Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Is there a Connection between Star's Mysterious Lameness and Skin Issues?

Star's mom went to search for answers when Star came down with some mysterious problems.

Dog Conditions - Real-Life Stories: Is there a Connection between Star's Mysterious Lameness and Skin Issues?

It all started with Star having pain in her legs and difficulty getting around. The initial suspect was hip dysplasia but that was ruled out.

Then Star's face broke out with nasty, painful sores.


In spite of all attempts for diagnosis, all results came back negative, For everything. But Star was not well. Along with difficulties with her legs and the skin sores, she was running a fever and had difficulty swallowing.

The question also remained whether there was a connection between all these problems. My thinking is that when various, seemingly unrelated problems crop up at the same time--look for a common thread.

What be causing all these problems and not showing on any tests?


An autoimmune disease was a high suspect. Systemic Lupus Erythematosis (SLE), for example, could account for all the things. The symptoms of SLE include lameness, lethargy, changes in appetite, skin ulceration and fever.

The test for that is Anti-nuclear Antibody (ANA)--antibodies that attack the components of the body's own cell nuclei--the control center in each cell. And it was negative.

Things like pemphigus would only cause lameness if the lesions involved foot pads.

What could be the diagnosis that would explain Star's constellation of symptoms?


The latest verdict of Star's veterinarians was canine herpesvirus; two different strains. This infection is best known in puppies. Star is an adult dog. In adult dogs, there would either be no signs of the virus present, or the virus would likely affect the upper respiratory tract, eyes, or reproductive organs.

Is this virus behaving differently in Star? Or is the virus present but something else, not yet discovered, is causing Star's issues?

Could it be that the virus is behaving similarly to chickenpox that can cause shingles later in life? There is plenty of pain to go with that--I had shingles a few years ago.

Could it be that Star's case is so unique or are her veterinarians missing something?


What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Monday, February 25, 2019

What Would You Do if It Was Your Dog: Teddy's Scratching and Restlessness

Teddy

Cavalier Springer Spaniel
2-years-old at the time
neutered male



Teddy found his forever home when he was 19 months old. He was a gentle boy and a wonderful companion.

Teddy's mom got her first suspicion that something wasn't right when Teddy started scratching his behind his front legs and later both ears. At first, he was doing it on one side only but eventually on both sides.

There was nothing wrong with Tedy's ears and no tale of allergies his skin was telling. He also tried to avoid any grooming.

Teddy's veterinarian treated for parasites, skin issues, and put Teddy on an elimination diet--none of which made any difference. It was very obvious by then, however, that Teddy was not a happy boy as he should have been.

He kept scratching incessantly. His facial expression and demeanor spelled pain, and he was very restless and couldn't get comfortable. Over time, he started limping and having problems with reflexes.

What do you make of Teddy's symptoms? 


What do you think was wrong? What would you do if Teddy was your dog?

Read Teddy's story here.



What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Dawg Business Recommends You Follow: Dr. Sue Cancer Vet

If you're not following Dr. Sue Cancer Vet yet, go ahead and do it now. She is the expert for everything pet cancer. I know what you think--you don't want to hear about dog cancer unless it happens. However, having some basic understanding will help you recognize the signs, get the diagnosis and make the right treatment choices for your dog.

My view on dog cancer and whether or not I would treat it has changed dramatically since I started learning from Dr. Sue.



What you learn from Dr. Sue about dog cancer might save your dog's life one day.

You can find Dr. Sue on
Facebook
YouTube
Twitter
RadioPetLady

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Useful Tips: Does Ash Work as De-Icer?

We like winter. We don't mind the cold until it becomes too unreasonable and we are happy with snow no matter how much there is. What we hate is freezing rain and ice. In the recent past, it seems one cannot have winter without it.

Useful Tips: Does Ash Work as De-Icer?

Many places were hit with crazy weather in the past couple of weeks. I wish we were the exception. Twice in a row, we got a couple of inches of freezing rain on top of several feet of snow. Oh goodie. The first time around, it was followed by a snowfall, so everything remained relatively reasonable. The second time around, however, freezing rain was all we got.


Lovely, isn't it? The entire place is covered with ice. With about four feet of snow below it.


The first time the ice layer was quite thin and easy to break through. With further snow on top, getting around was not easy, but it was possible. This time the ice is thick.


Poor Cookie is not impressed. Where we did have trails made in the deep snow, they are full of ice and cannot be used. Everywhere else there is thick enough ice to slip around on it until ultimately breaking through. Hazardous mess.

The first day after the freezing rain, we used up all of our sand just to get down the steps to take Cookie potty right under the tree beside the house. It was impossible to make it anywhere else, including our truck.

We never used commercial de-icers because of the regard for both the environment and our dogs' feet.


We do, however, have a wood stove.

I remembered that back in my old country, where many people had coal stoves to heat their houses, they would use the resulting ashes to treat their icy sidewalks and steps. Ash is environmentally friendly--in fact, it's a fertilizer--and harmless to dog feet.

Takeaways about using ashes on icy surfaces.


Ashes provide amazingly good friction, even if all you have is the fine dust form. And no matter how fine and light, the wind might blow it away from your hand but won't blow it off once it lands on the ice you're treating. The friction from ashes is something you wouldn't believe--it is way more effective than sand.

Not only do ashes provide great traction no matter how slick the ice is, once they get hit by the sun, they also literally eat into the ice.


Take a look above what the ash did to the clear solid ice I depicted earlier just after one sunny day. Perhaps because they are dark, or maybe they have some further properties that make them melt the ice they touch, the ashes eat right through it.

Ashes make a fantastic de-icer.

If you have a wood stove or a fireplace and get cold winters with potential ice, save your ashes. Tackle your ice problem naturally and fertilize your lawn in the spring.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

New Theory About Cookie's Leaks: Update

Last time I was pondering a new theory that could explain Cookie's leaks - a bouncy bladder. Armed with this new theory, I kept even a keener eye on when Cookie leaks and when she doesn't. What is the verdict?

Dog Conditions - Real-Life Stories - New Theory About Cookie's Leaks: Update

There definitely is a connection between bouncing and the urine leaks.


While an empty bladder wouldn't leak, a full one doesn't leak just because it's full. That is confirmed. And Cookie's bladder gets full often because the entire outdoors is one giant ice cream buffet.

How do we know when Cookie's bladder was full?


That's quite simple to determine. Typically, when we take Cookie out, she'll eat some snow, sniff the air, walk around, stick her head in the snow ... and then, eventually, she'll pee a moderate amount. When her bladder is full, she'll pee as soon as she hits the ground and a substantial volume.

The other way of telling her bladder was full when she finds herself laying in a puddle of urine.

What is making the difference?


Cookie has never leaked at night, regardless of how full her bladder was. Not once. She'll only leak during the day, typically about half an hour after a walk.

After she's done a bunch of bouncing. Right now, the snow is about three times as deep as Cookie is tall. Maybe more. When she decides to get off the trail which we keep making for her, the snow literally swallows her. It takes a lot of effort for her to bounce herself out of it, even though I am right there trying to stomp it down around her to make it easier.

Bouncing definitely plays a role.


That, I believe, leaves two theories. One is that all that violent exertion might affect the nerves that control the bladder. Given Cookie's issues in her pelvic area, this would be a reasonable assumption.

Case in point to the contrary: yesterday, we were out, and Cookie strayed from the trails more than often enough. After that, she leaked like a faucet. But after we went out the next time, and she did exactly the same stuff, she did not leak at all. She rested for several hours and then when she asked to go out, her bladder was quite full, but it did not leak.

It would almost seem that she bounced things out of position the first time around and then back where they belong on the next walk.


I am slow to draw conclusions, but given all the observations to date and the available theories from Cookie's veterinarians, bladder displacement does seem to be what the cause behind Cookie's off and on incontinence is.

Related articles:
Incontinence? Cookie's Mysterious Leaks
Cookie's Leaks Update
Cookie's Leaks Are Back: Garden Variety Incontinence or Not?
The Continuing Saga of Cookie's Leaks: Trying Chiropractic Care
Still Confused about Cookie's Incontinence
Living with an Incontinent Dog
Cookie's Leaks: New Theory


What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Monday, February 18, 2019

What Would You Do if It Was Your Dog: Beaner's Weight Loss

Beaner

10-year-old at the time
German Shepherd/Greyhound
spayed female

What Would You Do if It Was Your Dog: Beaner's Weight Loss

When Beaner started losing weight, his mom didn't think much of it because she was trying to get Beaner a bit thinner--weightloss was what they were trying to accomplish.

Weightloss, however, was soon followed by other symptoms.


Beaner started shedding more than normal and her skin was becoming dry and flaky. It was not the fact she was shedding but how much fur she was losing. Beaner's mom tried supplementing for skin and coat health but it was not making any difference.

Beaner was also becoming depressed and irritable. She lost interest in play and snuggling and became intolerant of her housemates. Her eyes were sunken and she literally looked sad. She was always hungry and started eating poop, her own and her housemates'.

In spite of increasing Beaner's food rations, she continued to lose weight and acted as if she was starving.


Beaner's stomach was making all sorts of noises and she had bad gas. Her mom started wondering whether Beaner's food didn't agree with her or whether she might have some parasites. She called a vet who asked for a fresh stool sample to analyze.

Before that could happen, Beaner made a turn for the worse. After a play, Beaner came in and virtually collapsed on the floor. Her muscles had been weakening and after a few minutes of play, she was unable to hold herself up.

Beaner's mom became concerned that Beaner might have cancer.


When Beaner's mom went to get the poop sample, she noticed it was slimy and gray in color. This was the first time she got a good look at it. Poop is not supposed to look like that. Once the veterinarian got to see the stool and analyze a blood sample and urine, they knew what was going on with Beaner right away.

What would you make of Beaner's symptoms?  What would you do if she was your dog?

Read Beaner's full story here:


Weight Loss, Brittle Fur, Starving all the Time: Beaner's Story Part I
Beaner's Diagnosis


What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Duke's Bloody Vomiting and Diarrhea

Duke is a 7-year-old gentle giant. He loves life and his family. Duke's life was great until one Saturday morning he started vomiting blood.

Dog Conditions - Real-Life Stories: Duke's Bloody Vomiting and Diarrhea

Duke's mom took him to a vet right away. They ran a blood panel, but everything looked good except for a high red blood cell count.

The most common cause of a temporarily high red blood cell count is dehydration. Since Duke was vomiting, dehydration was a likely explanation.

There are other possible reasons for high red blood cell count, but they didn't fit the picture. And other than vomiting, nothing else seemed wrong with Duke.

They tried to check Duke's stool but couldn't get a good sample. From what they were able to examine, they said there was nothing abnormal in it.

Based on the findings and history, Duke's veterinarian concluded that Duke likely has stomach ulcers.


Duke received a shot to stop the vomiting and was released to home care with medications to treat the ulcers as well as vomiting meds.

The next day, however, Duke also started having bloody diarrhea.


The emergency vet Duke's mom called said this may be normal with ulcers. Should stomach ulcers cause fresh blood in the stool, though? As the day went on, the blood in the poop decreased, but Duke continued to have watery diarrhea.

This went on till the next day when the blood also returned. After calling the vet, Duke's mom was told to give things another 24 hours to settle. Even though Duke's diarrhea had more blood in it than anything else and Duke stopped eating, the vet insisted on waiting.

So they waited.


24 hours later, Duke still wasn't eating and continued pooping blood. Finally, the vet concluded that Duke might not have stomach ulcers since the blood in the stool was bright red. It was bright red the whole time. But they still wanted to wait one more day. They advised a bland diet for the time being.

Meanwhile, Duke continued to spew bloody poo everywhere and refused food. 


Duke's mom took him to the ER. They kept him for fluids and diagnostics.

Finally, they were able to get a good stool sample. Duke had whipworms.




What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Monday, February 11, 2019

What Would You Do if It Was Your Dog: Buddy's Nosebleeds

Buddy

10-year-old at the time
Golden Retriever
neutered male

Dog Conditions - Real-Life Stories: Buddy's Nosebleeds

Buddy was a talkative dog; he'd communicate with whines, moans, sighs, and groans. That's why when he started snorting, everybody assumed he just expanded his vocabulary.

It wasn't until Buddy started sneezing so hard he almost blew his head off when his parents took him to a vet.


The veterinarian figured Buddy was suffering from seasonal allergies. It is possible though, in dogs, allergies typically manifest through their skin rather than sneezing.

When Buddy developed a hematoma, it fit in with the allergies theory--ear infections and allergies do often come hand-in-hand.

The hematoma continued having to be drained over and over and over.


It always filled back up. Even after surgery, the moment the stitches were removed, the ear flap filled with blood yet again.

Then, one day Buddy sneezed really hard and started bleeding from his nose. The vet technicians said they've never seen that much blood come from a dog who wasn't shot or hit by a car. Buddy bled so much that he needed a blood transfusion.

X-rays didn't show anything, but Buddy's blood pressure was high. The veterinarian figured that the high blood pressure was behind all that bleeding.

Once Buddy was put on medication, things seemed to have stabilized.


Until Buddy had another bleed. It wasn't as violent as the first time, but there was a steady gush of blood out of Buddy's nose. That's when it was decided that Buddy needed his nose properly examined with rhinoscopy.

What would you make off Buddy's symptoms? How do you feel about Buddy's initial diagnoses? What would you do if it was your dog?

Read Buddy's full story here.


Related articles:
Excessive Sneezing
Nosebleeds

What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Symptoms to Watch for in your Dog: Dull, Dry Coat

The skin and coat do serve essential functions. However, when the dog's body lacks nutrients or has to battle with illness, there are higher priorities than skin and coat maintenance. The brain, heart, and other organs are a little bit more critical to survival. Changes in skin health and coat quality are an early warning that something isn't right.

Symptoms to Watch for in your Dog: Dull, Dry Coat

Naturally, an acute illness wouldn't have time to send any warning through the skin and coat quality. Chronic nutritional deficiencies or illness, however, do.

A healthy coat is full, shiny, and soft, with no areas of hair loss. A lustrous coat means a healthy dog. With the exception of your dog getting into dirt or mud, of course.

Cookie's coat wasn't very shiny after she was done that day.

What does a dry, dull coat mean?


Healthy skin and coat need an abundance of protein, fat, vitamins and minerals. The good news is that many dogs can get their coat back to its luster by merely optimizing their intake of omega-6 fatty acids; linoleic acid.

Because omega-6 fatty acids are needed to form cell membranes and are involved with immune function, kidney function, and other vital processes, that's where the body will send them first. Skin and coat get if there are any left.

Fortunately, revisiting your dog's diet or simply supplementing a little bit of vegetable oil can often fix dull, dry coat easily.

Related articles: Fat in Dog Nutrition

Grooming to the rescue?


When your dog is shedding, your dog's coat will look dry and dull simply due to the undercoat making its way out. Regular brushing not only helps remove dust and dirt but also helps to activate oil production and distribution along the hair.

However ...


If your dog is well fed (a complete and balanced diet) and well groomed and still has a dull coat, you might be looking at a systemic problem.

If your dog's skin is unhealthy, the coat will suffer as well. Perhaps your dog doesn't digest or absorb their nutrients well, suffers from hormonal imbalances such as Cushing's or hypothyroidism, or diabetes. Jasmine's coat appearance declined greatly before she was diagnosed with poor thyroid function.

Digestive disturbances such chronic diarrhea, parasites, and cancer will reflect in a dull, dry coat.

Even chronic stress can affect the appearance of your dog's coat, likely due to high cortisol levels as well.

Listen to what your dog's coat is telling you


If your dog is getting good nutrition with sufficient levels of unsaturated fatty acids and is groomed well and their coat is still dull and dry, be thankful for the early warning and see your vet to investigate what is behind it.

We have a new home! For more dog health articles and resources, subscribe to us at our new location

mydogsymptoms.com

We are looking forward to seeing you there.


Do you know what your dog is telling you about their health?

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT): Buddy's Peritonitis

My regular readers know that I am a big proponent of alternative therapies, old and new. I am fascinated by what regenerative therapy can do; we used it more than once and couldn't say enough good things about it. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one of the treatments that are on my radar. This story is based on a case study submitted to HVM. This is not a sponsored post.

***


Peritonitis is an inflammation of the abdominal cavity lining. It is usually quite a painful condition. It can be caused by injury, bacterial or chemical contamination, pancreatitis, ruptured bladder or gallbladder, and the like.

Logically, peritonitis can come with fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, and it can lead to changes in heart rhythm, blood pressure, and shock. Not a light matter at all.

Buddy is a 5-year-old neutered male who was having some bad luck lately.


He came to a veterinarian with vomiting and abdominal pain. Buddy had belly problems before when he swallowed things he shouldn't have. He ended up having to have a surgery where some of his intestines had to be removed and the ends reconnected, anastomosis.

Peritonitis is one of the potential complications of anastomosis.


X-rays revealed that Buddy's intestines were indeed quite unhappy with extensive adhesions from previous surgeries and a portion of the bowel suffering from lack of oxygen supply--ischemia. It would require another surgery and the removal of several feet of Buddy's intestine.

Buddy's parents could not afford yet another surgery and, naturally, they were concerned about further complications. Were there any other options?

Buddy's veterinarian put together an alternative plan


His therapy was to include IV antibiotics and hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The hopes that this combo would work in healing Buddy's belly while avoiding surgery were guarded.

However, after the antibiotics and a series of hyperbaric oxygen treatments, Buddy eventually made a full recovery.

I don't know what decision I would have made if Buddy were my dog but the lack of funds really left his parents with just one option. It did work out for Buddy, though.

Original story:
Buddy

What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents

Monday, February 4, 2019

What Would You Do If It Was Your Dog: Ella Has Allergies and an Ear Infection?

Ella

4-years-old at the time
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
spayed female

The Dark Cloud Of Syringomyelia: Fight For Ella

When Ella was about 2-years-old, she started scratching herself more than usual. Nothing major, just enough for Ella's mom to notice.

Their vet concluded Ella was having food allergies so they started looking for food that would agree with her. A few months later, Ella's mom also noticed that there was something odd about the way Ella would go up the stairs. But while at the vet's office, there was nothing conspicuous in the way Ella moved and acted.

Ella's continuous scratching at her ears was diagnosed as an ear infection.

Ella also seemed unusually tired after a daycare visit of play with her buddies while being restless at night. It seemed as she just couldn't get comfortable.

None of those things seem all that unusual or serious. However, Ella's mom felt that something was happening but nobody was catching on.

At one point, Ella started hiding under furniture, shaking her head all the time, and having a seriously hard time walking up the stairs.

The veterinarian insisted that those things are caused by an ear infection and allergies. Could that really be the reason behind all that?

What do you make of Ella's symptoms? What would you do if Ella was your dog?

Read Ella's story.

What is your dog telling you about their health?


Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog now available in paperback and Kindle. Each chapter includes notes on when it is an emergency.

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is an award-winning guide to help you better understand what your dog is telling you about their health and how to best advocate for them. 

Learn how to see and how to think about changes in your dog’s appearance, habits, and behavior. Some signs that might not trigger your concern can be important indicators that your dog needs to see a veterinarian right away. Other symptoms, while hard to miss, such as diarrhea, vomiting, or limping, are easy to spot but can have a laundry list of potential causes, some of them serious or even life-threatening. 

Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog is a dog health advocacy guide 101. It covers a variety of common symptoms, including when each of them might be an emergency. 

An award-winning guide for dog parents