Q:

How do you determine whether a dog is suffering from dehydration?

A:

Quick Answer

There are specific symptoms to look for to determine whether a dog is suffering from dehydration. These symptoms include sunken eyes, lethargy, loss of appetite, dry mouth and depression. Determining whether a dog is dehydrated is also accomplished by lifting the skin on the back of the dog's neck or between the shoulder blades. The skin of a dehydrated dog takes a moment to settle back into its normal position.

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Full Answer

Using the elasticity of a dog's skin to determine if it is dehydrated does not work on those that are either overweight or underweight. Typically, the signs and symptoms of dehydration are not obvious to the untrained eye, so the dog should see a vet immediately for suspected dehydration.

In most cases, a dog becomes dehydrated due to reduced water intake or an increase in fluid loss. An excess loss of fluid is typically caused by vomiting, diarrhea or overheating caused by hot weather.

Owners can prevent dehydration by providing the dog with plenty of clean, fresh water to drink, and wash its bowl regularly to get rid of any bacteria that could make the dog sick.

A dog typically needs approximately 1 ounce of water per pound each day. For example, a 20-pound dog requires at least 20 ounces of water every day to prevent dehydration.

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