How to Choose a Healthy Dog

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When trying to determine if a dog is healthy, it's important to look for simple signs, such as whether or not the dog is eating or drinking okay. Find out how a dog's gum color can indicate whether or not she is healthy with help from a veterinarian in this free video on dog health.

Part of the Video Series: Dog Health
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Video Transcript

Hi I'm Dr. Greg McDonald and I'm a veterinarian in Southern California. I own McDonald Animal Hospital in Santa Barbara. We are talking today a little bit about dog care and this segment is talking about how to pick a healthy dog. To try and find out if your dog is healthy the things that you want to be watching for is the common things. Are they eating okay? Are they drinking okay, any increase or decrease in the amount of water or food? Also the poop and the pea is very important to pay attention to every day. If they are having normal stools, if they have increased urination, increased frequency or increased amount those are all signs that your dog could be having some kind of illness. The other thing that you can check on your dog to find out if they are healthy is to check the color. People always think that I am talking about the color like this is a golden retriever here but we are talking about their gum color. Their gum color should be nice and pink if they're healthy. If they're not healthy the animals could either be having heart problems and have kind of a blue tinge to their gum color or they could be anemic and their gum color might be white instead of just a nice pink color and so looking at your dog's coat is another thing that's an indicator as to whether they are healthy or not. This dog has a nice shiny coat and you can feel that it is nice and smooth like this, again this dog is on a good plane of nutrition and a very healthy dog and so the coat character is also something you can check to see if they're healthy. One other thing that we like to do is we like to look at their eyes. If a dog is healthy their eyes should be nice and bright and well moistened and alert and again you can tell if an animal is not feeling well. You can see their third eyelids, they kind of don't have their eyes open completely or a little bit of grayness to the color of their eyes. Also your dog would be healthy if they have nice normal ears without any dirt in them. You can see Rosie has had her ear cleaned today and it's nice and clear and pink the way it should be. So overall looking at the dog, the attitude is very important. As you can see Rosie here is very very happy. She wants to go home soon so she is looking forward to getting out of here and going home with her owner but again you can tell a little bit about their attitude as to whether they are healthy or not.

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