🐶 The Top 5 Puppy Illnesses: What You Need to Know! 🐾

As pet owners, it’s important to be aware of the common illnesses that puppies may contract. Dr. Natalie Marks has reviewed decades of Trupanion claims data to identify the most frequently filed claims for puppies under one year. In this article, we will discuss the five most common illnesses, how to identify them, and what steps to take if your puppy gets sick.

Medial Patellar Luxation (MPL)

One common condition that puppies may experience is Medial Patellar Luxation, or MPL for short. MPL occurs when the kneecap slides out of its normal position, causing discomfort and pain. While some dogs may adapt and adjust their patella back into place, others may require veterinary intervention. Small dog breeds are particularly prone to MPL. If you suspect an MPL injury, it is crucial to consult a veterinarian who may recommend treatments such as surgery. Trust the experts and avoid self-diagnosing or treating this condition at home.

Fractured Bones

Puppies, much like young children, tend to explore their surroundings without fully understanding the risks. Consequently, fractures are not uncommon among puppies. In the event of an obvious fracture, it is essential to remain calm and seek immediate veterinary care. To locate an emergency clinic, consult your regular vet or conduct prior internet research. Remember to store the clinic’s location and contact number in your phone for easy access. In some cases, fractures may not be immediately apparent. Signs such as limping, yelping, or sensitivity to touch indicate the need for diagnostic tests performed by a veterinarian. X-rays and potentially MRI scans may be necessary to determine the extent of the injury.


Lameness refers to a puppy’s inability to use one or more limbs properly. It can result from various conditions, including strains, sprains, fractures, or dislocations. Lameness serves as an indication that further investigation is necessary. Consulting a veterinarian is crucial for accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. Remember that diagnostic tests can accumulate costs. For instance, one puppy’s family incurred a bill of over eleven thousand dollars when their dog started limping. Thankfully, their Trupanion policy covered a significant portion of the expenses.

Foreign Body Ingestion

Puppies have a natural inclination to chew and explore the world using their mouths. Unfortunately, this behaviour sometimes leads to the ingestion of foreign objects. Socks, rocks, corn cobs, and small toys are just a few examples of items puppies may attempt to consume. Foreign body ingestion can result in obstructions or damage to the stomach and intestines, requiring surgical intervention. If you suspect that your puppy has ingested something they shouldn’t, do not wait for it to pass naturally. Instead, promptly visit your veterinarian to ensure timely and appropriate treatment. Remember, Trupanion policies cover unexpected illnesses and injuries, including diagnostic tests such as X-rays and MRIs.

Vomiting and Diarrhoea

Vomiting and diarrhea are common signs that something is wrong with your puppy. These symptoms can indicate various issues, including obstructions, poisoning, or parasites. If your puppy exhibits vomiting or diarrhea, closely monitor their condition. Trupanion members have filed numerous claims related to these symptoms, with the highest-paid claim exceeding fifteen thousand dollars for a three-month-old puppy. If you notice these signs persisting or worsening, do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian for guidance and proper care.


Being aware of the most common illnesses your puppy may contract is vital for every pet owner. Understanding the signs and symptoms, seeking prompt veterinary care, and relying on the expertise of professionals are essential steps to ensure your puppy’s well-being. Remember, Trupanion policies can provide coverage for unexpected illnesses and injuries, including diagnostic tests such as X-rays and MRIs. By staying vigilant and proactive in your puppy’s healthcare, you can help ensure their health and happiness for years to come.