There are 10 infectious diseases in dogs, which can inflict any dog breed, at any age. Understanding these dangerous dog diseases will allow you to protect your furry friend from infection. Each dog disease is described below, focusing on the manner in which the infectious disease is transmitted from dog to dog and across dog breeds, as well as the options open to dog owners for preventing infection in their dog.
10 Dog Diseases: #1, GIARDIA
Giardia is a dog disease that causes diarrhea with abdominal pain and consequent weight loss and poor weight gain. This dog disease results from a water-born parasite, after whom the disease of Giardia is named. Giardia is ubiquitous in open water sources throughout North America, and your dog can become infected by simply drinking contaminated water, such as in a lake, pond, or stagnant pool. Monthly Heartworm prevention pills, which also prevent other intestinal parasites, will protect your dog against Giardia.
10 Dog Diseases: #2, DISTEMPER
Distemper is a viral dog disease which is extremely contagious. Affecting the respiratory system as well as the nervous system, this dog disease causes fever and fatigue, coughing, vomiting and diarrhea, and finally seizures. And if untreated Distemper can lead to death. Distemper can be prevented with vaccinations at your local vet.
10 Dog Diseases: #3, PARVO
Parvo (or Parvovirus) is one of the most contagious dog diseases around. Affecting the bowels, Parvo symptoms include diarrhea and vomiting so severe that they may lead to death. And though dogs of all ages may contract this disease, Parvo is most common, and most dangerous, in puppies. Typically Parvo is passed from one dog to another from contaminated feces. But this dog disease may also be carried on fur or paws, thereby contaminating the living space of the dog and any objects he comes in contact with. Vaccination can protect dogs from Parvo.
10 Dog Diseases: #4, CORONAVIRUS
Coronavirus is another viral diarrhea that can affect dogs of all ages, though puppies are most at risk and will suffer the worst symptoms, from diarrhea to vomiting and weight loss, accompanied by constant drinking. At times, a dog may be infected with both Parvo and Coronavirus, in which case his symptoms will be more severe and may lead to death. Vaccination can protect dogs from Coronavirus.
10 Dog Diseases: #5, HEPATITIS
As with humans, Hepatitis dog disease affects the liver. This contagious dog disease includes symptoms such as fever, vomiting and diarrhea accompanied by abdominal pain. Furthermore, Hepatitis may lead to kidney damage. Once more, however, vaccination can protect dogs from Hepatitis.
10 Dog Diseases: #6, LYME DISEASE
Lyme disease is dangerous bacterial disease which can cause irreversible damage to a dog’s health. Symptoms of Lyme disease include arthritis and lameness, sudden limping indicative of pain, fatigue and lack of willingness to play or even walk, depression and loss of appetite. If left untreated, Lyme disease will damage the heart, kidney and even the brain. Vaccination can protect dogs from Lyme disease.
10 Dog Diseases: #7, RABIES
Once the most dreaded dog disease, Rabies is a caused by a virus, which attacks the brain. Rabies is a deadly disease that will be contracted through a bite from a rabid wild animal, such as skunks or raccoons, as well as bats. Unlike some dog disease, rabies can be passed to humans as well through a bite, or even just a scratch. Vaccination will protect dogs from Rabies and is mandatory for dogs throughout North America.
10 Dog Diseases: #8, LEPTOSPIROSIS
Like Rabies, Leptospirosis is carried by wild animals, although this dog disease is caused by a bacteria. You dog can become infected by drinking contaminated water or by coming in contact with an infected animal. Symptoms of Leptospirosis include high fever and jaundice, accompanied by hemorrhaging which will manifest in bloodstained feces. Vaccination can protect dogs from Leptospirosis.
10 Dog Diseases: #9, KENNEL COUGH
Most dog owners knew this dog disease by the name of the organism that causes it: the Bordetella virus. However, several other organisms can cause this highly infectious dog disease, whose full name is Infectious Tracheobronchitis (ITB). Symptoms of kennel cough include severe coughing spells, which may lead to vomiting and gagging. Nasal discharge and watery eyes are also possible. Though this vaccines is not automatically given at your local vet, if your dog is likely to interact with other dogs in the park, vaccinating him against kennel cough is a very good idea.
10 Dog Diseases: #10, PARAINFLUENZA
Parainfluenza is another strain of Kennel cough. This respiratory infection in dogs is highly contagious and will lead to flu like symptoms. Once more, the name Kennel Cough may mislead dog owners into thinking that their dog is not at risk if he never stays at a kennel. However, Parainfluenza may be contracted by simply being around an infected dog, as in the park, the beach, or an off-leash dog park.