Wellness exams are a vital component of what is known as “preventive medicine”. The goal of preventive medicine is to find and treat diseases BEFORE they become serious. This is typically much easier on the pet, the owner and the pocket book!
That old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” holds true for our pets as well. There have been so many advances in veterinary medicine that many diseases which may have greatly shortened your pet’s lifespan in the past can now be managed (if detected early) so that your pet can live a longer, happier life.
At the time of your pet’s wellness exam a veterinarian will perform a full physical examination of your pet. Some examples of physical exam findings may include: dental disease, weight issues, ear/skin infections, dry eye, heart murmurs, skin tumors, cataracts, painful joints, and flea/tick/tapeworm infestations. After the physical exam has been completed, your veterinarian will discuss any screening lab work that may be indicated for your pet. The tests that are recommended will be determined by your pet’s age, breed, lifestyle and physical exam findings.
How often should a wellness exam be performed?
This can vary depending on your pet’s age, breed, lifestyle and illness history. Generally, younger animals (less than 7 years of age) need annual wellness exams. Older pets (over 7 years of age) should have wellness exams every 6 months. Pets with potentially serious diseases may need more frequent exams and laboratory testing.
Recommended things to bring to your wellness appointment with your pet:
- Previous medical history (including vaccinations) of your pet (if new to us)
- Stool sample that is less than 24 hours old - For more information, see Parasite Control
- Names of products and or supplements and food that you apply or feed to your pet
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