Found  Articles :: Page 5 of 11
Heat sensitivity or the inability to tolerate heat can be a problem in many breeds. The brachycephalic dogs or pug nosed dogs such as Boston Terriers, Pugs, Pekingese, Boxers, Bulldogs or Shih Tzus are the breeds most prone to problems in handling the heat but other breeds may have concerns as well. Some of the double coated breeds that have been bred for colder, northern climates can also be prone to heat sensitivity when moved to more temperate regions. Heat sensitivity can lead to the serious, life threatening heat stroke seen in dog's whose internal temperature rises above 107 degrees Fahrenheit. [...]
Hemangiosarcoma is a cancer that, in the most serious variety, is almost always fatal in dogs because it is so difficult to detect before it has reached the life-threatening stage. Historically the prognosis for the disease is not good because by the time it is diagnosed there were no treatment options and the dog typically died within six to eight weeks after the diagnosis. With new methods for testing for the cancer as well as drug therapies and chemotherapy the disease, while still very serious, is often not fatal if detected early. [...]
Hypertrophic osteodystrophy (HOD) is one of the many different bone growth problems that seem to strike the large and giant breeds of dogs far more frequently than the medium and small breeds. HOD has no known cause and is not believed to be genetic; rather it may be combination of several different factors. Some researchers believe it may be caused by a bacterial infection, others indicate a lack of Vitamin C and still others feel it is a nutritional problem caused by feeding high fat and protein diets that cause too rapid growth. Since different puppies seem to react to different treatment modes and programs there is really no consensus on how to treat the condition or what is the root cause. [...]
Just like people dogs need to have sugar in their blood to supply the body and brain with the fuel it needs to work properly and efficiently. In some breeds, particularly the toy dogs such as Chihuahuas, Yorkshire Terriers, Pomeranians and Maltese hypoglycemia can be a problem in adult dogs that simply don't have enough body fat to carry their blood sugar between meals. Most of these small breeds have a significant drop in blood sugar that can trigger hypoglycemia if fasting for more than eight hours.
Another type of hypoglycemia is called juvenile hypoglycemia that occurs when puppies are weaned and switched to regular dog foods. Often these puppies do not eat properly or skip meals, leading to rapid drops in blood sugar resulting in seizures, lethargy and poor growth and development. The smaller breed puppies, especially those that are bred to be teacup or toy are most prone to the problem, but any puppy that is not getting proper nutrition can develop the symptoms. [...]
There are several differences in the human skeletal structure and that of a dog, but there are just as many similarities. The spine of both a human and dog is made up of a series of small vertebrae that form the solid structure of the spine. Each one of the vertebrae is made of bone, and if not cushioned from each other would be very painful and cause pressure and pinching of the delicate bundle of nerves known as the spinal cord that travels through the center of the vertebrae. To provide cushioning between each vertebrae there is a series of flexible cartilage discs known as intervertebral discs between each. These discs provide the movement of the spine as well as protection for the spinal cord during movement and protection of the bones of the vertebrae from rubbing and wearing. [...]
Much like with humans, obsessive compulsive disorder in dogs is characterized by the uncontrollable repetition of bizarre, out of context behavior. This behavior can be literally anything and is directed either at other animals or humans or even at inanimate objects such as food dishes or a piece of furniture. In the least severe cases, your dog's disorder might manifest through something simple like pacing back and forth, or hiding in a particular spot for seemingly no reason. At other times, it can become more problematic such as when they begin to bark at "nothing" for hours at a time, or destroy your or other's property with no provocation. In the worst cases, your dog might cause serious problems by turning its frustration against itself. In many cases, this might manifest as destructive behavior such as the dog compulsively chewing on its own foot, resulting in infections and problematic lesions. [...]
Otitis externa is a general name for a problem that seems to affect nearly all breeds at some point or another, and for a wide variety of causes: the ear infection. One of the most perplexing diseases that can befall your dog, ear infections usually produce no symptoms until the problem is already well under way and even then, extensive testing is required to determine which of the many possible causes is behind this particular outbreak.
Signs that a dog's ears might be infected include behavioral symptoms such as incessant scratching of the affected ear, unexplained back and forth shaking of the head, and a sensitivity of the skin around the ear. Other clinical signs include a pungent odor emanating from the interior of the ear, a visible discharge of any color, dark waxy buildup, and raised or swollen ear flesh. [...]
Every dog (or cat, or human for that matter) is born with a hole in his or heart. This hole works as a valve and is called the patent ductus. Its function is primarily to shunt blood to the lungs while the puppy is still in its mother's womb, and as such it becomes unnecessary after birth when the puppy can breathe on its own. Because of this, the fissure known as the patent ductus normally closes on its own by the time the animal is three days old. There are times, however, when for whatever reason, this does not occur.
In a normally functioning heart, blood enters the heart on one side and is sent to the lungs to be oxygenated, whereupon it returns to the other side of the heart where it is pumped out to the rest of the body. If the patent ductus does not close, the result is that an inordinate amount of blood is shunted towards the lungs, which causes an increase of fluid on the lungs and labored breathing. [...]
Premature disc degeneration is a disease in which a dog's vertebral discs begin to degenerate more rapidly than could be naturally expected. Degeneration might effect either the discs themselves in that they can become calcified and less mobile, or the spaces between the discs when cartilaginous cushions begin to deteriorate. It is classified under the generalized heading of premature aging and has many profound effects upon a dog's overall health, causing at best chronic pain and at worst loss of motor function.
Premature disc degeneration usually begins to occur in dogs that are between three and five years old, and seems to affect the discs in the cervical region of the spine most often. Depending on which discs are affected, the problem manifests itself visually in a variety of different ways. [...]
Premature graying refers to a disorder in which your dog's coat begins to lose the richness of its natural color and adopts a dull gray tone. Often this is associated with loss of hair, or the softening of hair which can ruin the texture of a coat in some breeds such as the Schnauzer or others with a typically coarse and wiry coat. Although almost all breeds will eventually lose some of their color and begin to go gray, graying is considered a problem when it occurs much earlier than could naturally be anticipated.
The disease can affect any breed of dog, but studies have indicated that it is most likely to affect dogs that are both small and possess a tightly woven coat as their standard, again making the miniature Schnauzer a prime candidate. It's not necessarily a harmful disease as it causes no real detriments to a dog's overall health, but it can still be very problematic for some people who paid a lot of money for a dog of a certain color, especially if they had plans to put that dog into the show ring. [...]
Protopsis is an emergency medical condition in which an otherwise healthy eye explodes or falls out of the orbital socket that normally contains it. Though it can happen in any breed, it seems to occur most often in those with short and wide faces such as pugs, bulldogs, and pekingnese.
Protopsis can happen for a wide variety of reasons. It could occur as the result of trauma such as a scratch or bite by another animal, even when the resulting damage is not externally visible. Likewise, it could occur as the result of pressure exerted upon the inner eye from the build-up of ocular fluids. It's even possible for protopsis to happen spontaneously with no discernible cause whatsoever. [...]
Pyometra is a medical condition in which pus is accumulated in the uterus of a dog. It usually happens after the animal has gone through a heat cycle without becoming pregnant. Hormonal abnormalities result in the uterine lining becoming thick. When this happens, fluid begins to accumulate within the thickened walls, infection develops and the uterus fills with pus. In certain conditions, namely if the cervix is open, the pus will drain from the dog through the vagina and is an unpleasant, but not especially life-threatening concern. If the cervix is closed, however, the pus will be trapped inside the uterus and cannot drain outside the body. At this point, the infection rapidly becomes a threat to the dog's life. [...]
Pyotraumatic Dermatitis, also known as "hot spots", are severe skin irritations caused by trauma that a dog typically inflicts on his or her self. Attempts to scratch persistent itches, to bite at fleas, or to alleviate some type of pain result in painful trauma to the outermost layer of skin. Though this trauma is the most frequent cause of hot spots, hypersensitivity to parasites such as fleas or mites or allergic reactions to food or medications can also cause similar irritations. Ultimately, the trauma to the skin manifests as large, open lesions within a matter of hours. These lesions are typically a bright red, moist, and oozing sore that rapidly forms a crust surrounded by red, raised skin. Hair is lost from the affected area, but in any hot spot, the hairline is very clearly defined with a sharp edge. If left untreated, the lesion will spread very rapidly, and there is substantial pain associated with the area of the trauma. [...]
In a healthy dog, kidneys fulfill the role of filter for the body's waste. They absorb toxins from the bloodstream and pass them out of the body as urine. In addition, they regulate the level of calcium in the bloodstream and aid in the metabolism of phosphorous. The "filtering" aspect of a kidney's function is carried out by tiny funnel-shaped tubes called nephrons. They number in the millions in each kidney and are essential parts of the filtration process. However, they are incredibly sensitive to damage. Poison, disease, fever, trauma, bacterial infection and aging all can destroy nephrons very easily, and once destroyed they never grow back. This usually isn't a major concern, though, as kidneys are made to continue working with as little as one quarter of their nephrons intact. If the level falls much below that, however, renal failure will rapidly occur. [...]
Canine rheumatism is a degenerative disease that affects the joints and cartilage of an otherwise healthy dog. It can occur in most any breed at almost any age, with no real warning signs. Canine rheumatism is a progressive disease, which means that it will not get better without treatment, and even with treatment, it usually tends to get worse over time. The ultimate result of rheumatism tends to be the total destruction of cartilage cushioning between joints and the death of cells that produce that cartilage. As a result, these bones grind together very painfully, and motor function can be lost altogether.
Canine rheumatism most often occurs as the result of either trauma or bacterial infection, and is most prevalent in dogs that have already reached middle age, as well as older dogs. That said, it can easily happen in younger dogs as well, especially if they're of one of the breeds that are predisposed to joint ailments such as hip dysplasia. [...]