The 28 Most Common Pet Disease Names Defined

Taking care of your pet in sickness and in health requires that you become familiar with common pet diseases and disease names. The better educated you become regarding pet disease, and different types of disease, the more prepared you will be to seek medical intervention for your dog or cat.

Causes of Common Pet Diseases

Common diseases in dogs and cats may be due to the following:

  • Bacterial diseases
  • Viral diseases
  • Parasitic infection
  • Blood diseases

Common Diseases Affecting Both Dogs and Cats Defined

  • CHV, caused by the canine herpes virus, involving rhinitis, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, fever, corneal and oral ulcers, early puppy wasting away and death
  • Cat scratch disease (CSD), caused by the bacterium Bartonella henselae, involving swollen lymph nodes, fever, headache, fatigue, loss of appetite
  • Campylobacteriosis, caused by the bacterium Campylobacter jejuni, involving diarrhea, intestinal inflammation.
  • Q Fever, or Coxiellosis, caused by the bacterium, Coxiella burnetti, involving urinary tract, liver and nervous system problems.
  • Cryptosporidiosis, caused by the parasite Cryptosporidium parvum, involving watery diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps, nausea, and vomiting
  • Hookworm, caused by various parasites, involving intestinal bleeding, pain and swelling.
  • Giardiasis, caused by the parasite Giardia intestinalis, involving diarrhea; malodorous feces; digestive problems; weight loss
  • Leptospirosis, caused by Leptospira bacteria, involving depression, coughing, vomiting, fever, anemia, dehydration, weakness, heart problems, liver damage, weight loss
  • Lyme disease, caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, involving "bull's-eye" rash; fever; headache; muscle and joint pain; lameness; kidney, heart and nerve damage
  • Pyoderma, caused by the bacterium Staphylococcus intermedius, involving rashes, pimples, blisters, scaling, hair loss, "hot spots"
  • Rabies, caused by the rabies virus, involving fever, headache, confusion, agitation, hostility, foaming at the mouth.
  • Roundworm, caused by the parasite Toxocara canis in dogs and T. cati in cats, involving vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and swelling, abnormal stools.
  • Salmonellosis, caused by Salmonella bacteria, involving diarrhea, fever, stomach pain, infection of internal organs.
  • Tapeworm, caused by the parasites Taenia spp. and Dipylidium caninum, involving scooting, weight loss, excreting worm segments in stools.

Common Dog Diseases Defined

  • Brucellosis, caused by the bacterium Brucella canis, involving watery or bloody diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, abortion of fetuses, early death of offspring.
  • Distemper, caused by the canine distemper virus (CDV), involving fever, loss of appetite, watery eyes, vomiting, diarrhea, breathing difficulties.
  • Leptospirosis, caused by Leptospira bacteria, involving high fever, shivering, muscle tenderness, excessive vomiting, dehydration, hypothermia.
  • Mange, caused by sarcoptic mites and demodex mites (parasites), involving irritated skin, scaling, skin infection, intense itching, extensive hair loss.
  • "Parvo," caused by the parvovirus, involving weight loss, fever, vomiting, nasal discharge, pus-filled eyes, diarrhea, dark or bloody feces.
  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, caused by the bacterium Rickettsia rickettsii, involving rash, stomach pain, joint pain, diarrhea.

Common Cat Diseases Defined

  • Chlamydial conjunctivitis, caused by the bacterium Chlamydia psittaci, involving conjunctivitis, fever, diarrhea.
  • FCV, caused by the feline calcivirus, involving rhinitis, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, fever, corneal and oral ulcers, gum disease, joint pain.
  • FeLV, caused by the feline leukemia virus, involving increased susceptibility to bacterial and viral diseases, cancer, lymphoma, behavioral changes.
  • FHV, caused by the feline herpes virus, involving rhinitis, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, fever, corneal and oral ulcers.
  • FIV, caused by the feline immunodeficiency virus, involving susceptibility to infection, fever, depression, swollen lymph glands.
  • FIP, feline infectious peritonitis, caused by the feline coronavirus. Symptoms of "wet" FIP include fluid build-up in the chest and abdomine, gastrointestinal distress, conjunctivitis, eye ulcers, and neurological problems. Symptoms of "dry" FIP include depression, weight loss, fever, anemia.
  • FLUTD, or feline lower urinary tract diseased, caused by bacterial or viral infections, involving intense pain, increased urge to urinate, reduced production of urine, bloody urine, straining or crying while urinating.
  • Toxoplasmosis, caused by the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, involving swollen glands, muscle aches, flu-like symptoms.