We’ve all been there — You find that your beloved pet has a rash, lump, or other such worrying symptom, but instead of calling the vet right away, you go directly to Google.
While the Internet is certainly an excellent resource for animal care advice, it’s not the place to go for diagnosing your pet’s ailments. Furthermore, whether you use the Internet or not, treating your pet on your own — without guidance from a professional veterinarian — may very well put your pet in greater danger than if you did nothing.
Here are several of the specific risks you should be aware of:
Risks of Treating Your Pet at Home
1. You may treat incorrect conditions or ailments.
While you might find a list of symptoms that seems to match your pet’s, you could be wrong. In this case, any successive treatment you administer may actually worsen the original problem.
2. Homeopathic remedies can be dangerous to animals.
Some pet owners may attempt to administer “natural” medicines, including herbal supplements, teas, oils, and other products. Not only are these generally meant for humans and not animals, they can also cause unexpected and dangerous side effects in pets.
3. Drugs meant for humans are generally not safe for pets.
Yes, certain medications that humans use may be used for animals in select situations, but you should never administer human drugs (or any drugs, for that matter) on your own.
Unforeseen interactions with other medications, overly high doses, or using the wrong drug in the first place can create much greater problems for your pet. Always consult with a veterinarian before administering any drugs or treatments to your pet.
4. Trying to “wait it out” can exacerbate the problem.
We understand that pet owners are busy, and seeing a vet for every small ailment may not be feasible for some. Still, if you’re worried about serious symptoms in your pet, this means you need to make a veterinarian appointment sooner rather than later. Waiting too long for the symptoms to get better on their own may worsen the original problem to an irreparable degree.
Medical symptoms that should never be ignored in pets include:
- Bleeding and bruising
- Distended abdomen and/or bloating
- Persistent respiratory distress
- Persistent vomiting
- Bloody diarrhea, vomit, and/or urine
- Not eating and/or rapid weight loss
- Profound weakness and lethargy
- Any other abnormal symptoms that cause you alarm
Is your pet showing worrying signs and symptoms? Do the best thing for them and make an appointment at Sunset Veterinary Clinic today. Our highly-trained and experienced veterinarians can accurately assess and diagnose your pet in order to obtain the best-possible treatment for their recovery.