10 Signs Your Dog's Body is Healthy

by Maggie Marton November 25, 2016

10 Signs Your Dog's Body is Healthy

You dog’s body tells you almost everything you need to know about his wellness. Here are 10 factors that indicate a healthy hound. How does your dog measure up?

  1. A nipped-in waist: Compare your dog’s shape to the Body Condition Score to figure out if he’s in a healthy weight range.
  2. Shiny chompers: A healthy smile indicates overall wellness. Check your dog’s teeth and gums regularly.
  3. Bright eyes: Clear, shining eyes signify good health! If your dog is prone to runny eyes, keep watch on the color of the goop. It should be clear.
  4. Clean ears: Clean, odor-free ears are healthy.
  5. Strong nails: Brittle nails can be a clue for an underlying condition. Nails should be strong and kept trimmed.
  6. A shiny coat: It might not be a literal shine if your dog loves to roll in puddles, but a healthy coat that shines (when clean) and is free from mats and odor means healthy skin.
  7. A cold, wet nose: There’s a reason this phrase describes a happy, healthy dog. While his nose doesn’t really need to be cold and wet, it shouldn’t be hot, dry, or cracked.
  8. Smell-free: Yes, dogs roll in stuff. They can get wet and stinky. However, a clean dog with an odor, or any odor from eyes, ears, butt, or gender-specific parts means a trip to the vet.
  9. Smoothness: All dogs can get lumps and bumps. Many mean nothing, but some mean something. If you run your hands along your dog and feel any raised or lumpy parts, anything but a smooth layer of fat, it’s time to see your vet.
  10. Tail wags: Just as we feel grumpy when sick, so can our dogs. If your pup is normally a happy, wagging guy, a droopy tail may indicate ill-health.

Finally, you know your dog better than anyone—even your vet. If you notice other signs specific to your dog, never hesitate to schedule that appointment, even if it’s something you can’t quite put a finger on (i.e. “He’s not acting like himself.”). A healthy dog is a happy dog!

Maggie Marton
Maggie Marton


Maggie Marton is a freelance writer based in Indianapolis. When not hiking with her two pit mixes, Emmett and Cooper, or playing with Newt the Cat, Maggie writes about them (and the pet industry) at ohmydogblog.com and maggiemarton.com. 

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