Many of the major diseases humans suffer from occur in our pets too. While treatment options can vary between the two, the seriousness of the disease remains the same in both pets and humans. We might have many unhealthy vices we can’t seem to shake off, but we are completely in control of how healthy our pets are. We are responsible for what they eat and how much exercise they get. Knowing the diseases they could suffer from will help us prevent them from occurring in the first place.
Diabetes isn’t just a growing concern among humans, it’s equally rampant among pets too. If your pet has been excessively thirsty recently, is urinating more than usual and is losing weight for no reason, then they might be suffering from diabetes. The increase in pet diabetes is in a large part due to their domestic, sedentary lifestyles. Domestic cats might rarely ever leave the house, get almost no exercise and tend to overeat. Diabetes in pets can’t always be traced back to lifestyle habits though as many cases are due to genetic factors. Like in humans, pet diabetes has to be treated with insulin injections since their body stops producing this hormone. You can control their diabetes (and in some cases get rid of it completely), by putting them on a restricted, healthy diet and making sure they get plenty of exercise.
Arthritis is caused due to inflammation in joints and can make any movement extremely painful. If you find that your pet seems to be having trouble moving around and looks like he is in pain while walking, he might have arthritis. You might even see him licking and nursing his joints in an effort to reduce the pain in them. You can ease your pet’s discomfort by gently massaging his joints and placing a heated pad over them. Your vet will try to relieve his pain too by putting him on prescription steroids which reduce inflammation or might suggest you try painkillers for short term relief.
If you find a lump on your pet’s body then bring it to your vet’s notice so he can get it tested. Apart from lumps, the other symptoms of cancer in pets include loss of hunger, excessive vomiting and diarrhea. Depending on the type of cancer to what stage it has reached, your vet might choose from a range of different treatment options like surgery and radiation. Take your older pets for frequent checkups as this can help you detect cancer early and stop it before it progresses any further.
4. Heart disease
If your dog suddenly begins to develop a swollen belly has a persistent dry cough along with breathing problems, then it might be a sign of heart disease. Your vet will conduct a full health check-up to confirm that your pet is suffering from a cardiac disease and will decide on a treatment system based on your dog’s physiological profile. In most cases, prescription drugs along with a balanced diet and aerobic exercise is prescribed. For cats, loss of energy, listlessness and noisy breathing could be signs of heart disease.
Older dogs are often prone to suffering from dementia which is an age-related cognitive impairment disorder. Dogs suffering from dementia have trouble recognizing people, get agitated for no apparent reason and are often disoriented. You can stave off the disease before it even sets in by feeding your dog a diet rich in fatty acids and giving him plenty of opportunities for mental stimulation. In a lot of cases though, the disease is genetic and you have to learn to live with the difficulties your dog now faces.