Canine distemper and roundworms are two of the more serious health conditions that can affect your dog's quality of life or even cut it short. While many dog owners are firmly committed to preventive care and routine vaccinations, some are not aware of the damage these conditions can do if left untreated. This is important to understand in case you're ever tempted to skip a vaccine or not bring your dog in for her annual check-up because she seems perfectly healthy.
What is Canine Distemper?
Canine distemper is a serious illness spread by dog-to-dog contact through saliva, urine, or blood. Your dog could pick up the virus by simply sharing a food bowl or being in a close proximity when an infected dog sneezes. Once the virus is inside of your dog, it affects his central nervous system as well as his respiratory and gastrointestinal systems. Some of the first symptoms of canine distemper include:
Thick mucus discharge from the nose or eyes
Loss of appetite
If you adopt a new puppy, she should have the first distemper vaccine by eight weeks old. Your veterinarian at Grantsburg Animal Hospital will recommend a series of boosters based on your dog’s breed, age, and other individual factors. It's important to do your part to ensure that actual cases of this serious canine illness remain rare.
Preventing Roundworm Infestation in Dogs
Roundworms are common intestinal parasites in dogs than can cause serious health consequences. Because they live in a dog's intestinal tract and feed off his nutrients, an infected dog does not get the nutrition he needs to live a long and healthy life. Roundworms may also be present in your dog's lungs, making it impossible for him to breathe normally. Some of the typical indications that your dog has roundworms include:
Dull appearance of the fur
While there is not a preventive vaccine for roundworms, it's important to stay current with your dog's medication to keep roundworms out of her. Because every dog is different, we recommend that you speak to your regular veterinarian at Grantsburg about the best roundworm prevention product for your pet. Once you find the right de-wormer medication for your dog, you can set up automatic shipments from our online store according to the recommended schedule.
Visit Us at Least Once a Year for Preventive Care
We recommend that adult dogs come in for a wellness exam annually. Senior dogs and puppies typically need more frequent check-ups. This gives us the opportunity to spot any health problems with your dog and begin treating them right away. It’s also a chance for you to review your dog’s vaccine and medication schedule to ensure that what we have in place still works for him. We look forward to seeing you and your dog at his next appointment.