Spot the difference. Can you recognize a perfectly healthy dog from one that is about to get sick or one that is already sick? Dog owners make sure that the pet is protected from common and not so common canine health concerns. Dog owners provide the pet with the right amount of nutritious foods. Knowing that vaccinations are the dog’s first line of defense against disease, an owner would make sure that the pet’s shots are current. Diseases though cannot be totally prevented.
When you look into the eyes of the pet, you can see the intelligence. Unfortunately, dogs cannot tell the owners that they are under the weather. Dogs cannot vocalize what they feel. Apart from this fact, dogs are very adept at hiding their illnesses. As with any health concerns, prompt treatment spells speedy recovery. It is therefore the responsibility of the owner to notice the slightest change in appearance. An odd behavior can be an indication that all is not well with the pet. A sick dog would be lethargic. Dogs are voracious eaters but one that is sick would turn away from food. The once energetic dog would have no inclination to do its usual activities. Diarrhea and vomiting are other signs that all is not well with the health of the pet.
Some dogs would not show signs of being sick. The temperature of the nose is believed to be an indication of the health of the dog. Anyone wanting to get a puppy is advised to take note of the temperature of the nose. A puppy with wet and cold nose will be chosen over another that has dry and warm nose. Warm nose is believed to be an indication that the dog is sick. Of course this belief has no scientific basis and considered simply as an old wives’ tale. The wetness and the temperature of the nose is not a sign of illness. A dry and warm nose does not mean that the pet is running a temperature.
It is perfectly normal for a dog’s nose to change from being wet and cold one moment to being warm and not so dry in another. These changes actually happen several times a day. We know that dogs do not have a very efficient cooling system given that sweat glands are mainly found on the pads of the feet. Hot temperatures will make the dog lick the nose. The moisture evaporating from the wet nose will cool down the dog. In this condition, the dog’s nose will be moist and cold. But if the dog is inside a temperature controlled home, it is highly probable that the nose will be dry and warm as licking the nose to help lower the body temperature will not be necessary. A dog that has been sleeping in front of the fire will have a dry warm nose as well. A dry and warm nose though can be due to some health concerns. Dehydration can cause the dog to have warm dry nose. One that has recovered from distemper would have the same nose temperature as well. A hot dry nose especially if the nose has a discharge can be an indication of infection.
Wet and moist or dry and warm, the temperature of the nose is not a reliable indication that the dog is sick or that it is healthy. In minutes the temperature of the nose can change with the temperature of the environment thus an owner has make use of other means to gauge the true condition of the pet.