10 Symptoms & Signs Your Dog May Be Sick

Sick Dog

Dogs often hide when they’re sick or injured as it can be a sign of weakness in nature. If you have a trusting relationship with your dog, they’ll come to you when they’re not feeling well, otherwise, you’ll have to spot any dog illness signs. It’s important to be aware of what’s normal so you can spot warning signs your dog is sick, and bring them to the vet’s clinic immediately.

Here are 10 symptoms and warning signs your dog is sick and needs to go to the veterinarian.

1. Excessively sleeping.

Dogs sleep more than we do and sleep more as they age, but if you spot your dog sleeping much longer than normal, it may be time for a checkup.

2. Unusual drooling.

Some dog breeds naturally drool more than others, but if your dog is suddenly drooling or foaming at the mouth, it could indicate poisoning.

3. Weight loss or gain.

Unless you have your dog on a special diet to target unhealthy weight, a rapid weight gain or weight loss can indicate a problem with their health.

Overweight Dog
Overweight Dog. Image from Unsplash

4. Cowering under chairs or beds.

If your dog is normally happy and friendly but suddenly starts hiding, there may be a problem with their health. They may even back away from you when you try to examine them for dog illness signs.

5. Labored breathing or panting.

While panting or rapid breathing is normal in hot weather or during running, it’s not normal for your dog to be doing it all day long. Breathing problems are serious and are the first warning signs your dog is sick.

6. Inability to jump or climb stairs.

Some breeds are more mobile than others but if your pooch is beginning to have difficulties jumping onto the couch, or walking up or down stairs, it may indicate a joint problem.

7. Sneezing or coughing.

Dogs can get contagious illnesses from other dogs. If your dog is excessively coughing or sneezing for no reason, it’s best to get it checked out at the veterinarian.

8. Gunky or red eyes.

Dogs get eye infections just like we do. It may be something as simple as an allergy to pollen from the yard, or they may have been exposed to something hazardous on their latest walk.

Dog with Red Eyes
A dog with Red Eyes. Image from Pexels

9. Diarrhea or constipation.

If your dog is experiencing irregular bowel movements and you’ve tried correcting it with pumpkin, it may be time for a visit to the veterinarian.

10. Discomfort during urination.

If your dog is having trouble urinating when you’re out for walks, or they whimper and cry when their leg is lifted, it’s possible they have a bladder or kidney issue.

While some dog illness signs are easily remedied with at-home treatments, if your dog is suffering, it’s time to book an appointment at your nearest veterinarian. It’s far better to get it checked out sooner rather than later, as you don’t want your beloved family member to needlessly suffer.

Image from Unsplash


DISCLAIMER: This article is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment or medical advice and is not meant to replace medical advice. It is strongly recommended to consult with your veterinarian to obtain the correct and proper diagnosis. Read more.