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Dec 16th, 2016
10 most common dog and cat illnesses and costs
Pet parents are no less worried about their companion animals’ well-being, many say, than parents of actual children. In fact, spending on pets is up so much, not just on toys, clothes (yes, clothes — remember those adorable dog and cat Halloween costumes you looked at last month?) and high-grade organic food, but also on vet bills. With this in mind, employers are offering pet insurance as an employee benefit.
This is a good strategy, when you consider how much the cost of veterinarians’ care has risen — it may not be quite on a scale with the increases in human medical treatment, but it’s bad enough that, according to the Healthy Paws Foundation, 26 percent of rehoming instances were the result of a pet parent’s inability to pay for their pet’s medical care.
10. Dogs: cruciate ligament injuries (4 percent); cats: ADR (4 percent)
Dogs are prone to cruciate ligament injuries, which include the tearing or rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament (aka the knee). Going limp in a hind leg is the first symptom, as well as swelling around the knee.
Surgeries have been reported to cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000, depending on the breed, severity of the injury and location of the tear.
9. Dogs: limping (5 percent); cats: URI (5 percent)
Dogs refusing to put weight on a leg, or walking “funny,” along with whimpering, panting or other signs of discomfort, aren’t necessarily in for a slam-dunk diagnosis.
8. Dogs: pain (5 percent); cats: heart conditions (5 percent)
Pain is a pretty generic word, and vets see excessive grooming, panting, limping, whimpering, lack of appetite, antisocial behavior (either suddenly shy or very aggressive) and stiff movements as indicators.
7. Dogs: allergies (6 percent); cats: ear infection (6 percent)
Itching, scabbing, watery eyes, sneezing, vomiting and diarrhea, as well as paw chewing and licking, can be signs of allergies in dogs — caused by diet or environmental factors, including fleas.
6. Dogs: UTI (7 percent); cats: eye conditions (6 percent)
Urinary tract infections (UTIs), as in humans, mean frequent urination, blood in urine, and straining to urinate. Your pet may cry or whimper while going to the bathroom, break housetraining, and even obsessively lick the genital area.
In both dogs and cats, UTIs are treated with antibiotics — again, not as high on the dollar scale as many other ailments.
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