We all know that our pets age faster than we do. Many times people ask me how old their pet is in “people” years. The old rule of thumb 1 dog year equals 7 human years and 1 cat year equals 5 human years is not always correct but it does give you a pretty good idea. Regardless of your pet’s age, it is important to understand the things that will keep him healthy. Dogs and cats cannot tell you when they are feeling ill so it is important to pay close attention to changes in behaviour and subtle signs of illness. According to the a recent veterinary survey about 10% of all pets that appear healthy actually have undetected disease.
Here is a list of signs that your pet may be developing a problem. Many times people think that these are simply signs of old age, but they are not. If your pet shows these signs be sure to take him to see your veterinarian to get things checked out.
Excessive drooling or bad breath
Increased drinking and or urination
Dry, red or cloudy eyes
Change in appetite
Difficulty getting up, or stiffness on getting up
Diarrhea or vomiting
Coughing or sneezing excessively
Change in activity level
Skin lumps or sores
Sleeping more than normal
If your pet has these signs, it is likely that your veterinarian will want to do blood or urine testing and possibly radiographs or an ECG if he or she thinks that the heart is abnormal. If disease is detected early ,it is usually a lot easier to treat with either conventional or holistic medicine. Do not neglect your pet’s annual examination as it may save his or her life! ( Note : An annual exam does not mean annual vaccinations. Your pet should only receive necessary vaccines as determined by your pet’s health status, risk factors and veterinarian.)