselves clean and indoor cats who are fed a healthy diet may go years and years without any type of health problem. Still, there are some common issues that cat owners will find they have to contend with.
- Vomiting. Often this is due to hairballs. You can minimize hairballs by keeping your cat brushed to remove excess fur. Other causes of vomiting include poison or ingesting something inedible. It's a good idea to keep an eye on your cat during and after they vomit, and paying attention to what they are vomiting.
- Tapeworms. These parasites grow in your cat's small intestine and cause problems such as weight loss and vomiting. You can usually confirm this by examining the feces and also checking their bedding. You'll notice Tapeworm segments that resemble grains of rice. Treatment for tapeworms may be oral or injected. Since tapeworms are caused by ingesting fleas, taking care of any flea problems is necessary.
- Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease. This is common especially for multiple-cat households, cats who eat strictly dry food and cats who are overweight. Stress is another factor. Signs and symptoms include urinating in unusual places, visible discomfort when urinating, bloody urine, dehydration and depression. If you suspect your cat has FLUTD, it's important that you seek veterinary care.
What Health Issues Are Common For Dogs?
- Ear infection. Dogs with ear infections will often seem to lose their balance, will scratch their ears and tilt their head excessively and you may see abnormal discharge come out of the ear.
- Roundworms, tapeworms and hookworms. Telltale signs that your dog has worms include weight loss, diarrhea, "scooting" on their bottom, appearance of worms in feces, vomiting.
- Hot spots, or acute moist dermatitis is a bacterial infection. The cause is irritation to the skin that causes your dog to compulsively lick or chew. Once the bacteria takes hold, the hot spot spreads, and your pet will continue to make it worse with their licking, chewing and scratching. Shaving the affected area, applying an antibiotic cream and implementing a cone so your dog can't lick usually clears it up quickly.
When Should You Consult Your Vet?
Because your pet can't talk, it's not always easy to tell when they are hurting or very sick. It's better to err on the side of caution and any of the following are cause for a trip to the vet:
- Excessive thirst
- Difficulty walking
- Lack of urination or bowel movement
- Bloody urination or stools
- Visibly in pain, whining and shaking, crying when they are moved.
- Open wounds, broken bones
Any of these symptoms warrant an immediate emergency trip to the veterinarian. Also, you know your pet best, if something seems "off" you should get them in. If you are looking for a veterinarian in Council Bluffs IA contact the Animal Clinic of Council Bluffs at (712) 323-0598.