Pinpoint Canine Emergencies

Edited by Mian Sheilette Ong, Anonymous, Lynn, Eng and 1 other

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A common dilemma among dog owners is how they can determine whether an ailment is an emergency or can wait until the following morning. Your dog cannot speak, so you have to bear the responsibility of identifying canine emergencies. Canine health emergencies are usually upfront but there are still some that may seem like nothing during their onset. A responsible pet parent like you should be aware of certain vet emergencies that your dog may suffer from. It is better to be ready than to regret the moment when you could have done something to save the life of your fur-baby. Your dog has always been there for you. When you know how to pinpoint canine emergencies, you let your dog know and feel that you will always be there no matter what.

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Things to Consider in a Canine Medical Emergency

The following should be considered when assessing a canine medical emergency. Keep calm and read on:

  1. 1
    Check the color of your dog's gums. Gums provide a lot of information when it comes to blood circulation.
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    The color could tell you if your dog is in shock, anemic, or is suffering from an internal hemorrhage. Normally, your dog's gums should be moist and pink. If you press the gums lightly with your finger, there should be a sudden white color. It will then return to its pink color after one to two seconds. It's a red flag if your dog has red, grey, blue, or very pale gums. It is wise for you to frequently check your furry companion's gums during moments of relaxation and rest. Treatment should be given immediately if gum color is not normal.
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  2. 2
    Keep your vet's number handy. Veterinarians always have phones with them.
    It would be very helpful to call your vet and ask if the situation is in dire need of emergency vet treatment.
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  3. 3
    Treat ailments early. There are times when a simple situation can turn into an emergency.
    Ear infections, hot spots, bladder infections, and broken toenails should be addressed immediately before they worsen or contribute to a bigger ailment.
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  4. 4
    Seek a vet's opinion when in doubt. If your dog shows signs of distress, it would be a safe move to bring him or her to the vet.
    This way, you won't just assume everything is okay when your dog is actually in grave need of veterinary attention.
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How to Pinpoint Canine Emergencies

There are many canine medical emergencies that you should know and understand. Below are common dog ailments and ways you can determine if it is indeed an emergency:

  1. 1
    Abdominal distention, inability to rest comfortably, inability to vomit, panting, restlessness. This group of symptoms belongs to bloat or gastric dilatation with volvulus.
    It's a very life threatening emergency for any dog. If you think your dog is suffering from bloat, rush to the vet without question.
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  2. 2
    Distressed breathing.
    Babybearmian upload4 canine emer.jpg
    Optimal breathing should always be maintained
    .
    If your dog doesn't breathe for three minutes, then assume the worst. Once you notice that your dog is having difficulty breathing (making noises or puffing his or her lips) you have to rush to the vet.
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  3. 3
    Seizures. This ailment can be presented as clusters that could then be progressive.
    Toxins sometimes cause seizures and an episode can be fatal to your dog.
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  4. 4
    Major trauma or excessive bleeding. You should definitely take your dog to the vet with these emergencies on the table.
    They are no-brainers. Small dogs have to be rushed. Large dogs may seem to be okay at first but should also be treated right away.
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  5. 5
    Generalized weakness or collapse. These are signs that your dog may be suffering from hemoabdomen, pericardial infusion, poisoning, anaphylactic shock, organ failure, or Addison's disease.
    You should rush your dog to the nearest emergency vet clinic.
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  6. 6
    Diarrhea and protracted vomiting episodes. If the liquid that comes out of your dog has blood, rush to the vet.
    Repeated diarrhea and vomiting results in dehydration. These can also be signs of an obstruction in the GI tract.
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  7. 7
    Difficulty in urinating. A bladder infection is usually signified by this symptom.
    This infection is painful but is not a life threatening situation. However, it is still best if the vet sees your dog very soon.
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  8. 8
    Inability to use hind legs. This is a condition common to breeds with long backs and short legs (Corgis, Dachshunds).
    This may indicate an injury in the spinal cord. The dog usually becomes paralyzed partially or completely. You should see the vet immediately.
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  9. 9
    Not drinking or eating. This is a judgement call for you as the owner.
    If your dog doesn't eat or drink, there is definitely something wrong. You can rush your dog to the vet or not, but seeing the vet is imperative since dehydration is imminent.
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  10. 10
    Coughing bouts. This is another judgement call for you.
    It may be because of Kennel cough, rat bait exposure, or pneumonia. Go to your vet to be finally sure.
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  11. 11
    Poisoning. This is definitely an emergency case.
    Immediately take your dog to the vet once you see your fur-baby eating something like raisins, onions, and human medications.
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  12. 12
    Intense pain. If there is vocalization, limping, panting, and other signs of pain, rush to the vet.
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Quick Lists of Canine Health Emergencies

The following are signs that your dog needs to be seen by a licensed veterinarian:

  1. 1
    Neck or facial swelling
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  2. 2
    Distressed respiration
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  3. 3
    Vomiting excessively
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  4. 4
    Seizure episodes
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  5. 5
    Loss of consciousness from a head injury
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  6. 6
    Blue or pale gums (if your dog has pigmented gums, check the underside of the eyelid)
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  7. 7
    Hives
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  8. 8
    Inability to walk or collapse
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  9. 9
    Poisoning (from eating gums and chocolates, overdose of medication)
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  10. 10
    Eye injury
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  11. 11
    Not able to urinate
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  12. 12
    Abnormal pupil size
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  13. 13
    Bleeding excessively
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  14. 14
    Heatstroke
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  15. 15
    Body temperature below 99 or above 104 degrees Fahrenheit
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  16. 16
    Dry heaving
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  17. 17
    Bloated condition of the abdomen
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  18. 18
    Discharge from vagina
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  19. 19
    Excessive licking of the vagina
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Symptoms that are non-critical but do need a vet's evaluation

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  1. 1
    Pain during urination
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  2. 2
    Blood in the urine
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  3. 3
    Lethargy
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  4. 4
    Diarrhea
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  5. 5
    Problems in maintaining balance
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  6. 6
    Vomiting
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  7. 7
    Abnormal changes in urination, thirst, or appetite
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  8. 8
    Scooting, hair loss, or scratching
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  9. 9
    Bite wounds
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  10. 10
    Fight wounds (large, bleeding, and infected)
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  11. 11
    Worms in vomit
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  12. 12
    Lumps and abnormal growths
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  13. 13
    Abnormal behavior patterns
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  14. 14
    Nose and eye discharge
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  15. 15
    Excessive coughing and sneezing
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  16. 16
    Changes in body condition or weight
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  17. 17
    Worms in stool
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Tips

  • Never hesitate to make a judgment call for your dog's health and safety.
  • Always have your vet's number handy.
  • Assemble a dog first aid kit so you can administer emergency relief until the vet arrives.
  • Monitor your dog at all times to prevent accidents and curious plays.
  • If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.
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Article Info

Categories : Dogs

Recent edits by: Eng, Lynn, Anonymous

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