You are concerned because your pet has recently become (insert symptom of your choice here.) You call your veterinarian and schedule an appointment. Sound familiar? This is the typical scenario for millions of pet owners across the nation. While unplanned visits to the veterinarian cannot be eliminated all together, they can be kept to a minimum. How? With Preventive Care. Our Preventive Care program is comprehensive and designed to evaluate the present overall wellness of your pet as well as catch diseases before your pet feels sick. On average, pets age 7 years for each 1 human year, therefore change resulting in serious conditions can occur quickly. With this in mind, we recommend a planned, annual Preventive Care visit.
The Preventive Care Exam:
- First, our veterinarian will collect a history of your pet and talk with you about his or her lifestyle, medical conditions, and prior vaccination history.
- Next, our veterinarian will perform a comprehensive preventive care examination including eyes, ears, teeth, gums, heart, lungs, musculoskeletal system, external urogenital system, nervous system, abdomen and digestive tract, coat, skin, and lymph nodes. You will receive a print out of this report.
- During the exam you’ll have the chance to ask any questions you may have about your pet’s health. You can ask about the aging process, dental health, breed predispositions, behavioral issues, diet, exercise, and any other concerns you might have. We know your pet is a valuable member of your family, and we encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity to quiz the expert!.
- Finally, you and your veterinarian will customize your pet’s future deworming and vaccination schedule. Most booster vaccines no longer need to be given annually. Depending upon your pet’s lifestyle and medical history, some boosters will be given annually, some every other year, and some every third year.
Preventive Care Blood Work and Urinalysis
A cornerstone of Preventive Care is laboratory tests. Having blood work and urinalysis done on your pet can determine if there is anything serious going on even if your pet is not presenting symptoms clinically. Blood Work and Urinalysis are recommended for senior (8 years and older) pets. Many so-called "old age" diseases such as kidney failure or liver disease may not be apparent until they are in the final stages. Blood and urine tests are the only way to catch these conditions early. Baseline laboratory tests include:
- Full Blood Screen - Checking for liver and kidney function, as well as diabetes and electrolyte problems
- Urinalysis - check for certain kidney functions, diabetes, and infection
- Complete Blood Count - Check for anemia and infections
- Thyroid Screening - Check for common hormonal conditions
Preventive Dental Care
Good dental care can add 5 years to your pet’s life. Tartar and gum disease produces more than just "bad breath," they can also lead to disease of the
heart, liver, lungs and kidneys. Studies show that by age 3, 80 percent of dogs exhibit signs of gum disease. Small dog breeds are more likely than large breeds to develop periodontal disease. According to studies, about 70 percent of cats have signs of gum disease by age 3. Your annual Preventive Care Exam will disclose if your pet needs a Dental Prophylaxis (dental cleaning). Routine dental prophylaxis usually consists of scaling, polishing, and fluoride treatment, but may also include tooth extractions and antibiotic therapy depending upon the extent of the dental disease.
The Cost of Preventive Care
In terms of quality and length of life issues, Preventive Care is priceless. In terms of cold hard cash, Preventive Care is more cost effective than crisis care. The monetary cost of prevention is much less than the cost of treating conditions once they present clinically.