Routine wellness exams (pet checkups) can help to provide your dog or cat with its best chance at health and longevity. Our Redding vets explain what happens when you bring your pet in for a checkup at Dana Park Veterinary Hospital.
Your Pet's Wellness Check
When you bring your dog or cat into our Redding veterinary clinic for a wellness checkup, your vet will go over your pet's medical history and answer specific concerns you might have.
After, your veterinarian will perform a physical checkup of your pet which usually includes some or all of the following:
- Listening to your pet's heart and lungs
- Noting your animal's weight, stance, and gait
- Checking your pet's eyes for signs of redness, cloudiness, eyelid issues, excessive teariness, or abnormal discharge
- Inspecting your dog or cat's coat for signs of conditions including dandruff, or abnormal hair loss
- Examining your pet's feet and nails for damage or indications of more serious health concerns
- Looking at your pet's ears for signs of bacterial infection, ear mites, wax build-up, or polyps
- Examining the condition of your pet's teeth for any indications of periodontal disease, damage, or decay
- Checking your dog or cat's skin for a range of issues from dryness to parasites to lumps and bumps (particularly in skin folds)
- Palpate your pet's abdomen to assess the health of the of their internal organs and check for signs of discomfort
- Palpating the body for any signs of illness such as swelling, evidence of lameness such as limited range of motion, and signs of pain
All of these tests are carried out to detect any signs of health problems or conditions your pet may be experiencing. Since our dogs and cats can't tell us when they are in pain or discomfort, these tests and checks can help to determine how your furry friend is feeling overall.
Keep Your Pet's Vaccines Up-to-Date
Vaccines are designed to protect your four-legged friend against common, contagious, and potentially life-threatening diseases. The vaccines recommended for your dog or cat will be based on the requirements of your area of residence and where you live and your pet's lifestyle.
Core vaccines for dogs and cats are recommended for all pets, whereas lifestyle vaccines are most often recommended for pets that are regularly in contact with other animals. For more information about recommended pet vaccines, contact your primary vet.
Adult pets will need to be provided with 'booster shots regularly to maintain their protection against disease. In most cases, boosters are given annually or once every three years. Your vet will be sure to let you know when your dog or cat's booster shots are due.
Preventing Parasitic Diseases & Conditions
Parasites are a serious health threat to Redding pets. Ticks and mosquitos carry parasites that can invade your pet's body and cause potentially fatal conditions, that's why your vet will recommend ways to prevent parasites from invading your four-legged friend. It's also important to keep in mind that some of these dangerous parasites can pass from pets to their loving owners!
Your vet might ask you to bring in a sample of your pet's stool for us to perform a fecal exam. Fecal exams allow our vet to check your pet's stool for signs of common intestinal parasites which would be very difficult to detect otherwise.
Heartworm testing is often part of your pet's annual checkup, and it allows your vet to examine your animal's blood for the earliest signs of heartworm disease. Early detection of heartworm provides your pet with the best possible chance of a good treatment outcome if they have contracted this serious parasitic condition.
Parasite prevention can help to protect your pet from issues and conditions including:
- Lyme Disease
- Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
About the Cost Of Routine Checkups
At Dana Park Veterinary Hospital our team understands that bringing your pet in to see us even when they seem fine might seem like an unnecessary expense but routine checkups help your pet's veterinarian to detect signs of disease in the earliest stages when many conditions are easiest to treat, and also to provide your pet with quality preventive care - from vaccines to parasite prevention medications. When compared to treating advanced forms of conditions, disorders, or diseases, (especially heartworm) regularly scheduled checkups will save you money.
Not only that, but they will make sure your pet experiences a minimal amount of discomfort or pain from any health issues they are experiencing. The sooner a medical issue is detected, the sooner it can be diagnosed and treated.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.