Colds in dogs and cats: a trivial seasonal ailment that can escalate into a serious condition. Here’s how to avoid it.

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Colds in dogs and cats: to prevent this trivial seasonal ailment from degenerating into cough, tracheitis or bronchitis, watch out for the symptoms and do not neglect them.

Dogs and cats, like people, are exposed to viruses and diseases, including colds.

During the change of seasons and with the arrival of cold winter weather, climate change is also physiologically associated with a drop in immune defenses that promotes cold illnesses.

Climate changes make dogs and cats more vulnerable

Climatic changes are the enemy of health: both the respiratory system, resulting in the development of colds, and the intestinal system are more susceptible to stress from changing temperatures and therefore more vulnerable.

If your dog or cat suddenly becomes secluded or seems fatigued, it is likely that they are “hatching” a cold.

The most common seasonal ills in dogs and cats

Otitis and skin problems related to the change of season are also often encountered in winter.

As temperatures change, moreover, symptoms of degenerative orthopedic diseases such as osteoarthritis or dysplasia tend to exacerbate.

In the case of puppies and elderly subjects, care must be utmost: the immune system of these subjects, being weaker, requires very careful precautions.

Inflammation of the respiratory tract in dogs and cats can degenerate

Inflammation of the respiratory tract is common discomfort, but it is necessary to act at the right time so as not to aggravate the situation.

Symptoms should never be overlooked: the risk is that a cold can degenerate into
cough, bronchitis or tracheitis

Cold symptoms in the dog and cat

Colds have a symptom picture that is clinically composed of a wide variety of symptoms:

STARNUTE: is the body’s first response to the possible entry of pathogenic or harmful substances. The nasal mucosa, which is highly sensitive to foreign substances, reacts by activating this defensive mechanism, which is an automatic and involuntary response of the body to the stimulus.

NASAL MUD: Mucus is a normal product of the nasal passages, usually serous and transparent. If the nasal discharge takes on different coloration and appearance, it is indicative of a pathological condition.

OCULAR LACRIMATION: The eyelids may be reddened, closed or semi-closed with the presence of profuse tearing and dense drains of various colors.

COUGH: When mucus, bacteria and viruses accumulate in the lungs, bronchi and trachea, the body expels these unwelcome guests through the sudden emission of air from the lungs through the mouth. It is the cough, precisely.

The importance of recognizing a cold in dogs

In dogs, colds mainly affect the nose.

Colds cause breathing difficulties due to the closing or congestion of the nostrils.

The nose is an extremely important body part for dogs because through their sense of smell they explore the world.

Precisely because the nose is for these animals the most important sense by which they orient themselves, you need to be able to recognize the disease right away.

Other more obvious symptoms of dog cold are muscle pain, phlegm, poor appetite, and fever.

Distinguishing cat cold from other feline infectious diseases

One needs to be able to distinguish a normal cold in one’s cat from a more serious and important form of influenza.

A cat’s cold could also be attributable to an infectious disease such as feline rhinotracheitis or feline influenza, generated by viruses or bacteria that carry very worrisome consequences.

Herpes never leaves the feline body; it always remains in a latent form and manifests itself when the immune defenses are lowered.

Only the Veterinarian can diagnose feline influenza by specific laboratory tests.

Cat and dog colds: how to treat them

Cold dogs and cats should not be given human medicines at all.

Similarly, cat medicines should not be given to dogs and vice versa.

Administering the wrong medicine could cause degeneration into serious disease or even cause death.

It is the sole responsibility of the veterinarian to prescribe the treatment and indicate the proper dosages and mode of administration.

Natural remedies for cat and dog colds

There are also some natural, herbal and homeopathic remedies for your four-legged friend’s cold.

Natural remedies, as well as traditional medicines, must be prescribed and dosed by a Homeopathic Veterinarian.

How to provide relief to the cold dog or cat

The main treatment for cold symptoms is to provide care and relief to your pet as long as his or her immune system is busy fighting and eradicating the virus.

  • Use a vaporizer: increasing the humidity in your pet’s environment will help him keep his nasal passages moist and expel excess mucus.
  • Keep him away from cold drafts: arrange the kennel in a warm, comfortable corner of the house where he can rest peacefully and, above all, undisturbed.
  • Remove mucus: remove secretions with a soft dampened cloth or pet-specific wipes.
  • Hydrate it: it is very important that the diet, in addition to being balanced, is especially enriched with fluids. Moist foods, plenty of water or hot (but not boiling) vegetable broth not only hydrate but also help decongest the airways from thick mucous secretions.

How to prevent four-legged colds

Providing good nutrition is one of the secrets to keeping dogs’ and cats’ immune systems in optimal condition.

Always feed your pet with high-quality food.

Don’t neglect other simple tricks and precautions as well:

  • Always keep the space where your tailed friend lives well cleaned and healthy
  • Limit your dog or cat’s exposure to the outdoors
  • Make sure the kennel is in a warm, dry area of the house. The ideal room temperature is 20 degrees
  • Avoid exposing your four-legged friend to drafts, even if he stays indoors
  • Give up walking in severe cold, rain, or high humidity and prefer, instead, the warmer hours of the day provided that outdoor conditions are favorable

Remember that at La Veterinaria Clinic our Staff is always available to you for both general and specialist visits.

And again, in case of need and urgency, Clinica La Veterinaria is always open h24 every day including holidays and with First Aid service from 8 pm to 8 am.

For the joy of seeing them HAPPY.

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