Health is a concern that all dog owners share. We want to know that we’re doing everything in our capacity to ensure our beloved pets lead a long and healthy life. But sometimes, these considerations get pushed to the wayside as we become less vigilant checking for signs our dogs aren’t in optimal health.

Needless to say, it’s important to stay on track with keeping an eye out for any signs which point to health problems with your dog. Catching any health problems early will not only increase the chances of a quick recovery, it will also help ensure your dog isn’t in unnecessary pain for too long.

If you don’t know what to look out for, here are four health problems you should act on if you notice them in your dog.

1.   Ear Infections

Unfortunately, most dogs will suffer from an ear infection at some point in their life. Common symptoms including odors, whining, itchiness, and head shaking, so if your dog hasn’t been acting like their usual self, be sure to check whether an ear infection is the root of their odd behavior.

You may be wondering, how do dogs even get ear infections? Well, there are numerous causes such as bacteria, moisture, yeast, and allergies. It’s very common for dogs to get ear infections, so don’t panic if you find your dog is presenting symptoms.

The good news is that treatment is relatively straightforward. To get your dog on the mend, you’ll need to clean their ear using a cleanser and cotton ball. Your vet will also prescribe medicated ointment or drops, or in some cases, oral medication for you to administer.

2.   Allergies

Allergies in dogs are sometimes a bit tricky to detect. Owners may dismiss the symptoms of an allergy as just a passing problem, and consequently not act on them in due time. It doesn’t help that some signs that your dog has an allergy are not that obvious, such as a runny nose, sneezing, and constant licking.

So, how do you diagnose an allergy? You’ll need to take your dog to your vet, who will administer allergy tests to determine exactly the cause of your dog’s allergy (or allergies!).

Just as a head’s up, even relatively “simple” procedures at the vet like allergy tests can be expensive, so it’s always a good idea to look into getting pet insurance so you won’t have to pay an arm and a leg for the bill.

3.   Worms

Worms, such as tapeworms, hookworms, whipworms, and roundworms, are a surprisingly common problem with dogs. With so many types which affect dogs – some of which can be fatal – it’s essential that you take your pup to the vet if you notice any signs of worms such as a bloated stomach, increased appetite, weight loss, or visible worms in vomit or feces.

Although you may think you can easily handle the treatment all by yourself, we can’t stress enough to let a professional handle it as an effective treatment for worms is dependent on proper diagnosis and the right medication.

4.   Diarrhea

As any dog owner can attest to, caring for a dog with a bout of diarrhea is one of the most stressful problems you will be faced with when it comes to caring for your pooch. Beyond the mess, it can be difficult to pinpoint not only the cause of their diarrhea, but also the severity.

Do you just leave it for a few days? Or is an immediate trip to the vet necessary?

The short answer is, it depends. In most cases, diarrhea won’t be cause for alarm, and you’ll be able to use natural remedies to stop their diarrhea. Similarly to ear infections, most dogs will have diarrhea at some point in their lives. Diarrhea is usually just nature’s way of cleansing your dog’s body of a toxin.

That being said, if your dog has a fever, is bloated, extremely lethargic, or blood is presenting their stool or vomit, there may be a larger problem at play. It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to your dog’s health, so in such a case, don’t hesitate to take them to the vet for a professional checkup.

Has your dog suffered from any of the above health problems? Do you have any advice for spotting health problems in your dogs? We’d love to hear your insights and tips! Leave a comment to share your thoughts.